Archive for August, 2011

Collections: A Brand New Way to Inspire

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

If you’ve browsed lately, you may have spotted a brand new addition to our articles, activities, and worksheets – a bright orange “Collect it!” button! As pretty at it is, it serves a purpose far greater than decoration.

We know parents and teachers don’t have much time to spare, which is why I think you’re going to love this new tool. It’s a quick, efficient, and fun way to create groups of your favorite content, and share the wealth with other parents and teachers. So while you’re making your own life easier, you can help others, too!

Don’t have time to craft your own collection today? Browse some of my personal favorites below – or click on collections you see throughout the site to see what they have to offer.

ABC Tracing Sheets

Creepy Crawly Activities for Kids Who Love Bugs

Weird Science!

This Quiet Car Could Be Yours

Bullying Lesson Plan

Physical Science

Shark Week with the Kids

Counting that Works Activities

A Home School Moms World

Well, what are you waiting for? Start collecting content, sharing with friends, and inspiring others today. And stay tuned for an expanded version of Collections in the very near future. We’ve got exciting things in the works!

Oh, wait, one more thing! Since Collections is hot off the presses, we’d love to hear from you about your experience with this new feature. Please let us know by emailing

BlogHer 2011: Priceless Photos, Brilliant Blogs, and Brand New Friends!

Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

Haven't been in a photo booth in awhile! Courtesy of Pfizer.

One week later, and I feel like I’m still getting back on track after BlogHer 2011. I loved the aura of energy, enthusiasm, and genius that surrounded me on that fine weekend in San Diego, but as a blogging (and BlogHer) newbie, I have to admit: it was A LOT to handle! Luckily, I had my good friends and coworkers, Kat and Danielle, there to show me the ropes (that’s us on the left).

I’m also thankful for the new friends (and beautiful blogs!) I was introduced to. Here are some of my favorite new blog finds and insightful posts I’ve come across after scrounging through the notes and business cards that I acquired that weekend:

• Maybe one of the most well-written (and funny!) blogs I’ve come across in awhile: Mommy’s Pen. I made a mental note to check out this blog after sharing breakfast with Sue. (more…)

BlogHer ’11: Oscar the Grouch and other Highlights

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011
Having fun at the Gatorade booth

Having fun at the Gatorade booth

After months of thinking about it, it’s finally over. We came, we saw, we got drenched in Gatorade and loaded up with all sorts of goodies. But swag aside (and there was lots of it), my favorite moments at BlogHer had to do with the people I met– sometimes just for a few seconds (speed dating!), other times over a long lunch.

Before I left for BlogHer ’11, I made myself a rule: always sit down next to people you don’t know. So first off, thanks to all the ladies who let this stranger plunk herself down at your tables. Loved talking to all of you- but here are a few of my favorite moments:

Speed dating! What an amazing way to meet a chunk of interesting people, one after another. Loved quick introductions to Sarah of Tech4Moms- a woman who truly knows how to translate tech-speak into mom-speak; the crafty Carolina of Moore Craft Time — I want her fabric notebooks for back to school; Tech Savvy Mama Leticia  (Holy cow! Just checked out her blog and I feel like a total slacker–how can one person do so many jobs at once?!); Kate (whose Adventures in Parenting blog inspires me to be a better mom); and Mandy Gresh of My Six Months Off, who like me, took a big break from normal life and stepped off the treadmill for awhile.

Loved bonding over super-active 2 1/2 year olds at the Sallie Mae Saving for College breakfast with Jennifer of Mami2Mommy.

Such fun to watch my friend, TechMama Beth Blecherman, run a session on all-things-gadget.

And thanks to Dollar Store Mom for doling out great advice and keeping it real as we grabbed a quick bite in between sessions.

Big (but low calorie) shout out to Ellen from Love that Max who made my heart sing when she said I gave her “the best parenting tip ever”. I just have one small bone to pick– the cheesecake yogurt is the best.

And thank you, thank you to Natalie Villalobos and Katherine Gramann for my first sips of Google+ Kool Aid. Now I believe.

Get Ahead of the SAT and ACT

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2011

Believe it or not, it’s not too early to prep for the SAT. For those students who will be taking the SAT or ACT in the fall, experts recommend preparing for the test before students are fully consumed with homework, projects, and class reading.

My favorite part: the map that shows you different test prep courses in your neighborhood.

Junior year of high school is full of new challenges — changes that can be overwhelming for kids. Don’t let preparing for the SAT or ACT put extra stress on your teen. To minimize test anxiety, you may decide to enroll your teen in an SAT or ACT prep class. That’s why we’ve put together a comprehensive directory to help you find test prep classes nearby that fit your budget.

The Test Prep Finder allows you to easily compare local SAT and ACT classes. In one easy place, you can view classes and prices from major providers, look at full course schedules, and choose between different class sizes and prices to find the best fit for your teen (and your wallet!). Get started now by checking out test prep classes near you.

In addition to this class directory, we also do our best to stay on top of the newest research and expert recommendations for getting high school students prepared for the transition to college. Don’t know where to start? Check out our Parent’s Guide to High School.

If you’re looking for information specific to preparing for the SAT, here are a few of my favorite articles: