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101 Offline Activities You Can Do With Your Child Review by Kathy and Rebecca Gelzer

Steve and Ruth Bennett
BPT Press
PO Box 834
Randolph, MA 02368-0834

101 Offline Activities You Can Do with Your Child is a book that has 101 different ways to have fun with children without using a computer or similar item. A few of the activities are Big Time Newspaper, Changing Rooms, Clothing Designer, Follow Me, Guess That Sound, Muffin Tin Toss, Rosetta Stones, Time Travelers, and Word Family Game. There are games to do while in line at a grocery store, in the car on a road trip, or at home just relaxing. The authors say that all the activities are fun, easy, and environmentally friendly. The games vary in length. Some could take five minutes; others could take as long as you want. Some of the games only need your time. Others also need common household items like vegetables, towels, soap, coins, and socks.

The book's says "Fun for Kids of All Ages!" But I think the activities are more appropriate for younger kids--maybe ages 4-10. At the end of the book, the authors have sorted the games into categories, such as Older Kids Play and Younger Kids Play. Some of the ideas require adult help or supervision, but most of the ideas your child could do on his own or with an older sibling. The book's title indicates that it is meant for parents and their children, but I think babysitters and other people who want to enjoy time with kids would like this book also. You could repeat most of these games over and over with your child, and the results would be different every time!

I thought this book was great! In this century more and more kids are getting plugged into iPods, cell phones, and game-boys. This book shows that there is still hope! I would like to a couple of activities that might be questionable to some adults. A game called Adventure Treks suggests that kids can climb on furniture and that it would be helpful in this game to do so. And a game called Witches' Brew requires your child to make a concoction and then describe what the "magic potion" will do. But those are just two of the 101 ideas in this book.

Overall this is a great book. If you know a child who you want to spend more time with offline, this is a great book for you!

Product review by Kathy and Rebecca Gelzer, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, December 2011