Learning Leaves: How to Fake Fall at Home

Despite the summer-like temperatures in South Florida, fall is in full swing. For states across the US, this also means that fall foliage is at its peak. Along with the cooler weather comes lovely shades of red, orange and yellow leaves from New York to California. For Floridians, however, teaching kids about the seasons isn’t as easy as walking outside.

Taking trips to different climates, reading books that are relevant to the current season and even watching holiday movies are all great activities for exposing kids to the divisions of the year. One of our favorite hands-on projects, though, allows children to see the transformation of autumn leaves with their own eyes.

This craft is great because it all starts with getting some fresh air and exercise. Take a walk around your neighborhood or favorite park and collect leaves of different shapes, sizes and hardness.

Next, grab ample sheets of …

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Bedtime Advice for Kids of All Ages

Is bedtime always a battle? Many parents struggle with getting kids to wind down and go to sleep on a schedule. Whether it’s a school night or a weekend, our tips will ease the sleepy time tension in your home.

The first tip is tried and true: keep a routine. There will always be exceptions, like a nighttime party or a vacation, but sticking to a routine is crucial. Bath time, getting in pajamas, and brushing teeth should be done in the same order at the same time each night.

Make bedtime fun. No, we don’t mean jumping on the bed or pillow fights. Let kids take control of their bedtime by picking out their favorite pajamas. Let them choose the book they read before sleeping. Giving them little things they enjoy will get them excited to get in bed.

Helping kids wind down is best done sans-electronics. Turn off …

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Halloween Tips & Treats

Happy Halloween! The festivities are almost upon us, so it’s a great time to go over the important safety basics that keep our kids protected. Plus, we’ve found a few delicious ways to get your kids involved in skill-strengthening crafts. Read on for our guide to Halloween 2016!

Trick-or-Treat Tips

Always check through your kids’ candy before they start to indulge. Toss out allergy triggers, choking hazards and candy with tampered wrappers.

Don’t text and trick-or-treat! Always be vigilant of your surroundings, and follow all traffic rules.

When it comes to costume safety, we hardly think your child will oppose. Choosing bright colors and reflective fabrics ensures you’ll be seen at night, and also guarantees your child will look super festive.

Spooky Snacks

Get in the spooky spirit this weekend before the Monday holiday with edible Halloween crafts. Cooking and creating puts children’s senses and small motor skills to work. …

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Science Skills: Teaching Kids About Shades of Color

When you ask a child what their favorite color is, they usually yell out their answer before you’ve finished your question. It’s also likely that their bedrooms, closets and even toys reflect their affinity for a particular hue. This is the perfect place to start teaching kids about color variation.

Helping kids understand that there are different shades of the same color can be loads of scientific fun. Here are four activities that will help kids learn about color variation while using their small motor skills and creativity.

Compare their clothes

Lay a few of the same color, but different shade, shirts next to each other. Show the child how several blue shirts, for example, are the same color but each look different.

Paint a picture

This is a fun weekend activity. Give kids large sheets of white paper along with paints in various shades of the same color. …

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Fun & Easy At-Home Reading Comprehension Activities

Back to school time is finally here! Whether your kids have spent the past few months at camp, traveling or plain old hanging out, they should start brushing up on their reading skills over the next few weeks. Our summer camp program was a great way for kids to review lessons and prepare for a successful year, but there are also at-home activities you’ll love to do together. Read on for ideas on fun reading comprehension activities for kids of all ages.

The first step is to choose an age-appropriate book. These activities will apply to kids of all ages and all reading levels.

Play

Keep kids entertained while you talk about the story by giving them a hands-on activity. You can print out an enlarged copy of the book cover, paste it onto cardboard, and cut it into different sized pieces to create a puzzle. As your child puts it …

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Swimming Safety: A Reminder for Summer

Living in Miami, we have plenty of access and perfect conditions for enjoying the pool or beach year-round. Still, summer is the season for beach getaways and pool parties galore. Swimming safety is important no matter your location nor the time of year, but it’s important to reinforce rules now to keep our families from harm.  

Despite a decrease over the past few years, drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death among children ages 1-4, and the second leading cause of death in children ages 5-14 (poolsafety.gov). These are tragic statistics that can be avoided if we are careful and alert when our kids are around water.

Whether you’re taking a trip to the beach or enjoying a pool day at someone’s home, paying close attention to kids in the water is vital. Accidents can happen even in shallow water like hot tubs, and even to …

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Enroll Now: Smart E. Pants Academy Summer Camp is Back!

Summer vacation is almost here, and that means parents have many questions on their minds. How will I keep my child active for the next few months? Is there a way I can make sure my kids don’t lose what they learned this year? Can I help them prepare for the upcoming school year?

The answer to all of these questions is simple. Enroll your child in the Smart E. Pants Academy summer camp! 

We’ll be offering our annual camp all summer long, from Monday, June 13th through Friday, August 19th. Each session lasts 2 weeks, making for 5 summer sessions total.

Here’s the scoop. Our camp accommodates children ages 2-13, with specialized programs to entertain and educate different grade levels. We establish a curriculum for each child before the session begins. Their individualized curriculum will be a tailored combination of reading, math, or other subjects, touching on last year’s …

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Digital Learning Puts Education at our Kids’ Fingertips

Fact: the average household contains 5.7 internet-enabled devices (Sylvan Learning). Whether it’s smartphones or tablets, laptops or desktop computers, we are constantly connected with access to infinite information. And these devices, as well as their reach, don’t only belong to the parents; the kids are just as lucky (if not more so!).

According to a Sylvan Learning report, digital learning is expanding young minds at a rapid pace. With technology already at the helm of many homes and even schools, it’s no surprise to read that:

4 out of 10 5-year-olds have an iPhone, iPod touch, or tablet Mobile gaming has increased 53% in one year 2013: gaming starts at age 9 2014: gaming starts at age 8 86% of teachers use technology 92% of teachers wish they used more technology The estimated 2017 gaming market is $14.74 billion

These striking statistics don’t only show an overwhelming technology …

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From Pre-K to SAT Prep: Why SEPA is Right for Your Kids

We know your child’s education is your priority, and it’s ours too. At Smart E. Pants Academy, we’re armed with all the tools to help your child of any age succeed at school. Read on to find out about some of our most popular programs and how they can elevate your child’s education.

Preschool

We believe that every child deserves a strong program that introduces him or her to new concepts with individualized attention, care, and patience. Our curated Pre-K program focuses on pre-reading and writing, gross motor skills, fine motor skills, number concepts, and language.

Test Prep

Standardized tests: last year we brought you information on the Spring 2016 changes to the SAT. We help our students prepare for this exam, including becoming familiar with the latest format of the test.

High school entrance exams: we’re proud to say we have a 100% …

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Our 10 Best Study Tips for Conquering Midterms

With midterm exams on the horizon, it’s time to buckle-down and start studying. This can be an overwhelming process, what with so much material to review and only a few weeks to do so. However, did you know it’s not about the length of time you spend in front of a book, but your comprehension of it?

That may seem obvious, but many students are so focused on the amount of time they spend studying that they don’t always use that time wisely. In reality, the key word for academic success isn’t time–it’s structure.

Creating the proper plan for tackling tests is at the foundation of achieving your academic goals. These 12 tips will help you study smarter, not harder.

1. Plan

Use an agenda or calendar to map out your test dates so you can see how much time you have before each exam, as well as how much …

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