Tag Archives: children

FingerprintHeartCanvasSmThere’s just nothing like the love we have for our kids but are you sometimes at a loss for creative ways to express that so that they know, without a doubt, that they are loved to the moon and back? I happened upon today’s post at Popsugar.com and loved this reminder to be intentional in showing and telling kids just that. Here are just a few of the ideas you’ll find in the post.
1. I’m grateful for you.
6. You don’t have to be perfect to be great.
11. I believe in you.
12. This family wouldn’t be the same without you.
33. What you did was awesome.
55. You can try again tomorrow.
Don’t these take you to a happy, secure place just by reading them?! Read more at the link below and help your kids face the difficult things life throws at them.
( See 66 Positive Things You Should Be Saying to Your Child for the complete post)

Yay, it’s finally here!

12027550_10153681532294809_3118894892065702213_n (1) I’ve been waiting for this since I saw it at our National Convention this summer.  Not only is it a bright, beautifully-illustrated thesaurus but this one includes games and tips for writing. This is so much fun, you’ve got to see it! Take a look and let me know if you want one (or more) for your family or classroom collection.

Simple and easy birthday party idea

Does your child love to read?  Here’s a simple and easy 3-step idea for a child’s birthday party or themed gathering.  You love easy, right?  12378457-happy-children-cartoon-sitting-on-the-floor-while-reading-books

STEP 1 – Contact Me to Set Your Party Date

I’ll set up your Facebook Event page and plan occasional posts and pics to get everyone excited about your special day.  You can start inviting people right away (moms and kids) or I can do that for you.  I’m happy to help!

STEP 2 – Use Birthday Party Invitations as Reminder Cards

Kids love to get mail so we can make them feel really special and remind their moms about the party at the same time.  Email me a quick guest list with addresses and I’ll take care of this for you too.

STEP 3 – Prepare as You Normally Would for the Birthday Party (but it’s even easier then that!)

Order a cake and mix up some punch or lemonade.  That’s it!images

What makes this so simple?

1.  You don’t need to buy party favors for the guests.  All the kids will be getting new books so you don’t have to stress about shopping for them and you don’t have the stress on your wallet either.

2.  The guests don’t have to shop for a present for your child so no stress for them either.

3.  Your child gets to pick out all the free books earned so they get exactly what they want.  No more gifts to return, no more acting like they like it when they don’t, no more getting gifts that they already have.

4.  You can easily arrange for party games or a sleepover after the shopping time is done, or send them all home if sleepovers aren’t your thing.  In any case, you get a chance to get to know your child’s friends and their parents a little better.  And in today’s fast-paced world, that’s always a good thing.

Set your date today.  If you are not in my area but still want to do this, contact me and I’ll find an Usborne Books & More rep in your area.

 

 

Has your 2-year-old started (or are they still) waking up at night?

My kids are teenagers now so this no longer applies to me though my kids are often up at all hours of the night too.  Thankfully that doesn’t mean I have to be awake with them.  But if you’re in the throws of toddler hood and your child’s nights are still challenging, here’s a tip you may not have tried from Becky at Your Modern Family.  (See original post at http://www.yourmodernfamily.com/waking-at-night-advice/)

My 2 year old is still waking up at night – advice from a Pediatrician 

A few years ago, when our child was still waking up at night, I went into our Doctor’s office with this complaint…  “My 2 year old is still waking up at night .”  Her advice changed our nights!

2, 3, 4 year old waking up at night

I wanted to share this with you, because our son was the BEST sleeper.  He came home from the hospital and slept through the night.   


At one year of age, he continued to sleep all night long.  He did this until he was about two years of age and then it started.  He started waking up at night and it was happening every night.  He was waking up not feeling rested… even, might I say… “Crabby”?


not happy

Once we started watching his patterns more often, we realized that it was around the same time every night.  He was going to bed around 7:00 every night (6:00 if he didn’t nap at all) and waking up in the morning around 7:00 or 8:00.  If he goes to bed at 6:00, he wakes up between 6:50 & 7:30 – he always gets at least 12 hours, sometimes 13, which is about what he needs.

