Thursday, August 7, 2014

Summer Fun for the Kids

Keeping the kids occupied over summer break is always a concern. We try to balance formal sports/dance activities with family visits, travel and some good old-fashioned downtime. Where downtime is concerned, I find it's helpful to have a solid collection of kids' books in the house. I turned to DK Canada's Summer Fun Boutique for a selection of books to help me keep the kids happy and productive this summer (all at 30% off too!).

The first book my daughter requested was DK's Spot the Bird. She was so excited about getting this book that she insisted we pack it for our New York City road trip. I confess I was a tad skeptical about bringing a bird-watching book to the big city. The busy city streets did nothing to alleviate my doubts. My little girl kept spotting pigeons and asking us what they were. (Another pigeon I'm afraid!)

But then we got to Central Park and boy did she prove me wrong. Within minutes she started spotting all kinds of interesting birds. Spot The Bird is a great beginner book because it features more than 100 common North American birds.

Like the Canada Goose. They can often be found sitting on our rooftop at home, but she was happy to spot some in Central Park nevertheless. The really fun part of the book is that it comes with stickers so your child can add the sticker once they've spotted the bird.

Also making an appearance on our road trip was DK's Ultimate Factivity Collection: Animals. Geared to seven to nine-year-olds, making it perfect for my little gal, the book is brimming with fun activities such as games, doodle pages, puzzles and crafts. There are more than 500 stickers too, as well as facts about insects, mammals, reptiles and more.

Proving that all kids like to study animals, regardless of age or sex, my son also chose an animal activity book for the car ride. DK's Smithsonian Ultimate Sticker Activity Collection: Animals is suited to kids ages five to 12. It makes learning about animals lots of fun, with more than 900 reusable animal stickers — from aardvarks to zebras and everything in between.

My son is also looking forward to building his own stegosaurus model with the help of DK's Smithsonian Make Your Own Stegosaurus kit. Last week we visited New York's American Museum of Natural History and saw all of the cool fossil dinosaurs, as well as a real dinosaur mummy. So this kit is a great addition to our study of dinosaurs! The model is based on a real Stegosaurus skeleton and is made using about 100 sturdy photographic "bones" that slot together without the need for glue. As the child follows the easy, step by step pictures, they also learn different facts about the dinosaur.

How are you keeping the kids (or yourself!) busy this summer? Do books play a big role for you?


  1. I might like "Spot the Bird " too!

  2. Wow ,the Photos are amazing! :)

    Happy Friday xoxo

  3. That's great about the bird book. I got one myself a few years ago and secretly thought "you really *shouldn't* have..." But I got hooked!

  4. Love these photos. Bird spotting is a favourite past-time of ours.

  5. What a great book collection! And bird spotting is a hoot, especially when you are away from the familiar. My kiddos are old enough to keep themselves thoroughly entertained, but we've had plenty of afternoons when we madly searched google to see what kind of bird/animal/thing is sitting in our back yard!