School is right around the corner, and it’s time for parents to jump aboard the DINOSAUR TRAIN to celebrate “Get Ready for Kindergarten” month in August.
There are many things that can be done to help prepare children for kindergarten, including working with your child on basic academic skills such as writing his/her name and reading letters; teaching critical thinking skills by encouraging them to ask “Why” questions; working on arts-and-crafts projects to get your child more comfortable using scissors, markers and other supplies he/she will see plenty of in kindergarten; and making shopping for school supplies a fun experience by letting your child make some choices of their own, like the color of his/her backpack or pencil case.
At The Jim Henson Company, the immersive and compelling DINOSAUR TRAIN website at www.pbskids.org/dinosaurtrain offers parents (and teachers) a wealth of activities to encourage basic scientific thinking skills for pre-school children. Here are a few examples:
Help your child practice the letters of the alphabet while learning about the diversity of dinosaurs that once lived on Earth with the “Dinosaurs A – Z song.” Basic supplies needed include 26 index cards (4x6 or 5x7), a thick marker, crayons, lyrics to "Dinosaurs A to Z" song
Help your child learn some basic insect anatomy by creating a model of a dragonfly, and learn that some animals seen in the world today also lived at the time of the dinosaurs. Basic supplies needed include construction paper, wooden popsicle sticks, strong tape, pipe cleaners, colored markers, glue and glitter (and photographs of real dragonflies from books or the Internet). For instructions go to: http://www.pbs.org/parents/dinosaurtrain/activities/handson/dragonfly.html
Help your child understand and apply the term "hypothesis," investigate and make predictions about the science of color, using household basics including food coloring, clean food jars/containers, colored markers and a cookie sheet. For instructions go to: http://www.pbs.org/parents/dinosaurtrain/activities/handson/colorfulhypothesis.html
“Get ready for Kindergarten” shopping ideas for play, learning and fun (available at major retailers) include:
DINO TRAIN T-REX BACKPACK FROM ACCESSORIES 22: The DINOSAUR TRAIN 16” backpack features our favorite T-rex Buddy. It also features adjustable padded shoulder straps and 3 easy zippered compartments making it great to carry DINOSAUR TRAIN toys and school supplies as well as mesh side pockets for markers, pencils, etc. The glossy Buddy appliqué makes Buddy virtually come alive on both the blue and brown styles. This is a definite back-to-school must have for any DINOSAUR TRAIN fan! MSRP $14.99; available now.
DINOSAUR TRAIN I AM A T-REX FROM GROSSETT & DUNLAP: Buddy has spent his whole life in a pteranodon nest. He knows he's not a pteranodon, but he's not sure what he is. When his family decides to visit a new stop on the DINOSAUR TRAIN, Buddy finally learns the truth. He's a T-rex! This simple storybook is the perfect introduction to the world of DINOSAUR TRAIN! Ages 3 and up. MSRP $3.99; available now.
TRICERATOPS FOR LUNCH BY GOLDEN BOOKS; ILLUSTRATED BY CALEB MEURER
A Little Golden Book about Dinosaur Train! The Triceratops are coming over for lunch. Do you serve them plants or fish? That's what Buddy and his dinosaur siblings need to figure out before Tank and Trudie Triceratops arrive at the train station. This Little Golden Book retells an episode of the new PBS Kids animated series Dinosaur Train. It explains to young readers the difference between herbivores and carnivores—so that the next time you're dining with a dino, you'll know what to expect! Ages 2-5; MSRP $3.99/$4.99 Can; on sale August 10, 2010
DINOSAUR TRAIN TAKE ‘N’ PLAY ANYWHERE™ GO FISHING™ MAGNETIC ACTIVITY FROM PATCH PRODUCTS: Now kids can help Buddy and his family catch fish! They’ll practice hand-eye coordination and matching skills as they use the magnetic fishing pole to grab fish and try to land them in just the right spot. DINOSAUR TRAIN Go Fishing teaches cooperation, trial and error, or listening to and following instructions. Take ‘N’ Play Anywhere activities feature big magnetic pieces that are easy for kids to use and hard for kids to lose! Ages 4 and up; MSRP $9.99; available August at specialty stores, amazon.com or patchproducts.com.
DINOSAUR TRAIN DINOSAUR COLLECTIBLE 3-PACKS FROM LEARNING CURVE: Perfect for hours of imaginative dinosaur play, these 3-packs feature three detailed DINOSAUR TRAIN character figures and a special collector card. The 3-pack figures can be enjoyed separately or can fit inside train cars (sold separately) for more role play fun. The 3-packs are currently available in the following sets: Mrs. Pteranodon, Shiny & Derek; Mr. Pteranodon, Don & Velma; Boris, Annie & Pete; Dolores, Ollie & Oren. Ages 3 and up; MSRP $7.99; available now.
DINOSAUR TRAIN ALL ABOARD GAME FROM PRESSMAN TOY CORP: Join Buddy and his friends on the DINOSAUR TRAIN! Choose a character – Buddy, Tiny, Shiny, Don, Cory, Tank or Mr. Conductor – and try to move the fastest along the tracks. Speed through the three dinosaur eras: Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous along the beautiful scenery. Special Stopwatch spaces will help you get closer to the nest, while Dinosaur Crossing spaces will send you back. The first player to reach the nest area in the center of the board wins. For 2 to 6 players; Ages 4 and up; MSRP $12.00; available now at Target and Amazon.com.
Win: One lucky winner will receive a Dinosaur Train T-Rex Backpack full of new Dinosaur Train products as described above!
***THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED***
Congratulations to jsc123!
- To enter, comment on how you get your child(ren) ready for Kindergarten or going back to school!
- You’ll get one extra entry each if you do any of the following (be sure to leave a comment for each “entry”):
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- The deadline for entries is September 4, 2010, 11:59pm HST.
- If you submitted an eligible entry and it is chosen by random.org as the winner, you will be notified via email on or about September 5, 2010 (make sure your email address is in your profile or comment and be sure to check your junk/spam, etc. folders) and will have 3 days to accept.
- Valid for US addresses only.
- By entering in this giveaway, you have read and agreed to Sage and Savvy’s policies regarding giveaways.
Thank you to the Jim Henson Company for providing the products for giveaway free of charge. I received no monetary compensation for this post.
Gem is a Hawaii Mom Blogger who posts reviews and giveaways, and blogs about life in Hawaii as a mom of 3 boys, including one with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. She loves to travel, bake, and eat anything with chocolate.