Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/dandysof/dandygiveaway.com/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524
Disclosure: This site contains sponsored posts, affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale) and is part of the Amazon affiliate program, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Little Passports {Giveaway}–CLOSED

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

Do your kids ever surprise you with things they know that you didn’t realize they knew? I recently started a co-op preschool with some friends, and when it came time to say the Pledge of Allegiance on my day to teach, my 3-year-old son was able to recite the whole thing! I’m sure a few words were wrong and he has absolutely NO idea what it means, but I was just shocked that he could say it all! He also answered correctly that we live in the United States when I asked where we lived (though I was trying to get the kids to say California), but that one didn’t surprise me. I know that knowledge was due to our subscription to Little Passports.

logo

You may remember a bit about Little Passports when Heather Ann reviewed them back in January. But in case you are a newcomer to Dandy Giveaway, here’s a recap: Little Passports is a monthly subscription box geared towards ages 5-12 that follows the adventures of characters Sam and Sofia as they travel across the United States and throughout the world.  To join, you begin by selecting either the World Edition (ages 5-10) or the USA edition (ages 7-12). I was sent the USA edition, which is actually geared towards ages 7-12, and I couldn’t agree more. My 3-year-old son was thrilled to receive a package and learn more about the United States, but he definitely didn’t get as much out of it as he would have if he were even a few years older.

first

When his welcome package came, we hung the map of the United States in his room and filled out a few pages in his Field Guide. He loved taking pictures with the “old camera” (it includes a disposable!) and the Scratch Book. A few weeks later we received an envelope with the first two states. It came with a book filled with fun facts, history and culture about Pennsylvania and Arkansas. There was also a postcard, stickers and a pop-out model from both states. My son loved putting the stickers in the field guide, but everything else was way above his learning level.

collage

For a 7-14-year-old, however, it is perfect! The book about the states is filled with mazes, games, word searches, pictures, and activities to teach loads of interesting facts about each state. An envelope filled with these goodies will come to your doorstep once a month–for up to 26 months if you do the whole United States!–and you can imagine your child’s excitement to open his package and learn! This would be perfect as a supplemental learning kit for public school or homeschooled kids, especially 5th- or 8th-graders learning about U.S. History.

subscription

Subscription plans range from monthly plans ($11.95 a month) to 3-, 6-, and 12-month plans with discounted prices. Sign up for their newsletter online, and connect with them on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest to be in the know about the latest deals. Head on over to Little Passports to take a look at their options, then come back and enter below to win:

Win a 3-month subscription to either the World edition or USA edition!

 Entry-Form

** This giveaway is open to U.S. entries only.
** The winner of this giveaway will be drawn no later than the morning of October 15th, 2013, and will be emailed within 24 hours. If the winner does not respond within 48 hours, a new winner will be drawn.
** This posting and giveaway were sponsored by Little Passports, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Somewhat Simple’s “Life According to Me” e-book {Giveaway} – CLOSED

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/dandysof/dandygiveaway.com/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524

My four-year-old misses the cut-off to start kindergarten in the fall by just 10 days, and it’s killing me!  We checked in to the school district about having him tested to start early, but we haven’t heard very positive outcomes from other parents who have tried in previous years.  When I figure, though, that I’ll be having a baby just weeks after school starts, that we’ll be visiting family for the entire month of January, and that we’re moving to another country in March, I guess that it really isn’t the worst thing to wait another year before sending him off to school.  (Plus, I think I would really miss him if he were gone for a full school day all week long!)

I do plan to homeschool him this next year for kindergarten, in hopes of him starting right into first grade next year.  I’ve taught elementary school before and have lots of resources and materials, and my little guy is a bright kid who is pretty far ahead in reading and math already.  One area, though, that I know is going to require some extra assistance this next year?  His writing.

main

I came across the Somewhat Simple website through (what else??) Pinterest, and I’ve been hooked since I discovered them six months ago.  I added the site to my Google Reader page and have loved seeing lots of great ideas throughout the week.  They have lots of posts under categories such as Projects, Food, Home & Garden, Seasons & Holidays, Lifestyle, and Promotions, and I love browsing through the ads on their main webpage to find other sites with similar interests and content.

By the way, if you had been following Dandy Giveaway using Google Reader (which is no longer available as of the beginning of this month — boo hoo!), take a look at following us through Bloglovin’ or Feedly instead, along with keeping up through Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.  We don’t want you to miss out on our great giveaways and reviews!

cover

Somewhat Simple offers a 30-page e-book entitled “Life According to Me” that will be perfect for my son to use in the upcoming months to spark some interest on his writing!  The fun colors and easy-to-read font make it perfect for young budding writers, and the topics for each day give a little more direction to those who would otherwise “have nothing to write about”.  The pages include questions and prompts about being kind, watching TV, surprises, hobbies, getting dressed, and more!  The open-ended nature of these questions make this book applicable for most school-age writers and also make for some great pre-writing for preschoolers.  Neither the colors nor the daily topics are too gender-specific, so this would be perfect for either boys or girls.  There are also sections for them to write notes to a parent/family member and then for that person to write back.

notes

And, a few of my favorite things:  (1) Life According to Me is only $5.95!!  (2) This e-book is sent electronically, meaning that you can print out the pages that you need/want and not worry about the others!  You also can print a number of pages for multiple children or for multiple books for the same child!  (3) The e-book pages can be printed using your color printer.  I cannot tell you how many times I’ve bought e-books to download, only to find that it really is necessary to have them sent off to a printer in order to get quality pages.

pages.

