Of course you read books aloud to your kids often, but have you ever thought about setting aside time to cuddle and solve math problems together?
Leslie Gilbert, a math teacher and creator of MathKit, has created a collection of games to show kids that math can be a fun way to spend family time—and give them the confidence to keep trying and learning, even when they get a problem wrong.
The Hello Kitty craze is global, from breathtaking fashion statements to almost any piece of merchandise you can think of. And it all started in March 1975 with a simple coin purse that cost less than a dollar.
At the new Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty now at the EMP Museum in Seattle, you can get a look at one of those rare coin purses, along with more than 500 unique pieces from Sanrio on display. The traveling exhibit is fascinating for anyone who has ever owned their own piece of Hello Kitty merchandise or been intrigued by her rise to pop culture stardom over the past 40 years.
My six-year-old and I recently attended an event at Nintendo to get a firsthand look at some of their best offerings for the holiday season. Not only did my daughter make her own Nintendo-themed holiday wish list, we are ecstatic to share an incredible prize back with Animal Crossing: amiibo Festivaland her other top picks with one lucky reader!
Today’s kid celebrities aren’t just found acting on TV or movies anymore—they’re being themselves on YouTube. You might not know who EvanTubeHD, kittiesmama, or Kid President are, but chances are your kids do, thanks to how easy the YouTube Kids app has made it to find kid-friendly content with the tap of a finger.
Do your kids dream of being the next big YouTube sensation? There’s no one right way to do it, but Jillian and Addie of the channel babyteeth4 have made it happen with the hard work and support of their parents Bob and Tommie. Bob turned his family’s home movie hobby into his profession, and his unique story might even inspire you and your kids to do the same.
The new Nintendo 3DS release takes place in the kingdom of Hytopia, where a witch has replaced the princess’s stylish clothes with a drab unitard that she can’t remove. (The horror!) It’s up to the heroes of the land to save the princess…’s awesome fashion style.
This lighthearted take on Zelda is a one-of-a-kind co-op title that takes teamwork between friends and family to save the day. Here are six things you should know before you pick up the game.
Have you ever looked at a stark stormtrooper and thought, “That guy could use a splash of color!” If so, this is your chance to put your own spin on a stormtrooper with this creative watercolor painting perfect for you and the kids.
I’m always on the lookout for picture books with characters my daughter can really identify with. As she’s someone who has a big interest in science, I was on the hunt to find books featuring girls who also love science and experiments.
It’s usually difficult to find the elusive Natasha Romanoff, but not today: You can now find Black Widow starring her own young adult title, Forever Red, in bookstores everywhere.
Black Widow: Forever Rednot only gives us a much-needed insight into the history of Natasha Romanoff, but also introduces a new teenaged character, Ava Orlova, who made her debut in September in the Mockingbird comic book one-shot. How do their paths intersect?
“Being able to tell a canon story—the definitive story of Natasha Romanoff’s past—that was both the carrot and the stick,” says author Margaret Stohl. “But the book is both an origin story and a legacy story—with our Black Widow and our Red Widow—so in many ways it becomes a very powerful female narrative about friendship and really sisterhood between two pretty amazing women.”
Conventions are one of the best ways to discover independent and creative small businesses sharing their love of all things geeky. Last year I brought you my choices for just some of the amazing booths featured at GeekGirlCon.
This year, I picked five more with online storefronts so that you too can pick up some of their amazing and unique creations.
Having your friends over to play video games isn’t a new idea. If you grew up in the 80s and 90s, you probably had some buddies over to check out the rad new Super Mario World or Sonic the Hedgehog. But “playing games together” back then was more your friends staring at the screen while you play, instead of playing together.
GeekGirlCon in Seattle, WA, sold out again this year! GeekGirlCon might have a reputation as one of the year’s most relaxed and family-friendly conventions, but that doesn’t mean that cosplayers don’t bring their A game.
Here’s a gallery of some of the best costumes on display on Saturday, October 10, at GeekGirlCon 2015.
October not only brings Halloween fun every year, but the return of Star Wars Reads Day! As Episode VII gets closer and closer, this year’s event promises to be more exciting than ever. With a ton of new Star Wars books to choose from, events nationwide, and spoiler-free activity sheets for The Force Awakens, Star Wars Read Day 2015 will be a blast!
