Latest Blog Posts

Tech Teacher Workshops

Tech Teacher Workshops

Spread the word! In January I’ll be leading a series of teacher workshops for early childhood and primary grade teachers and administrators. The workshops will take place at Northwestern University in Evanston. We’ll discuss how to introduce coding and robotics...

Build that Code!

Build that Code!

Here is an excerpt from my new blog post for the Center for Talent Development: Two young children play with wooden blocks and plastic dinosaur toys. They create a zig zag path of blocks and move the dinosaurs down the path one by one, all in a row. As they play, the...

Hack Your  Code-A-Pillar!

Hack Your Code-A-Pillar!

Like many other tangible tech enthusiasts, I was excited to hear about the new Fisher-Price Code-a-Pillar toy when it made its debut at the 2016 International Consumer Electronics Show. Over the summer the Code-a-Pillar became widely available to consumers and I was...

Robots & Coding at SXSW

Robots & Coding at SXSW

Guess what? I've submitted a proposal to present at the 2017 South by Southwest educator conference (SXSW.edu). My session is titled "Build that Code! Teach Coding with 3D Construction Projects." The SXSW application process includes a crowd sourcing component. Please...

Lessons from a Maker Space

Lessons from a Maker Space

Here’s my shopping list this week: Rubber bands Springs Nuts & bolts Golf tees Masking tape Wood glue Why am I shopping for such an odd combination of items? I’m purchasing supplies for a maker space. In my role as Early Childhood Coordinator at Northwestern...

Make Mini Model Robots!

Make Mini Model Robots!

Preschoolers are fascinated by robots but most robotics kits are intended for older children with advanced skills. In my work developing robotics curricula for early childhood classrooms, I’ve discovered that one way to engage young children in working with authentic...

What We Can Learn from Mies van Hout’s Monsters

What We Can Learn from Mies van Hout’s Monsters

The monsters in Mies van Hout’s charming picture book Friends have much to teach us about emotional intelligence. Developing the ability to make a friend is a milestone that every parent wishes for their children. The greater challenge is developing the ability to...

Coming Soon: Book Talk at The Book Cellar!

Coming Soon: Book Talk at The Book Cellar!

  When I talk about Creating a Beautiful Mess in book stores or libraries, it’s fun to use familiar characters from well-loved children’s books to demonstrate the ten essential play experiences. In fact, I’ll be giving just such a talk next week, on Thursday,...

My Beautiful Mess Wins Gold!

My Beautiful Mess Wins Gold!

I’m pleased to announce that my recent book Creating a Beautiful Mess: Ten Essential Play Experiences for a Joyous Childhood won gold in the National Parenting Publications Awards, also known as the NAPPA awards. The National Parenting Publications Awards is one of...

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