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How to Teach Your Child to Share

children playing in living room with toys

“Sharing is caring,” as the old saying goes, but while most of us adults understand this, our children usually don’t. We often struggle to teach them the value of sharing, especially when it comes to their most prized objects—their toys and stuffed animals.

However, sharing is a vital life skill, and one that we need to teach our children while they’re still young. Here’s how:

Taking turns

The best way to introduce the concept of sharing to your child is by teaching them to take turns. If you force a child to share by taking their toy away permanently, they’ll associate sharing with something negative. Instead, by taking turns, your child will be without their toy for a shorter amount of time, teaching them that giving something away doesn’t mean they’re without it forever. To make it fairer, set a timer on your phone so that each child has the toy for an equal amount of time.

Be a role model

Our children learn most of their behaviors from us. That means if you’d like them to value sharing, you, too, have to share with others. Practice sharing not only with friends and strangers, but also with your child to drive the point home.

Praise positive behavior

It’s easy to scold bad behavior, but many parents often forget to praise good behavior when it happens. If your child just willingly shared one of their toys with a friend or sibling, use descriptive praise to let them know how happy you are. Our children want our approval, and praising their good behavior will make them want to repeat that behavior in the future.

If your child has received a stuffable animal from The Zoo Factory, make sure that they let other children in on the fun by sharing their new toys with their friends and family! For more tips, look through our site or contact us today.

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Family Day Trip Ideas for the Summer

family driving in car for day trip

Summertime is almost here, and that means our kids will be getting out of school and looking for things to do. While plenty of families will be planning summer vacations, summer break is long. You will likely have days or weekends where your kids have nothing to do. In those situations, why not take a family day trip? Here are some ideas to get you started:

Go to the park or a hiking trail

Summer is great time to spend outdoors. So, why not spend that time at a park or on a hiking trail? At a park, your kids will have plenty of access to playgrounds and open space to run around. You can even bring a football or baseball to play games. Additionally, a hiking trail is perfect for older kids who enjoy the outdoors. When you all get tuckered, grab a picnic and relax in the sun for a little while.

Visit famous or historic places

Teaching your kids a little bit about local history is not only educational but fun as well. Famous or historic locations around town can be a great adventure for your kids. Museums, monuments, and memorials are just some of the places you can visit. You can also visit attractions such as zoos, resorts, theme parks, and more. Plus, these locations often have exhibits or activities just for kids.

Go to a nearby city

Whether you already live in a city or live out in the country, there is likely another city just a couple hours nearby. This city will have other attractions that your local town or city does not have. Visit local restaurants, go to a zoo, or attend a baseball game for that city’s local sport’s team.

When you head out on your family day trip, don’t forget to bring your child’s best friend—their stuffed animal. Here at The Zoo Factory, we have plenty of stuffable animals that your child will love. Look through our shop today!

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Top 3 Things You Can Do to Connect with Your Inner Child

mother with small daughter blowing to dandelion

Much of our life is waiting for the next thing. When we were little, we dreamt about growing up and all the cool things that come with it; whether it was getting to drive a car or deciding if you want to have ice cream for breakfast. For many of us, that continues into adulthood. Somewhere in that, we got so excited for growing up we forget what it’s like to live in the moment.

Many of us look back on our childhood days and wish we can go back, and ironically that’s typically the time that we were wishing we could grow up from. While it might not be possible to call off work to go play on the playground, there are a lot of things you can do to help connect with your inner child.

Treat Yourself

Often, people feel silly buying something they might deem “childish”. But these things can be incredibly fulfilling to buy and play with! A great way to connect with your inner child is to have a day where you unabashedly do things that feel natural. Start your day with sugar cereal, re-watch some of your favorite cartoons, and get yourself a stuffed animal that reminds you of one you had when you were little. Also, if you have kids, this is a great activity to include them on. Plus, you can simultaneously teach them about your childhood while connecting with theirs. Take the opportunity to show them your favorite toy from when you were little, and then grant them the opportunity to tell you about their favorite toy!


Play! It doesn’t matter what, just start. You could play kickball, you could play dolls, or you can play an old board game. The sky is the limit, and if you have kids, you can ask them what their favorite games to play are. You can go to the park, make a fort, or you can play dress up with their toys and them.  Not only does playing get our bodies moving, but it also gets our minds moving. Get silly, get messy, get to playing!

Live in the Moment

It’s easy to stick to schedules that make sense for us, and it’s easy to lose track of things that are important to us. But rather than forcing ourselves to get home, clean up, make dinner, clean up from that… Take a break. Take an extra 10 minutes before starting dinner to play make believe with the kids. You can also take that time to yourself to do some creative journaling or let out any bad emotions from the day. Dinner will still be there when you’re done. So much of our lives is waiting on the next thing to happen, and it’s important to just slow down and live in the moment; to experience life for all it has to offer.

At the Zoo Factory, we have a plethora of adorable pals to choose from, including cute clothing! Browse our selection, and we’re sure you will find something that speaks to your inner child. Treat yourself, or your loved ones, to a fluffy friend today!

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How to Prepare Your Child for a Trip

Mother helping to put on the seat belt for child

With the school year winding down, many of us are starting to think about our summer vacations. Trips are always exciting for every member of the family. However, it can be stressful to leave home, especially if this is the first trip your child has ever gone on. Here, we list some ideas to help prepare your child for your next trip:

Let the kids help plan

To help your child get excited for the trip, let them in on the planning. Knowing that they had a say in what you do will make the trip even more appealing. Sit down with them and go through some ideas together. Not everything they suggest will be do-able, but just doing one or two of their ideas will be enough to excited them!

Make it familiar

Some kids get anxious when leaving home because they’re heading for unfamiliar territory—literally! To help reduce any nerves, educate your child about where you’re going. Show them pictures of the hotel, the city you’ll be staying in, as well as any other destinations you may visit.

Create a list

It’s important that your child brings everything they need with them. However, expecting them to remember everything themselves is asking a bit much. Start creating a list of items at least a week prior to when you leave. This way, they can add items to the list as they remember them and then check them off once they start packing.

Bring a comfort item

As excited as your kid may be, it’s normal for them to feel a bit nervous when leaving home. Bring a comfort item with them can help ease some of their anxieties. A blanket, toy, or stuffed animal will always do the trick. Plus, you can then take cute photos of their stuffed animals at different locations throughout your trip!

For more tips and tricks on how to prepare for your summer vacation, read through our blog today!