He started waking up at midnight, too.  He would wake up and cry.  We would just go in, cover him up and he would go back to sleep.  Sometimes he wanted a drink or different pajamas (not sure about this one, he just liked to change his pajamas – haha!)  It was impacting his mornings.  He just wasn’t acting like himself because he was waking up and not getting his much-needed rest. After a few weeks of this, I was exhausted (We have three other kids and one was a baby at the time.)  He was exhausted, too.

yourmodernfamily

I wish I could say that it was a short phase, but it kept going.  A few months later, I was even more exhausted.  When his 3 year well-check came around, this was brought up and we received great advice!

THIS ADVICE CHANGED HIS SLEEP PATTERNS AND HE BEGAN TO SLEEP ALL NIGHT LONG…

She told us that when WE go to bed, go into his room first, hug him, kiss him, lay with them, cover him up…. all things to rouse him just a bit.  Wake him just enough to break him out of his sleep a little.  What this does is that it breaks up his sleep cycle.   He was waking when he was switching from his REM sleep.   I studied child development in college, so this makes complete sense to me, once she said it.

I wish I would have thought of it sooner!  It worked PERFECTLY!  He no longer woke up at night and he sleeps the full night.  I was so excited the first night and I have been happy ever since!  So the key is just to ‘stir him a bit’ before you go to bed.  That was it for us!  I hope that it works for you, too!

Continue reading Has your 2-year-old started (or are they still) waking up at night?

Today I want to share a post from the Momastery blog because all kids need to hear this.  Yesterday Momastery posted a letter sent home with a child from a very caring teacher who absolutely ROCKS!  This shows why teachers are one of our nation’s most valuable resources.  Read below and then read it to your kids.  Not once or twice.  Every single time they hear the word “testing” they need to hear this until it’s ingrained in their hearts and minds.  Isn’t it absolutely fantastic?!  (See original Momastery post)

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Interesting and sneaky parenting tips from a recent Time Magazine article

6 Sneaky but Scientific Ways to Help Kids Learn

@katejleary

Jan. 22, 2015

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Anna Pekunova—Getty Images/Flickr RF

 

Parents want to teach kids the skills they’ll need to lead happy, productive lives. But we have too much to do and not enough time to do it. Ellen Galinsky, author of Mind in the Making: The Seven Essential Life Skills Every Child Needsacknowledges this “time famine” at the outset of her book, which is filled with evidence-based ways to help kids learn the skills they need. Here are a few of her suggestions. Chances are you’re already doing some of them. Now you can rest assured that research supports your methods, and maybe you can try a couple of new things. As Galinsky says, “we teach best when we are learning.”

  1. Play games backwards. For example, “Simon Says, Do the Opposite.” It’s the classic with a twist. If Simon says, “Be quiet,” the kids should be loud.

Why:
This helps kids practice inhibitory control, an important executive function. Executive functions also include focus, cognitive flexibility, and working memory. These skills predict academic success at least as well as IQ scores.

  1. Talk about feelings. Encourage your kids to talk about how they feel (She’s sad and frustrated that she left her new necklace at Grandma’s and won’t be able to get it back until next week. She’s also envious of her brother, who remembered his necklace.) Speculate about how others might feel, whether it’s in real life situations (Another driver cut you off, and that made you angry, but maybe that driver was having a terrible horrible no good very bad day) or in a book (Alexander was disappointed when the shoe store had exciting striped sneakers for his brothers but only white ones for him.)

Why:
This helps kids learn the skill of empathy. Kids who are able to understand what others are feeling and understand their intentions have smoother transitions to school, college and beyond because they can see others’ point of view.

  1. Tell Stories. Read. Talk about what you’re reading. Read to your kids, or ask them questions about their books. Tell stories. If you go to a friend’s house, encourage the kids to tell the story of the visit later. Family life is filled with what Betty Hart and Todd R. Risley call “business talk.” This kind of talk usually uses simple vocabulary and conveys what an adult wants from a kid. Storytelling and discussion of books uses richer language and is called “extra talk.”

Why:
It promotes good communication skills. In a survey Galinsky conducted, employers were most concerned about employees’ verbal and written communication skills. Extra talk correlates positively with academic performance. Of course, it might also be pleasant.

  1. Choose toys that have no point. Lego bricks, not sets. Or break up sets after the thrill wears off and see what your kid can make. Guide instead of taking over. (“It doesn’t seem to fit here? Where else could it go?”) Don’t wrest the brick from her hand even if you know you could make something cool.

