Archive: parents

Tips for Preparing Your Child for Summer Camp

Find Summer Camps

 

Not only is summer camp a good option for keeping kids busy, active and learning over the summer after school has wrapped up, but it could also set positive habits for the rest of their lives. Psychologists have found that sending kids to summer camp may make them less affected by stress as they mature. Camp helps kids form new relationships with new friends and learn from different adults. They learn to cope with unfamiliar situations and learn handle the unexpected. But sometimes experiencing a large shift in routine takes a bit of getting used to. Help make the transition smoother with these tips for preparing your child for summer camp:

 

Make a checklist

With so many things to remember, especially if your child is heading to overnight camp, it’s good to write everything down. Most camps offer their own checklists so that parents know exactly what to pack. Make sure you get this ahead of time, or write out your own if the camp doesn’t have one available. That way, you’ll have plenty of time to go out and buy any missing must-haves.

 

Include your child in the packing process

Often, kids feel less stressed about change when they know the fine details. Allowing your little one to help you pack can give them some added insight into what’s going on. That way, they’ll feel involved and know exactly what’s coming with them and what to expect.

 

Buy special camp supplies

Anything shiny and new will add to the thrill of summer camp. Maybe that means a new swimsuit or a brand new backpack in their favorite color. Then, tell them they can use their new gear as soon as camp begins and have them hold off to add a bit of positive anticipation.

 

Get excited about camp!

The whole point of summer camp is to have fun, right? Make sure your little one knows this! Talk about all the new friends they’re going to make. Mention some of the cool activities they get to do (think swimming, games, crafts, etc.).  Often, getting excited about something washes the jitters away for both the parents and the child.

 

Leave quickly

When the drop-off date finally arrives, do it quickly like ripping off a band aid, even if they’re only headed to a day camp and you’ll see them that night. Waiting around can make too big of a deal out of your departure, giving them a chance to think about what’s happening and get nervous. Plus, if you stick around too long, they might pick up on the sense that you’re nervous too. Make it easier for both of you by dropping them off with a big smile and waving goodbye.

 

No cares and woes beyond this point

 

Still looking for the perfect fit for this summer? Search for a great one near you now!

 

Sources:

-“Camp Prep” She Knows

-“Summer Camp Makes Kids Resilient” Psychology Today

-“Prepare Your Child and Yourself for Camp” American Camp Association

 - Photo credit: United States Navy & Peter Blanchard

Bridging the communication gap between parents and care providers

Child care providers can now connect more easily with parents, keeping them up-to-date on their children’s day-to-day care with Daily Connect. And, because we think this app could be the next tool in every child care provider’s tool belt, we want to offer it to you for {SPECIAL DISCOUNT}

 

The mobile and web app gives care providers the opportunity to record everything from naps, milestones and diapers to mood, location and temperature. You can even photograph and record the type of games each child is playing.

 

Daily Connect eases the mind of worried parents, and helps bridge the communication gap between child care provider and parent. Instead of calling to check in, parents can simply view the app, leaving the care provider free to care for the children. This is also a great tool for tracking data over time and helping ease the transition between caregivers during shift switches. Because it’s quick and easy to enter information on Daily Connect, the data will be more accurate than it would be on a traditional, hand-written information daily sheet.

 

The handy app even has extra features that cater to those managing large child care centers on its web app. Attendance reports and classroom and teacher management help directors of child care centers make sure everyone is where they need to be. Even customize the app with your own company’s branding. Those interested in managing large groups through a Professional Membership get to try their first month for free.

 

If the idea of getting started in a little daunting and you don’t want to sacrifice the data you’ve already gathered, don’t worry. Daily Connect is happy to help. Simply forward Daily Connect the documents with your children’s information and they’ll upload it into the system, so you’ll be ready to get started in no time.

 

For iPhones, download the app {instructions and code}

If you’d like it on your iPad, download Daily Connect {instructions and code}

It’s also available for Android phones, as well as on your regular, every-day browser.

