Saturday, 22 August 2020

Journey into the Unknown with These Limited-Edition Frozen 2 Dolls

Some things are worth melting for, like our love for all things Frozen and Frozen 2. Get ready for enchanting Disney memories with these brand-new, limited-edition collectible fashion dolls inspired by the glamorous Elsa and Anna characters from the second flick. Beginning on Saturday, March 14, fans can order these intricate dolls from and the Disney Store. The 17-inch Snow Queen Elsa and Queen of Arendelle Anna dolls are wearing their gowns from the end of the movie. The dolls will retail for $129.99 each beginning at 7 a.m. PST. Additionally, when families purchase both dolls, they will receive a free, bonus Frozen 2 collectible key, stylized as Olaf. These dolls feature highly intricate details that make them perfect keepsakes for Disney collectors of all ages.

Frozen Superfans, Your Wedding Dress Is Right Here

It’s been a very long time since we last described our ideal outfit as something “just like a Disney princess.” But, for those who have dreams of Magic Kingdom ceremonies and a prince or princess charming who will slay a dragon in your honor, the folks at Alfred Angelo have been listening. They've been listening to you, but also a lot of “Let It Go.” Yes, brides-to-be — the Frozen wedding dress is here.
Vying to be hottest (um, coldest?) wedding inspiration since Cinderella, Elsa’s nuptial style is the latest one up for grabs from Alfred Angelo designer Jason Gillen, who debuted the icy-blue, crystal-covered creation at Bridal Fashion Week. Of course, should you be more of a classicist, Angelo’s collection also included a slew of other designs inspired by fairytale characters we know and love.
However, our instincts — as well as Pearl Jam, the cast of Mad Men, and tons of other Frozen fans — tell us that this year's top seller will likely be the Elsa number. And, hey, if you're not in the midst of planning your wedding day, there's always Halloween. The sparkly fantasy creation can be yours for a cool $1,399. (Daily News)

Thursday, 20 August 2020

LEGO Disney Princess Elsa's Magical Ice Palace 43172 Toy Castle Building Kit with Mini Dolls, Castle Playset with Popular Frozen Characters including Elsa

  • Build a sparkling ice palace with revolving staircase and sliding bridge to recreate favorite scenes from the Frozen movies or reimagine them in new and exciting ways!
  • Includes LEGO l Disney Frozen Elsa and Anna mini-doll figures, plus Olaf, Marshmallow and 4 Snowgie minifigures for fun adventuring possibilities
  • Elsa's Magical Ice Palace measures over 12-inch (31cm) high, 11-inch (30cm) wide and 7-inch (19cm) deep; Playground with snow fort measures over 2-inch (6cm) high, 7-inch (20cm) wide and 1-inch (4cm) deep; Sleigh with carriages measures over 4-inch (12cm) long and 1-inch (3cm) wide
  • 701 pieces – A cool building toy for boys and girls aged 6+ and for fans of Disney Frozen and kids of all ages
  • This LEGO l Disney Frozen Elsa’s Magical Ice Palace 43172 building kit makes a great Christmas present for kids and can be built together with all other original LEGO sets and bricks for more creative play

Wednesday, 12 August 2020


In a tight budget, but still, wants to buy your four-year-old girl a great gift? The Melissa & Doug Decorate-Your-Own Wooden Princess Wand is the perfect solution at only $6.99. Comes highly recommended by parents and pediatricians, this toy is a great gift idea for growing girls. An engaging substitute for screen time, the Decorate-Your-Own Wooden Princess Wand will fill every girl’s world with glitters, gems, ribbons, and many more!

The toy opens your girl’s imaginative play. It is an engaging craft activity that requires her full attention. When you buy the set, you will get a wooden star, a dowel, gem stickers, satin ribbons, four pots of paint, a paintbrush to use, two glitter glue, and one white glue. Your girl will spend her playtime using her hands and honing her excellent motor skills while sharpening her creativity and imagination. A gold standard in early childhood play, the Decorate-Your-Own Wooden Princess Wand also includes a child-safe, shatterproof mirror that she can use. Your four-year-old girl will always be ready for an impromptu princess day-out with friends when you get this toy. Nurture her creative expression while she colors and designs her unique wand.

