Today is our 21st anniversary and what stands out most for me is my husband’s ability to hold back his own desires of golf stardom for his children and let them find their way. This is not to say that our oldest, Grasshopper and Sensei, did not receive a set of miniature golf clubs on her first Christmas when she was exactly 20 days old. Or that he didn’t take the kids out to the putting green as soon as they could walk. Because we did do that. It was a great photo oppt!
All posts in Parenting
My kids had the same 5th grade teacher. One lovely tradition is this I Appreciate You Because … certificate that each student fills out for their classmates. Grasshopper and Sensei and PickyKidPix have one; here’s my son. I can’t believe that he graduated from 5th grade already!
I was also thinking that this would make a lovely gift for anyone:
- colleague departing at work
- birthday gift (for my mom who is about to turn 90!). Must think of way to do this will all party guests!
- for any grade as a graduation gift from preschool to high school
- a classroom gift to a teacher
- a gift to a coach Read more…
I was bringing two bags of groceries to our local food bank when a couple with their young daughter stepped into the elevator with me. They were loaded with bags including paper towels and food. They also had piles of toiletries to donate, so much so, that they needed to bring their car around and get some help. Where did all this bounty come from? Their little girl who looked around ten or eleven had asked for donations to this food bank instead of birthday gifts.
My son and his best friend did this for their 10th birthday. Instead of gifts, they asked for dog toys and collars for a local dog shelter. They delivered it themselves and were allowed to play with the dogs. It was the best birthday ever!
Here are five ideas for kids to change the world by donating to these charities. I picked organizations whose missions would resonate with kids. And even a very small donation can change someone’s life. These are gifts that give back more: they teach children gratitude. And it turns out that gratitude is the fastest path to happiness.
Rules of Kindness Campaign is designed to build a culture of caring and empathy among today’s youth.
I love this new Be Fearless, Be Kind campaign from Hasbro and generationOn, the youth service division of Points of Light. Together they have launched Rules of Kindness, a new campaign that encourages kids and teens to create, share and act upon their own Rules of Kindness.
From September 1 through October 17, teens, teachers, parents, and youth leaders can visit Rules of Kindness to sign up, submit their Rules of Kindness, and see how others are putting their Rules into action.
Now that my kids are in high school and middle school, the Parent/Teacher conferences are much different than in elementary school when we met with one teacher for about fifteen or twenty minutes. That time period felt short, especially when the conferences were running late. The elementary school conferences focused on assessments the teacher gave as opposed to standardized testing, and how my child was doing. Next steps included ideas for books to read or additional ways to practice writing or math facts.
Some of my son’s amazing teachers in elementary school on the last day of school!
Middle School Parent/Teacher conferences at my school are even shorter and we choose a combination of just two teachers: Math/History OR English/Science. The information was usually around completion of work, attitude in school, and quiz grades. Sometimes these conferences feel like confirming that the teachers know exactly who your child is.
Our High School Parent/Teacher conferences are like a kind of sprint: 6 minutes per teacher and I think we can only meet with two. If the rooms are far apart — our high school has four floors — it is literally a sprint. This brief time period seems to focus on how my child is doing in that class from grades to attitude. It’s amazing but I found in high school that these teachers really have a good grasp of who my child is from early on.
Given that there’s limited access to teachers (assuming that you don’t request or require more), my strategy is to:
- Meet with teachers my child seems to complain about the most.
- Meet with teachers that my child seems to have the hardest time academically.
- Ask the teacher if they need things donated to their classroom. You’d be amazed how many teachers need basic items like hand sanitizer, and paper towels.
- Convey positive feedback from my child about that teacher.
- Thank them for their time. Parent/Teacher conferences make a long school day even longer for teacher!
Today my guest author is Rocketship Education — a nonprofit network of public charter schools in the Bay Area, Nashville, Milwaukee, Tennessee and Washington, DC on Parent & Teacher Conferences. Since they are coming up in a few weeks, I hope this is helpful!
How about you? Please share your tips for getting the most out of Parent/Teacher conferences. Thanks!
My son’s 5th grade Parent/Teacher Conference focused on self assessment that he did of his own work and how he thinks he’s doing.
In this increasingly self-absorbed world where people can spend more time staring at a screen then they can communicating with each other face to face, it’s getting more and more important to teach children the importance of doing good in the world. As well, with the growing number of natural disasters, terrorist attacks and other conflicts and issues, in addition to the fluctuating economies around the world, there seems to be more people who need help than ever before.
If you’re keen to teach your children to donate to charities, volunteer their time, raise money for a good cause or otherwise help someone who needs it, read on for some ways you can encourage them to do good today.
I’ve become well versed in teen concussions after my oldest, Grasshopper and Sensei, had four concussions over a period of fifteen months from club volleyball. Also, PickyKidPix had a soccer teammate with two severe concussions; her older sister had a concussion so bad that she had to quit soccer altogether. I’ve teamed up with that mom, Mary Lou, to bring you what parents should know about concussions in children and teens.
My daughter is number 9. She plays libero, a defense specialist.
Our Concussion Story
In retrospect, my daughter’s first concussion was a mild one that I didn’t realize was a concussion. She tried out for club volleyball team in December of 2015 where she took at least one hard ball to her head from girls serving the ball at high speeds. She had a headache for two days and then she was fine. We didn’t go to the doctor at all.
Her head coach of her volleyball club team called me to tell me that she had failed his concussion test. He wasn’t the coach at her practice when she took a very hard ball to the side of her head that had shanked off a teammate. He noticed that she didn’t look quite right during practice and gave her the test. She wasn’t able to recalling the words he’d given her in the correct order.
This was April 2015 at her MGA Club Volleyball practice. Her symptoms included memory loss, headache and light sensitivity. She missed about a week of school but the following week was spring break. When she was home, she had to stay off screens and she was bored and restless. She cocooned for that week at home, unhappily.
During that vacation, she took an intensive 40 hour art class at Mass College of Art. My boxing trainer advised drinking a lot of water to help bring down the swelling in the brain. After her week of art class, she returned to school full time and seemed fine. Read more…
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Tyson Foods, Inc. All opinions are entirely my own.
Now that school is starting soon, I find that hot breakfasts are harder to pull off. We are always rushing in the morning due to the fact that two of kids — the youngest and oldest — are simply not morning people. They tend to skip breakfast or eat on the run because they are always running late.
My middle daughter, however, gets herself up every morning and makes herself a hot breakfast. She likes a big breakfast to set herself up for the day. Read more…