Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category

The Great Homework Debate

Tuesday, March 17th, 2015

the great homework debate

Recently, I’ve seen quite a bit of debate about homework and the effects it has on our children. Just in the past week I’ve read this newspaper article, and upon doing further research, I found this Stanford news article equally interesting.

I have to admit, as a parent I feel strange when my teenager or my tween comes home with no homework. I ask, “Well, did you do it all in class?” or “Any project you can work ahead on?” Instead, I probably should be savoring those days and letting them enjoy their free time without interrogation. I was raised with the perception that All homework is good homework! Homework is necessary! You won’t learn without homework!

My seventh grader attends a progressive school where they do not believe that all homework is good. In fact, their view is that an aggressive approach to homework can result in a negative view of learning in general. That’s right, homework may cause kids to hate learning. (more…)

Posted in Parenting, The Tween Years | 7 Comments »

Always Hungry! A Parent’s Guide to Making it through the Tween/Teen Years

Tuesday, February 17th, 2015

always hungry - a parent's guide to making it through the hungry tween/teen years. The science behind why our kids are always hungry and how we can help them make good food choices

Have you ever opened the refrigerator or your pantry and wondered where all the food is going? Or why your kids are eating you out of house and home? Well, I do, daily! Having a tween and a teen, both boys, I decided it was time to see if there’s any science behind this, and how I can help them make healthy choices. (more…)

Posted in Parenting, The Tween Years | No Comments »

A Surprising Tip for Teaching Kids the Value of a Dollar

Thursday, February 5th, 2015

money matters

Do you tell your kids how much money you make? According to an article in the New York Times, maybe you should. It may just help them understand the value of a dollar. The author writes:

“Money is a source of mystery to children. They sense its power, so they ask questions, lots of them, over many years…shielding children from the realities of everyday financial life makes little sense anymore, given the responsibilities their generation will face…”

The article goes on to share stories from parents who have all decided to talk openly with their kids about their family finances, including how much they earned. One dad even went as far as to withdraw his month’s salary, in cash, from the bank so he could show the kids how the money got distributed. He separated the money into piles showing them how much went to bills, groceries, etc. That’s serious dedication to a lesson.

One of the things that struck me most was this: (more…)

Posted in Parenting | 1 Comment »

Short Story | Morning In America

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

morning in america short story

“Hustle, hustle, hustle,” she snapped. Her son was dawdling again. His lunch was not in his bag, his shoes were not on his feet, his homework was still laying on the table and the bus would be at the stop in three minutes.

The boy continued playing with the figurines he got for Christmas.

“That’s it, you’re grounded.” (more…)

Posted in Parenting, short stories and essays | 5 Comments »

It’s National Book Month – Crafts, Activities and Ideas to Celebrate!

Monday, January 5th, 2015

Crafts, activities and ideas to celebrate national book month
“A book is a dream that you hold in your hand.” –Neil Gaiman

Happy National Book Month! I’ve rounded up some of my favorite tips, crafts and activities to help the kids celebrate their love of the written word. Long live books!

Raising Confident Readers (video)
Five Playful Ways to Introduce Reading

Marbled Bookmarks
Botanical Bookmarks
Teeshirt Book Tote Bag

Children’s Book Swap
Children’s Book Club

Posted in Parenting, Play + Learn, The Reading Nook | No Comments »

Community Service Projects for Kids – Care Packages for the Homeless

Tuesday, December 16th, 2014

community service ideas for tweens

Community service projects are a wonderful way for kids to feel involved, helpful, and be a valuable member of society. It also introduces the idea of incorporating service as a part their daily lives, not just for a particular time of year, but all year round.

This year, my son’s fifth grade class is encouraged to explore community service opportunities in their city. They need to complete a minimum of 4 hours and each month a team of parents offers families suggestions for different activities.

Here’s a sample of what some of our tweens have participated in so far: (more…)

Posted in Parenting, The Tween Years | 4 Comments »

The “Perfection” Problem

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

the perfection problem

When I tally up the years, I realize I’ve been at parenting thing for some time now. Not long enough to have any true sage advice, because I can’t tell you how my kids turn out yet. In a few years, it could turn out I’ve done everything wrong.

But I have been parenting long enough to see some of the same conversations, topics, and tropes come up again and again, as if they’re stuck on a loop. There’s the this type of parent is ruining future generations articles, the this type of parent is the best for future generations pieces, the pro vs anti vaccination horror stories, the pink stinks/pink is empowering debate, and on and on.  But there is one parenting opinion piece that makes me clench my butt the tightest—the story of “perfection” mom.  (more…)

Posted in Parenting | 4 Comments »

Family | From Five to Six

Monday, November 17th, 2014

family - thoughts on going from five to six

Families, they come in all shapes and sizes. In a continued celebration of family life, I asked my friend Maggie from Smashed Peas and Carrots to share her thoughts on having a larger family…

What was the transition like going from a family five to six? (more…)

Posted in Features, Parenting | No Comments »