Saturday, 8 August 2020

Central Illinois school district implements ‘pajama ban’ for remote learning

A central Illinois school district is implementing a “pajama ban” for students during remote learning this fall.
The ban is part of a new at-home dress code from the school board in the town of Springfield, where students will have a mix of in-class and at-home instruction due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Hats, caps, bandanas, hoods of any type, sweatbands, sunglasses, pajama pants, slippers, or shoes with wheels attached to the bottom shall not be worn,” the district’s school handbook already states — and that applies at home as well, officials said.
Students also are banned from taking classes in bed and must have their computer cameras on and trained at themselves.
“In our regular student dress code, it actually states that pajama pants and so forth are not acceptable school apparel,” Jason Wind, the district’s director of school support, told school board members this week, NBC News reported.
“And so this remote learning information that we put in, with the students’ rights and responsibilities that will fall back under that dress code,” he went on.
“They must follow the dress code of the building, and so no pajama pants.”
The district will be sending 14,000 students back to school on Aug. 30, from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, according to NBC.
Students will spend two days in class for every three days of remote learning, with parents given the option to instead choose full-time remote classes.
Some district parents were reportedly puzzled by the at-home dress code.
One, John Freml, said the last thing kids needed was another barrier to learning.
“To put more barriers in place, ‘You have to sit at a table, you have to dress a certain way,’ does not make sense,” Freml told NBC News.
“We have to meet families where they are and not put up more restrictions,” he added.

Monday, 20 July 2020

How to Teach the Importance of Education to Children

Children at their earliest ages should learn and realize the importance of education in their lives. Some kids, however, may resist your efforts and insist on doing things their way. As a parent, your best teaching tool is your attitude. Having a positive attitude about reading and a curiosity about learning new things instills similar beliefs in your children. Show them that education is the ticket to fulfilling their dreams and having a productive life.
Teach the value of education early in a child's life. Children are naturally curious and observant. If they see you reading books and newspapers, they may be wondering why this activity holds such interest. Tell them that they need to learn to read to be able to also share such enjoyment. Read to them often help them develop their language skills.
Impress on children the importance of school. This means getting them to school on time and modeling the importance of punctuality. Take an interest in all their homework and make sure the required assignments are completed before the due dates.
Take your children to educational yet fun parks. Instead of taking them to the malls, take them to a museum, science center or zoo. Explain to them that continuing their education will allow them to understand more about the world around them. This strategy will certainly make them more motivated to learn and study.
Introduce the computer to children. Computers never fail to amaze people, especially young children. Let them play grade-level software games that will provide fun and entertainment. Emphasize to children that learning about computer use, videos and education go hand in hand.
Teach the importance of education daily. You could incorporate mathematics into daily tasks and situations. Have them help you count the number of cookies on a cookie pan. Their love for learning could start if you rely on them to do specific tasks. Incorporate counting, reading and writing within those simple tasks. For example, you could take them to the market and have them pick out a certain number items (like five apples or four oranges).
Enroll your children in schools. If you want them to love education, make sure to place them in an environment that fosters comfort, fun and learning at the same time. In addition, attend all the parent teacher conferences and become active in other school activities. Your child will notice and grow to respect the time you put into her education.

Thursday, 16 July 2020

Early Childhood Development

Early Childhood Development is an investment for life. But in countries where poverty, armed conflict, natural disasters, and HIV and AIDS threaten a child's family and community support structures, Early Childhood Development (ECD) programs seldom take priority.
The evidence is mounting: increased global investment in children under 8 years of age today builds a better educated, prosperous, and peaceful citizenry tomorrow.
Children who participate in Early Childhood Development programs, when compared with children who don't, are more likely to enroll in school, plan their families, become productive adults, and educate their own children.
They also are less likely to repeat a grade, drop out of school, or engage in criminal activities.
Through interventions that engage young children, as well as their parents, caregivers, and communities, Save the Children's Early Childhood Development programs ensure that young children survive and thrive — that they are physically and emotionally healthy and intellectually curious — and school readiness programs prepare them for school success.
Early childhood, the period between birth and age 8, is the foundation of a child’s future health, growth, development and achievement at school and throughout life. Experiences during these early years shape brain architecture and have a direct impact on social, emotional and learning skills. This investment prospectus focuses on the first five years of a child’s life — an important window of opportunity in a child’s development.

The Need to Start Early

Why are early learning opportunities so important? During the first few years of life, approximately 700 neural connections are formed every second. These connections are dictated by the interplay of a baby’s genetics, environment and experiences, especially the child’s interactions with adults. These are the connections that build brain architecture — the foundation upon which all later learning and behavior depend.
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania studied the home environments of children at age 4 and again at age 8, and then observed their brain structure in late adolescence. They found that the amount of cognitive stimulation available at age 4 affected cortical thickness, which has been linked with intelligence, when these children’s brains were scanned many years later. And consistent with the importance of early experience, cognitive stimulation at age 8 did not show the same effects.
Children who are not exposed to early learning opportunities before age 5 are left at a distinct disadvantage.
Research from the Center for the Developing Child at Harvard University shows that differences in the sizes of children’s vocabularies first appear at 18 months of age. On average, children living in poverty have heard 30 million fewer words than their more affluent peers by the time they turn age 3. By age 5, half of all children living in poverty are not academically or socially ready to start school. Not only do these children start school at a disadvantage, many never catch up.

