Paper Chromatography: The Art & Science of Color

Paper Chromatography: The Art & Science of Color

Emily Crawford ©2019 Parents’ Choice

 

Emily holds a BSE in electrical engineering and computer science from Duke University and a Master’s in computer engineering from Georgia Tech. She is a homeschooling parent and lives with her husband, three children, five cats, and thousands of LEGOs in Blacksburg, Virginia. .

Lullabuddy

Claire Green ©2019 Parents’ Choice

 

Claire is president of Parents’ Choice Foundation and serves as a judge on several national toy and music award committees. She champions toys, books, and media that offer children new perspectives and playful adventures in learning.

Timbuktu to Bombay

Lahri Bond ©2018 Parents’ Choice

Lahri Bond is a father, a writer, music historian and an art professor in Western Massachusetts. His published books include Spinning Tales Weaving Hope (with the Stories For World Change Network) for New Society Press and People of the Earth (coauthored with Ellen Evert Hopman) for Destiny Books.

Kiddopia – Kids Learning Games

Sharon Heuscher ©2018 Parents’ Choice

 

Sharon holds B.A.s in English Literature and Ancient Studies as well as a B.S. in Psychology. She is currently a masters-level trainee in Clinical Psychology specializing in neurodegenerative diseases. For the past thirteen years, Sharon has focused primarily on raising, educating, and nurturing her five children who range in age from three to thirteen.

Fly!

Lynne Heffley ©2019 Parents’ Choice

A freelance writer and editor for the arts and non-profit organizations, Lynne is a former staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, where she established the paper’s first weekly children’s arts and entertainment beat.

Let’s Sing!

Lynne Heffley ©2018 Parents’ Choice

A freelance writer and editor for the arts and non-profit organizations, Lynne is a former staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, where she established the paper’s first weekly children’s arts and entertainment beat.

Reading is Fundamental Literacy Central

Sharon Heuscher ©2018 Parents’ Choice

Sharon holds B.A.s in English Literature and Ancient Studies as well as a B.S. in Psychology. She is currently a masters-level trainee in Clinical Psychology specializing in neurodegenerative diseases. For the past thirteen years, Sharon has focused primarily on raising, educating, and nurturing her five children who range in age from three to thirteen.

Jet’s Bot Builder

Jennifer Wells ©2019 Parents’ Choice

For more than 20 years, Jennifer has been developing play experiences for children, with beloved organizations like Highlights and LEGO. With a Master’s degree in Children & Media, a Bachelor’s in Music, and a love of Star Trek, Jennifer has many layers.

Remy’s Place

Claire Green ©2018 Parents’ Choice

As president of Parents’ Choice Foundation, Claire applauds toys and media that unleash children’s interests and celebrate the fun of learning.

Q Wunder App

Sharon Heuscher ©2018 Parents’ Choice

Sharon holds B.A.s in English Literature and Ancient Studies as well as a B.S. in Psychology. She is currently a masters-level trainee in Clinical Psychology specializing in neurodegenerative diseases. For the past thirteen years, Sharon has focused primarily on raising, educating, and nurturing her five children who range in age from three to thirteen.

Todo Math

Sharon Heuscher ©2018 Parents’ Choice

Sharon holds B.A.s in English Literature and Ancient Studies as well as a B.S. in Psychology. She is currently a masters-level trainee in Clinical Psychology specializing in neurodegenerative diseases. For the past thirteen years, Sharon has focused primarily on raising, educating, and nurturing her five children who range in age from three to thirteen.

Pinna

Don Oldenburg ©2019 Parents’ Choice

A former feature writer and consumer columnist at The Washington Post for 22 years, Don Oldenburg is the Director of Publications and Editor of the National Italian American Foundation, in Washington, D.C. He regularly reviews books for USA Today and is the coauthor of “The Washington DC-Baltimore Dog Lovers Companion” (Avalon Travel). The proud father of three sons, he lives with his journalist-author wife, Ann Oldenburg, in McLean, VA.

