Naptime Reads

Happy Friday Friends!

Welcome to another roundup of our favorite things we read this week. We hope you find the articles and resources as helpful or encouraging as we did!

 

We could all use a little more kindness in our lives! And we could definitely read more about kindness with our charges. Here’s a list of books that encourage kindness towards others. Mackenzie loves Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Pena, it won the Newbury Medal last year and it was a Caldecott Honor Book!

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How do we prepare our little people to do hard things? How can we help set them up for success when they face challenges? What are some ways that we can foster grit? Katie Westenberg writes a list of five ways we can help to raise overcomes. {This article originally appeared on Katie’s Blog}

 

As caregivers we are constantly looking for the best developmental toys/tools to help children grow. This website has a great list of toys that can help stimulate brain or gross motor growth. We also love that it matches a learning standard to each toy it suggests!

 

Sometimes, or most of the time, we don’t always get a break in our jobs. Our line of work has a lot going on all at once; lunch, clean up, prep for activities. Nap time means meal prep, planning, and cleaning up toys. So what do you do if you’re overwhelmed and need to reset at work? I love this list of how to reset and refocus in two minutes. Let us know if any of them worked for you!

 

Can you love a kid too much? We don’t think so. And neither does Deborah MacNamara! Creating a safe space with dependable and deep connection allows children to grow. It gives them confidence to move forward and to try! After reading this article, we wanted to go read her book too!

“At the end of the day, the most important lesson is this: Children don’t need to be pushed to separate or to grow up. What kids need most are deep relationships and to be freed from their hunger for connection.”

 

We hope your weekend is filled with restful moments!

Cheers!

Mackenzie and Kathryn

Naptime Reads

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Jean E. Pendziwol’s No Dragons for Tea: Fire Safety for Kids (and Dragons) is a fantastic resource for teaching fire safety, if you’re in the market for that sort of thing. It’s how my 3 year old charge learned “stop, drop, and roll.”

Power struggles are one of those tricky scenarios you can fall into before you realize it. Parenting Beyond Punishment has some helpful tips here to sidestep or resolve them.

I’m always encouraging my charges to make a mess on the job. Children primarily learn through their senses. My employers have always gotten it, but it can be hard selling some parents on the idea. This post from Creative Sense offers a handy and thorough break-down of how sensory experiences benefit children in learning and development.

A simply truth that seems too easily forgotten: children are people too, via Happiness is Here.

Need a summer boredom buster? Make ice cream in a bag (via 2 Little Hooligans) or knock out one of the science experiments on this fantastic roundup from Growing a Jeweled Rose.

Happy Weekend!

Kathryn

 

Naptime Reads

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Does your charge have a book he or she wants you to read over and over and over again? Try to hold your tears of frustration, the repetition is actually good for them.

Have you heard of Brains On? It’s a science podcast geared for kids ages 7 and up. It’s based around “why?” questions like Why is the ocean salty? and Why dont carnivores need to eat their vegetables? Do you have older charges who like to know the why’s and how’s? They’ll dig this.

Tired of asking your charges “How was your day?” Here’s 50 questions to ask them instead.

The folks at the Tinkergarten blog More Than Mudpies on why children love to demolish and knock down.

This video of a little girl who does NOT want to put her feet in the grass made us smile.

Happy weekend, nannies!

Mackenzie & Kathryn

 

Naptime Reads

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Bill Murphy Jr. on how to read to children in a way that develops intellectual empathy here. Hint: ask questions that force them to put themselves in the story.

My oldest charge picked out The Queen’s Hat by Steve Antony on our weekly library visit, and it was a firm favorite. We giggled all the way through this charming little romp through London to find the Queen’s hat that’s been blown away by the breeze. She, her corgi, and her guards visit some famous landmarks along the way, with cute illustrations to boot. I later learned it’s by the same man who wrote and illustrated Please, Mr. Panda. Steve Antony never disappoints.

To kick off summer, a recipe for sidewalk chalk that glows in the dark. How cool would this be at night?!

Janet Lansbury (our childcare hero) on how and why you should stop entertaining your toddler.