Sunday, 12 July 2020

Florida wrestles with impossible question: when can schools reopen safely?

Broward county, Florida, is America’s sixth largest school district, where more than 10,000 teachers are tasked with educating more than 270,000 students. Now, it is also a Covid-19 hotbed.

When in-person classes ended here on 13 March, there were 11 cases of Covid-19 in the county, according to Johns Hopkins University’s virus tracker. Now, there are more than 23,000 cases, with a curve bending vertically. Covid-19 cases have doubled in 20 days.
As the virus spreads and reopenings are placed on pause, no one in Broward county seems to agree on a fundamental question: when should students return to school, and how?
“It’s very tough right now, with the amount of cases we have,” said Burt Miller, president of the Broward County Council of Parent Teacher Student Associations, a coalition of groups made up of hyper-involved parents, and a father of a future high school freshman.
“I sit on meetings almost every day with the school board, different committees, trying to figure out how this is going to happen,” said Miller. “Nobody has a set plan, because every time you think of something, something else comes up that’s going to counteract that.”
In the last week, all eyes have been on Arizona, California, Florida and Texas, which have seen spikes in Covid. With the exception of California, these states normally resume classes in early to mid-August. That now feels worrying close to the Fourth of July, a holiday known for socializing, partying and drinking – all behaviors public health officials warn can help spread the virus.
Amid this trend, Donald Trump has heaped pressure on educators. He criticized “tough and expensive” guidelines from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which the agency said it would revise after his comments. The CDC director, Dr Robert Redfield, said he would be “very disappointed” if schools used guidelines put out by his agency as a reason not to reopen.
Trump’s administration has also threatened schools’ funding, at a time when local governments are expected to slash school budgets in response to cratered sales tax revenue. Educators across the country have begged for federal support, but have received none of the $250bn they proposed in a letter to Congress.

With the school year now getting near across these states, anxious teachers, frustrated parents and overwhelmed school districts are wrestling with how to bring students back, if at all, amid a pandemic whose trajectory only seems to reach skyward.
“It’s very exhausting,” Miller said. “I would not want to be a part of the decision-making the school board’s got to make.”
Arizona already delayed school reopening once in June, when there were 74,000 Covid-19 cases. There are now 108,000, and ticking up. Texas’s education agency will require students aged 10 and older to wear masks to attend in-person classes. Parents there can request virtual instruction.
Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, this week ordered “brick and mortar” schools to reopen at least five days a week for students, in consultation with health departments, this fall. Some school leaders have said there is still flexibility in the order, but worry about the pandemic escalating further.
On the day the governor made the announcement, one of the local hospitals in the Broward county city of Deerfield Beach had just one available intensive care bed.
“We do not see a path to reopening all district schools with 100% full enrollment every day, as we were before we closed schools due to the coronavirus pandemic,” the Broward county superintendent, Robert Runcie, said in a video message to his district.
He also shot down comparisons to other countries, made by Trump, which had reopened their schools and economies.
“These countries have done widespread testing and contact tracing,” he said. “We have not done so, and consequently don’t have the infrastructure and systems in place that are necessary.
“The sad fact is that there is no national plan.”
Pediatrician Dr Tommy Schechtman, a past president of the Florida chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, who practices in nearby Palm Beach, said: “We all want our kids back into school, but we need to do it safely.”
Fall classes were scheduled to start on 10 August in Palm Beach. The board announced this week all classes would still be virtual.
“We’re in the middle of a horrific surge,” said Schechtman. “Our hospitals don’t have ICU beds, our numbers are rampantly increasing.”
In the past week, his practice’s order for 400 Covid-19 tests went from back-ordered to canceled. The delay in test results grew from two days to six, and is now up to 12. And the practice is struggling to obtain basic personal protective equipment such as surgical gowns.
“You can’t do contact tracing when [test results are] 10-12 days out,” Schechtman said.
Broward county schools are among those still developing a model for students and teachers, now amid public acrimony. In the current “hybrid” proposal, Broward kids would go to in-person classes two to three days per week, and attend virtually on off days. But that plan has split the community.
“I don’t care if they sit side by side,” said a poster in a new Facebook group called “Broward parents for the return to school”.
The group, with more than 4,400 members, is advocating for full-time, in-person instruction. “The six-feet-apart nonsense is a joke. Just get them back in the classroom so we don’t have a country filled with anti-social dummies.”
Members have organized protests, letter-writing campaigns, shared letters from hopeful children, and even made T-shirts reading “five days, face-to-face”.
No matter the return-to-school policy, all are fraught with seemingly unanswerable questions. After all, how do you get a five-year-old to keep a mask on? How does a teacher refuse a hug to a crying child? Are children in part-time school eating enough? Are they suffering abuse? Is their mental health deteriorating?
Third-grade teacher and single mom Jamie Delerme, whose six-year-old daughter attends Broward schools, described it as a “no-win” situation.
“Ask any teacher: we would rather be back in the classroom,” she said.

