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When I was a preschool teacher, my class would start every day by shouting “Learning is an adventure!” Then we would talk about the adventures of learning! Learning can be fun, scary, easy, hard, silly, sad, intimidating and crazy! Learning is truly an adventure because of the feelings we have while we are on our learning journey and because we are learning our WHOLE LIFE! But, how do we get our kids to see the world through the eyes of a lifelong learner? How do we instill this attitude in our children? The following tips have helped me to guide my children (both in the classroom and at home) in learning to love learning!

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April 12, 2018
Rachel Grapes

Games for Diverse Little Learners

STEM, Learning Through Play, Learning at Home, STEM Education / Play

Playing games is not only a lot of fun but can also provide numerous benefits for people of all abilities!

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February 15, 2018
Dimitra Neonakis

Geology Rocks!

STEAM, STEM, Learning Through Play, STEM Education / Play

Dimitra Neonakis always had a love for science and nature, but came late in life to formal science education. With degrees in visual and performing arts and an environmental monitoring certificate, Dimitra brings her A game to STEAM education. Dimitra has designed and classroom-tested science activities for formal and informal k-12 and collegiate science education since 2005. She works both with at risk and neurodiverse populations as well as typical students. Students fondly refer to her as Ms. Dee and Ms. Frizzle and they all agree that science is fun!

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February 01, 2018
Melinda Contreras

The Evolution of ThinkFun's Rush Hour

STEM, Learning Through Play, STEM Education / Play, Insider

Rush Hour is ThinkFun’s most successful game to date, delighting families for over 20 years! Adults that grew up with the game proudly gift Rush Hour to their children, nieces, nephews, and grandparents alike.

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January 11, 2018
Melinda Contreras

4 STEM Activities for Winter

STEM, Learning Through Play, STEM Education / Play, Learning at Home

Winter is in full swing and many of us are experiencing frigid temperatures. If you're staying indoors to keep warm, these four Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) activities will keep your little ones entertained. In addition to keeping busy, they'll be learning too! How can marshmallows help you learn engineering and necklaces help you learn code? Read below to find out!

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December 21, 2017
Matthew Farber

Games, Hacking, and the 21st Century Skill of Systems Thinking

Creativity, Kids And Creativity, Learning Through Play, STEM Education / Play

All games are systems: the rules (or constraints), components (game pieces), space (from a soccer field to a game board to a tablet screen), and goal (to win!) interconnect. A game’s interconnected system is driven by player actions; as players learn a game, they also learn its system. Scholar James Paul Gee wrote, “Games encourage players to think about relationships, not isolated events, facts, and skills. In a game like Rise of Nations, for instance, players need to think of how each action taken might impact their future actions and the actions of the other players playing against them as they each move their civilizations through the Ages.” Similar to the aforementioned civilization building game Rise of Nations, the city management series SimCity tasks players with balancing a complex urban system. Another systems thinking game is Plague, Inc., in which players release a pathogen into a map of the world. Playing it illustrates how actual infections spread around the globe.

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