Category Archives: children

A screenless world?

One of our grandsons speaks very naturally, and in a normal conversational tone, to Alexa. He growing up in fast-changing world I struggle to understand.

But I wonder about the long-term impact of digital tech on our five grandsons, as they grow up in a world of mixed realities, when offline and online morph together, and virtual reality and physical experiences merge.

Will all this tech help these little guys be more caring and compassionate? competent and efficient? happier?


Streetwear from Santa?

What began as a fashion statement of West Coast surf and skate clothing, streetwear for kids has moved toward mainstream.

Holiday images of kids wearing styles that mirror adult trends are popping up on social media. Actually, that’s where some of the energy is coming from: parents who post photos of their well-dressed children.

Fashion trends seem less edgy when modeled by a cute kid.

A calming color

Although Scandi Pink (also known as Tumblr Pink, Millennial Pink) has become genderless, I don’t dare buy any of my five grandsons clothing with the blushy peace-salmon hybrid color.

Although the girly-girl overtones have left all shades of pink, the flattering color has yet to downage to the elementary school set.

Halloween DIY

By spending less than $10 at a local thrift store, our grandson recently “dressed the part” for his oral presentation on Steve Jobs.

That same type of DIY thinking will drive the creation of many costumes this Halloween. In an effort to be unique, kids will wear costumes they put together by themselves.

Using a mix and match approach, children will add accessories and items they borrow, find or buy inexpensively.


Haunted house designers have applied consumer psychology to haunted houses this fall.

By working to understand how to scare a guest without triggering deep fear, more sites will use sensory experiences including smells, sounds and sights that incorporate elements of cutting edge technology.

A word to wise parents: developers work from adult standards, not those which are child-appropriate.

Summer “makers”

Students who spent the school year working with motors, switches and gears as part of the “Maker’s Movement” initiative won’t miss a beat this summer.

Science centers, libraries, museums and even camps are inviting kids to use “real” woodworking tools, circuit boards, and soldering equipment.

“Making” has birthed the next generation of inventors, and these kids won’t stop just because it’s summer.

If your flashlight is missing a battery or bulb, check your preschooler’s light saber.

One in 68

That title – one in 68 – is the number of American children diagnosed with autism.

Julia, a character who came to life as a Muppet last Monday, was introduced in a special episode on HBO and PBS Kids.

Designed to increase awareness and understanding of autism, Sesame Workshop consulted with more than 250 experts and organizations during the last five years before introducing Julia.