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10 Tips On How To Raise A Free-Spirited Child

Raising a strong-willed child can be a challenge when he or she is young. They might seem overly difficult, stubborn and opinionated. But strong-willed children are also spirited, fun and courageous. They simply want to learn things for themselves instead of accepting what others tell them. They may have a habit of testing boundaries and limits, but it’s because they are strong, passionate and they live life to the fullest. So how can a parent raise a strong-willed child without discouraging the child’s high energy, persistence and spunk? Here are ten tips for parenting a strong-willed, free-spirited child:

How to Talk to Your Kids About Beach Safety

As early as possible, Leatherman says, elementary age kids “should learn what to do in the water, how to swim and how to float.” And as kids are getting comfortable in the water, parents can encourage them to think about safety at the beach. One place to start: what do kids themselves feel cautious about? Parents may be surprised to learn kids are feeling leery of sea creatures, or bothered by the sun, and take the opportunity to talk more about sharing the water with wildlife, or the importance of sunscreen—as well as getting across the absolute basics of beach safety: young kids shouldn’t go into deep water, and should always stay near their parents or a lifeguard.

2 Week Meal Planning

Ever since I took on the job of SAHM, I’ve tried my best to save our family money while also continuing to cook healthy(-ish) meals at home. I’ve always enjoyed cooking and coming up with new meals for Mr. Oyster and me to eat – but my excitement for it has changed a bit since having to juggle 1 or 2 children while cooking and also cooking things that they won’t eat. I know it’s a common parenting challenge, but it’s one that’s definitely taken away some of my enjoyment of cooking.

10 Traditional Parenting Practices We Should Continue In This New-Age World

Parenting has changed a lot since we were kids. For instance, parents and teachers are now very careful about meting out punishment and criticizing children. On the other hand, there appears to be a shift towards fostering the child’s independence and self-esteem. Moreover, the traditional family model has changed – from a stay-at-home mom (and dad as breadwinner) to dual-income families; in some countries, even single-parent or same-sex parents’ families are acceptable. Technology has also changed the activities that a child engages in, as well as familial interactions.

Teaching Young Children About Bias, Diversity, and Social Justice

We've somehow decided that little kids can't understand these complex topics, or we want to delay exposing them to injustices as long as possible (even though not all children have the luxury of being shielded from injustice).

However, young children have a keen awareness of and passion for fairness. They demand right over wrong, just over unjust. And they notice differences without apology or discomfort.

Racial identity and attitudes begin to develop in children at a young age. Two- and three-year-olds become aware of the differences between boys and girls, may begin noticing obvious physical disabilities, become curious about skin color and hair color/texture, and may also be aware of ethnic identity.

5 Elementary Strategies

1. Use children's literature: There's a wealth of children's books (check out here: http://www.adl.org/education-outreach/books-matter/#.VwQW3_krLcs) that can be read aloud and independently to approach the topic of bias, diversity, and social justice.

2. Use the news media: Find topics and news stories that bring forth these themes and discuss them in the classroom -- like the nine-year-old boy who was banned from bringing his My Little Pony backpack to school because it was the source of bullying.

3. Teach anti-bias lessons: Social and emotional skill development lessons are the foundation, and then teachers can move to lessons on identity, differences, bias, and how bias and bullying can be addressed individually and institutionally.

4. Give familiar examples.
Take advantage of children's interest in books, TV shows, toys, and video games, and use them as opportunities to explore diversity, bias, and social justice.

5. Explore solutions: Re-think the concept of "helping others" to include discussions about the inequities that contribute to the problem and consider actions that can address it. For example, while it's useful to provide food to homeless people, we want to deepen the conversation to convey a social justice perspective and a wider lens with children. Therefore, discuss the stigma and stereotypes of homeless people, learn about unfair housing policies, and reflect on solutions that will reverse the problem in a lasting way and encourage students to take action.

'Tough Love' Parenting for Baby Boys Can Do More Harm Than Good

Baby boys don’t need to be “toughened up” by letting them cry or intentionally withholding your affection. In fact, doing so can lead to harmful consequences, says a recently published research review.

According to the research review published in Infant Mental Health Journal, baby boys are more vulnerable to stress due to “significant gender differences…between male and female social and emotional functions in the earliest stages of development.”

7 Brands of Sunscreens To Avoid For Your Kid!

According to the EWG’s report, these are the 7 worst sunscreens for kids:

1. Banana Boat Kids Max Protect & Play Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 100
2. Coppertone Water Babies Sunscreen Stick, Wacky Foam and Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 55
3. CVS Baby Sunstick Sunscreen and Spray, SPF 55
4. Equate Kids Sunscreen Stick, SPF 55
5. Neutrogena Wet Skin Kids Sunscreen Spray and Stick products, SPF 70
6. Up & Up Kids Sunscreen Stick, SPF 55
7. Hampton Sun Continuous Mist Sunscreen for Kids, SPF 70

This Is What Screen Time Really Does to Kids' Brains

Screen time is an inescapable reality of modern childhood, with kids of every age spending hours upon hours in front of iPads, smartphones and televisions. That’s not always a bad thing: Educational apps and TV shows are great ways for children to sharpen their developing brains and hone their communication skills—not to mention the break these gadgets provide harried parents. But tread carefully: A number of troubling studies connect delayed cognitive development in kids with extended exposure to electronic media. The US Department of Health and Human Services estimates that American children spend a whopping seven hours a day in front of electronic media. Other statistics reveal that kids as young as two regularly play iPad games and have playroom toys that involve touch screens.

15 Things Toddlers Think Before Falling Asleep

We have a video baby monitor because I’m a crazy nut job who has to know if my kids are really sleeping or if they’re just laying their quietly waiting me out to see if I’ll come in and check on them. They’re crafty children. After I lay them down, I check the monitor every 5-10 minutes or so just to see what they’re up to.

Sometimes they’re talking or laughing. Sometimes they’re screaming or playing nicely in their cribs.That’s not super interesting. It’s kind of cute, but I see them laugh and play and scream all day.

Meet the 11-year-old girl who scored an $11million deal with Whole Foods to sell her lemonade that's sweetened with honey in an effort to save bees

Mikaila Ulmer's BeeSweet Lemonade will be carried by 55 stores in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana. When Whole Foods saw the promise in her lemonade, the supermarket agreed to sell the products in its regional stores. If Mikaila's lemonade does well, it'll eventually be sold nationwide.
The savvy 6th-grader from Austin, Texas, has developed her signature Me & The Bees lemonade stand into a thriving national business.

20 Things To Say To Your Child Instead Of “Don’t Cry”

We don’t always appreciate it when our children begin to cry, but what they are actually doing is making use of the body’s innate recovery system. When we get hurt, physically or emotionally, instead of storing it all up in our bodies as tension, we can make use of crying, laughter, raging or trembling. This is how the body processes and releases feelings. Most of us don’t do this often, having being told “Don’t cry” since we were small, but our children still have their recovery system intact.