Baking with Kids

So… how many of you guys are in love with baking shows? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. My friend recently introduced me to The Great British Bake-Off, and I’m officially hooked. There’s something fun about watching someone mix together some raw ingredients and making something delicious and pretty. Sometimes, if we’re feeling confident, we can even go and make the things we see on television.

Of course adults aren’t the only ones who enjoy baking: kids love it too! It’s a great way to get them involved in the kitchen and allow them to get a little messy as well. cooking class-1

Last week the kids made poğaça, a Turkish savory bun. It was kind of difficult at first, but our kids did a great job working through it and being patient.

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As tempting as it is to do some of the things for them, such as cracking the egg, it’s so much more rewarding for them if they learn to do it themselves.

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By far their favorite part was the mixing! That’s one of the best parts of baking, right up there with eating the finished product… or tasting the dough… or cracking the eggs… (can you tell I like baking?)

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Unfortunately all of the finished poğaça was gone before I got to take any photos (those kids eat fast!), but if you’d like to try out some Turkish cuisine for yourself and your kids, you can find a great recipe here. That blogger made cheese stuffed poğaça, but we made ours plain and it was still super yummy!

Happy baking everyone!
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Links: Working with Our Anger

Just like Emily in Emily’s Tiger, we all have some moments of anger and frustration. This week we wanted to share some helpful links about how you can help teach your kids all about “tiger-itus,” and how to handle anger.

  1. “Let It Out Slowly” Anger Balloon (Great Visual Aid!)

2. Cool-Down Cubes

3. Safe-Space and Calming Jars

4. Calm-Down Codeword

5. Blowing Bubbles (so simple, but so effective!)

Keep it zen this weekend everyone!

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Weather Game for Kindergarten

This summer at Kids Nook we did a lot of playing around with water. It was a nice way to cool down, and the kids loved it. But this past week we decided to add a little science to our normal water games, creating some fun Weather Games for our kids so that they could learn about the water cycle.

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First we took the white fluffy stuff you’d find inside a baby’s diaper and filled up some bowls with them. The kids took their own bowls and sprayed water on it, showing them how water that travels through the air creates the clouds in the sky.

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We even talked a little about pollution, and how it can be hard for those clouds to give us good clean water when there’s so much stuff inside them!

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Lastly, we made it rain! We tied up the water balloons to a simple Ikea coat rack, and the kids came up one by one to pop the “clouds” that were full of rain!

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It was a lot of fun, but watch out! It could inspire a little creative mischievousness 😉

Hope you’re having great weather wherever you are!

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Musical Links

While I know we’ve already visited this theme before, this week’s book Once Upon an Ordinary School Day got me in the musical mood. So without further ado, here are some links to get your kids moving and grooving in home or in the classroom!

  1. Popsicle Stick Harmonica

2) Sensory Bin Shakers

3) Five Great Games to Get Your Kids Grooving

4) Light Table Rainbow Water Xylophone

5) “World of Music” Passport and Lesson Plan (this looks so cool!)

Have a musical weekend!
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Links for Your First Day of School

Here in Turkey we are fast approaching the first day of school. To celebrate we’ve scoured the internet (or Pinterest) and found some of our favorite Back-To-School ideas.

  1. Teacher Gift: Mints (speaking from experience, these are a great way to counteract all the coffee teachers drink!)

2) Using chalk as a measuring tool for the First Day of School Photo

3) Create a Homework Station

4) Back to School Fashion Show!

5) Welcome Back Home… WATER BALLOON FIGHTS

Can’t wait to get back to school? Have some traditions you like to do every year? Let us know in the comments below!

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The Ugly Duckling

This week we’ve been busy, busy, busy at Kids Nook (almost as busy as the Little Red Hen!) But we still had time to meet with one of our new friends: The Very Ugly Duckling.

If you’re not familiar with the story, the Ugly Duckling is a little grey duck who looks and acts nothing like his brothers and sisters. After enduring a lot of teasing, he leaves his family only to discover that he’s not a duck at all! He’s a beautiful swan!

The kids loved this story, and they loved playing games with the Ugly Duckling. First we created a nest for them using finger paints…

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Then we cleaned up the lakes so that they could swim better!

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Look at those little ducks go!

Do you love playing with duckies? How about the ugly duckling? How would you treat him if you found him? Let us know in the comments below!

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The Little Red Hen (Makes a Pizza)

I always enjoyed listening to the story of The Little Red Hen, but if I really think about it, it was because we always got to make a loaf of warm bread to go with it. This time when I told the story of The Little Red Hen to our kids, I decided to go with the updated version: The Little Red Hen Makes a Pizza. 

Why? Because I love pizza.

We listened to the story and afterwards went out and made our own “play pizzas”. We started with our homemade oat play-dough (which you might remember from our last story Goldilocks and the Three Bears). Afterwards we painted on “tomato sauce”…

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Then we added some toppings. I added broken up spaghetti pieces to make it look like a cheese pizza.

 

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After we decorated our pizzas came the very best part: eating our own homemade toast pizzas!

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Yum yum yum! We helped the Little Red Hen make her pizzas, so we got to enjoy our own! What kind of pizzas do you like to make? Would you help the Little Red Hen? Let us know in the commments below!

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Canada School (Kanada Anaokulu)

This past Wednesday we had a special treat at Kids Nook. Our friends from the new Kanada Anaokulu (Canada School) in Levent celebrated Canada Day with us!

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We were able to sit down and talk with them about their brand new school opening up this fall!  Kanada Anaokulu is setting up a school system in Turkey that teaches subjects in English according to the Canadian curriculum. This way, as the children grow up and have opportunities to participate in exchange programs, they’ll be able to integrate seamlessly into the Canadian schools. It’s an exciting opportunity to broaden the child’s horizons in more ways than one!

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The preschool program (with a primary school to follow next year) is a great one. Every Canadian and Turkish teacher at Kanada Anaokulu is required to have at least five years of university experience and teaching experience. For children ages 5+, classes will only be taught in English. These men and women are professional teachers, and they are thrilled to start classes this fall!

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Their vision for the school includes four pillars:

  • The well-being of the whole child, from social interactions and eating habits, to learning about emotions and belonging to a global community.
  • Communication with the children, and giving them the equipment to communicate with the world around them
  • Teaching about diversity and social responsibility, such as sustainability and learning about other cultures.
  • Lastly, the importance of play! All of the lessons will be “play based,” which engages the child in a way that is interesting to them.

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The example they gave us was about birthdays. They would ask the child questions such as “Do you have a birthday? How do you celebrate it? Do you know how they celebrate birthdays in other parts of the world? Do you have cake at your birthday? Do you know how to make a cake? Would you like to learn?” Every question has a real-life follow-up example, and in the case of the birthday lesson, there’s even a cake to make at the end! How fun!

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If you’re interested in finding out more about Kanada Anaokulu, feel free to check out their website here. You can also e-mail them (in Turkish or in English) at info@kanadaanakolu.com

In the meantime, we’ll be here fondly remember that Canada Day cake! Yum!

Happy summer!
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