Enter below to win a download of Life According to Me from Somewhat Simple — we’ll have TWO winners!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**This giveaway is open to U.S. entries only.

** The winner of this giveaway will be posted  no later than the morning of Saturday, July 27th,  and emailed within 24 hours.  If the winner  does not respond within 48 hours, a new winner  will be drawn.

** This posting and giveaway were sponsored by Somewhat Simple, but all opinions are  strictly my own.

 

SmartGames {Giveaway} – CLOSED

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/dandysof/dandygiveaway.com/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524

The other morning, I was really getting ready for the day after taking my older son to preschool (in yoga pants and a ponytail…), and I realized that it was just a little too quiet for my now two-year-old to be playing by himself without a problem.  I called out his name, but he didn’t answer.  I walked into the living room and still didn’t hear anything.  I looked through the bedrooms and couldn’t find him anywhere.  I started to get a little panicky, but then I heard a little voice say “Mom” from the side of my bed.  Evidently, my just-barely-two-year-old had gotten my Kindle Fire out of my purse and figured out how to turn it on, find the game he wanted, and then actually played it for a few minutes quietly.  I’m not exactly sure I should be proud of this…

I have my teaching certification and taught elementary school before I had my boys and my husband’s degree is in Human Development with a emphasis in Special Education, so we have quite a toy room that has more of what I like to call “activities” than toys.  I’m not a huge fan of anything with characters on it, and I love activities that are open-ended and allow for lots of learning.

Print

When I came across the SmartGames website, I was in heaven!!  They offer so many games and toys that focus on strategy, using logic, and problem solving for ages 3 and up.  Their SmartGames page has a search option that allows you to choose age range, material, travel game or not, and theme to select a SmartGame that best fits your abilities and interests.  Here are a few examples:

catCat and Mouse Go-Getter : Help furry critters find their way through a maze of possible paths in these brain-teasing, logic-building puzzles. Arrange the nine tiles to build connecting paths between the icons pictured on your selected challenge. But watch the road – be careful not to veer off course or get stuck in a dead end!angry birds

The game my two-year-old was playing on the Kindle Fire?  Angry Birds.  And, frankly, he was more successful at that game than I am.  Here’s an educational twist on this favorite.

Angry Birds Under Construction : This puzzle game, based on an award winning SmartGames design, will make your brain chirp! Using all 4 playing pieces, make sure you end up showing only the right pigs. Sometimes an angry bird will manage to show itself! More challenging than you would think…For one player, ages 7 and up.

smart car

SmartCar : SmartCar is a wooden game that evolves with your child growing skills. Can you assemble a car with the included wooden pieces? The model remains the same but the car construction plans get more and more difficult!

We received a SmartCar to review, and we all loved it!  I started playing it with my four year old during quiet time, and he loved going through each of the challenges until about half way through the booklet.  After my two year old woke up from his nap, he saw the SmartCar and enjoyed putting pieces together and making a car.  And, after both boys went to sleep, my husband and I stayed up and finished the challenges in the booklet together.  🙂

We loved the game itself and the fact that it could still be used as an open-ended toy, but I was incredibly impressed with the workmanship of the Smart Car.  The pieces are made of sturdy wood, and I imagine that it would last us for quite a few years without any problems.

SmartGames is offering a SmartCar to one Dandy reader!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

** This giveaway is open to U.S. entries only.

** The winner of this giveaway will be drawn no later than the morning of May 9th and will be emailed within 24 hours.  If the winner does not respond within 48 hours, a new winner will be drawn.

** This posting and giveaway were sponsored by SmartGames, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Makedo {Giveaway} – CLOSED

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/dandysof/dandygiveaway.com/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524

So, a common result of Christmas morning gift giving in a toddler/preschool/child home is toys strewn all over the room while the kids play with the boxes.  It can be irritating to have shopped for the perfect gift (or, frankly, to have spent any money at all!) to only have them play with something you just tossed on the curb for recycle day — Makedo is a great way to embrace those boxes!

Makedo tools and pieces connect recycled materials together to make large or small creations.  They are designed to encourage open-ended creative play and are reusable for other projects.  Makedo tools build and connect things quickly, neatly, and sturdily and can be used with most materials (cardboard, plastic containers, fabric, etc.).  Creations can be made individually, with a group of friends, or with the whole family!

Here are some of my favorites:

Shop Guided Kit

Space Pod Guided Kit

Playhouse Guided Kit

Freeplay Make Anything Kit

Makedo is giving away a Freeplay Make Anything Kit to TWO of our Dandy readers!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
**This giveaway is open to U.S. entries only. **The winner of this giveaway will be posted no later than the morning of Monday, December 17th, and emailed within 24 hours.  If the winner does not respond within 48 hours, a new winner will be drawn. **This posting and giveaway were sponsored by Makedo, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Follow

Get every new post on this blog delivered to your Inbox.

Join other followers:


Warning: Use of undefined constant user_level - assumed 'user_level' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/dandysof/dandygiveaway.com/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-google-analytics/ultimate_ga.php on line 524