family activities

Mac-N-Cheese Please!!

Are you ready to have the greatest mac-n-cheese ever?!? It may come as a surprise but did you know that children's book author and illustrator Todd Parr is also an amazing cook?! Well, he is! Here is Todd's recipe for the the best mac-n-cheese EVER. 

Let’s start with the ingredients

  • 1 box of pasta (if you use elbow macaroni you can talk about different body parts!! Science!!)
  • 2 cups of cheddar cheese
  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 2TBS butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Here’s what you do.

Boil water and cook macaroni. Set aside.

In a separate pot over medium heat add 2 TBS of butter.

When melted add a small handful of the cheddar cheese.

To the cheese and butter add a full can of condensed milk.

Add remaining cheese and turn the heat on low.

Stir continually until the cheese is completely melted.

Add the cheese to the pasta and stir.

WARNING: This will be hot!

Add salt and pepper to taste.

Wanna turn this into a tasty math and science lesson? Here’s how.

Start with the measuring. Have the little ones measure out the butter and cheese. If your child is anything like me make sure to watch them with the cheese (I’m a totally cheese sneeker!) Measuring allows your child to work on quantity, volume, fractions, and one-to-one correspondence.

Boiling the water is a great place to insert some science. You can talk about the properties of water. Ask your little learner what happens when water gets cold and when it gets hot. Ask them to make predictions about what will happen when you add heat. You can even do a time exploration by making predictions about how long they think it will take for the water to boil.

Bring in some more science with the cheese sauce. Discuss how cheese is a solid (another place to insert some science vocabulary). Then ask them what they think will happen when you add the cheese to the heat.

Finally, you can wrap up this mini lesson with setting the table. Have your little one count how many cups, plates, and forks you will need for dinner. Let them set the table and count as they do each place setting.

Sharing a meal is a powerful thing. According to The Family Dinner Project, sharing regular meals with family reduces substance abuse and depression, while promoting higher grade point averages and boosting self-esteem. 

MASSIVE thanks to Todd for sharing his home, his food, and his friendship! Check out Todd Parr for all things Todd! 

                                            -Ms. Giannini


Unity, Kindness, and Peace

We all want what's best for our children. We want them to be safe, kind, loved, the list goes on and on. Events this past year may have you feeling; sad, confused, scared and nervous. Your children may have felt this way too. Dialogue may be difficult and you may be looking for answers and resources. Guess what?  You're not alone. Here are some resources and things to consider.

Links to books and activities which promote unity, kindness, and love

Ideas for kindness

Self-care tips

See an activity which worked well? A book your family shared? Something not on the list, but is a great resource? Insert in the comments below and share.


                                                                                                Mrs. Giannini


Turkey Day Fun!!! Gobble Gobble

It’s Thanksgiving and you maybe looking for activities to keep your little one engaged, active, and possible out of the kitchen. Here are some tips and tricks for your kiddo this turkey day.

Have a lot of guests? Have just a few? Never hurts to have a place setting. Have your little artist create place cards with crayon, paint, anything. It will keep them engaged and be adorable.

While you’re at it make some placemats. Same deal: grab some supplies and get your little one engaged. You can even encourage them to draw the guest who will be sitting there. It will be a fun game later…..”Guess Who”

Want to work on math? Have the little ones set the table. Have them work on one-to-one correspondence by counting the utensils and plates outload as they help out.      

Having a kids table? Make some playdough and use it as a centerpiece. They will be entertained for hours and its edible if they eat it. It’s not particularly yummy, but it’s safe.

Have some time that morning? Print up some turkey bingo sheetsIt will keep the kids busy the entire day. Winner gets to do the dishes……or maybe the first piece of pie.

Have a safe and happy turkey day everyone!

                                                                        Mrs. Giannini