There’s something a little bit magical about turning a piece of paper into a crane, bear, or dragon through the practice of origami. But turning a piece of paper into Batman? That’s being a flat-out origami superhero. Thanks to John Montroll, origami master and author of DC Super Heroes Origami, you and your kids will be making super origami versions of Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and more in no time.
The much-anticipated (at least by my six-year-old) new series DC Super Hero Girls kicks off today with a re-designed web site and webisode! The short animated episode introduces us all to Super Hero High, where heroes and villains alike go to school to learn about their powers and make friends.
If you or your kids loved decorating your house more than anything else in previous Animal Crossing games, you’re in luck! With Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer, you can put your own style on the inside and outside of homes of over 300 villagers. You’ll also make a school, hospital, restaurants, and more to make your new town feel like your very own.
As a veteran of the Seattle convention circuit, I was ecstatic to peruse new-to-me vendors from across Oregon when I attended Rose City Comic Con for the first time.
With booths that feature one-of-a-kind apparel, Minecraft toys, home decor, and more, all of these phenomenal vendors have one thing in common: fantastic wares to show off your favorite geek loves. Take a look at these super shops and check out their online storefronts to snag some goodies for yourself. Continue reading 4 Super Shops Discovered at Rose City Comic Con
When Brett Dalton and Elizabeth Henstridge took the stage at Rose City Comic Con, you would have expected that all of the questions thrown their way would focus on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. But a surprising number of audience members asked Dalton about his recent appearance in Until Dawn, a PlayStation 4 exclusive horror game released in August.
At this year’s Rose City Comic Con, Brett Dalton (Grant Ward) and Elizabeth Henstridge (Jemma Simmons) took the stage to a packed room to talk about the upcoming season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, premiering September 29 on ABC.
Today, the Star Darlings take the spotlight on bookstore shelves in a magical new series from Disney. Chapter books, toys, and apps will tell the story of the Star Darlings, magical girls who are working hard to achieve their dreams of becoming wish granters.
When my daughter was a toddler, one of our favorite activities was making handprint paintings together. She loved feeling the cool paint as the brush tickled her fingers, and I loved having a small keepsake of her little hands. Add a Star Wars theme to the handprints, and you’ve got a perfect painting to hang on the fridge or paste in a geek mom’s scrapbook.
Here are three Star Wars handprint painting ideas crafted with small hands to make happy memories.
Black, white, maroon, gold, brown, and light tan/peach cardstock
Black enamel dot stickers (like these from Doodlebug, found in craft stores with the scrapbooking supplies)
Begin by cutting two black strips the same size, approximately 1.25 inches by 6 inches (or 4 inches for a shorter bookmark). Cut a small oval for Hermione’s face, and a strip smaller than the black strip for her neck and shirt.
Next, cut a small shape for the tie out of the maroon cardstock, and a small strip of gold for the tie’s stripes.
Cut a hair shape out of the light brown cardstock, using the oval as a guide for size. (Remember, this is Hermione, so the poofier the better!)
Now it’s time to start putting it all together!
Glue the oval behind the hair, and then glue the white strip to the bottom of the face.
Then, glue the maroon tie under Hermione’s chin. Cut the gold strip to fit and carefully add two stripes to the tie.
Next, cut a small triangle in the top of one of the black stripes for the front of the robe. Line it up with the tie and glue the robe to the shirt.
Flip the bookmark over, and glue the other black cardstock to the back to finish the robe and give the bookmark a cleaner look.
You can also trace her hair on the brown paper, cut it, and glue to the back of her head to finish the clean look.
You’re almost done! Place two black enamel dots for Hermione’s eyes, and draw a smile beneath.
Finally, to add some texture, use the school glue to draw waves in Hermione’s hair and down the length of the robe to give it some detail.
After the glue on the front dries, flip the bookmark over to add waves to the back of her hair with school glue for the final touch.
Allow the bookmark to dry completely, and Hermione is complete.
Every kid knows their mom is a superhero, even if they don’t have actual superpowers. (Although my daughter has wondered more than once how I always know what she’s thinking.) Power Up from Boom! Studios, a phenomenally fun, new, all-ages miniseries, puts a spin on the magical girl genre by adding a superpowered mom to the lineup. And a dude. And a laser whale.
Power Up, written by Kate Leth with art by Matt Cummings, is the six-issue origin story of an unlikely team of superheroes. The story focuses on Amie Bloom, who works in a pet store and can barely scrape together change for a gallon of milk.
