Kitchen Math: No Bake-Cookies

No-Bake cookies help us avoid the stress of working an oven with our little helpers in the kitchen, so we and our children can focus more on the fun side of baking. One way we liven up our baking recipes is by teaching our child the value of measurements when pouring our batter. Since we want all our cookies the same size, now is a great opportunity to teach your child about inches. That way, they have a good sense of how much batter to pour out for each cookie and they get a started on some geometry!

"no-bake cookies" by Melissa Hiller ©2012. Some rights reserved. Licensed by Creative Commons Public Works License

“no-bake cookies” by Melissa Hiller ©2012. Some rights reserved. Licensed by Creative Commons Public Works License

What you’ll need:
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
3/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons cocoa
1/2 cup milk
3 cups oatmeal
1/2 cup peanut butter (or any kind of nut/cookie butter if your child has allergies)
1 tsp. vanilla
Instructions:
Before you begin, make sure your Blaster knows their measurements! Bring out a ruler so that they can really understand the length of an inch and foot. For your middle school student, feel free to add in some lessons about diameter and circumference of a circle!

1.Mix together the honey, cocoa, butter, and milk.
2.Warm on medium heat.
3.Let ingredients boil for a minute and add the other ingredients .
4.Once the pot has had a chance to cool, let your Blaster spoon out the batter. Have them measure out cookies that are 2 inches long onto wax paper.
5. Let the cookies cool enough to harden.

Enjoy your cookies! Keep them refrigerated so they do not spoil. You can even include some math problems after you finish cooking. Ask them how many cookies would you have to lay out to make a foot and have them measure with a ruler to check their answer! As a reward, let them embark on some Red Alert missions with their tasty treat.

Add Some Math to Your Valentine’s Day Festivities

Valentine’s Day is a holiday that involves expressing feelings from your heart, but that does not mean you cannot integrate some mental math into your activities while you’re at it. With all the cards, candy, and heart-shaped items, you have plenty to work from to make your Valentine’s Day filled with math and science! Here are some ideas you can work on to make your February 14th a day filled with some extra love for arithmetic:

Photo by Johntex, ©2007 Some rights reserved. Licensed by Creative Commons Public Works License

Photo by Johntex, ©2007 Some rights reserved. Licensed by Creative Commons Public Works License

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Fall Activities: Leaf Rubbing

Photo by Emma Craig, ©2013 Some rights reserved. Licensed by Creative Commons Public Works License.

Photo by Emma Craig, ©2013 Some rights reserved. Licensed by Creative Commons Public Works License.

Make the most of your leaf strewn lawn by incorporating Fall foliage into this fun activity with your kids! It’s simple and uses supplies that you probably already have at home, plus it creates instant seasonal artwork for your home! This is a great opportunity to teach your child about the different types of trees in your neighborhood!

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Family Health and Fitness Day is Coming!

Photo by: Evil Erin

Photo Strawberry Smoothie by: Evil Erin, ©2010 Some rights reserved. Licensed by Creative Commons Public Works License.

The last Saturday in September is designated as Family Health and Fitness Day by the Health Information Resource Center (HIRC) and the U.S. Surgeon General. Local organizations organize fun, health-related events at parks, schools, and communities across the nation to teach the whole family health and fitness basics. Whether you choose to participate in the organized events or want to go it alone, we’ve got some great fitness tips to get your family moving.


Get Everyone Involved

With children of different ages and at different skill levels, it can sometimes be tough to find an activity that everyone can participate in. One way to even out an imbalance is to pair younger children with older siblings and cousins or an adult. For example, try a three-legged race where pairs are comprised of one younger player and one older player. You can also play traditional games like hide and seek– your young ones might actually have an advantage here! Alternatively, take the family out for a walk or bike ride that everyone can enjoy!

Start With Basics

You don’t have to organize a full on basketball tournament or host the ultimate soccer showdown– help your children build their basic sports skills by practicing dribbling the ball down the court or having a goal kicking contest. Your older children can help their younger siblings improve by sharing their experiences and teaching them firsthand!

