PARENTS WHO EXERCISE: OVERCOMING THE CHALLENGES




Work-Life Balance: It's Possible

Good work-life balance - what does it really look like?

Its contours are vague, definitions different.

"What constitutes a healthy work-life balance will vary substantially between individuals and families. Some people may be able to tolerate more demanding working conditions than others," says Dr Jonathan Ramsay, a lecturer at the Human Resource Management Programme at SIM University.



He offers a working definition.

"For most parents with office jobs - especially those with young children - a work-life balance would involve being able to spend the majority of their evenings and weekends with their children," he says.

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.

Thumb sucking, nail biting may combat allergies

Does your child suck her thumb or bite her nails? A long-term study suggests these “bad” habits might actually have a plus side: lasting protection from common allergies. Researchers followed a group of more than 1,000 children in New Zealand from birth through age 32. They asked the parents to report their children’s thumb-sucking and nail-biting habits at ages 5, 7, 9 and 11. Then they tested the children for allergic reactions using a skin-prick test at age 13, and again in adulthood at age 32.

What All Moms of Boys Need to Know

I am a Boy Mom.

I remember thinking during the gender ultrasound of my second baby that it was certainly a girl (after all, I always dreamed of having one of both genders), and then the technician said, “It’s a boy!”.

Strangely enough, my first thought was “I get to be the Mom of 2 BOYS!!” I was so excited. I love my oldest son, and was so excited to have another boy to love.

As much as I love little boys, there are some things that are unique to raising them.

Yes, there is penis talk, fart jokes, and dirt but there’s so much more about boys that every expecting Boy Mom needs to know.

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.

Weaning Toddler: 5 Easy and Natural Tips

I knew I wanted to nurse my son Griffin when he reached 2 years of age. That what is recommended by the AAFP and WHO, and research shows the most benefits for mom and child nursing this long. But I also knew I didn’t want to be pregnant and nursing. In this post, I’ll show you how I weaned Griffin without much drama.

First, let me say that many, many moms nurse while pregnant with great success. Many go on to tandem nurse, which means they nurse both their newborn and their older child. And that’s great.

But I knew this wasn’t for me. Physically, emotionally, and spiritually, I knew I needed a break, and that managing a pregnancy was enough for me.

So, right around Griffin’s 2nd birthday, I started figuring out how to wean my toddler.

Female chief in Malawi breaks up 850 child marriages and sends girls back to school

Theresa Kachindamoto, the senior chief in the Dedza District of Central Malawi, wields power over close to 900,000 people… and she’s not afraid to use her authority to help the women and girls in her district. In the past three years, she has annulled more than 850 child marriages, sent hundreds of young women back to school to continue their education, and made strides to abolish cleansing rituals that require girls as young as seven to go to sexual initiation camps...