Abandon All Artichokes

“Abandon All Artichokes: A Heartless Card Game” is a deck-building (or as the makers say, “deck-wrecking”) card game for two to four players in which the players try to build up their personal decks with vegetables and toss out their artichokes as soon as possible. On a turn, players have a hand of five cards from their own personal deck. They pick one of the garden row cards, and then try to play any advantageous vegetable cards from their own hand. Each vegetable type is unique, allowing players to discard artichokes permanently to the compost pile, add garden stack vegetables to their personal deck, claim cards from other players (sometimes at the risk of getting an extra artichoke), and pass cards to other players (sometimes at the risk of losing a garden vegetable). At the end of each turn, a player discards everything left in their hand and draws five fresh cards from their personal deck, reshuffling the discard pile into the deck as needed. If all five cards drawn from the personal deck are artichoke-free, the player calls out “Abandon All Artichokes!” and wins the game.

In play we quickly realized there were two strategies, that of discarding artichoke cards as quickly as possible, thus eliminating the opportunity to draw them; or that of collecting as many vegetables as possible, thus making the chances of drawing vegetables from one’s personal deck higher. Ideally one can pursue both goals at the same time, but most cards favor either one direction or the other. Recognizing which way a fellow player is leaning at any time can help one’s own strategies, and it is possible for a player to become gleefully “heartless” toward one’s opponents as well as literally heartless in one’s card deck. In a two player game, there’s a greater element of luck — so the choice of vegetables to play becomes even more crucial.

Not only is the game concept well-designed, but visually Abandon All Artichokes is a delight. A game doesn’t have to look good to be fun to play, but it certainly adds to the enjoyment. A quick and enjoyable game for social family times.

 

Emily Crawford ©2020 Parents’ Choice

Emily holds a BSE in electrical engineering and computer science from Duke University and a Master’s in computer engineering from Georgia Tech. She is a homeschooling parent and lives with her husband, three children, five cats, and thousands of LEGOs in Blacksburg, Virginia.

Elephant Books

Elephant Books is a mail-order book club that provides children and their parents with high-quality contemporary children’s books on a monthly basis. Subscribers can choose between packages featuring board books (for ages 0-2) and picture books (for ages 2-6). Each month’s selections are wrapped in heavy Kraft paper and tied with bright orange ribbons. Each package contains two to three hardcover books, along with “reading tips” to assist parents in teaching their children while reading to them. The packages for the younger reading group (ages 0-2) include book plates on which parents can list all of the books that they’ve read with their children, while the packages for 2-6 year olds include a traditional library card on which to record each time the book is read and everyone who was involved in the reading.

The books are selected from recently published titles by contemporary authors and illustrators and feature original stories and characters (with no tie-ins to branded media products). The selections include both popular titles by established authors and illustrators (such as Alexandra Boiger’s Max and Marla and Terry Border’s Peanut Butter Yummy Numbers: Ten Little Peanuts Jumping on the Bread!) and lesser known works by new or previously neglected writers and artists. All of the selections are illustrated in brilliant colors, and many of the books for younger readers (ages 0-2) include special features (flip pages, spinning wheels, blank panels for writing) designed to engage the child more actively in the reading process. Selected titles are discounted between 15 and 20 percent of the suggested retail price, with subscriptions available on a one-month ($20.99 per month), three-month ($19.99 per month), six-month ($18.99 per month), or yearly ($17.99 per month) basis, with an additional $5 for monthly shipping cost.

 

David Shirley ©2020 Parents’ Choice

David Shirley’s recent nonfiction titles include A History of Brooklyn Bridge Park and Fix It Leroy! His YA biographies, Every Day I Sing the Blues: The Story of B. B. King and Satchel Paige: Baseball Legend were honored as the New York Public Library’s Best Books for Teens.