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Tuesday 25 September 2018

Fun Facts & Adventures with National Geographic Kids

Sponsored post: I received these National Geographic Kids products for free from Moms Meet (momsmeet.com) in exchange for my honest opinion. 

Hands up if you're a fan of National Geographic magazine? I've got my hand up!

It's such a classic, isn't it? 

As a kid I used to love looking through stacks of magazines at our neighbor's house, and every time I came across that instantly recognizable yellow border I knew I'd found something worth reading - even before I knew how to read! The photos always captivated me and I loved learning about people, places, animals and plants that I knew I'd probably never get to see with my own eyes. The magazine sparked a sense of adventure in me and a keenness to learn about the world around me. No matter how old the issue was (and they were often quite old!) the articles always filled me with wonder.  

Fast forward a few decades or so, and that yellow border still draws me in when I see it. When I saw the National Geographic Kids Almanac 2019 I just knew I had to get it for the kids. Just like National Geographic magazine, the Kids Almanac is full of stunning photography and amazing facts about our world, but, here's the best bit, it's broken down into kid sized chunks of information. There's a little bit of everything: animals, plants, geography, history, cultures, weather, science, food, technology... Everything! 

The kids were excited to get their hands on the Kids Almanac and check it out. A National Geographic just for them! Sure enough, there were lots of oohs and aahs as they flicked through the chapters and spotted things that interested them. Pages with narwhals, dinosaurs, volcanoes, maps, quizzes and experiments were bookmarked. So many bookmarks!

Lola was keen to learn more about narwhals (we had seen a narwhal skeleton at the American Museum of Natural in New York over the Summer) and made sure to read every last fact about these illusive creatures in the Kids Almanac. Inspired by what she had learned she got to work drawing a picture of a mama and baby narwhal.

Mathilde, being dino obsessed like most preschoolers, was excited to find several pages about dinosaurs. She did a pretty good job at naming most of the dinosaurs featured and was keen to practice the names of those that were new to her. It always amazes me that despite her speech impediment, she's pretty good at getting her tongue around those looooong dinosaur names!  

Given that much of the Kids Almanac, and National Geographic in general, is focused on nature the kids decided to take it along to the community garden with us to see if they could match it up with anything growing there. We found zucchinis growing, but none the size of a large sheepdog like the one mentioned in the weird but true facts in the Kids Almanac!

Mathilde was keen to find some ugly food growing in the garden just like the page in the Kids Almanac that had her laughing. We've had our fair share of "ugly" carrots growing in our garden bed, but none this time around. 

The Kids Almanac is such a great book to take out and about on adventures, even if it's just to the local community garden. There's sure to be something that you come across while exploring that you can find fun facts about in the book.

Speaking of exploring, National Geographic Kids has released a great series of fiction books aimed at older kids. And yes, you read correctly, that did say fiction! The Explorer Academy series is a fact-based fiction series inspired by the real life adventures of National Geographic explorers. The series follows the adventures of Cruz Coronado, a 12 year old student at the fictional Explorer Academy, an exclusive school that teaches the next generation of explorers. Along with his studies Cruz must try to crack a family mystery with the help of his friends and classmates from around the world.

Ava has been reading the first book in the series, The Nebula Secret. With clues and codes hidden throughout the book, it's more than just a captivating read. Ava can try to crack the code and solve the mystery herself as she reads. For more mystery fun online, exploreracademy.com features an awesome code breaking game.

To celebrate the launch of the new Explorer Academy series, one lucky family will get to experience the ultimate adventure on a ship based expedition, just like the students at the Explorer Academy. The grand prize of this sweepstakes is a family trip for four to Alaska's Inside Passage from National Geographic Expeditions. Doesn't that sound amazing?
To enter the sweepstakes visit exploreracademytrip.com 

There's a giveaway for readers of the Kids Almanac too! Kids can participate in the Lions Forever Almanac Challenge for the chance to win a $500 gift card to host a lion conservation party.
For all the information visit natgeokids.com/almanac

Both National Geographic Kids Almanac 2019 and Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret are available at book stores and online at natgeokids.com

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