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Best Brains

Dessert for Dinner?!?

Apr-08, 2020

chocolate mousse food picture

Photo Credit - www.freepik.com

Take breakfast for dinner to the next level! Make the whole family feel special with this indulgent treat. We recommend choosing no bake recipes for this event, since every age level can help out in the kitchen putting their “meal” together.” Plus, no bake recipes usually include more healthy ingredients like fresh fruit.

  • Pudding Pie Deluxe: Layer instant chocolate pudding, a mixture of cream cheese, whipped topping, and powdered sugar, and instant vanilla pudding in a graham cracker crust. Top with sprinkles, chocolate shavings, or crushed graham crackers. The perfect combo of cool, sweet, and crunchy!
  • Peanut Butter Cookie Balls: A classic no bake dessert! Mix peanut butter and oatmeal with your favorite flavors. Chocolate chips, chopped dried fruit, vanilla extract, M&Ms, butterscotch chips, chopped peanuts, and honey all make good flavor additions to this treat.
  • Mug Cake: A quick and easy way to have a serving of cake! Use cake mix or make from scratch and microwave until cooked through. Top with a scoop of ice cream for an extra layer of flavor.
  • Parfaits in a Glass: Great for turning leftover sweets into something new! Layer cake, cookie, cheesecake, or brownie pieces with fruit, pudding, chocolate syrup, caramel sauce, mini marshmallows, whatever you like! Top with whipped cream. Our favorite combinations are Nilla wafers + banana + vanilla pudding, brownie pieces + strawberries + chocolate sauce, or chocolate chip cookie pieces + cheesecake + caramel sauce.

So, is dessert for dinner something you like to do in your family? Which no bake dessert is a hit in your house? You can share pictures of your no-bake meals with us on social media at www.facebook.com/bestbrainsinc!


It’s a Dinosaur Masquerade!

Apr-08, 2020

child dressed as a dinosaur

Photo Credit - www.freepik.com

Who doesn’t love dinosaurs? Get prehistoric and tap into your wild side! Just because you’re stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t party. Here’s some ideas to make your Dino Day Jurrasstic!

  • Cook up a dino-feast: Will you be a carnivore or an herbivore? Mix up a mouthwatering salad or grill up a rack of ribs or steaks. We prefer a little of each. Create a fossil cake from dark fudge or brownie batter, and layer in hidden fossils make of pretzel sticks or sugar cookies. You can also suspend eggs or little dino toys in Jell-O, coat pretzels or cookie pieces in white chocolate to create snackable dino bones, or add a few pop rocks to fruit punch and cream soda for a fizzy volcano drink!
  • Party Games: One of the best features of a dino party is the games! Go on a dino-egg hunt around the house and backyard. Try your luck at pin the tooth on the T-Rex. Get the whole family together for a dino-egg-and-spoon relay race. Or come up with your own games like Dinosaur Trivia or cookie decorating.
  • Make a dinosaur mask: These can be as simple or as complex as you like. Cut up and color paper plates, double-glue felt, or even build with papier-Mache. Just make sure each family member get a dinosaur of their own. Our favorites are stegosaurs, triceratops, T-rex, or pterodactyl.

Does your family like to party like it’s 99 million BCE? You can show us pictures of your Dino-Bash on social media at www.facebook.com/bestbrainsinc!


The Indoor Relay Race

Apr-08, 2020

family having fun inside

Photo Credit - www.freepik.com

Got two or more kids at home that need physical activity? Put them to the test with a fun relay race! Activities can take place in different rooms or all in one big, open area. We recommend going barefoot on non-carpeted surfaces to prevent slipping for this one. Kid Contestants complete several timed activities in a specific order. Whoever has the fastest time is the winner! Remember to adjust the length and duration of activities for the ability of your Kid Contestants. Here’s a list of suggested activities, or “legs,” for your race, but definitely come up with your own based on your child’s talents or what supplies you have in the house:

