Make A Tooth Fairy Wand

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We are celebrating Family Dental Health Month at the museum, and in this video shows you how to make a magnetic tooth fairy wand. Here's what you will need to make a magic wand at home:

Supplies needed

  • Paper - cut out a star or tooth shape
  • Markers or crayons
  • Stickers (optional)
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • White paper for mini teeth
  • Magnet
  • Paperclips, brass fastener, or pipe cleaner
  • Wand- pencil, craft stick, or chopstick
  • Optional: ribbon to decorate

Steps:

  1. First decorate the top of the wand- you could make a paper star, tooth, or a shape of your choice. Use markers or stickers to decorate it
  2. Next tape the paper piece of the wand to a stick- this could be a pencil, craft stick, choo stick, dowel, or even a twig from outside!
  3. Add some colorful ribbon or streamers to your wand if you would like
  4. Now carefully tape a magnet to the back of your wand. You can test the magnet first to make sure it's strong enough to pick up a paper clip (or whatever metal object you are using)
  5. Cut out some mini teeth using white paper, and add a paperclip, pipe cleaner, or brass fastener to each tooth
  6. Try out your magic wand! Place the teeth on a flat surface, and use the magnet on your wand to try to pick them up.

At the end of the video we talk about a few of the dental health books we have at the museum that cover losing teeth! Here is another great selection put together by Scholastic.

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Sunflower Exploration

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Three Sunflower Activity Ideas from Little Pine Learners

Get a Sunflower! If kids can pick their own at a farm or market, that adds to the fun!

  1. Have children use tweezers to take apart the sunflower, and get the seeds out.
  2. Draw or print a sunflower template and have children use a paint brush to sweep the seeds to the center of the flower drawing.
  3. When the exploration is done, use the seeds to create sunflower art by glueing them to the template or drawing!

Save the extra seeds to make a bird feeder or simply scatter for birds in your yard!

Learn more Play Based Learning tips here on our website, on Pinterest, or on YouTube.

Backyard Birding

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Creating a Play Space at Home

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Even with limited space and materials, kids can learn from play!

Play Based Learning experts suggest that Montessori style play areas can be a good approach to use for play based learning at home. Open ended activities that allow for creativity work well, and it helps to have a defined play space where kids know they can use any materials available. Adding one new or different activity choice per week can help keep children engaged. This can be a new theme using their toys, nature items, or other objects from around the home. Borrowing library books also helps to add variety without purchasing anything new, and can be a great way to explore new topics.

A Few Guidelines

  • Have a limited number of activities, and cater to their interests.
  • Set up materials at their level and let them choose.
  • Choose engaging activities over entertainment.
  • Mix in a variety of activities and add something different each week.
  • Use a cozy space where few things are "off limits" so kids can focus on play.
  • Trays help separate activities and contain messes

Learn more Play Based Learning tips here on our website, on Pinterest, or on YouTube.


Why is Play Based Learning Important?

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CMNH Play Based Learning Tips

At the Children's Museum of New Hampshire we've been inviting children to engage in hands-on Play Based Learning since we opened in 1983. However, we realize it's not as easy in a classroom or at home. Each week we will be sharing Play Based Learning tips to help caregivers and teachers encourage play!

You can see all the PBL tips here on our website, or follow us on Pinterest, or subscribe to YouTube.

Play Based Learning: An Introduction


Why Play Based Learning is So Important


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Books Alive: Bruce the Bear puppet

Make a Bruce the Bear bag puppet!

Bruce the Bear was our special guest for Books Alive & Story Explorers this month. We read “Mother Bruce” and enjoyed the story of Bruce mothering a group of baby goslings!

There are lots of other Bruce the Bear books by local Maine author Ryan T. Higgins -you can check them out at your local library and learn about Bruce’s other adventures!

To make your own Bruce the Bear puppet to bring on adventures, follow these instructions:

Materials Needed:

  • Small paper bag
  • Two small paper circles (for his ears!)
  • One paper triangle or circle (for his nose!)
  • Glue or tape
  • Markers or crayons

Instructions:

  1. Place your paper bag on your work surface so that the square bottom is facing you and turned upwards (This will be the head/mouth of your puppet!)
  2. Use your glue or tape to attach the ear and nose pieces
  3. Decorate your puppet with markers or crayons!
Bruce Puppet

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Membership Expiration Dates

Dear CMNH Member,

Your CMNH Membership has been extended to account for covering the time that the museum was fully closed due to COVID19. We have updated all membership records in our database to reflect this extension. When you visit the museum please have your membership card (even if it says it’s expired) OR a photo ID and our staff can verify your information.

*Since all of our membership information is kept digitally there is no need to reprint membership cards as your record has been corrected in our system*

All Passport Members: When visiting any ASTC or ACM museums please keep this email as well as your old membership card as proof of your correct expiration date and reciprocal membership status.

If you were given a Gift Membership: If you happened to be gifted a Membership to CMNH, but haven't used it yet (ie, you have the gift membership certificate, but haven't visited for whatever reason) your membership hasn't been activated yet, and won't be until the first time you come in and present the certificate. So once you do visit, the expiration date will become one year from the date that you visit for the first time.

Thank you for being a member and supporting the museum!

