How Family Meetings Can Help Kids Learn to Use Their Voice

How Family Meetings Can Help Kids Learn to Use Their Voice

Now that the school year is in full swing, we find ourselves settled into the hectic monotony of rushing kids to school, prepping dinner, and getting ready for bed. How do you connect with your kids and give them a voice in the family amidst the daily chaos? Consider trying out family meetings.

Family meetings are a tangible way for kids to practice exercising their voice and sharing their opinions. Young people benefit so much when they have a say in how their environment is structured. When they can use their voice it also fosters feelings of self-worth and builds …

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For Healthier Kids, Flip the Script on Self-Care

For Healthier Kids, Flip the Script on Self-Care

One way to help kids who are struggling is to try flipping the script – talk less about self-care and more about care for others around us.

Research shows that kindness towards others is more beneficial for mental and physical health than self-care. Active kindness: helping others, volunteering, being generous and consciously kind, results in us feeling physically better, less depressed, and more energized. It just makes us happier.

Being actively kind has profound positive impacts for kids. An article in Psychology Today reports that kids who have life experience helping others are three times happier than those who …

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How Parents & Caregivers can move on from “What’s Wrong with Me?”

How Parents & Caregivers can move on from “What’s Wrong with Me?”

Our early experiences shape us in profound ways. If those experiences were persistently stressful or traumatic in your early life, you may suffer from the results of adversity, just like millions of other parents and caregivers.

Dr. Bruce Perry and Oprah Winfrey teamed up on a new book titled What Happened To You? that illuminates how early adversity affects human beings. Many of us are caught up in blame and shame, and the authors point out that rather than asking, “What is wrong with me?” or “What is wrong with you?” we should shift the question to ask instead, “What …

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How to Help Kids Rebuild Their Stamina for the New School Year

Masked up, many children have headed back to in-person learning. Though the academic load has not yet become heavy, the time in isolation has taken its toll in many ways.

Just like an athlete returning to training after post-injury recuperation, our kids need to slowly build back the stamina they once had.  We can help our kids steadily build it back over time and adjust stamina for social interaction, focus and study, and all that it takes to be an engaged student of today.  Here are some ideas to support your kids in this time:

Acknowledge the internal work of

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Harnessing Hope (For Parents)

Harnessing Hope (For Parents)

Hope is the belief in a positive future. It is an optimistic, exciting sense of what is possible. In this time of global health crisis, economic uncertainty, racial reckoning, and physical disconnection from other human beings, the day to day challenges of doing everything differently make it difficult to hold onto hope. Yet hope is an antidote to despair. It can give us the energy to persevere and can offer a sense of purpose, calm and connection. Parents are children’s first hope builders. Your presence, connection, and attitude can help your child be more hopeful. They look to you to …

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Four Ideas for Stressed Parents

We are parenting more hours a day than ever before.  In-person school, in-person play dates and visits with family and friends are things we hope to resume in the near future, but they aren’t providing much relief for parents at the moment.

Have you noticed any of these issues coming up for your kids?

  • stressing out over seemingly small things, like tech issues during on-line school or having to ask the teacher a question
  • more disorganized than usual and having difficult time keeping up with assignments
  • less physically active
  • less social and more isolated
  • on screens much more than usual
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Contributions Kids Can Make to Support their Community during Challenging Times

Ideas for Children to Contribute During Protests

Make posters and signs to put in the yard or to give to protesters

Organize their own demonstration or protest

Make food or provide drinks and snacks for people who are protesting

Write letters to community, city, regional or state officials and elected officials

Research organizations that do work in a field of their interest. Create a plan to share out to friends and family. Fundraise and/or donate to those organizations.

Stage a toy protest, chalk your walk, and other ideas – 5 ways for kids and families to peacefully protest from home

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Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep – Or Not

Routines, Science and parenting, Self-care, Tips & Tools
Falling asleep (and getting enough sleep) would seem to be a normal, simple part of everyday family life—especially for children. But it turns out that it’s not so simple after all. Recent studies tell us that children today are getting an average of one hour less sleep each night than they did 30 years ago. That may not sound like much, but it turns out that that lost hour is having quite an impact.
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The compasses and maps of parenting

Science and parenting, Tips & Tools

Contributed by Melanie Miller, M.Ed.

I had the recent opportunity to take my daughter and her friends orienteering. Orienteering is where you use a map, compass and your powers of observation to navigate through a course of pre-set checkpoints. It’s a great way to explore the outdoors, discover new hikes and learn some map and compass skills. At each checkpoint, you study your map, set your compass and begin the trek to next check point, watching for landmarks along the way.

As we moved along the trail, I thought about my own parenting and what might be my parenting compass; …

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