  • Strings and Things: Line up a row of shoes, ribbons and/or strings. Tie them into bows. The first Contestant to finish all the ties can move on!
  • The Obstacle Crawl – Contestants most walk on their hands and feet on a straight line over a series of obstacles (disposable cups, toilet paper rolls, etc). Contestants must make three trips forward and back across this line: forward they go straight over, and back they weave in between. Find a way to mark each pass, either by ringing a bell, stacking a block, or putting an object in a box. The first contestant to make all three laps without knocking over their obstacles can move on!
  • Over and In – Contestants lie on their backs. At their heads, place a receptacle like a plastic tub or a toy chest. And their feet, sit ready with several soft and relatively large objects, like stuffed animals or toilet paper rolls. Contestants must grip an item with their feet, and lift it over and in with their legs, depositing the item in the receptacle. Contestants will need help getting the items in their feet, so make sure you have enough helpers for this one. Once all items are in the receptacle, the Contestant can move on!
  • Fill R Up! - Due to the likelihood of spilled water, we suggest this leg for carpeted surfaces only! Set up a cup filled close to the top with water and one end of a room and a bowl of water and a spoon at the other end. Contestants most carry a spoonful of water to the other end and deposit it into the glass. The first Contestant whose glass overflows can move on!
  • Quick Peel – Contestants must sit at a table, and then peel and section several citrus fruits. Clementines or tangerines work best for this one, but older Contestants can peel oranges or even grapefruit. Be careful if using a peeler! Set out a bowl or plate for peels and another for the fruit sections. The first Contestant to peel and section all their fruits can move on!

Make sure you have a special treat for the winner! Whether it’s a trophy, medal, or ribbon, or even a special treat like an extra hour of screen time, a pizza dinner, or choice of film for your next movie night.

So, are you having an indoor relay race at your house? Who ended up the winner? Share with us on social media at www.facebook.com/bestbrainsinc!


Stuck Inside? Get the Family Together for Some Fun and Excitement

May-07, 2020

family playing together in bedroom

Photo Credit - www.freepik.com

When you’re cooped up at home, it’s easy for our energy to get pent up. Even routine activities like playing outside or regular arts and crafts can become more like work than fun. That’s when you need to shake things up! Here are six safety-first ideas for you and your family that take planning, creativity, and participation from everyone in the household.

From the smallest child up to teenagers can somehow contribute to each of these activities. Take the time to share a new skill, a new responsibility, or a secret from the rest of the household! In these extraordinary times, it’s tempting to carry on with life as normal. But this can lead to confusion and friction in the household. Find opportunities to acknowledge and even celebrate the unusual!

So, which of these ideas are you going to try first? How is your family managing the stress of staying home? Let us know below!


What Makes Best Brains Teachers the Best

Feb-11, 2019

Teach word scrabble letters wooden

Photo Credit: WokandaPix from Pixabay

Just as each child has their own unique personality, so do they have a unique style of learning. However, many teachers due to their lack of education or funding in their school system, cannot facilitate the individual needs of each student. This creates fundamental learning gaps in many children and the need for help later in their education. Best Brains seeks to solve this issue.

Education

Our teachers are board-certified at state and national standards for professionalism and excellence with years of real classroom experience and the knowledge required to be just what your child needs. They have been trained to assess each student on their educational needs and to find the root of the problem, not just the symptoms.

Your child will work with the same teacher each week to ensure that their progress and problem areas are consistently being assessed. We also pride ourselves on our low student to teacher ratio, which helps to ensure that each child gets the attention and care they deserve and need.

Experience

These teachers have experience in creating a learning environment that is interactive and engaging. We don’t use passive teaching, where we simply tell the students about a topic and expect them to learn from it. Instead, we make sure they are actively participating in the learning process.

They are given examples, activities, and work that not only teach them but allow them to learn on their own. Teaching this way gives kids the opportunity to take ownership of their education and to rely on their strengths and not just the teacher’s knowledge.

