5 Tips to Keep Kids Reading and Writing Over the Summer

Posted Jun 22, 2015

Keeping kids writing and reading during the summer can be challenging, especially when the focus shifts from learning in school all year to a “break” for fun. Sneak in some ways to continue to develop their reading and writing skills and they won’t even know they’re learning!


1. Set reading goals, and reward when completed:
While many kids have a summer reading assignment of one or two books, keep children reading with books they actually enjoy and picked out themselves. Schedule a time weekly to take a trip to the local library and pick up a new read for yourself and your child. Make it a fun challenge – create a chart with each week of the summer and what book was read and if it was completed. If all books are completed, take your child out for a day of fun at the end of the summer. Rewards don’t have to be extravagant, but it will keep kids motivated!

2. Encourage reading and writing through games:
Board games like Scrabble Junior, Boggle, Last Word and Spill will encourage them to create words while having fun – try setting up a picnic outside and playing a few rounds. Learning can be incorporated into outdoor sports as well, but it can be a bit more challenging. Have them spell a word before they toss a ball. Play a game of H-O-R-S-E at the basketball hoop – switch up the word to something they are having difficulty spelling. Grab some sidewalk chalk and have them draw what they see and write a few sentences about it, even a game of Hangman or a spelling bee challenge in the driveway would be fun.

3. Turn browsing the internet into a kid-friendly blogging session:
Nowadays, all kids are connected. Instead of sitting inside in the AC, grab a tablet, and take it outside. Direct your kids to a few of our favorite kid-friendly learning and blogging sites: Disney’s Club Penguin and (http://www.clubpenguin.com/welcome) and National Geographic Kids (http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/), where they can play educational games and even write their own blog.

4. Write snail mail to family and friends:
Because everyone is connected, it’s extremely exciting to get a letter in the mail! Keep the art alive with a pen-pal to write to all summer (check out PenPal World (www.penpalworld.com). Going on vacation? Get postcards and send them to friends back home. Even if you’re not going on vacation, your child can still send local postcards just for fun!

5. Record summer fun a journal:
Create a special summer journal notebook just for them (why not get them a fun, personalized Gotcha Covered Notebook?!) and remind them to write about all of the fun they are having. Then, read the journal together on Labor Day to reminisce. This is a great opportunity for them to write and read their writing (especially if they are working on their handwriting!), and also a nice keepsake to have. The start of a new tradition!

A few of our favorite notebooks for summer journals:



Feet in the Sand
http://www.gotchacoverednotebooks.com/feetinthesand

Cherry On Top
http://www.gotchacoverednotebooks.com/cherryontop

Come Fly Away
http://www.gotchacoverednotebooks.com/comeflyaway

Floating Balloons
http://www.gotchacoverednotebooks.com/floatingballoons

Ice Cream Sprinkles
http://www.gotchacoverednotebooks.com/icecreamsprinkles

Take Me Out To The Ball Game
http://www.gotchacoverednotebooks.com/takemeout



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Father's Day Printable

Posted Jun 18, 2015
 
     

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Not Another Tie!

Posted Jun 15, 2015



























Here at Gotcha Covered, we make notebooks that are fun and functional. In honor of Father’s Day, we’ve compiled a list of our top five gifts for dad that we think he’ll love – and actually want to use! Prices are reasonable and products come highly recommended. The items we chose are fun and different – just like us!

 

Orvis Stainless Steel / Hardwood Multi-Tool Check it Out (Sale: $24.00) 

  • Dad will love the gadgets included in this compact multi-tool. Includes some of the most useful items in one place: a hammer, slotted and Phillips screw driver, can opener, saw, knife, pliers and wire cutters/stripper. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars, this multi-tool is sure to be used again and again.

Polaroid Zip Instant Mobile Printer Check it Out ($129.99)

  • Dad will love the versatility of this portable printer, great for instantly showing off pictures of the kids! Prints directly from mobile phones or tablets with Bluetooth or NFC Technology. Photos are smudge-proof, 2x3” and have sticky-back paper. Rated 4.7 out of 5 stars, the free app makes this printer better than the rest.

