Tuesday, July 10, 2007

What Method of Discipline Really Works?

While some parents are not comfortable in the disciplinary role, order in a family must be preserved for all to survive. Lets take a look at some of the common methods of disciplining children and see how they really work.

1. Spanking. While most parents have experienced the urge to spank children, and many have resorted to spanking their kids, there are problems with this form of discipline. Spanking may give children a clear message about the unacceptability of their behavior and sometimes stops the behavior in the short run. However, in the long run, it teaches children that it is all right to hit, and that it is all right to be hit. Even children are confused by the irony of the statement, "This spanking will teach you not to hit your brother."

2. Time-outs. Giving children a short time-out can give them the chance to reflect on their behavior, and also a clear message that a certain behavior won't be allowed. This can be an effective method of teaching. Time-outs can also give an angry, frustrated parent a chance to calm down and respond more rationally. It is suggested that a child be given a time out equal in minutes to her age (a four-minute time out for a four-year-old child). It is not recommended to use time-outs with children under the age of three.
The problem with time-outs is that they take a child away from a valuable learning experience. A child who hits another child can begin to learn empathy from watching the other's child's response to being hurt, and if he stays around, he may also be able to participate in helping the other child feel better.
Article From iVillage.com

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Keeping Your Children Safe From Crime

Statistics show that crime against young children by strangers is rare. Even so, these seven tips can help protect your child:

1. Tell your child to avoid talking to people they don't know when you're not around
2. Make sure your child knows never to walk away with anyone without first telling the person in charge
3. Make sure your child understands that they should always tell you if a stranger approaches, and never to keep this secret
4. If your child gets lost, they should ask for help from a police officer, another grown-up with children or someone working at a nearby shop
5. Have your children learn their address and telephone number by heart
6. Try to keep your children within your sight or another adults whom you trust
7. Use reins for your toddler - these will keep your child nearby even if you get distracted


Monday, July 2, 2007

Summer Ideas For Kids

Summer vacation is only a few days away and we are faced with the question of what to do with all that time. Or more like, what do we do to entertain those kids that are so bored and they don’t know what to do. Here are some helpful ideas to fill in those long summer days.
Start some type of collection - Bugs are everywhere and once properly dried can be collected, marbles of every color and shape, coins or whatever interest them.

1.Record and catalog information - What type of birds they have spotted, wild flowers or animals. There is not enough science in schools and what better way to learn than from hands on experience.

2.Visit the Zoo - But don’t just walk through it and you’re done. Sit and draw the animals, figure out what they’re doing. Research where the animals came from and what do they eat. Have each child pick an animal to research and go back and visit the animal that their interested in several times. Try to come up with ways to raise money for that animal.

Monday, June 18, 2007

What If Your Child is The Bully


If you have just found out your child is bullying other children your first reaction might be disbelief or anger. But there are calmer and more effective ways to stop your child bullying.

Reasons for bullying:

If your child is bullying, they could be copying the behaviour of other people in the family; or perhaps they haven't learned better ways of mixing with their friends. Friends may be encouraging bullying, or your child may be going through a difficult time and acting out aggressive feelings.

To stop your child bullying:

Explain to your child that what they are doing is unacceptable and making other children unhappy

Discourage other members of your family from using aggression or force to get what they want

Show your child how they can join in without bullying

See your child's teacher to talk about how you can work together to stop your child bullying

Check regularly with your child about how things are going at school

Give your child lots of praise when they are co-operative and kind to other people

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Fire Safety Advice For Parents and Child Carers