On a day like any other at the shop, Amie and a fish in the store named Silas are bathed in a strange light, immediately followed by a dark creature’s attack. Their superpowered adventures are about to begin!
They’re not the only ones who see the light: Construction worker Kevin and married mom-of-two Sandy also suddenly find themselves with superpowers, although none of them know why. They’re brought together as another monster attacks and realize they need to stick together to get to the bottom of it all.
This is an original and diverse cast of superheroes that I can’t wait to see more of. Not only is Amie adorable with a realistic body shape (and I want her penguin hoodie), Kevin is unashamed of his skimpy magical girl uniform. “It’s my armor,” he says, with a touch of pride. Add to that a mom of two teenagers in the mix, and I’m in love.
There are very few mothers in comics, much less superpowered ones, and I feel like there’s a kindred spirit in the pages of Power Up thanks to the inclusion of super-strong Sandy. I’m just sad that there will only be six issues to see a super mom in action.
If you’ve been to any of the major comic conventions across the country, chances are you’ve spotted the Espionage Cosmetics booth stocked with makeup inspired by various geeky passions. After successfully running two Kickstarter campaigns for nerdy nail wraps, Espionage has moved to the next level with two new endeavors: a subscription box service and and a brick and mortar storefront, Geek Boutique.
The subscription box, Nerd Makeup, is currently in beta testing and not yet ready for public signup. The box, however, inspired the opening of the retail storefront. In an interview with FanBolt, Espionage Cosmetics CEO Jaimie Cordero explains:
So the brick and mortar store is half production for the subscription boxes and the other portion is what everyone has been begging us to do, which is, “Where can I come and pick up the stuff in person? Where can your artists show me how to use these colors if I can’t make it to a convention, if I can’t get tickets, if I don’t have time? Where can I do that?” That’s what we’re starting here.
Cordero promises a storefront version of Artist Alley, and the new store delivers. Featuring not only your favorite nail wrap designs and geek-inspired makeup collections, at the grand opening, products from Geeky Hostess, Optimystical Studios, Throwboy, and more were on hand.
If you are coming to the Seattle-Tacoma area any time soon and you want to stock up on nail wraps and more, head to 707 Pacific Avenue in Tacoma to visit the new, gloriously geeky Geek Boutique.
Haven’t had a chance to play Splatoon on the Wii U yet? This is your chance to get inked—for free! Splatoon is back as a “global testfire” (i.e. a free demo) during the dog days of summer.
Since launch, Nintendo has consistently been adding new, free content in game updates. New weapons, stages, and game modes have been keeping the game fresh, and a recently increased level cap adds even more fun for the dedicated Inklings out there.
Check out my review of Splatoon for more details about the game; so far it’s my family’s favorite game of the year.
Visit the Nintendo eShop to download the demo now! Free play is available from 3-5 PM PT on August 21-23.
These picture books picks aren’t for the kids this time: They’re for all the parents out there who are unabashed grammar geeks! If you love grammar, writing, and word play, you’re likely to be more entertained than your kids when you read these clever books aloud together. Introduce writing concepts, palindromes, and grammar to your kids with the entertaining books below.
Teach kids about the fun you can have with words in this clever and unique book. With over 101 palindromes to spot, this picture book is an interactive addition to family story time.
Younger kids might have some trouble grasping the concept of a palindrome, but there’s no better introduction to learning to recognize one. As a bonus, parents will love trying to spot them as well. (My favorite has to be “too hot to hoot.”) If your kids enjoy this one, Ann and Nan Are Anagrams by the same author and illustrator is another great picture book to pick up.
A brave little pencil chooses her own adventure in this one-of-a-kind picture book.
Read this ingenious twist on Little Red Riding Hood to the kids to explore ideas like story structure and different types of words (like adverbs and adjectives), and you just might pass on your love of grammar and vocabulary. You might even learn a new word or two yourself, like “bosky,” a new one for me.
GeekMom received a promotional copy of I Yam a Donkey! for review purposes.
Most moms are familiar with the comfort and style of TOMS shoes. If you wanted to add your distinctive geek style to your comfy slip-ons, though, you usually had to take the time to paint them yourself.
Summer nights are more than ideal for heading outside to stargaze. Every summer, the night sky lights up with the Perseids meteor shower, a perfect opportunity to watch the stars. This year promises one of the best shows yet, with the peak night predicted for August 13 paired with a new moon. Continue reading Summer Science Fun: Shooting Star Party