Calendar of the Season
Milk and milk products are important for strong bones and healthy teeth. Children should have 3-4 servings a day. Try this fun recipe with the children:
Berries and Cream
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 cups frozen berries (any one or combination of strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, or raspberries)
Place two dessert cups or bowls in the freezer to chill.
Mix heavy cream and sugar in a small bowl.
Remove dessert cups and place berries in them. Berries need to stay frozen.
Drizzle cream over berries to coat, stirring constantly.
Quickly spoon into serving dishes and keep in the freezer until ready to eat.
Makes 2 servings! Enjoy!
Here's a recipe for a healthy and delicious snack to make with the children. Ask your host family about any allergies before baking.
- 1 3/4 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/3 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour 8" square metal cake pan.
- In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.
- In large bowl, with an electric mixer, beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg until combined. Beat in applesauce.
- On low speed, add dry ingredients and beat just until combined and flour is barely visible. Stir in walnuts.
- Scrape batter into prepared cake pan. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- Cool in pan on a rack completely before cutting into 2" squares.
A quick and easy indoor craft activity uses dry pasta, pipe cleaners and glue to make adorable moveable figures. Click here for directions.
Are you caring for children who are fussy eaters or are reluctant to try new things? Make a tasting passport. Take several pieces of computer paper and fold in half and staple. On the front write "Tasting Passport" and the child's name and the date you started. Look for food pictures in magazines (old magazines are often recycled at libraries or at the town dump) that the child can glue into their passport when they try a new food. Or you can write the name of the food or look for food stickers where stationery or crafts are sold. Stamping each page with a rubber stamp will make it even more official.
Flying the American flag is more popular than ever. It is a symbol of the country's values and traditions. The design has particular significance. Its 13 red and white stripes represent the original colonies and the 50 stars stand for the states. You might also want to use this day to teach the children about your own flag. You can find a print out of the American flag and flags of many other countries in the Kids Culture Corner.
Erickson was born in Germany in 1902 and later moved to the US. He is famous for his studies of Native Americans and for giving us a new way to understand child development. Until a baby is one and a half the main learning is learning to trust, which is why is it so important to make babies feel safe and secure. The next stage is until age 3 or 4. At this time children start to learn about the world around them and they need to have the freedom to explore. This can require a lot of patience! From age 3 or 4 to 5 or 6 is the time children learn to take on some simple responsibilities and to learn new, more complicated skills. Imagination is very important at this stage. School age children, from age 6 to 12, must learn about social relationships outside their own families. It is not until this age that they can really learn to follow rules. During adolescence teenagers begin to know who they are and how they fit into society - it is not an easy job to figure this out.
Can you recognize your children in this description? Are these descriptions true in your culture as well?
To honor the father in your family, work together to make one of these special homemade gifts.
The Statue of Liberty arrived in New York. The Statue of Liberty was a gift from the people of France in 1885 to recognize the French-American cooperation during the American Revolution (War of Independence against Britain in 1776). It stands 93 meters (305 feet) high in New York Harbor. The seven rays on her crown represent the seven continents and seven seas of the world.
Look at a map with the children and find the seven continents and the seven seas. Why do you think New York Harbor was chosen for the statue? Click here for more history of the statue.
Do you and the children know where their families lived before they moved to the United States? Ask your host parents to tell you about their family history. Explore the history with the children. Make a family tree or find a book about the country where their family once lived.
MC Escher was born in 1898. He was a Dutch graphic artist. Older school age children will be fascinated by his spatial illusions, impossible buildings, repeating geometric patterns (tessellations), and his incredible techniques in woodcutting and lithography. You can view his artwork at www.nga.gov/collection/gallery/ggescher/ggescher-main1.html.
This day celebrates the freedom of over 250,000 slaves at the close of the Civil War in the United States in 1865. Over the years, Juneteenth festivals have evolved into day long events that include picnics, parades, music, dancing, and baseball. To learn more about Juneteenth explore this website: www.infoplease.com/spot/juneteenth1.html.
Long hot days make for children who need some quiet time. Relax and unwind at the end of the day with some summertime reading. Here are some books to choose from:
Picture books to read aloud:
- Grandma Summer by Harley Jessup
Initially grumpy about his trip with Grandma to her beach cottage, Ben slowly comes around as he falls under the spell of the old house, the seashore, and his grandmother.
- Albie the Lifeguard by Louise Borden, illustrated by Elizabeth Sayles
Albie gains the courage to go swimming at the town pool one summer.
- Amelia Bedelia Goes Camping by Peggy Parish, illustrated by Lynn Sweat
Amelia Bedelia, who takes everything literally, has never been camping before and she's trying her best to do exactly as she's told. Her efforts make for a very funny book.
For beginning readers or to read aloud:
- The Camp Knock Knock Mystery by Betsy Duffey, illustrated by Fiona Dunbar
Crow and Willie have a not-entirely-friendly competition at camp over who tells the best knock-knock jokes. Willie spends the week looking for his joke book, which Crow has hidden.
- Cool Ali by Nancy Poydar
One hot summer day, Ali takes her sidewalk chalk and draws the things that everyone needs - a little lake for Mrs. Frye to dip her toes into, a beach umbrella, the North Wind. But what will happen when a summer storm comes
- Last One in Is a Rotten Egg by Leonard P. Kessler
Freddy can't swim in the deep water. When some big kids throw him into the pool his friends and mother encourage him to ask the lifeguard for lessons. Freddy learns how to float, to breathe and blow bubbles in the water, and how to move his arms and legs, until he can jump into the deep water with his friends.
- Sally Goes to the Mountains by Stephen Huneck
Sally goes for a ride to the mountains, where there will be all kinds of new friends to meet: bears, moose, rabbits, and skunks! There will be berries to pick, sticks to fetch, and a lake to swim in. Sally can hardly wait!
- The Summer My Father Was Ten by Pat Brisson, illustrated by Andrea Shine
A young girl tells how every year she and her father plant a garden together, and every year he tells her the story of the summer he was 10 when he led his mates in vandalizing the garden of his lonely, old Italian neighbor but later righted the wrong
Born in Germany in 1400, Gutenberg is credited with creating the first moveable type, making printed material available to more people and making reading a more important skill. His invention changed the world. Make a book with your children about themselves and their year with you. What a great keepsake when you leave! You can decorate pages with drawings, memories and photographs and staple them together. If there are rubber stamps in the house you can try some printing of your own.
Children should eat 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. Many children prefer the crunch of raw food - especially popular are apples, pears, carrots, broccoli, celery and cucumbers. Use your imagination to serve cut up vegetables in an interesting way. For example, make a figure with carrot stick arms and legs, a celery body and a round of cucumber for a head. You can also grow your own vegetables with the children. Radishes are ready to eat about 3 weeks after planting and grow easily in a small amount of space.
Visit your local zoo or aquarium or set up a pretend zoo with play animals and blocks. Invite the host parents to visit your pretend zoo. Read One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish or If I Ran the Zoo, both by Dr. Seuss. Encourage the children to make up their own animals and draw them. Think of all the animal sounds you can and play a game guessing what animal you are. You may find that the same animal says one thing in America and something quite different in your own country!
Native Americans used dreamcatchers to keep bad dreams away and let good dreams come in. Simple to make for 5 year olds and older, this is a fun craft activity that can then be hung in the child’s room. Be sure to look for related books at the library. Visit this website for directions and details.