Methodology for Success

Photo Credit: Geralt from Pixabay

Methodology for Success

Our teaching methodology is non-repetitive and focuses on presenting new skills and concepts each week. And while these lessons are fun-filled, they are also challenging so that the building blocks of their education can be constantly being added to.

Here at Best Brains, our teachers help prepare students for what is ahead by giving them a firm educational foundation and a connection to the material, enabling them to catch on to future lessons quickly and easily.

Variety and Continuation

This isn’t just tutoring like many after-school programs. This is a complete enrichment program with the sole purpose to improve your child’s overall academic success and development. Our teachers make use of real-time classroom instruction in multiple subjects. We don’t just teach English and Math. In fact, we are the only learning center that also structures lessons in Abacus and General Knowledge.

Most would say that once a child is up to speed or at the correct grade level in a subject, extra help should be forgotten. However, we disagree. Many students and parents alike have found that continuing the Best Brains program creates some of the best and brightest students around. Not only are these kids understanding and mastering what is being taught in their schools but they quickly rise to the top of their class. The extra help they receive at Best Brains teaches them that can do and achieve anything.


STAAR Test Preparation

Jan-18, 2019

Bunch of Pencils

Photo Credit: Ben Chun from Flickr

Every spring in Texas, STAAR (State of Texas Assessments for Academic Readiness) tests are given to all students enrolled in public school for grades 3-12. The number of STAAR tests your child takes will depend on their current grade. In preparation for Spring and the season of standardized testing, we want to make sure you and your children are as prepared as possible for what is to come.

A Little Bit About STAAR…

The purpose of these standardized assessments is to measure how well each student has learned state curriculum standards in their grade and to determine if they are ready for the next grade. Assessments are taken in the core subjects of mathematics, reading, writing, social studies, and science.

By giving these tests, schools can see if each individual student is getting their educational needs met. Schools, parents, and the community can then come together to ensure that each child is given the best chance at academic success.

Test Preparation Tips…

OMR sheet marking

Photo Credit: Alberto G. from Flickr

Here are some great tips to ensure that your child is ready for STAAR this year:

Know what to expect. Most teachers send home some sort of info about the format, length, and types of questions on each test. Go through this with your child so neither of you are surprised on test day.

Get a good night’s sleep. It is recommended that children get, at the very least, eight hours of sleep. For younger students, 3-6 graders, 10-12 hours of sleep each night is needed for healthy brain function.

Eat a good, healthy breakfast. This is not the morning for sugary cereals or Pop-tarts. Instead, eat yogurt with fruit or granola and toast. Something light that will fill your child up and ensure they are able to focus and not crash after a sugar high.

Be positive and encouraging. These tests cover topics your child has already been taught and should know. If she has a tendency to get nervous, teach her to count to ten slowly or give her deep breathing tips to relax during the test. This simple acronym created by our Texas staff has also been a great help to many students:

I know, I need to know: Read and reread the question for important information.

Try to think of my answer before looking at the choices.

Examine all the choices.

X-out answers I know are wrong.

A  Analyze all answers: Take a closer look at the leftover choices and pick the best one.

Satisfied? No Silly Mistakes: Am I satisfied with my work? Go back and look for silly mistakes.

Be physically prepared. Have pencils, erasers, calculators, paper, etc. all laid out the night before, ready to go when the time is right. If he wakes up feeling poorly that morning, let him stay home. He will be able to retake it at a later date when he is at his best.

Encourage good study habits. If you have helped your child consistently with homework and daily activities, these tests should simply be a review for her. Encourage reading whenever possible and ask him to talk about it often to develop healthy thought processes.

Here at Best Brains, academic success is our passion for each and every child. That is why our Texas learning centers hold classes each year in Reading, Writing, and Mathematics specifically for STAAR test preparation. If you are interested in a little extra test help, please contact us today.