Contact: Kate Bandos, KSB Promotions For Release: Immediately or any time
What to do when you still hear “What can I do?”
With the kids back in school, moms and dads can get a break from the summers refrain, “What can I do?” - right? Not if there are still young children at home…not to mention after school, rainy weekend days, and when someone is home sick.
Deborah Shelton has lots of suggestions for these situations, as well as ideas to help busy parents find fun ways to keep little ones occupied when older siblings are doing homework, or to distract them when they feel abandoned after the school bus takes their summer companions away. In her award-winning* book, The Five Minute Parent: Fun & Fast Activities for You and Your Little Ones ( or ), there are more than 115 fun activities to choose from. Most of the projects call for materials that people usually have on hand. (If not, see reverse side for tips on how to organize supplies for easy use.)
For instance, help your child make a wooden spoon doll or a puppet from a paper lunch sack (see attached). The child can then spend time playing alone with these new friends. You can even encourage them to prepare a little show to do later, maybe when their siblings get home from school or for the whole family after dinner.
Perhaps they will like the idea of creating their own books to “study.” Sheltons ideas for a “Touch and Feel” book or a “Color” book may be just the thing (see attached).
“Remember,” encourages Shelton, “no matter how hectic your schedule, you can create small treasures and lasting memories with children in just minutes.”
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In The Five Minute Parent Shelton suggests having a craft supply box readily available. The most convenient option is to stock a small bookshelf with the following containers and materials:
* Plastic Bins or Shoeboxes: Fill with crayons, felt scraps, fabric, magazine cut-outs, glue, tape, bottles of paint, etc.
* Coffee Cans: Place paintbrushes, markers, popsicle sticks, and pipe cleaners (chenille stems) in decorated coffee cans. Use different sizes of cans to hold different materials.
* Baby Food Jars: Small items such as beads, buttons and googly eyes fit neatly into baby food jars, which can be stored together in a shoebox.
* Empy Shelf: Save a space for pads of construction paper, newspapers and magazines.
* Clear Top Shelf: A clear top shelf works well as a “drying table” for paint projects.
* Shoe Bag: If space is limited, use a clear plastic shoe bag, hung on the back of a door, to hold your supplies.
* Clean Up: Make clean-up easy by keeping rolls of paper towles, sheets of newsprint, rubber gloves for paint projects, and a bag of sponges stored together.
Make sure there is a place for everything, so you can spend time having fun instead of searching for missing materials. “Dont wait for the weekend,” says Shelton. “You can create small treasures and lasting memories in just minutes.”
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Parents and kids can pick ideas from any of the 11 chapters:
• Adventures in art
• Weird and wacky
• Writing and wishing
you were here
• Games & sports, of sorts
• Family fun time
• Music, movement and
• Puppets, critters and
• Celebrations using your
• Cooking & munching in
• Outside fun guide and
• Easy crafts for all ages.
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The Five Minute Parent: Fun & Fast Activities for You and Your Little Ones
by Deborah Shelton illustrated by Frankie Gordon
184 pages 9" x 6" Line illustrations Family Resource Centers Index
Printed 2 color throughout (blue & black)
$12.95 trade paperback original
Publication date: September 2002
To request a review copy of The Five Minute Parent, to arrange an interview with Deborah Shelton or for any additional information, please contact Kate Bandos at KSB Promotions • 800-304-3269 • • fax 616-676-0759
Published by Bayou Publishing; available at bookstores nationwide through all major wholesalers, at online bookstores, by visiting or by calling 800-340-2034.
Please send two copies of any review or mention to
Bayou Publishing, 2524 Nottingham, Houston, TX 77005