Amazon Basics Ultra-Portable Mini Bluetooth Speaker Check it Out ($29.99)

  • Dad will be able to take his music wherever he goes and even talk on speaker-phone with the built-in microphone for hands-free calls. Up to 10 hours of play on a single charge, comes with a charging cable and carrying pouch. Rated 4.4 out of 5 stars, this reasonably-priced speaker is sure to be a hit.

Craft Coffee Subscription Check it Out ($11.99 to $24.99 per month depending on quality tier)

  • Dad will love a delivery of handpicked java sent monthly. Choose your pricing tier, frequency and schedule so you never run out! Featured in The New York Times, Wired and Saveur.

Undercover Stealth Laptop Case Check it Out ($39.80)

  • Dad will love hiding his laptop in a case meant to look like a padded envelope he just received in the mail! The sleeve is made of hi-tech material, which is padded, waterproof, tear-proof and can actually be written on. Rated 4.6 out of 5 stars, the novelty of the camouflage really makes this gift.

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Free Coloring Printables!

Posted Jun 02, 2015
      
     

     
     

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Draw With Us!

Posted Jun 01, 2015
We’re excited to celebrate Drawing Day later this week! In honor of this holiday, the Gotcha Covered Team is breaking out their notebooks and showing you what’s inside. We’ll also give you a few tips to improve your own drawing abilities. Remember, drawing is a learned skill - with practice, everyone can draw!

1. Observation: You must look at an object in order to successfully draw it! Many are disappointed when they draw from memory and the drawing doesn’t look realistic. Use your mind as a camera lens and draw the image you observe on paper.
2. Basic Shapes: Find basic shapes in the objects you are looking to draw and use them to develop a more intricate drawing.
3. Use shading and light: While observing an object, be sure to look at light and shadows in addition to the object itself. Use this lighting to establish value (a range of lightness or darkness of color) and make sure your drawing ranges in value from light to dark.
4. Stick with your style: Keep your whole drawing loose if you begin that way. If you start out very precise, stay with that style throughout. The same artist should look like they completed the whole drawing!
5. Loosen up: Drawing should be relaxed and not stiff- you’ll get a much better result when you’re not trying too hard. Draw multiple light lines instead of one dark one, plus use your whole arm to get the motion, not just your fingers.


What’s in Jason (The Innovative One)’s Notebook?
Jason’s the boss, and he’s always coming up with new ideas for Gotcha Covered. He tracks the team’s tasks in his notebook, and makes sure everyone is hitting deadlines and keeping the brand moving forward.
What’s in Brett (The Creative One)’s Notebook?
Brett is our creative designer and he keeps a list of the many designs he needs to complete throughout the day. Included in his to-dos are drinking 2 cups of coffee to get the day started!
What’s in Megan (The Technical One)’s Notebook?
Megan is the technical genius behind Gotcha Covered’s functionality and backend. She keeps a very detailed, organized list of daily tasks (on checklist paper of course!), plus updates she needs to communicate with the programmers.
What’s in Mike (The Social One)’s Notebook?
Mike is extremely artistic and likes to draw in his notebook, whether or not it has sketch paper inside! He also tracks Gotcha Covered’s analytics accounts.
What’s in Michelle (The Insightful One)’s Notebook?
Michelle’s the marketer and always working on improving the Gotcha Covered website’s usability and increasing brand awareness. She loves the split paper and is always drawing ideas on the top of the page and writing notes at the bottom!

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Proud to be...

Posted May 18, 2015


Next Monday, like most of the nation, the Gotcha Covered team will celebrate Memorial Day. While the holiday marks the unofficial start to summer fun with barbeques and parties, Memorial Day is also a time for reflection. On this day, we celebrate the servicemen and women who have passed courageously fighting to keep our nation free.


As a small business, we are thankful for that freedom and the ability to create and sell a product that we love however we choose. We are incredibly proud that our notebooks are all handmade, one at a time in our printing production facility in the thriving small town of Waynesboro, Pennsylvania. Before we had even launched, we donated over 1,000 notebooks to our local community and we’re always looking for ways to support American families. Our goal is to give children the tools to be creative and brainstorm ideas so that they can one day live their own American Dream and have endless opportunities for success through hard work and dedication.