The best way to teach children about fire safety is by example. Let your children see you being sensible and careful about cooking, candles, smoking and other potential fire risks.
Make your home safe for children
Here are some measures you can take in your home to make sure your children stay out of harm's way:
don't leave children on their own in a room where there's a fire risk
keep matches, lighters, candles and tea lights in a place where children cannot see or reach them
put a child-proof fireguard in front of an open fire or heater
don't let children play or leave toys near a fire or heater
put child locks on cupboards containing anything that could be used to start a fire (for example, matches, candles and flammable liquids)
keep portable heaters in a safe place where they can't be knocked over when they are being used or stored
keep your fire escape route clear of toys and other obstructions
never leave children alone in the kitchen when you're cooking and never let them play near the oven and hob
put plug guards into sockets so children can't stick anything into the holes
For more information on fire safety in the home, click on the links below.
Fire safety in the home (home and community section)
Talking to your children about fire
Children are naturally drawn to the warmth and light of fire, but without the proper guidance this can turn into a dangerous fascination. The Fire Kills website has plenty of advice for parents on ways to teach children about the dangers of fire, and how to stay safe
Advice on teaching children about the dangers of fire (opens new window)
Teaching your child what to do if there is a fire (opens new window)
In this section...
Bullying: getting support
Dealing with bullying
If your child is bullying others
Keeping your child safe from abuse
Keeping your children safe from crime
Protecting older children who are leaving home

Monday, June 11, 2007

Myspace Safety Tips For Kids

For teens, MySpace is a popular online hangout because the site makes it easy for them to express themselves and keep in touch with their friends.

As a parent, please consider the following guidelines to help your children make safe decisions about using online communities.

Talk to your kids about why they use MySpace, how they communicate with others and how they represent themselves on MySpace.
Kids shouldn't lie about how old they are. MySpace members must be 14 years of age or older. We take extra precautions to protect our younger members and we are not able to do so if they do not identify themselves as such. MySpace will delete users whom we find to be younger than 14, or those misrepresenting their age.
MySpace is a public space. Members shouldn't post anything they wouldn't want the world to know (e.g., phone number, address, IM screen name, or specific whereabouts). Tell your children they should avoid posting anything that would make it easy for a stranger to find them, such as their local hangouts.
Remind them not to post anything that could embarrass them later or expose them to danger. Although MySpace is public, teens sometimes think that adults can't see what they post. Tell them that they shouldn't post photos or info they wouldn't want adults to see.
People aren't always who they say they are. Ask your children to be careful about adding strangers to their friends list. It's fun to connect with new MySpace friends from all over the world, but members should be cautious when communicating with people they don't know. They should talk to you if they want to meet an online friend in person, and if you think it's safe, any meeting should take place in public and with friends or a trusted adult present.
Harassment, hate speech and inappropriate content should be reported. If your kids encounter inappropriate behavior, let them know that they can let you know, or they should report it to MySpace or the authorities.

Now it's your turn. Let me know what you do to keep your child safe on the internet.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Helping Your Kid Make Friends

Article By Kidsgoal.com

Having friends is an important way for children to learn social skills. We all want our children to develop lasting friendships but if your child is a bit shy and seems reluctant to make friends sometimes a little help from Mom or Dad is in order.

If your child is on the shy side try helping them by providing positive social interactions without making them feel awkward or pushed. Play dates or other social interactions should be encouraged. This will give your child a chance to hone his social skills and increase his/her confidence.

We can't choose our children's friends so ask your child who he/she likes spending time with at school and contact the child's parents to suggest a get- together. Start by inviting one child over and keep the time short to start with. One or two hours is enough time to get to know each other. Any longer and they may start to squabble.

Make sure to provide games and activities for your child that he enjoys and is good at. This will help ensure that your child is comfortable and confident. Make a few suggestions but let your child pick the activity before the play date. It is a good idea to stay involved with your child and his potential pal. Don't just leave them alone and hope it all works out. You can supervise a cooking or craft project but allow the children to do as much on their own as possible. If your child is uncomfortable with you always being underfoot respect his/her wishes but be available if there are any conflicts or they become bored and want to change the activity.

Try to arrange regular play dates with the same children. If things go really well you can suggest an outing such as going to a movie or some other activity. When your child is comfortable you can suggest that he or she has a play date at his/her friends house. Let your child know that you are only a phone call away and they can come home anytime.