Thursday, 9 July 2020

Mayor Says New York City Schools Will Not Fully Reopen In September

New York City’s 1.1 million public school students will attend class part-time this fall according to a preliminary plan announced today by Mayor Bill de Blasio in a press conference. Students will spend one to three days in the classroom each week. On staggered schedules, there will likely be only a dozen people gathered together at a time, including students, teachers and aides.
The nation’s largest school system, which has more than 1,800 schools, has long been plagued by overcrowding, with classes held in hallways and trailers. Most classes in middle and high school have at least 30 students. De Blasio and schools chancellor Richard Carranza, said they will adhere to the school safety guidelines laid out by the CDC, which recommend that students and staff stay six feet away from one another.
De Blasio laid out three possible scenarios. In one, school buildings would accommodate 50% of the number of students they had taken in the past. Students would get live instruction the same two days each week and every other Monday. The second plan would serve only a third of the normal number of people in each building. Students would go to school 1-2 days a week and get a total of five days of in-person instruction every three weeks. In the third model, students would attend in a six-day rotation, with two consecutive in-person days and four remote days in a cycle.
De Blasio said that the plan is subject to change, depending on recommendations from public health officials.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who frequently clashes with the mayor, said in his own press conference later today that he would make the final decisions about school reopening statewide. He will issue additional guidance Monday and school districts must submit their reopening plans to his office by July 31. A final decision will come the first week in August.
It’s not clear whether Cuomo will try to interfere with de Blasio’s plan. When a reporter asked the governor whether de Blasio’s ideas were “credible,” Cuomo answered “No.”
President Trump has been pressuring school leaders to fully reopen K-12 schools. Today he threatened to withhold federal funds if they don’t. Most school funding comes from state and local government sources. The federal government pays for just 8.3% of public school budgets nationwide, according to government figures. Nevertheless, Trump and Vice President Pence are trying to control what local districts do. To make it easier for schools to open, Pence said today that the CDC would issue new, less stringent school reopening guidelines soon.

Tech CEO Apologizes After Viral Video Captures His Racist Rant At Asian Family

Michael Lofthouse, the CEO of a San Francisco-based tech company, Solid8, apologized on Tuesday after he was caught on camera making racist comments to an Asian family at a California restaurant, saying he “lost control and made incredibly hurtful and divisive comments.”


Lofthouse told an Asian family holding a birthday celebration at a restaurant in Carmel, California, that“Trump's gonna f**k you. You f*****g need to leave. You f*****g Asian piece of s**t,” a video of the incident shows.
In an Instagram post, Jordan Chan, the woman who recorded the Video Viral, said her family was singing happy birthday and taking pictures when Lofthouse started speaking to them.
An employee at the restaurant then stepped in between Lofthouse and the family, saying, “You do not talk to our guests like that. They are valued guests. Get out!" She then escorted him off the property.
In a statement to a local ABC affiliate, Lofthouse apologized: “My behavior in the video is appalling. This was clearly a moment where I lost control and made incredibly hurtful and divisive comments. I would like to deeply apologize to the Chan family. I can only imagine the stress and pain they feel. I was taught to respect people of all races, and I will take the time to reflect on my actions and work to better understand the inequality that so many of those around me face every day."