“I like to see a man proud of the place in which he lives.  I like to see a man live so that his place will be proud of him.”  - Abraham Lincoln

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A Gift for Everyone!

Posted May 04, 2015

Have you ever been in a gift shop or retail store and spotted a cool keychain or gift idea that has specific names printed on them? So you search the display to find your name or the name of the person you would like to buy it for. The only problem is that name is not common so they don’t have it, or maybe the name is so common that they are sold out. At Gotcha Covered Notebooks we feel your pain. Thankfully, on our website, this problem does not exist. Even if your name is one of a kind it can be easily placed on a great notebook that matches your personality perfectly! Also, you never have to worry about us running out. We make each notebook as you place the order! Problem Solved!

Not only can any name be placed on any of our notebooks, they can also be personalized with special messages on the back or front covers. We strive to make our notebooks as personalized and as customizable as possible. We understand that every person has differences and unique characteristics and that is what makes us each so special. Gotcha Covered likes to celebrate that fact. Our goal is to make sure that anyone can find a notebook that’s perfect for them.

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It's Good to be Green

Posted Apr 20, 2015



What does it mean to be sustainable?


There are 3 factors that go in to a sustainable business. The first on the list is people. An organization must have a social responsibility or an obligation to benefit society at large.  The second factor would be economic value or profits. The third factor that truly makes a business sustainable is environmental protection and conservation.


It goes without saying that being environmentally conscious these days is very important. At Gotcha Covered Notebooks, we are proud to say that our printing facility is certified by the SGP, or the Sustainable Green Printing Partnership. SGP promotes “best practices, networking, and innovation among raw material manufacturers, converters, printers, finishing facilities, trade association, and print buyers." [1]


Along with the obvious environmental advantage of a certified facility, there is also the personal consumer benefit. With more sustainable practices, efficiency in operations increases. This leads to decreased costs for the company and ultimately a lower price for our products!


Please visit the SGP website to learn more.

 

[1] SGP Partnership. Retrieved March 17, 2015, from http://sgppartnership.org/index.html

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Children's Safety

Posted Apr 06, 2015


What does it mean that our products abide by CPSIA standards?


Well, ultimately it means that our products are SAFE. The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 authorized a variety of new regulations and testing requirements for children’s products. According to the CPSC website, the CPSIA defines the term “children’s product” as a consumer product intended primarily for children 12 years of age or younger.(1)

The following are mandatory procedures for children’s products based on the CPSIA:

• It requires that these products comply with all applicable children’s product safety.

• It is tested for compliance by a CPSC accepted accredited laboratory.

• It has a written Children’s Product Certificate that provides evidence of the product’s compliance.

• It has permanent tracking information affixed to the product.


You can be sure that our all of our notebooks are safe for children.

(1)The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA). (2013, December 6). Retrieved March 12, 2015. http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Regulations-Laws--Standards/Statutes/The-Consumer-Product-Safety-Improvement-Act/

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Our Mission is Your Family

Posted Mar 23, 2015



Aside from delivering our customers quality products that the entire family can find useful and enjoyable, we have a deeper mission in mind.  One of our goals is to help spark creativity in children. Creative activities help to acknowledge children’s uniqueness. They foster mental growth in children. We know as well as you do that your child is a creative flower ready to blossom.

The process of self-expression is very important in developing minds. At Gotcha Covered Notebooks, we hope to be another outlet where your children can express their interests, hobbies, and favorite activities visibly on to a product that is useful to them. As parents, this is a great way to help empower our child’s imagination, which we all know is very important.

Your children will love assisting you in navigating through our easy-to-use website as you both find the perfect notebook that will match your child’s personality. We hope that this, in turn, will spark an interest in using this notebook to create, study, and learn, in a fun environment.

What do you think? Is creativity and self-expression a direct link to a positive learning environment? Does something as simple as a unique notebook help to foster growth and spark interest in learning and creativity? Please tell us your thoughts. 

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