Listen to our very own Barb Dunn-Swanson share with Iowa Public Radio’s Charity Nebbe some Tips for Family Vacations.
Last December we shared information with you on Creating Grateful Children . Throughout November, we are going to take you back to some of our previous topics as a way of continuing to create conversations relevant to today’s parenting dilemmas.
As you listen to the podcast, consider how gratitude has come into play in your family over the last year. Did you implement any of the ideas in the “Teaching Children How to be Grateful” blog? Did you see additional ideas in the What We All Want video?
It seems like whenever November comes around people begin to talk about being thankful and or grateful. But I’m curious… how did you share your thankfulness and gratefulness all year log.
Share with us, we would love to hear from you.
As more adults and children want or already have a cell phone, tablet or other device, families may being to wonder: How much technology is too much – or not enough? Our phones, tablets and computers give us a direct connection to all kinds of information, games and entertainment, and communicating with family and friends. The technology also provides opportunities for learning. According to the National Education Association, in order for today’s students to compete globally, they need 21st century skills: They have to be able to communicate, create, collaborate and think critically. Understanding how to use technology can help kids, and parents, build these skills. However, screen time can get out of control at any age. The technology we have access to has the potential to help us, if we are disciplined enough to know when to use it and when to put it down, and interact with the people around us. As they say, everything in moderation, and that includes technology too. Just because a particular technology is available, doesn’t mean you have to embrace it. As a parent, you have the final say in what and how much technology comes into your home.
This month the Science of Parenting Bloggers will discuss how technology can be family friendly, how to support the positive use of social media with family members, and how to set boundaries for a healthy balance of technology and face-to-face social interaction.
Want kids to eat their vegetables and do better in school? Get them involved in gardening. Research has shown that children who have the opportunity to plan, plant and harvest are more likely to eat vegetables and to continue eating vegetables throughout their life time. Gardening also can help children apply concepts learned in school. For example, writing and journaling are important garden skills, and math and measurements are necessary for garden design. If you and your family can have your own garden, that’s great; but there are other ways to get kids interested in gardening.
- Head to the public library, because books are a great way to start the conversation, Hayungs said. “A book about vegetables can get you talking about your child’s favorites. Talk about the colors, feel and taste of veggies.”
- Visit a farmers market or grocery store and talk about new or unusual vegetables on display.
- Explore the nutrition and growing facts about different vegetables. Then make a list of favorites and begin to think about a garden growing plan.
Learn more from tips in the podcast below and share your thoughts and experiences with us.
Podcast script July 2016
Children aren’t born knowing how to be kind or compassionate. However, these virtues can be taught.
How do we raise kids who are compassionate and kind? We can give them opportunities to practice being kind. Children must learn to be kind, just as we learn language. Practice makes perfect and parents can encourage such simple opportunities like helping with housework. Parents can help children learn how to focus on others who need help. Children need to hear from their parents that caring for others is a top priority.
Harvard researchers tell us that children aren’t born good or bad, and we should never give up on them. They need adults who will help them, at every stage of their childhood, to become caring, respectful and responsible for their communities.”
Join us this month as we share ideas about the importance of raising children to be kind and compassionate. Listen to the podcast below or read the transcript.
We love hearing from you, so join us!
Eat better. Exercise more. Get organized. Learn something new. It’s that time of year when adults make resolutions to help them reach their goals. It’s also a good time for parents to help their children build goal-setting skills. To succeed in school and in life, children need to be able to make their own decisions and guide their own behavior. Setting goals can help kids learn to connect their own personal choices with the end results. Parents can be involved by helping their children think about and set personal goals, and then encouraging them to work toward the goals.
As you work on goals, try to avoid steering your child toward the goal you want him or her to achieve. Offer guidance, but let your child choose the goal. Children who have a say in what they are learning are more motivated to succeed. What matters is that children see themselves making progress. This is far more important than what the specific goal is.
Just us this month as we talk about goal setting with children.
Listen to the podcast below or read the script here. Jan2016 Podcast Script
Not all parents feel confident having “the talk” with their children — when the topic is science, technology, engineering and math. However, it’s an ongoing conversation parents and kids need to have.
STEM — Science, technology, engineering, and math — is a vital part of our kids’ education and their future and parents play an absolutely critical role in encouraging and supporting their children’s STEM learning at home, in school and in the community. This month we will discuss how to create a science-learning friendly home. We’ll also talk about how parents can be more actively engaged with their children’s teacher and school.
Researchers have documented that young people may lose some of what they learned during the school year if they aren’t engaged in educational activities during the summer. However, many communities, schools and youth organizations have summer learning opportunities worth exploring.
Parents are extremely important in encouraging and motivating their children during the summer months. This month, we will explore ways for parents to help their children discover the joys of reading and tips to keep those math skills sharp. We also will discuss challenges that parents face when trying to encourage learning.
On our blog we typically discuss parenting from a science or research-based perspective. However, this month we will also discuss the “art” of parenting – how parents can tailor their parenting style to each child’s temperament.
Parenting style really isn’t ‘one size fits all. Styles range from overly involved ‘helicopter’ parents to ‘free-range’ parents who are more hands off, with a wide range in between.
The “art” of parenting comes into play as we figure out how to customize our parenting style to our children’s needs.
Join us this month and share your ‘art’ of parenting.
It seems inevitable: People see babies and immediately start talking to them in a high pitched voice, exaggerating their vowel sounds. But there’s a good reason for this behavior. Child development experts call this musical way of talking ‘parentese,’ and more and more researchers are telling us how important it is to infants’ development and future success in learning.
Whether you call it parentese or baby talk, research shows that the more parents talks to their babies face to face, the more words the children will know by the time they reach age 3 and there just is something special with face-to-face communication.
Join us this month as we shut off the television, put away the smartphones and iPads and talk.
From the preschooler who can’t decide what to eat, to the high school student who can’t decide what to wear, sometimes children have a hard time making decisions. Children, and adults too, have many decisions to make each day. Sometimes we make wise decisions and sometimes, we make not-so-wise decisions. A child’s age, confidence, experience and knowledge are all factors in his or her ability to make decisions. Decision-making is one of the important life skills that parents can teach their children.
Join us this month as we blog about how to turn a child’s “I can’t decide” into “This is my decision.”
When a child says, “I know Grandpa isn’t really dead. He’s just asleep,” how should a parent respond? As adults we know that death is an inevitable part of the life cycle. We go to funerals, send sympathy cards and offer support. Somehow we come to reconcile death as a part of life and learn to live with that knowledge. Children, too, will encounter death, but they don’t have adult coping skills. It is up to the significant adults in their lives to help children understand their feelings when a family member, friend or beloved pet dies.
Join us as we blog about how to help children as they encounter death.
When parents worry about gray hair and wrinkles or complain about getting older, should they also wonder whether their children are listening? During February, we will discuss children’s attitudes about aging. Research shows that family influences are among several factors that can impact how children view aging and older people. We’ll also look at the impact from TV, movies, books and jokes, and everyday language and experiences.
Join us as we blog about how to help children view the aging process in a healthy and realistic way.
Sometimes life is not fair — and that really can make a child mad. As adults and caregivers, we help children learn how to cope with their anger in positive ways. Join us this month as we offer tips for parents and teachers on how to help children with their anger.
Listen to the podcast and join us as we blog!
Teach children manners and they’re more likely to grow up to be respectful and develop empathy for others. Join us in Novembas we focus on offering tips to helg children learn manners and how they connection to respect and empathy.
Listen to the Podcast here: Teaching Manners Leads to Respect, Empathy