Wednesday, 8 July 2020

Sick Nazi song goes viral on TikTok with more than 6.5 million views

The now-banned jingle, which was sourced to a teenager in the UK, featured appalling anti-Semitic lyrics such as, “We’re going on a trip to a place called Auschwitz, it’s shower time,” reports the BBC. The words were in reference to the Nazi death camp in Poland where Jewish prisoners were mass-murdered during World War II under the guise of taking a communal shower.
The song was featured in over 100 videos after first surfacing as the soundtrack to a clip of a giant swastika-emblazoned scorpion attacking and killing people. It also appeared in a first-person shooter game where players kill enemies using poison gas, a clip from the computer game “Roblox” featuring a Hitler doppelgänger, and others depicting footage from documentaries of the Holocaust.
“It was incredibly distressing to watch this sickening TikTok video aimed at children,” Stephen Silverman, director of investigations and enforcement for the Campaign Against Antisemitism, tells the BBC.
Unfortunately, the sordid clips collectively amassed millions of views in less than three days before getting yanked from the platform — a culling process that took eight hours to complete.
Experts chalk up the song’s success to TikTok’s eyeball-seeking algorithm that allows offensive memes to metastasize rapidly.
While TikTok has remained tight-lipped about its content strategy, “it’s widely believed that it’s similar to other commonly used models that collect data on our content consumption and peers influenced network,” says Michael Priem, chief executive of Modern Impact.
He explains: “As specific videos gain momentum, the algorithm then promotes them more widely across the platform. Hence, the users [are] intuitively asking each other to ‘help this go viral.’
Indeed, research has shown that “TikTok has become one of the fastest vectors for transmission of memes mocking the Holocaust,” according to Silverman.
However, the video-sharing site denies that it is a hotbed of offensive content.
“Keeping our users safe is a top priority for TikTok, and our community guidelines make clear what is not acceptable on our platform,” said a TikTok representative. “We do not tolerate any content that includes hate speech, and the sound in question, along with all associated videos, have now been removed.”
They added that they were constantly working to “ensure TikTok remains a safe place for positive creative expression.”
This isn’t the only time TikTok has been in hot water of late. The video-streaming platform was recently targeted by the feds for allegedly violating children’s privacy. India infamously banned the app last month amid the nation’s military standoff with China, and the US is contemplating following suit over security concerns.

Sunday, 5 July 2020

Bone Soup (Sup Tulang)

Thick soup. Can be served with garlic bread in place of stew or mushroom soup. Adjust ingredients according to the amount of the meat/soup bone

  1. Step 1
  2. 2 kg Soup Bone (see pic)
  3. Enough water to boil the meat
  4. 4 Star Anise
  5. 4 Cardamoms
  6. 4 Cinnamon Sticks
  7. 2-3 tbsp Kurma powder (see pic)
  8. 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  9. 2 big brown/yellow onion
  10. 4 garlic
  11. 2 " ginger
  12. 1 big green chilli
  13. 5 bird eyes chillies (more for extra punch)
  14. 1 tbsp Pepper (finely crushed using mortar & pestle)
  15. 2 sticks carrot - cut
  16. 3 big potatoes - cut into cubes
  17. 1 tbsp rice flour/corn flour
  18. To taste - Chicken Seasoning powder
  19. To taste - salt

07 Just Stay Home Japanese Recipes Everyone Can Make

For pantry-led and creative cooking, here are  easy Japanese recipes you can make at home anytime. You’ll also find quick tips and resources on how to make the best of your pantry meals.

Pantry meals exist for a good reason. Whether you’re a home cook or a college student, there will be times when we find ourselves relying on pantry items to cook up lunch or dinner.

In my kitchen, I always make sure I have staples such as rice, dried noodles, tofu, eggs, and frozen vegetables. Not only they are convenient, they really can save the day when I need to feed my hungry family in an unexpected situation. Bonus points: cooking at home is always so much better than taking out. We save a lot of money, time and essentially eating healthier.

In this pantry meal guide, you’ll find easy Japanese recipes that are pantry-friendly, along with tips, ideas, and resources on maximizing pantry staples.

Staying at home? No problem. These recipes will empower you to eat well and nutritiously anytime!

Zosui (Japanese Rice Soup)

Zosui is a comforting Japanese rice soup that works beautifully with pantry-ready ingredients like ready-cooked rice, eggs, and leftover ingredients. The easy template is flexible, yet you’re guaranteed a nourishing meal at the end of the day.

Substitutions: Use fish (salmon, cod), tofu, or other protein if you don’t have chicken. No shiitake mushrooms? Don’t worry, any mushrooms are fine, or just skip them. This is a very flexible recipe. I think non-Japanese rice works for this recipe (I never tried it but Jasmine rice or any long-grain rice is ok!)

Classic Fried Rice

I believe fried rice was created out of necessity. It is indeed the most convenient and comforting meal that turns leftovers into something so delicious! You can whip up this classic Fried Rice under 20 minutes.

Substitutions: I used ham, egg and green onion in the recipe, but you can easily use bacon, frozen edamame, crab sticks, green peas or whatever you have in the fridge.

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