Terrific Toy Tuesday: Let’s Pop the Pig!

“Mommy, I want Pop the Pig for my birthday, please,” my daughter requested. I never heard of pop the pig, nor had I seen any commercials, so I responded with the typical parent phrase, “We’ll see, honey.” After looking it up online, I discovered that it is quite the educational game. So I went back to Target and got it for her. The premise of the game is to feed the pig burgers and to press his chef hat corresponding with the number on the bottom of the burger until his belly pops causing his arms to fly up and his shirt to pop open.

The burgers have a number one, two, three or four on them and come in red, green, purple and yellow. This game engages a child to count, select colors and even strategize.  For instance, when my little girl and I were playing the game the other day, she she rolled the die, which is used to determine what color burger the player will select, and purposely wanted the color green because she knew that was the only set of burgers with the number four remaining. She exclaimed, “I need a number four, not a one, Mommy! The more times I press then I’ll win and pop the pig!” Something some parents will like about this game is that it is fast moving. It takes well under ten minutes to play it. Even though it is a quick moving game, however, that doesn’t stop Quinn from wanting to play it a few times a day since she got it for her birthday a couple of weeks ago. It’s exciting seeing her so interested in playing games and developing her critical thinking skills.

All the best,

Tanya

Loving Math: Let’s Count Toddler Style!

2015-08-15 12.26.45“I hate math with a passion!” some people willingly admit. Nevertheless, most people eagerly share when their child, grandchild, niece, nephew or even little cousin is capable of counting to ten or even to one hundred. For some, it’s major competition, and they love flexing those “parent-of-the year” and “my-child-is-a-genius” muscles because their two year old or even one year old is able to count. I must abashedly admit that I’m one of those parents who’s so proud of my two year old daughter.

Yes, counting is an accomplishment, but learning the concept of numbers and how to apply it with basic math, such as adding and subtracting is not easy feat. So I am extremely proud to share a milestone my toddler “the math wiz” has accomplished. Quinn has always enjoyed singing songs about numbers and will point them out during our outings in the checkout lines, in the supermarket or just walking down the street where numbers are visible. However, within the past few months she has began applying the concept of addition and subtraction. She clearly knows that one plus one equals two and that one plus one plus one is three, as she will ask for two more treats so that she can have three or one more toy so that she can have two. When she has three pieces of pineapple remaining and eats one, she will say, “Now I have two, mommy!” I’ve even observed her on occasion using her fingers to count, leaving me to wonder if it’s instinctive considering that I never suggested to her to use her fingers.

About a month ago, she went and grabbed several birthday hats from her birthday party and began to count them. In the early stages of counting items, Quinn would count some items twice or just skip over some. Also, she often would count to ten regardless of how many items were there, but this time she counted each hat just once and was confident and certain about how many were there. I was so impressed.

This makes me wonder if we are underestimating our children’s capabilities. Of course, I do not want to pressure Quinn and do not plan on having “toddler counting boot camp,” and it may be too early to tell if math will be one of her strong areas. Nevertheless, even in 2015 females are often steered away from professions dealing with math. I want my little girl to know we are counting on her to simply want to continue learning, and we will try our best to provide her with a stimulating and fun environment that helps her to love math or at least appreciate the necessity for it.

Here’s a video of Quinn counting. Enjoy 🙂

All the best,

Tanya

My Little Girl Can Count!

2015-02-09 09.57.272015-02-09 09.56.45With just a little under two more months to go before my little girl is two, she’s been showing more and more of an interest in numbers. A few months ago, I was blown away with Quinn’s ability to recognize numbers one through ten. Lately, she has been not just reciting her numbers but using her fingers which is an indication that she is already beginning to grasp the concept of counting. Since Quinn is being educated at home, I’ve been using countless resources to help with her intellectual development. Out of the many resources, one that my daughter really loves is the items in a can that I purchased from Amazon: Learning Resources One to Ten Counting Cans.

At the start of each week, she knows we will be opening up a new can and will jump up and down with excitement as I grab it from the shelf. Before she opens the can, she’ll look at the number on the can and shout it out. Then she can barely contain herself as she pops open the lid and empties out the contents. Usually, she will observe me as I count and will repeat after me, but a few days ago she starting counting the pineapples, which look so realistic, all by herself (Of course when I began to film her, she got camera shy). I highly recommend this resource not just for parents of stay-at-home children but for any parent looking for a fun and engaging way to help their toddler learn numbers and how to count.

All the best,

Tanya