Keep Cool

September temperatures can be warm, so remember to stay hydrated and keep cool! Have plenty of water on hand and incorporate fun water activities into your day! Surprise the kids with a new water slide or bust out the squirt guns to start an all-out family showdown!

Most of all, have fun! Fitness is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, and this is a great chance to show your kids that working out and being active is fun for the whole family! Whether you hit the park, the beach, the gym or the backyard, there’s family fun to be had for all this weekend! Now that you’ve read our fitness tips, head on over to the JumpStart blog for our post on how to celebrate the health aspect of this event!

Kick Off Summer in BIG Ways!

The official start of summer is upon us! Kick off the start of the season with these amazing family activities that will invite the kids to enjoy some of the season’s most popular offers in outdoor activities.After all, there is no better time than now to start planning for the season ahead! Are you ready for the first day of summer?

Photo by: Deb

Sidewalk Chalk Art Show – invite your kids and their friends to throw their very own art show by using the sidewalk as their canvas. Buy a selection of washable sidewalk chart and assign them areas to decorate. You can plan a simple BBQ or neighborhood block party to celebrate their work!

Water works – Visit the beach, a local pool or even a water park to splash around and beat the heat. Remember to bring the proper tools to protect the kids skin from the summer sun. For younger kids, the start of summer is the perfect time to learn to swim. After all this skill is of immeasurable value if your family finds itself around water often.

Craft some garden ornaments – Settle into the great outdoors by grabbing the kids to decorate a space to call their own in the yard or garden. From homemade bird feeders and the like, these cute creations are ones that you are sure to cherish for seasons to come.

Park Games – Plan a sports day for the kids and their friends to compete in a few fun and festive activities under the sun. You might even plan a picnic or BBQ to make sure that everyone is fed and hydrated throughout the day’s festivities.

 

Cosmically Cool Crafts for Dad!

Call your Blasters back from the space station to put together an out-of-this-world Father’s Day craft! If you and the kids are not looking to break the bank, visit Math Blaster’s official Pinterest page for ideas on how to surprise dad with something special yet affordable. Best of all, crafting can be a great opportunity to practice basic educational and developmental skills with early learners like your Blasters!

mbfathersdaycrafts

How are you celebrating dad around your home? Do you have any special traditions that you enjoy doing each year? Share some of your favorite craft and activity ideas with us now or start following us for a world of amazing online resources!

Maracas for Cinco De Mayo

Cinco De Mayo gives us a chance to celebrate Mexican culture, and a part of that culture is music. Maracas are simple percussion instruments that are used instead of the common drum. You can have a set of this rhythmic and rattling sounding pair of your own at home as a result of perfect craft opportunity that will have your little ones shakin’-it to the sounds of your May 5th festivities! Here is how you can make maracas with your kids for Cinco De Mayo.

Photo by Steven Depolo

Photo by Steven Depolo

Decoupage Maracas for Cinco De Mayo

 What you will need:

    • Empty plastic bottles (Empty Salad dressing bottles are perfect since they have a long enough neck for the handle)
    • Modge Podge
    • Brightly colored tissue paper (Try sticking to traditional Cinco De Mayo colors like red, orange, green, and yellow)
    • Paint brush
    • dried beans

Steps:

Start by having your little ones tear the colored tissue paper into pieces while you take an empty plastic bottle and coat it in Modge Podge using the paint brush.

Once the bottle has been generously Modge Podged, have your kids place torn tissue paper all over the bottle. Have them layer the tissue paper to cover the bottle as you go over the pieces with the paint brush and Modge Podge.

Once one bottle is covered in tissue paper, set it aside and repeat the process with your second bottle.

Let both bottles dry completely

Once the bottles are dry, fill them with your dried beans and place glue on the cap of the bottle before you replace it for a tight seal.

Creating a set of your own maracas is a great craft that’s suitable for children to enjoy as you celebrate the Mexican culture in an upbeat way! Challenge your kids to try and keep time with a beat, counting down in between shakes to keep a steady rhythm. Make these maracas and enjoy your Cinco De Mayo fiesta with your kids!