It also helps to play with your child on a regular basis. It will give you an idea where your child's strengths are and where he or she may struggle. Your child may we awesome at video games but may have a hard time playing checkers or doing puzzles. These activities may frustrate your child and should not be included in a play date.

Try to find out what the flavour of the month is. Most children are often into some kind of fads such as certain trading cards or a special video game that everyone must have. The latest trend may not thrill you but it offers great bonding material and gives them something in common to talk about while they are forming a friendship.

It is also very important to talk to your child's teacher about any concerns you may have and have and work together on strategies to help your child make friends. Offer to volunteer in the classroom to get a good idea how your child interacts with his/her peers.

Most importantly try not to expect too much from your child. Never make your child feel like they are being forced to make friends. When a child is shy too much pressure can make a child feel even more insecure. Try not to focus on it and allow friendships to develop naturally. In most cases shyness and problems making friends for children is normal. But If your child constantly avoids eye contact, seems withdrawn or avoids children all together it is time to talk to your family Doctor.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Making Parent–Teacher Conferences Work for Your Child

Parent teacher conferences are very important. Whether your student is doing well or needs to improve, sitting down with your student(s) teachers is vital to their education.

It demonstrates that you are paying attention to them and what they are involved in. Do not fall into the "You don't have too," or "I'm fine, don't worry about going," or even "conferences are dumb and the teacher hates me" trap. It's the tendency for most teens to down play conferences and especially if they're struggling.

Getting to know teachers is important. Asking them questions, even if it's "why does my son think you hate him?" Or, "she's getting an A but do you feel she understands the work." Any question is good and setting up a dialog about your student(s) education is important.

I stay in close contact with my son's teachers. I also volunteer on Monday and Friday to help out with lunch. This keeps me involved in school and my son's grades and behavior reflect my involvement.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Nine Things To Do Instead of Spanking

By Kathryn Kvols

Research confirms what many parents instinctively feel when they don't like to spank their child, but they don't know what else to do. The latest research from Dr. Murray Strauss at the Family Research Laboratory affirms that spanking teaches children to use acts of aggression and violence to solve their problems. It only teaches and perpetuates more violence, the very thing our society is so concerned about. This research further shows that children who have been spanked are more prone to low self-esteem, depression and accept lower paying jobs as adults. So, what do you do instead?

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Kids And Television

American children watch an average of three to fours hours of television daily. Television can be a powerful influence in developing value systems and shaping behavior. Unfortunately, much of today's television programming is violent. Hundreds of studies of the effects of TV violence on children and teenagers have found that children may:

1. Become "immune" to the horror of violence
2. Gradually accept violence as a way to solve problems
3. Imitate the violence they observe on television and
4. Identify with certain characters, victims and/or victimizers.

Extensive viewing of television violence by children causes greater aggressiveness. Sometimes, watching a single violent program can increase aggressiveness. Children who view shows in which violence is very realistic, frequently repeated or unpunished, are more likely to imitate what they see. The impact of TV violence may be immediately evident in the child's behavior or may surface years later, and young people can even be affected when the family atmosphere shows no tendency toward violence.

This does not mean that violence on television is the only source for aggressive or violent behavior, but it is a significant contributor.

Parents can protect children from excessive TV violence in the following ways:

1. Pay attention to the programs their children are watching. Watch some with them.

2. Set limits on the amount of time they spend with the television.

3. Point out that although the actor has not actually been hurt or killed, such violence in real life results in pain or death.

4. Refuse to let the children see shows known to be violent, and change the channel or turn off the TV set when something offensive comes on, with an explanation of what is wrong with the program.

5. Disapprove of the violent episodes in front of the children, stressing the belief that such behavior is not the best way to resolve a problem.

6. To offset peer pressure among friends and classmates, contact other parents and agree to enforce similar rules about the length of time and type of program the children may watch.

