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As This School Year Begins, Please Teach Your Children To Be Kind

The Huffington Post – Laura Smith

“A fresh backpack, lunchbox, shoes and school outfit are waiting tomorrow for my child’s first day of school. There is an excitement in the air as we bought school supplies and met her teacher last week. She picked out her name tag like the other kids and picked her seat. She flashed a big smile to her new teacher and chattered endlessly about school starting again and how she was excited to go back and to learn. We went and got a new haircut and she told the stylist how she was starting third grade.” (more)

Commentary: A Mom Wonders — I Never Enjoyed Math, but My Kids Love It. When Did Doing Math Become Fun?

The 74 Million – Tally Bernard

“There are things you come to expect to hear when you pick your kids up from school. These include “I’m hungry” or “I’m thirsty.” My favorite is “Did you charge the iPad?” But on the first day of school last year, I heard, “Mom, will you give us a math problem to solve, and can you make it hard?” I was taken aback. It made me wonder: When did math become fun? I started with what I thought were grade-appropriate questions. My second- and third-graders quickly responded, “Mom, That’s too easy. Ask one that is harder.” What amazed me even more than the fact that they kept coming up with the right answers was how they articulately explained what method they used to get those answers. It really demonstrated how much they had learned and made me think about the differences between how they are being taught math and how I was taught.” (more)

Moms Of Teens Can Benefit From Social Support, Just Like New Moms

KQED News Mind/Shift – Juli Fraga

“Raising children is a task that requires extensive “on-the-job” training, which is why many women rely on new moms groups for parenting support and guidance. Often, however, as the kids get older, the mothers’ friendships fall by the wayside. Now, new research indicates that social support isn’t just valuable for mothers of young children, it’s beneficial for moms of teens, too. The study, published this spring in the journal Family Process, suggests that these support networks may help mothers develop closer relationships with their teens.”(more)

Overweight mothers underestimate their children’s weight

Medical X-Press – Neil Schoenherr

“Mothers who are overweight or obese tend to underestimate the weights of their obese children, according to a new study from the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis. Researchers, led by Rachel Tabak, research assistant professor, surveyed 230 overweight or obese mothers in St. Louis who had a preschool-aged child. Nearly half of the mothers considered their overweight or obese children “about the right weight.” The study, “Associations Between Feeding Practices and Maternal and Child Weight Among Mothers Who do and do not Correctly Identify Their Child’s Weight Status,” was published in the January issue of Obesity Science & Practice.”(more)

Here’s How To Stand Up Straight If You Have Bad Posture, From Your Head To Your Toes

Medical Daily – Elana Glowatz

“Standing up straight can be a challenge. Some of us have orthopedic issues but others have just developed bad habits, like slouching when sitting in front of a computer or after a long day of work. No matter the reason for our bad posture, we should be standing up straight if we can. Experts say poor posture screws with our muscles, puts extra wear on our joints, makes our organs operate less efficiently and could make us more prone to injury. And in case you needed any more incentive, in many people’s eyes, the body language of bad posture says you are not confident.”(more)

A New Year’s Plan For Parents Of Bilingual And Multilingual Children

The Huffington Post – Bea Sieradzka

“I’m not going to make any New Year’s resolutions. Nope. No more. Instead, I’ve made a plan. We all know what happens to most of our New Year’s resolutions. Plans are plans, though. Plans are made to be followed and make them a reality. Point by point. Or, a little bit of each point every day. 2016 has brought to me many changes and some of them helped me prepare for what will be in 2017. My little boy is now 6 and a bit. For the last six months, with a changing regularity (read: rarely) I have been writing about his language adventure. Even though my idea from the start was to raise him bilingual and for all those years I have been doing it as a very conscious parent, only when I actually started writing about my son’s language adventure I began to truly understand what a precious gem it is to help your child speak more languages. My initial goal was simple: to introduce him to the community language at a level that would be enough for him to communicate and comprehend the language of the majority. I wanted him to be as proficient an English speaker when he starts school as his English peers.”(more)