*I received a complimentary box to facilitate this post, and this post contains referral links.*
Serenity turned two the end of April, and it’s like a switch flipped. Suddenly, she’s super interested in learning and doing everything at once!
She can count to three…
“Fwee… Fwee… FWEE!!!”
She can say her ABC’s…
“A, E, A, Oooo, A, Bay, Say, A!!”
She can even spell her name (but she can’t say it)…
“Esh, E, Err, E, Mem, I, Tay, Yee! I ess Shrebmabee!”
Serenity learns new words and concepts daily – often several of them – and I can’t keep her too busy these days. So when M is for Monster sent me their May box to check out, I was thrilled!
M is for Monster is a monthly subscription service that offers preschool activities in two age categories – ages two to three, or four to five; they sent us the younger box.
I loved M is for Monster as soon as I saw the adorable monster sticker branding the top of the box. How cute! And what a great way to instantly indicate the contents of the box, making it exciting and personal for young kids that love to help mom or dad check the mail.
The four colorful envelopes you see pictured each contain projects and supplies for the four weeks in May. We also received a surprise gift “for a special lady” just for “mom” – a set of three pretty mint green scalloped sticky chalk board labels, and a piece of white chalk. The box also contained two sheets of paper – “May: Weekly Activities” which outlines the contents of each envelope, and provides directions for their use, and “May: Continue The Learning” which offers a ton of great suggestions for supplemental activities to flesh out those provided.
We broke into Week 1’s envelope, and discovered a plethora of butterfly projects! From a “Butterfly Wing Match” game, to making a “Chromatography Butterfly” out of coffee filters, ink, and water, Serenity loved them all. But her favorite activity from Week 1 was the “Butterfly Sequence” – it shows the life cycle of a butterfly, from eggs to wings, and has a fun game where you place each piece of the sequence in order from one to four. We played this game at least six times! We also sang “Flutter, Flutter, Flutterfly” (to the tune of “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star”) from the “May: Continue The Learning” sheet. She loved it, especially when we added hand motions.
My mother-in-law, Cindy, is an early childhood education professional, so I had her take a look at everything in the May M is for Monster box we received.
From the perspective of a complete pre-pre-K monthly program, Cindy and I agree that M is for Monster is a great program. That said, we feel that the projects represented in the May box are all a little too advanced for two year olds, and possibly even some three year olds.
For instance, a two year old can grasp the concept of matching two wings together to form a butterfly (with some direction – okay, a lot of direction if you want the wings to actually meet in the middle), but understanding the concept of matching colors is out of range for most of them. A project from Week 4 – “Food Choices” – is advanced even for many four and five year olds, as it’s subjective (they’re supposed to sort pictures of common healthy and unhealthy foods onto bigger cards that read “GOOD” and “BAD”).
That said, most of the projects are fine for three to five year olds, especially with adult participation and direction. “Rocket Building” from Week 2 encourages imagination and critical thinking, “Little Chef Apron” from Week 4 is an adorable decoration project that can easily segue into cooking with mom or dad, and we love the adorable animal figures included for the “Farm Animal Counting” project from Week 3. They even appeal to book lovers by not only suggesting a list of titles to pick up at your bookstore or library, on the “May: Continue The Learning” sheet, but by also including Big Red Barn by Margaret Wise Brown in the envelop for Week 3. I read this book as a little girl, and loved it, so I’m super happy to have a copy to share with my daughter! Bonus – I can easily share this book with Serenity at only two years old, and know she’ll get it and enjoy it.
Out of all eleven projects included in the M is for Monster box for May, I heartily recommend every one of them, though perhaps for children a little older than mine. I would love to have found simpler counting projects, for instance, that perhaps focus on foundational skills vs building up on pre-existing ones. I’m definitely keeping this box for a little farther down the road, though – it’s a fantastic resource for early learning! And I will definitely be considering a regular subscription once Serenity’s a little bit older, and ready to fully participate in all of the projects.
So, how does M is for Monster actually work?
When you purchase a subscription to M is for Monster‘s monthly preschool activities program, you are presented with a couple of options.
1. Choose between “Toddler” or “Preschool” or “Kindergarten” boxes:
2. Choose a single box for $42.95, or a monthly subscription for $38.95 (automatically renews each month, unless you cancel). You also have the option to select additional boxes (identical, for other children in your home), if desired.
3. Sit back, and wait for the fun to begin!
Boxes are shipped on the 20th of each month, and you have the option to sign up for weekly email newsletters that arrive in your inbox on Sunday, packed with fun ideas and projects for your child to do that week, that coordinate with that week’s projects that are included in the box! We signed up for the newsletter, and the ideas were fantastic. They also have a blog that’s updated regularly with tons of wonderful projects and ideas.
There’s also a referral program – share your referral link wherever you normally post to the Internet (email, social media, etc), and when someone clicks on it and signs up for M is for Monster, you earn points. Get five referrals, and earn a free box! Your referral link looks like this one, which is mine —-> http://urlt.ag/BXWhc This is a fantastic way to earn free boxes for your kids, and share this great service with your friends and family.
Want To Win A Box??
This Giveaway Has Ended
M is for Monster is generously giving away a one month subscription to their fantastic monthly preschool activities service to one of my lucky readers! Only entries received and completed via the Rafflecopter widget below are eligible to win, so make sure you follow the instructions carefully (click on the buttons, read what pops up, then do it – super easy). You must be at least 18 years old and a United States resident to enter or win, and by entering this giveaway you agree to our Official Giveaway Rules. This giveaway will run from June 26th, 2014 to 11:59pm on July 10th, 2014. Good luck!!
Which project mentioned in this post sounds like the most fun?
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Disclosure: I received the May box from M is for Monster as a gift, in the hopes that I would love it and write about it on my blog. All opinions are my own. The giveaway in this post is sponsored by M is for Monster; they hold sole responsibility for prize fulfillment. To learn more about my policies, check out my disclosure. This post updated on March 28th, 2015, to reflect current brand information.