Talking with Teachers . Parent Involvement . Going to School . Education | PBS Parents

Alaska Infant Learning Program shared this today.  I thought I’d pass it on here.


Talking with Teachers . Parent Involvement . Going to School . Education | PBS Parents.


4 Tips For Getting Your Kid Mental Health Services | Red-Hot Parenting

70 % of children and adolescents who need mental health services do not receive them.  Parenting wrote a short piece about how to increase the chances your child will not be part of that statistic.


4 Tips For Getting Your Kid Mental Health Services | Red-Hot Parenting.

Spring Cleaning: 12 Fun Ways to Get Your Kids Involved |

Spring Cleaning: 12 Fun Ways to Get Your Kids Involved

via Spring Cleaning: 12 Fun Ways to Get Your Kids Involved | lists 12 ways to make the dreaded spring chore more fun.  Teaching children to help is good for them and give you more time to play as a family.  Win/win!

Children should be allowed to get bored

Thanks to Nancy J. Smyth @njsmyth for bringing this article to my attention.  In addition to creativity, boredom in small doses also helps children develop impulse control.

Full story at BBC News Education 

Children should be allowed to get bored so they can develop their innate ability to be creative, an education expert says.

Dr Teresa Belton told the BBC cultural expectations that children should be constantly active could hamper the development of their imagination

She quizzed author Meera Syal and artist Grayson Perry about how boredom had aided their creativity as children.

Syal said boredom made her write, while Perry said it was a “creative state”.


Developing Resilience: 10 things-to-tell-yourself-when-life-knocks-you-down


I’ve been reading a lot lately about what protective factors can help us when we face trauma.  Whether its the personal  trauma of abuse, or the society  wide trauma of Sandy Hook or 9/11.  Two factors more than any other predict a lack of PTSD symptoms:  1) Finding meaning in the event, 2) Finding something that gives us strength in the event.

Boy Scouts of America Survey

My son is a cub scout.  He just earned his Tiger Cub rank.  When we signed him up to join scouting we did not realize that scouting was an organization that discriminated against our gay and lesbian neighbors.  We thought about pulling him out, but  learned that scouting was in the midst of revising their policy, and wanted to be a part of the conversation.  Currently the National Organization is considering changing their policy to allow the local chartering organizations decide if they want to discriminate or not.
This policy is wrong minded in that it does not go far enough.  It continues to allow for discrimination.  Recently Boy Scouts of America contacted me as a parent and asked me this question,

“What is your greatest concern if the policy is changed to allow charter organizations to make their own decisions to admit openly gay Scouts and leaders? (Please be specific.)”
Here is my response.   Please share with your friends if you agree that Scouting’s policy is wrong.

My primary concern is that local chartering organizations would be prejudiced against gay and lesbian people.  The notion that a kid could begin scouting as a tiger (6 years-old)  – continue through varsity and then be denied eagle scout because he discovers at 17 that he is gay is so abhorrent to me that I can support this organization.  Our troop is sponsored through  our local diocese.  If an organization like the church, that is so anti-gay can be so associated with child rape — I can only think that scouting in its current form is not where I want my child.  The notion that men and women who are attracted  to the same sex are somehow more likely to be pedophiles is so absurd that I don’t know where to begin my comments.  My son’s den leader, by the way, is a women who I ‘m pretty sure is attracted to men.  She has never once been sexually inappropriate with my six-year-old son son .  Why should I think that a gay father would be a sexual predator?  One of my very best friends from childhood is gay.  He is attracted to men, not to children.    One of my dearest friends from college is gay.  She is attracted to women, not to children.  Should we fear that every straight man is attracted to young girls, that every straight woman is attracted to young boys?  The notion is absurd.  If scouting does not change its current position – and in fact go further to reject the ridiculous prejudice based on sexual orientation out right,  it will not have the support of my family.  It will I fear be a dying organization and boys will suffer.  Scouting offers young men so much.  It should not offer them these obscene views of their fellow citizens, their neighbors, their families.

Increasing Happiness

Dan Buettner on Happiness

via 6 Thrive Centers | Blue Zones.

I heard an interview with Dan on NPR’s talk of the Nation.  He talked about 6 “Thrive Centers” .  These are areas that, if you pay attention to, can dramatically increase your level of happiness.


1. Community

2. Workplace

3. Social Life

4. Financial Life

5. Home

6. Self


My favorite was: Find the right job, It’s best to find a job that challenges us to an optimal level — one that’s neither so hard that we give up nor so easy that we get bored. Finding a job that engages your natural talents and gives you constant feedback is a sure way to build happiness.

Buy the Book —

Thrive: Finding Happiness the Blue Zones Way 



Talking to Henry about Bullying


I’ve been struggling with this for a few months.  I have a great kid who is sensitive to what those around him are doing.  He tells me about “bullying” in the first grade and I want to prepare him for life, but I don’t want to make him afraid of life or unable to handle his own problems.I want to step in when there is real danger, but I also want to teach him to be a more-resilient, less-enticing target.

I have always encouraged parents and teachers to empower kids – NOT to overreact to teasing and less-harmful testing that often occurs in peer relationships. When it’s your own six-year-old, its tougher to do.

Adults, get involved when there is real harm or the threat of real harm. At other times, help your kids learn to handle mean or rude people.

Trudy Ludwig says this much better than I of — See her posting here.

 How to Talk to Your Kids about Bullying | A Platform for Good.