If your Membership expired at the end of:

March 2020 - Your new expiration date was end of September 2020

April 2020 - Your new expiration date was end of October 2020

Renew Your Membership >>

If your Membership expires at the end of:

May 2020 - Your new expiration date is end of November 2020

June 2020 - Your new expiration date is end of December 2020

July 2020 - Your new expiration date is end of January 2021

August 2020 - Your new expiration date is end of February 2021

September 2020 - Your new expiration date is end of March 2021

October 2020 - Your new expiration date is end of April 2021

November 2020 - Your new expiration date is end of May 2021

December 2020 - Your new expiration date is end of June 2021

January 2021 - Your new expiration date is end of July 2021

February 2021 - Your new expiration date is end of August 2021

March 2021 - Your new expiration date is end of August 2021

April 2021 - Your new expiration date is end of August 2021

May 2021 - Your new expiration date is end of August 2021

June 2021 - Your new expiration date is end of August 2021

July 2021 - Your new expiration date is end of August 2021

Any memberships purchased in or after September 2020 will have the normal 12 month length of their membership.

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Spooky Science: Disappearing Ghosts

Disappearing Ghosts

Materials Needed:

  • Biodegradable packing peanuts (made of corn!)
  • Dark colored marker
  • Pipette or paintbrush
  • Small cup of water
  • Tray/plate/cookie sheet

Instructions - Set-up:

  • Use your marker to draw ghosty faces on several biodegradable packing peanuts
    • Invite your young scientist(s) to draw some faces, too!
  • Place ghosts, small cup of water, and pipette on a tray, plate, or cookie sheet

Instructions - Activity:

  • Explain to young scientists that today they are going to make some ghosts disappear!
  • Invite them to touch the ghosts and guess what material was used to make them
    • Talk about the texture, the weight, and ask if it reminds them of anything they’ve seen/touched before
  • Show them how to use their pipette and tell them to carefully drip some water onto their ghosts
    • What happens?!
      • You can also use a paintbrush to carefully drip water
  • Eventually they will notice that their ghosts are shrinking and “disappearing” into a pool of water!
    • Ask them what happened? How do they think that happened? Do they think the ghosts really disappeared? Where did they go?!

The Science:

Although it may have LOOKED like the ghosts were disappearing, they were actually dissolving! The packing peanuts are made of corn, which dissolves in water. If you put a handful of these packing peanuts into a jar of water and shook it, they would completely dissolve--leaving some cloudy white water behind.

Packing peanuts are traditionally made of styrofoam which takes millions of years (we think!) to biodegrade and become dirt in the earth. These packing peanuts biodegrade almost instantly, making them much more environmentally friendly--and they also make an awesome science experiment!

Bonus Activity: Monster Ice!

Can’t get your hands on biodegradable packing peanuts? No worries! Try this fun experiment instead.

Materials Needed:

  • Plastic container (freezer safe)
  • Water
  • Googly eyes or other Halloween trinkets (spider rings, erasers, etc)
  • Small cup with warm salt water
  • Pipette or paintbrush
  • Tray or cookie/baking sheet
  • Red & yellow food coloring (optional)

Instructions - Set-up:

  • The night before the activity, or several hours before, put water into your plastic container.
    • Add yellow and red food coloring to make orange, if you’d like
    • Put in the googly eyes or other Halloween trinkets
    • Freeze!
  • Place plastic container with ice* on a tray with cup of warm salt water & pipette/paintbrush
    • *You might be able to get the ice out of the container, if not--start with the ice still in the container and as young scientists add water & salt, you will easily be able to get the ice out!

Instructions - Activity:

  • Invite young scientists into the experiment area
  • Ask them what they see!
  • Encourage young scientists to use the pipette or paintbrush to drip warm salt water onto the ice and “free” the halloween trinkets
    • Ask: What is happening?
    • Mention that the water is warm and has salt in it--ask how they think this might help to melt the ice
  • Continue adding water until the trinkets are unfrozen!

The Science:

  • Salt lowers the freezing point of water. Ice melts faster when salt is added as the salt lowers the freezing point of the ice, this is known as freezing point depression. The more salt you add the lower the freezing point.
    • This is why we use salt on roads in the winter to help melt the ice and make them safe!

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9th Anniversary of Alzheimer's Cafe

By Paula Rais, CMNH Vice President of Development and Community Engagement
paula@childrens-museum.org

In 2011, the Children's Museum of New Hampshire launched the first Alzheimer's Cafe on America’s east coast. Alzheimer’s Cafés provide a safe, supportive and judgment-free setting for people living with dementia and their loved ones to enjoy an outing in the community, socialize, and make new friends. This program exemplifies the museum’s goal of working with communities to meet existing needs and demonstrates an innovative, concrete way to provide community based solutions to these problems. The Museum’s vibrant inter-generational environment proved to be an ideal setting and the Café became very popular. Dozens of similar programs sprouted up in communities around New England modeled after the Museum’s program.

At the Café each month, we share stories and tell jokes, listen to musical performances and interesting presentations, or celebrate holidays and birthdays. Some attendees became friends and socialized outside the monthly Cafe gatherings. According to Dr. Lokvig, the founder of the first Alzheimer’s Café in the USA, “In spite of the name ‘Alzheimer’s Café’, we leave the disease at the door and celebrate the person beyond dementia. The Café is a chance for everyone to step out of their daily roles and share a positive experience in a supportive environment.”

Since Covid-19 struck in March 2020, our Café has not been able to meet. I know that our Café families are missing each other's companionship and support, and we miss seeing them at the Museum. When it is deemed safe for our staff and visitors, we will explore options for resuming this important program. Please contact me if you would like more information about the Alzheimer's Cafe or want to be on our email list to receive updates.

In the meantime, allow me to honor the occasion of the 9th anniversary of the Alzheimer's Cafe at the Children's Museum, the many families who shared their lives with us, and the generous volunteers, performers, and funders who helped make it all possible.

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