 

The best part? Daily Connect believes in providing the best customer service possible. That means that if you hit any bumps in the road, feel free to reach out, and they’ll give you a hand. In fact, they’re so eager to help that they’ll respond to any and all customer support emails the same day you send them.

 

Register today!

How Parents Can Use CHALK Preschool

Whether your child is already enrolled in a separate preschool program, starting next year or learning at home until they begin kindergarten, the CHALK Preschool online curriculum can help children expand and enhance their early education for free. All you need is your computer, smartphone or tablet to enroll and get started.

 

The CHALK Curriculum

CHALK Preschool focuses on preparing preschoolers for kindergarten. Lessons revolve around learning numbers, letters, shapes, sizes, colors, pattern recognition, weather, days of the week and more. The best part? There’s constantly new, challenging material for your little one. With a new lesson list every day, your child can expand his or her knowledge by exploring new games, songs and activities.

 

The CHALK Learning Approach

Despite being an online program, CHALK Preschool is about much more than sitting in front of a screen, clicking a computer mouse. The curriculum is centered on hands-on learning, involving both indoor and outdoor play and discovery. From art projects to song and dance, CHALK gets little ones up and moving, learning through exploration, the way that they learn best.

 

Here’s how to use CHALK Preschool to enhance your child’s learning:

 

1. Enroll

To get started, all you need to do is enter your email information and your child’s name and birthday on CHALK’s website.

2. Select a lesson to focus on.

Choose a topic on the left hand side of the screen. You can opt for dailies, which changes every day, weather, literacy, math and science or art. Each comes with videos, games or activities. Some even feature all three.

3. Print off printables.

Next, check out the printables available on the left side of the screen, under the lesson options. Here you’ll find coloring sheets, graphs and more that your child can draw or write on.

4. Free play!

If your little one still wants to learn and you’ve already covered his or her daily lesson plan, click on the free play link on the top right of the screen. Here, you and your little one can watch videos and learn fun, educational songs to sing along with.

5. Stop by the Parent Portal.

This section of the website, located on the top right of the screen, is completely dedicated to parents like you. Here, you can learn more about the CHALK Preschool program and leave helpful feedback for the staff. You can also head to the advice corner to find helpful tips on everything from teaching about manners to helping smooth out the bedtime routine.

Potty Training Tips

Potty training can be a frustrating and messy (trust us, we’ve been there too) process. But with a little bit of structure, guidelines and positive reinforcement, it doesn’t have to be a disaster. Here are some potty training tips from MomTrusted:

 

Follow the rule of 15.

When you have the time to keep a close eye on your toddler, ditch the diaper. Then let your little one go about their playtime and meals as usual, but plop them on the potty every 15 minutes. Gradually lengthen the time of the sessions until they’re all-day long.

 

Practice positive reinforcement.

Every time your child goes in the toilet, praise them. You can even keep a handful of a small treats (try M&Ms or stickers) in the house and give them a special reward every time they go in the right spot.

 

Let is all hang out.

Let your toddler run around the house naked or pants-less. This way, when they have to go, they don’t have the option of going in a diaper. That leaves the floor or the toilet. Odds are, they’ll choose the toilet.

 

Keep sitters and teachers in the loop.

Make sure that everyone who watches your child knows that they’re in the process of potty training. This way they can help remind them to go now and then and they’ll be extra prepared for potential accidents. If you’re rewarding at home, be sure to explain the process to your little one’s babysitter or teacher so that they can mimic what you’ve already begun. Consistency is key!

 

Provide a target.

For little boys, give them something to aim for. Throw some Cheerios or Fruit Loops in the toilet and make a game out of it.

 

Stay protected when training is not in session.

The easiest way to keep the process mess-free? Pop on the pull-ups when you’re not in the middle of a training spurt. And at nighttime, especially in the beginning.