Parents should also use these measures to prevent harmful effects from television in other areas such as racial or sexual stereotyping. The amount of time children watch TV, regardless of content, should be moderated, because it keeps children from other, more beneficial activities such as reading and playing with friends. If parents have serious difficulties setting limits, or deep concerns about how their child is reacting to television, they should contact a child and adolescent psychiatrist for help defining the problem.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Look At What I Stumbled Upon

Stumbleupon is much more than just a social network tool known from such sites as friendster or orkut. It provides addition with features like - Link Recommendation (which is the main purpose) - Topic Surfing (which makes it a great research tool) - Channel Surfing aka co-browsing (which means leaving your comments on sites, pages and people) - Web and Photoblogging - Recommend to friend via mail - Bookmark collecting - Community forums - Site promotion - And a lot of fun ! All of this adds up on meeting a lot of friendly people, that have the same interests as you have. Privacy issues might worry you: SU leaves you full freedom of entering details about you. The only thing that leaves a trace of your identity is in my view a collection of which sites you prefer and your probably everchanging IP number. You cannot be connected to your surf-preferences if you dont reveal your identity, as your email address is not visible for other users. So privacy is not really an issue as it may be in other networks you might find, and if you don't care building up a data-minable collection of likes and dislikes connected with other peoples likes or dislikes.

Monday, May 21, 2007

10 Tips For Better Grades In Class

Parental Involvement Is the Answer
Study after study has shown that parental involvement is the number-one determinant of how well all children -- regardless of their background -- do in school. Here are ten ways you can help your kids succeed in the classroom -- and beyond.

1. Create an environment in your home that encourages learning.
This will be a major influence on how well your children do in school. Provide them with many different opportunities to become excited about learning. Make sure that appropriate materials from puzzles to paints to computers are available to stimulate their curiosity.

2. Provide your children with a well-balanced life.
A stable home, filled with love, serves as a solid foundation for getting straight A's. Establish routines so your children get enough sleep, eat regular nourishing meals, and receive sufficient exercise. Limit excessive TV-viewing and the playing of video and computer games.

3. Read to your children every day.
Most of the learning your children do in school involves reading. Read to your kids to teach them about reading, expand and enrich their vocabularies, and broaden their experiences. Reading aloud exposes them to materials that would be difficult for them to read on their own.

4. Encourage them to read extensively.
As your children progress through school, as much as 75 percent of what they learn will come from the printed page. The more children read, the better their reading skills become. Make sure there is a wide variety of interesting reading materials in your home to encourage the reading habit.

5. Show your children how to be organized.
Children who are organized find it much easier to succeed in school. One of the best ways to teach organizational skills is through example. Show your children how to use such organizational tools as assignment pads, calendars, notebooks, binders, and backpacks.

6. Teach them effective study skills.
Good study skills are absolutely essential to get A's. Make sure your children know how to read their textbooks, prepare for tests, memorize facts, and use their time efficiently. Encourage them to have a regular time for studying, and provide a study place that is free of distractions.

7. Urge your children to listen and participate in class.
Listening in class is the easy way for children to learn. Advise your older children to take notes, which will help them concentrate on what is being said. Encourage your children to participate in class -- it will greatly increase their interest in what they're learning.

8. Help your children learn how to tackle homework.
Doing homework reinforces what your children learn in school. Show them how to do it so that homework quickly becomes their responsibility. Help them learn what assignments to do first and how to plan their time. Encourage them not to rush through their homework but to consider every assignment a learning experience.

9. Talk to your children about school.
Your children spend hours in school every day. A lot can happen during that time. Show that you are genuinely interested in their day by asking questions about what they did and talking with them about the papers they bring home. When problems occur, work with your kids to find solutions.

