Teachable Moments are Everywhere, Even at Red Mango



This post comes with a warning. If you try Red Mango frozen yogurt - you WILL become addicted.

Of course, I kid. Sort of.

A few weeks ago baby bookworm and I went to a blogger event at Red Mango, a new frozen yogurt shop in the lovely town of Wayne, PA...and I. Was. Hooked. I went to Red Mango about 5 times the week of the event! Should I be embarrassed to admit that? I really don't have an addictive personality, I swear. Their frozen yogurt is on another level, and for whatever reason I had to have it, very often.

Since then, it's actually become one of our favorite spots, and it's a "special treat" for baby bookworm that I can feel good about because it's nonfat, all-natural, and contains live and active cultures that are beneficial to your body.

Oh. And I cannot forget that there was also pizza at the event from another new shop, Jules, just down the street from Red Mango. It's all organic and completely delicious. I have also become a regular there, as well! (I must be an advertiser's dream or something).

Now, you might be asking yourself what does this have to do with the theme of my blog, learning, literacy, and a love of books?

Everything. Because my "homeschooling" motto is that learning opportunities creep up on you in the most surprising places. An event with pizza and frozen yogurt, sure, is lots of fun! But, the real fun is trying to make teachable moments out of everyday experiences...going to the grocery store, the doctor's office or just about anywhere.

So how did we create a learning experience out of a yummy blogger event?

Well, for starters we read the book Ice Cream Everywhere.

Technically ice cream and frozen yogurt aren't the same thing, but...to a 2-year-old they pretty much are. And since I had a difficult time finding a frozen yogurt book, this one seemed perfect since it's fun, and contains lots of rhymes and repetition. I had baby bookworm point to the words as I read them since the text was short and simple, and then try to identify the words "ice cream" in the text.

As a follow-up activity, we then created our own ice cream cone out of construction paper and glue (super simple). I numbered the pieces and asked her to put them in order. If your child can't identify numbers yet, you could leave them out and go by size alone. This is a really easy and fun activity to practice shapes, numbers and size.

Finally, baby bookworm and I added a little science to our lesson by reading From Milk to Ice Cream.

The book tells about the process of how ice cream is made from milking the cow all the way through to stocking shelves with ice cream. It's a great science book for the toddler age group, and I definitely recommend it to you if you are looking to make a teachable moment out of your next trip to the ice cream shop or Red Mango.

Marissa Kiepert Truong, PhD is a Chester County, PA mom and early education consultant. This post is adapted from her blog Land of Once Upon a Time.

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