 

Sources:

-“How to Potty Train in a Week.” Parenting.com

-Photo courtesy of arztsamui/freedigitalphotos.net

Best Books for Moms

Trust us, we know how important some down time is for busy moms. So after you tuck your little ones in at night, before you collapse in exhaustion, relax by reading a book. MomTrusted is here to help! We’ve scouted out the top 7 best books for moms:

 

Where’d You Go, Bernadette

By Maria Semple

This is the hilarious story of an agoraphobic woman who goes missing. Her best friend and daughter must hunt her down. This goofy read explores the strong bond of a mother and daughter.

 

No Biking in the House Without a Helmet

Melissa Fay Greene

Right before Melissa’s oldest of her four children headed off to college, she and her husband adopted five more. They took in four children from Ethiopia and one from Bulgaria. In No Biking in the House Without a Helmet, the author explains why and how they doubled their family size.

 

Bossypants

Tina Fey

As any fan of Saturday Night Live knows, Tina Fey will have you laughing out loud in no time. In Bossypants, Fey talks about being a mother. She touches on the funny parts of being a mom and the scary ones, making for an incredibly relatable book for any mom.

 

Cinderella Ate My Daughter

Peggy Orenstein

Peggy Orenstein explores what influences like Miley Cirus, the American Girl Dolls and Disney World are doing to young girls in today’s society. She argues that these influences are putting an unneeded emphasis on appearance and sexiness too young.

 

It is Well with My Soul

Ella Mae Cheeks

106 year-old Ella Mae Cheeks tells the story of her life in It is Well with My Soul. She reflects on watching W. E. B. Du Bois speak in the early 1920s and attending President Obama’s inauguration. Learn about how she lived a happy life for 106 years.

 

Forgotten

Catherine McKenzie

When Emma Tupper heads to Africa on vacation, she has no idea that an illness will strand her in a small village for six months. When she finally returns home, she finds that everyone thinks she died. Read as Emma struggles to reestablish her family and life, all the while discovering her true self.

 

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff for Moms

Kristine Carlson

Kristine Carlson writes of her own experience as a mother, with an understanding voice, offering advice and learning from her own mistakes.

 

 

Sources:

-“Mom Will Love These Entertaining Reads.” She Knows

-“Books Moms Will Love.” Oprah

-“10 Best Mother’s Day Books of 2010.” The Christian Science Monitor

-Photo courtesy of marin/freedigitalphotos.net

5 Reasons to Avoid Buying Live Animals for Easter

Even though baby bunnies, chicks and ducklings are cute and cuddly, here are the top five reasons why you should avoid buying living animals for Easter:

 

5. They may carry germs or diseases. You don’t want to stuff them in a basket with a bunch of food.

 

4. Do you really want to clean up all of that poop? Seriously. Chickens and ducks aren’t indoor pets and, while rabbits can be trained, at the end of the day you know that the new pets will be your new responsibility.

 

3. Baby animals are delicate. They may be scared by a bunch of kids constantly touching them. Plus, they’re so tiny and sometimes little ones get excited and forget to be gentle with their new fluffy friends.

 

2. What about all of those supplies? You can’t buy just the animal. You need the food, the water dish, the cage and the vet visits. Just like a dog or a cat, pet bills add up quickly.

 

1. They will grow up. It’s unfair to adopt animals for a special holiday because they’re cute and cuddly. Eventually they’ll grow up and then what? Do you really want a chicken running around your house?

 

Bottom line: Stick to goodies and projects this Easter!

 

Sources:

-“CDC Warns Against Live Chicks, Duckling, Bunnies for Easter” Yahoo! Voices

-“Live chicks and ducklings bad idea for Easter” Examiner

-Photo courtesy of dan/freedigitalphotos.net

Mommy Math: Single Parents

We live in a country where single parenting is far from rare. In the U.S., there are 13.6 million single parents and 21.2 million children being raised by only one parent. That makes up 26% of young people and children in the country. While it used to rest primarily in the mother’s hands to care for a child, the amount of single fathers had grown 60% in the last decade. However, despite the large growth in single fathers raising children, single moms are still much more common.

Sources:

-“Single Parent Statistics” Single Parent

-“Single Mother Statistics” Single Mother Guide

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