10. Develop a good relationship with your children's teachers.
Good communication between home and school helps children do well in school and makes it easier to address problems. Be sure to attend parent-teacher conferences, visit your kids' classrooms, and volunteer to help their teachers. And don't forget to express your appreciation to teachers for all that they do for your children.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Talking to Your Kids About Building Wealth

The primary task of parenting (besides loving, of course) is preparing your kids for independence. You teach them about life and give them the tools and the wisdom to make the most of their talents and their opportunities.
It's easy when they're young. "Look both ways before crossing the street." "Study hard." "Do your best." But as your kids get older, the issues get more challenging -- sex, drugs, and alcohol come to mind -- and the conversations get a lot more difficult.
Yet too few parents are having the one conversation that's vitally important to their children's future, and which -- when compared to talks about sex or drugs -- is surprisingly easy to begin: The one about building wealth.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Does It Pay For Mom To Work?

The phrase "It costs money to make money" is certainly fitting when used to describe the second income of a working parent who has dependent children. The "working tax" on a second income includes additional income taxes, childcare costs, work-related expenses, and additional household expenses...CBS News

I think it's important these days to have multiple income steams. There are so many opportunities with the Internet at our fingertips. I'm a big fan of affiliate programs because you can usually do them from home. I have several, some high commissions and a few low commissions. The possibility is out there we just have to search it out.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Allowance Tips: Good Money Management Begins with an Allowance

Teach philanthropy at an early age. A portion of a child's allowance — 10 percent — should be allocated to charity. Encourage children to participate in canned good, clothing, or toy drives for charities. Help them to respond to natural disasters, such as hurricanes or earthquakes, outside their community by donating money to help.

Teach saving at an early age. It's important to put something aside for the future. Teach your
children that saving isn't for leftover money. Both the allocations for charity and savings should be made before any discretionary spending takes place. As with the donations to charity suggested above, the child should be encouraged to set aside the same portion of allowance — 10 percent — for savings. Children should have savings accounts by the time they're 8 years old. If older children don't have savings accounts, remember it's never too late to start a savings account for a child.

Encourage an entrepreneurial spirit. If children have a special goal, encourage them to find ways to earn the necessary funds. Don't create unnecessary jobs just so they can meet the goal. That's the same as giving them the money. Let them find a job and make the offer. If it meets a need and the price is right, hire them.

Never reward good behavior with tangible gifts. Goodness is its own reward. Your approval and words of praise should be sufficient. Paying for good behavior leaves parents open for juvenile blackmail. Parents don't want to hear, "I'll stop crying if you take me to the toy store," or "I'll come home on time if you buy me a new stereo."

Don't try to compensate your children for your own deprivation as a child. There are some purchases that signify changes of lifestyle and qualify as rites of passage. Allow your children the pleasure and pride that making those purchases for themselves can bring.

Teaching children financial responsibility can be an exciting and fun-filled experience. It's not always easy, but when parents are consistent, the rewards are immeasurable. Parents will be giving their children skills that will benefit them for the rest of their lives.

Monday, May 7, 2007

The Story of Mother's Day

The earliest Mother's Day celebrations can be traced back to the spring celebrations of ancient Greece in honor of Rhea, the Mother of the Gods. During the 1600's, England celebrated a day called "Mothering Sunday". Celebrated on the 4th Sunday of Lent (the 40 day period leading up to Easter*), "Mothering Sunday" honored the mothers of England.
*(For more information on Lent/Easter check out - Easter on the Net)
During this time many of the England's poor worked as servants for the wealthy. As most jobs were located far from their homes, the servants would live at the houses of their employers. On Mothering Sunday the servants would have the day off and were encouraged to return home and spend the day with their mothers. A special cake, called the mothering cake, was often brought along to provide a festive touch.
As Christianity spread throughout Europe the celebration changed to honor the "Mother Church" - the spiritual power that gave them life and protected them from harm. Over time the church festival blended with the Mothering Sunday celebration . People began honoring their mothers as well as the church.