When encouraged to do something independently, does your charge pipe up instantly and say, “I can’t!”? (Mine does!). Kelly from The Reformed Idealist Mom writes here on the one word that can stop a child’s negative self-talk. Game-changer.

On a personal note: Thank you for all your kind responses to this post last week. Nanny community, you guys are the bees knees. Mackenzie and I think you’re pretty lovely.

Happy Weekend!

Kathryn

 

 

Naptime Reads

Summer is coming!!! And some days the sunshine is already here in full force. If you’re looking for a safe sunscreen, here’s a great list of the worst and best to use! Personal favorites on the best list: California Baby (Super Sensative) and Badger’s Chamomile & Calendula.

Tragedy is not a subject we love to write about. But as nannies, parents, or caregivers we can be faced with concersations about big events. The tragic events in Manchester this week are one example of things we may have to talk to children about. Linda Stade has a great list of advice on how to listen to children when they want to talk about tradgedy.

We love books! And books we can read to our girls that are empowering? We love them even more! Here are a few great summer reads for your future world changers.

Mrs. Potts told the Beast, “You MUST control your temper!” Turns out this is also good advice when looking into Emotional Regulation. As caregivers we have to learn to be calm enough to hold our charges big emotions. “This very challenging task — regulating our own emotions so that we can guide our child lovingly rather than indulging in our own tantrum — is fundamental to good parenting. But it’s not just good for our kids. This inner work also helps us to grow into happier people.”  We love what Dr. Laura Markham has to say about this topic. It’s pretty great advice!
Mackenzie here! I am a self proclaimed crunchy nanny. I believe in teaching kids yoga, using essential oils, and helping ease tantrums with meditation techniques. So, roll with me for a minute as I present an article on EFT. It’s a “tapping” technique from Chinese medicine that helps ease the nervous system using pressure points. Try it on yourself as you’re emotionally regulating and see if it helps!

We read this “letter to a new mom” article and cried a little. May we be the message of “you are one hell of a mom” to the moms in our lives. The ones we know, the ones we work with, and the ones we may be one day.

We all hope kids will be well adjusted and kind. And apparently it starts with healthy relationships! Rebecca Eanes wrote a great article about the top 10 habits we can weave into daily life to help our charges as they grow!

This video is not new, but it is AMAZING! If you ever need inspiration on a long day, here it is: “Mother of Dragons” by Tai Weinman

Naptime Reads


Play is SO important. We are advocates if free play, down time, and letting kids explore without an agenda. Here is an amazing article with a lot of great reasons why we believe these things are so vital!

Do you make funny voices when you read aloud to children? Do you add in noises? Great! Studies now show that helps children read better in later years!

We love talking to babies. Why? Because it’s way more fun to have full conversations! Apparently it can improve children’s vocabulary if you pretend you understand their babbling and answer with a conversation. That’s pretty fascinating to me!

Think nannies are just overglorified babysitters? Probably not if you’re reading our blog. But now, nanny training is getting even more intense! In Britain, they’re training their nannies on counter terrorism and cyber security!
Bonus: We LOVE this roundup of the best Yoga Videos for children!

Naptime Reads

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Don’t let those spring showers keep you indoors. Mother Natured has an article on 50 ways to play in the rain.

Speaking of outdoor play, this book by a Swedish mom looks intriguing.

I can’t say enough good things about this kids sticker subscription service. Adorably designed, well priced, and free shipping within the USA. What could be better than getting fresh sticker sheets in the mail?

“Be careful!” is one of those phrases I catch myself saying to my charges often. This dad’s article breaks down how that phrase communicates fear, and what to say instead.

This might just be the prettiest kids activity book I’ve ever seen.

A toddler’s observation is powerful – I’m sometimes caught off guard by the rituals they pick up on. Watch this sweet little fellow make coffee for his dad AND clean up afterwards.

I’ve been playing Caspar Babypants non-stop for my charges (thanks to our friend Lolo’s recommendation). Their music manages the mammoth task of charming both kids and adults, and their videos are quirky and delightful.

Have a good week, folks!

Kathryn