Why:
This kind of play promotes object, space, and number sense, skills that help kids make connections. Information is easy to come by in the age of Google, but it’s of limited use if you can’t make creative connections.

  1. Write Out the Fights.You probably don’t feel like pulling out a notebook when the kids are fighting, but try Galinsky’s approach, supported by research and tested on her own kids. Collaborate with your family to:
  • Identify the dilemma.
  • Determine the goal
  • Generate a list of solutions. Go beyond your typical solutions.
  • Think about how these solutions might work, and not just the ones that were your idea.
  • Pick one and try it.
  • After you’ve tried it, discuss how the solution is working and either tweak or change the plan.

Why:
This process models critical thinking, which Galinsky defines as “[T]he ongoing search for valid and reliable knowledge to guide beliefs, decisions, and actions.” Life is packed with decisions to make and problems to solve, but in the short term, good critical thinking skills might help your kid judge when a friend is influencing him to make a mean-spirited or dangerous choice.

  1. Praise effort — not talent or intelligence. Instead of saying, “You got that problem right. You’re so smart,” say “You worked hard on those problems and you figured them out. That’s great.” Talk through how they deal with challenges and praise persistence.

Why:
Kids who receive this kind of praise are more likely to take on challenges. They have a “growth mindset,” which means that they see their abilities as something they can develop. This sets the stage for a lifelong interest in learning.

Continue reading Interesting and sneaky parenting tips from a recent Time Magazine article

This is an excellent idea! (I didn’t come up with it)

(See the full post at http://www.artbarblog.com/inspire/make-mornings-better/  for suggestions to try with your child’s specific personality.  I am sharing only a portion of this wonderful piece.  Diane)

Make Mornings Better {through patience + planning}

Make Mornings Better {through patience + planning}

Last year, I made a chart of sorts for my one that just cannot get her body moving in the morning. It wasn’t really a chart as much as a way for her to visually see what she needed to do. This totally worked for us. It helped her understand and grasp the fact that the mornings were hers to own (or hers to ruin). By taking me out of the equation, she actually did everything she needed to do because she was in control. We had this chart up for no more than two weeks and then it wasn’t needed anymore. Why it took me 4 years to figure this out is a mystery.

DIY good morning chart ~ teach kids to own their day | artbarblog.com

Make your own Good Morning chart:

shoe box lid / scissors / piece of cardboard / white glue / markers or paint / photos of your child doing the things that need to get done

I simply cut a shoebox lid in half and glued it to a piece of cardboard. I decorated it for her because she was honestly not into this idea at all. She thought it was “babyish”. But I convinced her by telling her that it would make mommy not have to talk to her at all! She liked that idea. We took photos of her in the midst of her morning tasks. All she had to do was move the photos from one pocket to another. She still is slow to get up, but she knows what to do and that if she doesn’t do it, I will have to speak to her (are you getting the picture that she is not a morning person?).

Is there ever a better time for this new title?

Do Nice, Be Kind, Spread Happy.  What could be more fitting to teach our children?  This book starts with a note to the reader;

“Congratulations!
Now that you have this incredible book, you automatically qualify for membership in the worldwide “kindness club” – a secret society of undercover agents with a common purpose: 0006941_do_nice_be_kind_spread_happy_300to spread happiness, smiles, magic, and a bit of mischief throughout our world. By committing acts of ninja niceness.
And do you know the most powerful thing about your acts of kindness? Kind acts make people happy, and happy people are nice to others, so the movement grows and grows.”

What follows are pages and pages of activities, a total of eighty different activities, that kids can do to spread happiness and kindness in their piece of the world.  Doesn’t everyone want to make a difference?  Start a Kindness Club at school or make acts of kindness the focus for just your own family.  For more about this title click here.

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I’m excited to announce my new interactive website blog where you can get information about the many opportunities and services that USBORNE BOOKS & MORE (also known as UBAM) offers, as well as post questions and comments about the content you see here. You’ll see at the top of the blog page that you can easily travel directly to specific topics through the links offered there. So if you need information about hosting an USBORNE event of your own, whether it be a school book fair, a fundraiser or an in-home shopping appointment for yourself or with a gaggle of your best friends, then click directly on the topic you need and get on outta here!

On the other hand, if you’ve got a minute Continue reading I’m so glad you’re here!