In the United States Mother's Day was first suggested in 1872 by Julia Ward Howe (who wrote the words to the Battle hymn of the Republic) as a day dedicated to peace. Ms. Howe would hold organized Mother's Day meetings in Boston, Mass ever year.

In 1907 Ana Jarvis, from Philadelphia, began a campaign to establish a national Mother's Day. Ms. Jarvis persuaded her mother's church in Grafton, West Virginia to celebrate Mother's Day on the second anniversary of her mother's death, the 2nd Sunday of May. By the next year Mother's Day was also celebrated in Philadelphia.

Ms. Jarvis and her supporters began to write to ministers, businessman, and politicians in their quest to establish a national Mother's Day. It was successful as by 1911 Mother's Day was celebrated in almost every state. President Woodrow Wilson, in 1914, made the official announcement proclaiming Mother's Day as a national holiday that was to be held each year on the 2nd Sunday of May.

While many countries of the world celebrate their own Mother's Day at different times throughout the year, there are some countries such as Denmark, Finland, Italy, Turkey, Australia, and Belgium which also celebrate Mother's Day on the second Sunday of May.

Friday, May 4, 2007

IIs Your Child A Picky Eater?

If it seems like your child's eating only a few bites of plain pasta, you're not alone. Nearly 40 percent of kids under 6 are picky eaters, and while it can be frustrating for you, it's actually a normal developmental stage. At this age, kids' instinctual response to something new is suspicion and caution, and they may be asserting their independence by refusing your offerings. But picky eating won't last forever — most kids grow out of it by age 8 or 9. In the meantime, there are plenty of things you can do to try to expand his palate.

Encourage adventurous eating!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Tips for Keeping Your Children Safe Online

By Sharon Housley

Parents are constantly struggling with ways to keep their children safe online. The Internet has a global reach and at this point no bounds, or limitations. Outside of installing filtering software children should be educated in order to protect themselves to this virtual monster. We've put together a collection of ten tips that should be observed while surfing online. At the very least these tips will prompt family discussions regarding safety.

1.) When on the internet personal information should be kept private. Just because someone asks doesn't mean you need to tell them. When someone asks for personal information, consider how they might use that information and whether it is necessary for them to have it.

2.) If you are conversing with someone online, don't assume that they are being honest with you. Just because they say they're 16 doesn't mean they are.

3.) Do not release your password to anyone, even if they say they are from your online provider.

4.) Overall it is best not to respond to unsolicited e-mail (SPAM), if there is something flagrant or inappropriate in the e-mail, consider reporting the sender to their Internet Service Provider (ISP).

5.) Do not give out or post identifying information, including address or telephone numbers.

6.) You may want to create a nickname for a screen name in chat rooms.

7.) Keep in mind when posting in chat rooms or newsgroups, that there may be lurkers (people who read but do not post). Your information can be read and seen by all.

8.) Keep an open dialogue with children surfing the Internet, remember if they come to you with a problem, your first reaction should not be to take away the Internet. Applaud child's confidence in confiding in you and work together to find a solution.

9.) Overall it is not a good idea to post or exchange pictures over the Internet

10.) Try to keep in mind the Internet is global and is *not* governed by any entity. This means that there are no limitations or checks on the information posted and accessible to Internet users.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Get Out Of My Face(Book)

Facebook is a social networking website. It was originally developed for college and university students but has since been made available to anyone with an email address. People may then select to join one or more participating networks, such as a high school, place of employment, or geographic region.
I signed up for my Facebook account. I like Facebook for its simplicity and private features. I saw that the developer also turned down $1 Billion dollars from Google. Crazy Stuff!!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Lavish Baby Accessory

Just because your baby can't walk yet, doesn't mean he can't step out in style with these lace-up sneakers that have signature Gucci detailing. With sizes starting at 8-10 months, nothing beats a little Gucci to get your baby off on the right foot.

These are some lavish extras for little ones. To see a few more click here.

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