• Trader Joe’s Grocery Store at Pretend City Children’s Museum

    Have you ever thought of a grocery shopping as a learning experience for children? Your grocery store is filled with great literacy and math learning opportunities  including: Counting Addition/subtraction Measuring Learning the value of money Sorting and categorizing Letter recognition On your next visit, incorporate a fun activity to teach your child mathematics while shopping by giving them a go at shopping for apples – they will pick up skills such as: weighing objects identifying differences and similarities in shapes and sizes calculating costs The grocery store is also a great opportunity to teach by example. Your child may have observed how you make one of their favorite meals at home, such as spaghetti. While grocery shopping, ask them what ingredients are needed to make their favorite spaghetti at home and let them pick it out. They will learn things about the grocery store such as: that the store is organized into groups of similar things (i.e. produce, aisles, dairy) that it takes several ingredients to make one thing (the whole is made up of many elements) that the same product can have different costs (consumer literacy) Come to Pretend City and explore our brand new Trader Joe’s grocery store! […]

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  • Imaginary Friends: Should you be Concerned?

    Should I be concerned if my child has an Imaginary Friend? Answer: NO, you shouldn’t be concerned if your child has an imaginary friend! In fact, imaginary friends are very common. A study conducted by the University of Washington and University of Oregon psychologists found by age seven, 65% of children have had an imaginary friend at some point in their lives! Here’s what you need to know: Myth: Children are living in a world of confusion and truly think their imaginary friend is alive.      Fact: Children know their imaginary friend isn’t real. They are able to separate fantasy from real life! This phase is all pretend and make-believe. Myth: Imaginary friends show loneliness or lack of social skills in a child.      Fact: Children with imaginary friends are actually exercising their imaginations. Research shows children with imaginary friends are very social, engage in more laughing and smiling with peers, and have a sophisticated understanding of how others may feel or think.  Myth: Children who have imaginary friends are troubled.      Fact: Having an imaginary friend does not show a child is troubled. However, if a child has experienced a traumatic event or difficulties in life, an imaginary […]

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  • Risk Taking: Child Development Magic!

    I watched something magical happen the other day! As most of our readers know by now, Pretend City Children’s Museum is hosting a new summer exhibit called Super Powers. During the first week of operations, we were customizing the zip-line activity to ensure a safe experience for all of our guests. Initially, I spent a couple of hours simply observing how this exciting activity was being used by both children and their adults. Since the installation, children have been flocking to this area to zip down the rope like a super hero and I can assure you that it is definitely a “super” popular activity! As I was doing my initial observation, I noticed a mom and her (best guess) 3 year-old son. Mom was trying to talk a very hesitant 3 year-old into trying the short zip line and he was having nothing to do with it! He dug his heels in and refused to even step up on the starting platform. But he was interested in the activity as evidenced by his reluctance to leave the area and do something else. So this smart mom let him watch, remarking on the fun the other children were having. After […]

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