Sunday, June 17, 2012

A great blog for Mom's and Caretakers of children...

Summer Nanny Jobs is a blog that has some great tips on how to stay safe.  I really enjoyed the article on POISON IVY, since we go camping and on nature hikes quite a bit.  I want my children and I to know what to look for to stay itch free this summer.  Here is what SUMMER NANNY JOB had to say about poison ivy.

Poison Ivy
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As the weather warms up thoughts turn to blissful days where you spend the day outdoors, playing and enjoying nature.  If your whole family is the outdoorsy type, you may even be thinking about hiking or camping this summer.  Poison Ivy is pretty common and can be found in almost every state, so it’s something to be aware of and to make your child aware of.  Nothing puts the brakes on fun like being covered in an itchy Poison Ivy rash.
Check out these 10 simple ways to teach kids about Poison Ivy.
  1. Take them to a nature museum: Many times nature museums offer walking tours where they take you on a hike and identify different local plants. A nature museum may even have a pressed specimen of Poison Ivy if they don’t have any on property.  The experts at the museums are pretty likely to be able to talk about Poison Ivy and describe what it looks like.
  2. Have them color a picture of it: These days you can find a coloring page for anything.  The interesting thing about coloring a picture is that you are slowly filling in shapes and it allows the brain to remember what the shape is. Since the shape of the leaves for Poison Ivy is the most important thing for identifying it in the wild, coloring a picture should help your child learn what it looks like.
  3. Show them a video online: The Internet is such a great tool for learning and for teaching.  It’s true; you can find nearly everything on the Internet.  There are videos on various plants, both good and bad.  There will be visuals of Poison Ivy along with a lot of information about the plant. Check out this video on how to recognize and avoid Poison Ivy: http://www.howcast.com/videos/22122-How-To-Recognize-and-Avoid-Poison-Ivy.
  4. Read a book about it: Visit a library and check out a book about Poison Ivy. Ask your local librarian for an age-appropriate recommendation.
  5. Show them a live plant: Go on a hike in your area and find some Poison Ivy.  Show your child where Poison Ivy tends to grow and how it grows.  Showing your child how Poison Ivy can hide in among many other weeds and that it can be hard to see is an important part of teaching him to avoid it.
  6. Make a craft project: Something about making a craft helps the right brain and the left brain come together on an idea.  Have your child cut out Poison Ivy shaped leaves from green felt. Glue all of the pieces down onto another piece of felt.  If your child is younger, you may want to pre-cut the leaves and have him just glue the leaves down in the right arrangement.
  7. Let them try to draw the shape in shaving cream: The funny thing about kids is that they all have different learning styles.  Some will be able to see something in a book and it will just stick in their head and they will know it.  Others are more visual and they will want to see the real thing or pictures of the real thing.  Maybe a video will do if the real thing can’t be found.  But then there are those that need something more.  They need a bit of hands-on fun.  For these kids, put some shaving cream down on the table and smooth it out.  Illustrate the shape of the Poison Ivy leaves and then have your child copy you.  It’s kind of like finger painting, only less messy!
  8. Host a game show: Now it’s not enough just to teach your child the facts, you need to be sure that those facts stick.  Playing a game where your child answers questions about what you’ve taught him can be a fun way to review.
  9. Have a contest: See who can remember the most information about Poison Ivy and then give the most knowledgeable person a prize.
  10. Teach someone else: Sometimes teaching someone else can help to solidify a concept in your mind.  If your child has a younger sibling or friend, let him teach the sibling what he has learned. 
To read more great articles head over to the SUMMER NANNY JOBS blog
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