Archive for the ‘Ages And Stages:Ages 7 to 8’ Category

Start talking to your kids about differences. Aside from just observing skin color, even a preschooler can see that some people are big and some others are skinny. That some celebrate Christmas and others celebrate Hanukkah, and that certain kids are smarter than others. And if your local gas station attendant has a thick accent, they will notice that too. Are you talking about these differences with them? Probably not. Parents of white children very seldom discuss race with them. Black parents, though, are far more likely to bring it up. People of color have to prepare their children for uncomfortable moments.

With a child who is 3 or 4, you can explain that people come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. You could even try holding up a green apple and a red apple. Say to them they look different from the outside, but they are both apples on the inside, just like people. Seek out opportunities to demonstrate your respect and appreciation for these contrasts. Your might say something like, “Look at that girl. Aren’t her ponytails pretty?” or “Did you hear that boy speak Spanish to his grandma and then English to his friend? I wish I could speak more than one language.”

If your child asks something that makes you squirm, do your best to respond matter of factly. We tend to try and avoid these questions. But that does not keep our kids from noticing. By explaining to them will teach them to have respect for others. Leave us your comments. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. Let us know what other topics you would like to have discussed. Share this post with your family and friends. Remember to always praise your child.

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Different

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Treating people of all races and backgrounds honorably is not just politically correct, it is the right thing to do, the respectful thing.

When my 4-year-old son, David, started flipping out about going to preschool, I thought it was typical first day jitters. Then he told me the reason: I do not want a teacher with brown skin. Our family who is white and live in a diverse neighborhood in Northwest Indiana. I must admit I was a bit horrified and confused. He had been around people of many races before. Our neighbor who had babysat for David before when he was a toddler is African American. But his new teacher whom he had met before at the school orientation was from Africa, so I think it had more to do with her accent. Concerned I turned to a psychologist who was also a family friend. I was reassured that little David was not being a racist.

It is natural for young kids to notice differences in a person’s appearance and manner of speaking, and to express curiosity or even fear about them. Many of us can probably share a comparably mortifying moment, whether it was our kid’s insensitive comment about someone in a wheelchair or an objectionable question about why a classmate of Asian descent has “squinty” eyes. In our upcoming posts we will share some steps with you that you can take to teach your child how to be open minded. Leave us your comments. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. Let us know what other topics you would like to have discussed. Share this post with your family and friends. Remember to always praise your child.

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These summertime activities will help your little one get ready for their first day of school.

We all love a relaxing summer. But the transition to a structured school day in the fall will not be quite as big a shock to your child if you begin a routine and integrate some learning into their day now. Whether your little one is going to preschool for the first time or returning for another year, try these simple ways to make the shift to the classroom a smooth one. In our following post we will give you some great ideas to help in this transition. Leave us your comments. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. Let us know what other topics you would like to have discussed. Share this post with your family and friends. Remember to always praise your child.

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independent

Check a few things off of your to do list and have some fun at the same time.

Week 4: Rock the fall style–shop Crazy 8 for the new and now looks that your kids will love. Help them express their unique style, have one less thing to do before school actually starts, and always get a good deal!

Week 3: Channel some of that summer energy into a project that will benefit your community. Community service is an integral part of most school curriculums, and it will help you and your child connect with others. Contribute to your school directly and look for Tyson Project A+ labels on participating Tyson packages. For every label that you submit, Tyson will give your school 24 cents for whatever it needs.

Week 2: Host a back to school playdate for your children and their friends to help them to get back in the swing of things. Provide healthy snacks like deliciously baked, gluten-free Pirate’s Booty, Welch’s Fruit Snacks made with real fruit, and Mott’s 100% Juice. Mix in some fun with activities like “Telephone Story”. Have each person take a piece of paper, write a sentence, and pass it to the next person on their right to write the next line until you have a one of a kind story to share!

Week 1: Play with your food. Try using Mini Babybel Original semisoft cheese to create fruit and cheese skerers and Hillshire Farm Naturals Lunchmeat to create ham and cheese roll-ups. They are sure to be exciting and healthy additions to your kid’s lunchbox!

Leave us your comments. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. Let us know what other topics you would like to have discussed. Share this post with your family and friends. Remember to always praise your child.

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Back To School

If you suspect that your child has stolen something (or if they are caught red handed), you should rehash why stealing is wrong and help them see it from the other person’s perspective. “How would you feel if David stole your coloring book?” Go light on the talk of police involvement or breaking the law. These scare tactics can stop your child from being honest about their misbehaviors and can cause them to fear police officers rather than viewing them as helpers in an emergency situation.

Instead, you should right the wrong. Help your child apologize and return the item to its rightful owner. If it is not returnable (as in the case of my niece, who was already munching on the cookie), pay for it and make your child do an extra set of chores to pay you back. If you have already left the store or find an item at home, take it back (if possible) and follow through with consequences that fit the crime. For example, if your kid steals a toy, they might have to donate one of their own to an organization that helps needy children. Repeated thievery or other troubling behavior may require help from a therapist. Fortunately, most kids who take something once or twice and face real life consequences (having to apologize, angering a friend, disappointing parents) do not steal again. Leave us your comments. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. Let us know what other topics you would like to have discussed. Share this post with your family and friends. Remember to always praise your child.

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Offenses

If you eat a few grapes at the grocery store without buying them or claim an older child is younger so that you could pay less at the movie theatre, your child will notice. This will send them the message that it is okay to take things you have not paid for. It is important to model the behavior you expect of your child. Keep in mind that even little innocent acts can look dishonest. When you grab a free magazine from the dentist’s office, your child may think you are stealing. A little explanation can help him understand the difference between freebies and stealing. Make a comment like, “Awesome, this magazine is free.” Then point out the word “complimentary” or the sign that says “Take One.” Tell your child that if they are unsure whether an item is free or not, it is always best to ask first. Leave us your comments. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. Let us know what other topics you would like to have discussed. Share this post with your family and friends. Remember to always praise your child.

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Lead By Example

Kids may pick up something because they are afraid to ask for it. They do not know what to say or they think the response will be a no. Focus on helping your child learn how to ask permission and practice it with them. You might guide them through asking a friend to borrow a bookmark, for instance, or asking a teacher if they can have a sticker. Praise them when they do the right thing in their daily activities. “Jenna, I appreciate that you asked for the crayons before taking them.” Explain to them that requesting permission does not automatically mean that they will get what they want all the time. The person may just say no. Discuss other ways that they could get what they want, for example, adding it to a birthday wish list, or doing some extra chores around the house to earn it. If they know there are other ways to get sunglasses, they may be less likely to swipe those that belong to a friend. Leave us your comments. Your feedback is greatly appreciated. Let us know what other topics you would like to have discussed. Share this post with your family and friends. Remember to always praise your child.

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Stealing