From backpacks to lunchboxes, school books to cleats — kids have a lot to juggle these days. When dark clouds start to rumble, an umbrella may be the best idea, but it can also be tough to manage with a full load. Have no fear, the UFO Cap Umbrella is here! Appearing to be straight from space, these futuristic Korean-made inventions are said to keep heads dry and arms free. They are apparently pretty handy when fishing or hiking in the rain, too! Tell me, would you put one of these on your tot?
My husband's parents' 50th anniversary is coming up in December and they offered to take the entire family on a trip to celebrate. They selected a cruise that does not return until the 5th of January. While the trip works for the rest of the family, it means my preschooler and kindergartener will miss the first two days back to school after Winter break. My mother-in-law says that I shouldn't worry because the children are young. Though I am grateful for the vacation, I am wary of the kids missing class. Should we skip the trip?
– Cruisin' in Lieu of School Mama
To see the response from Mommy Dearest, read more
We all know children can be lil angels, but there are bullies that like to add mischief to the mix. At some point, almost every child comes face to face with a bully. When that moment arrives, it is helpful to know some tips on dealing with the situation. Even better, give your child the advantage by talking about it before he encounters Mr. Bossy.
According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, children should take these steps when confronted with a bully:
- Tell an adult: parent, teacher, coach or neighbor.
- Stay in a group — there's security in numbers.
- If it is safe, stand up to the bully.
- If receiving written communication from him, don't reply.
- Join clubs or make other friends where confidence can be gained and safety can be found.
To see what you can do if your child is the bully, read more
I never could stomach letting my children cry it out. Despite friends who swear by the method and have logged enviable amounts of sleep, I can't imagine hitting the hay while my infant whimpers.
In working staggered schedules, my husband and I came up with our own method — tire them out. It wasn't something we discussed, it just happened. Before going to work in the afternoon, he'd take our tots on outdoor adventures to museums, exhibits, parks, and playgrounds. Then, when I leave the office, I run errands, meet up with friends, and plan play dates with the kids in tow. Our arrangement exposes our children to lots of places and people, and they get shut-eye in the car. Sometimes it means late nights and other times early mornings, but we have never had a real schedule.
Until now. This week my daughter started kindergarten and we had to bid our go-where-the-day-takes-you attitude goodbye (well, it's tabled until the weekend). The 6:30 a.m. wake-up call has gotten our best rester out of bed before the sun comes up and back between her sheets by 8:30 p.m. Our son is about to begin preschool, and already the lil wild child is tucking himself under the covers at a reasonable hour. I suppose we've discovered a new sleep method — enroll your kids in school. At night in the moment of peace I have before I crash, I savor it, knowing that it will be a distant memory when our new baby arrives next month.
Have you used any unconventional sleep methods?
Source: Flickr User lovelypetal
A child of the 70s, I clearly recall some of my elementary school teachers using physical means to get some students to behave. Things are much different in the 21st century, or at least one might think. Though only legal in some parts of 21 states, Principal David Nixon of Calhoun Hills, South Carolina, has taken to using his paddle to discipline his pupils. Oddly enough, it was one of the parents who tipped him off to the idea. His first day on the job, a father told him, "I want to give you the authority to whip my son's butt." As the new boss at a severely struggling public school, the 31-year-old head honcho literally started taking matters into his own hands and began spanking mischievous pupils when he deemed necessary.
Fortunately for the youngsters, he didn't find it mandatory all that often, but many teachers and parents credit his practices for putting the school and its students on a better path. Not always the image of doom, the young authoritarian also knows how to celebrate the kids' accomplishments. He throws pizza parties for good test scores and arranges school pageants.
Consistent with the state law, Nixon gives parents the choice to allow or deny corporal punishment by school officials. Since 73 percent of lilsugar readers are admitted spankers, I'm curious to know, would you give your child's school permission to pop your child?
Sign on the dotted line please. We sign contracts for our homes, our jobs, and even for our child care providers, but will signing one with our children help keep them in line?
Some parents use parent/child contracts to keep the communication path more open, while others see it as a way to keep order in their household. The contract can serve as a visible way to ensure that kids are aware of the house rules and the consequences of disobeying them. They also help children understand what their parents' roles are in helping them achieve their goals.
For families looking to put things in writing, this pad of contracts ($10) will help get the process started with 30 fill-in-the-blank sheets that outline the terms of the agreement and penalties for breaking them.
What's your opinion of drafting contracts with your kids?
The sneakers are glowing and the lunchboxes are fresh. It's time to head back to the little red school house for another year of education. Entering a new classroom promises never before seen math problems, spelling rules and lectures in science for sponge-like brains. While most everyone expects that type of learning, it is sometimes a different lesson that gets moms and dads fired up for a new year. Parents see their children grow every day, but it is a fresh perspective from their child's new teacher than can often offer them a new vantage point into their kiddo's life. An art instructor may spot a budding Van Gogh or the P.E. coach sees the next Mia Hamm. The reading teacher may see a writing future while the math tutor discovers a counting issue that needs special attention. What have you learned from your child's teachers?
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When asked which grade was their favorite, most people can answer without hesitation. Whether it was the teacher, the classmates, or the lessons, there's something that reminds them of the joy they celebrated for one year of their life. Kindergarten is full of firsts and new friends, but subsequent grades offer P.E., drama classes, learning how to jump rope, taking field trips, and participating in school talent shows. While I loved most every minute of elementary school, second grade was my most cherished year. My teacher, Mrs. Wright, who coincidentally was never wrong, was sharp, witty, quick to discipline, and never short on laughs. If someone wasn't behaving well, she'd threaten to sit on them and occasionally she did, though it was mostly for show and giggles. I can only hope my children are lucky enough to have a Mrs. Wright and irreplaceable friends placed along their school path. What was your favorite grade and why?
My 5-year-old twins are entering kindergarten next month and I was just contacted by their new school regarding their class placement. We kept the girls in the same class during nursery school and it worked well for them in terms of their learning, meeting new friends, and having each other to lean on. But as their pre-K year came to an end, their distinctive personalities came through. While one was outgoing, the other complained that her sister was leaving her out of activities. Do you think it would be best to separate them going forward?
– Twin Thoughts
To see the response from Mommy Dearest, read more
If you have school aged children, especially tweens, the Mouse has probably taken over your television set and CD player. Now, prepare for The Jonas Brothers and The Wizards of Waverly Place to take over your kiddo's closet. Yesterday, Disney debuted it's back to school line of Ivy League and Boho Chic duds inspired by the popular shows. There are also school supplies and accessories to fill up your youngster's desk or locker. The reasonably priced items hit shelves this month at JC Penney, Kmart, Sears, Walmart, Target and DisneyStore.com.
To check out more shots from the runway show and the full line of apparel, read more