Category Archives: Uncategorized

The shopping dance

If I mentally push back, I can remember when grocery shopping was simple.

Yogurt fit on a single shelf. There was one type of lettuce and it came on a head. I only shopped at one store.

Remember?

Now, we constantly balance quality vs. price as we zip between Aldi and Walmart on the bargain end and Whole Foods on the “nicer” end.

Families might be eating healthier, but shopping is more complicated…and kids still only eat mac and cheese.

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Easier parenting?

In some ways, monitoring a child’s tech use is getting easier.

Apps allow remote locking, offer location tracking, and limit time on a device.

My concern is that it’s too easy to substitute tech monitoring for effective parenting.

Helping a child effectively use a device is one aspect of parenting, but gatekeeping, filtering or blocking is a single part of being a good mom or dad.

No app, filter or site will help a child make meaningful sense of his experience. No program can duplicate your family value system.

Tech is a tool, not a parent.

Socially conscious shoppers

Raising children to be pro-social consumers is emerging as a priority.

Just as happened with recycling, introducing the subject often begins at school before the topics are carried home.

But moms and dads who do ethical shopping reinforce those lessons and train their kids to make informed purchasing decisions.

It’s neat to hear children discuss issues like transparency and sustainability, whether at school or home.

Gender neutral?

Reports of recent research indicate that kid media continues to reinforce gender stereotypes.

That’s happening in spite of Nickelodeon’s initiative to promote empowerment and inclusiveness….and gender-neutral licenses like Minions, Lego, Minecraft, etc…and Target removing pink and blue backgrounds from toy shelves.

Change happens at hyperspeed in so many aspects of life, but attitudes are so deeply ingrained…

Bored yet?

Has boredom hit your house?

Kids who complain “It’s boring” or “I’m bored” have a wonderful opportunity to read a book, climb a tree, ride a bike or help you clean out a closet. Really!

Can your child – all by himself – find something meaningful to do with a free hour or afternoon?

Help your child unplug by watching him initiate a project, come up with a neat idea or help someone.

These summer days aren’t boring if we support children to become more self-reliant and to think independently.

To share or not to share?

Our sharing economy has triggered countless embarrassing images appearing online.

Although transparency is becoming a cultural virtue, consider where you set sharing boundaries. After all, a picture of a naked six month old might not seem funny or harmless when that child is a tween or teen.

How real is too real?

Parents of some middle and junior high students are nervously awaiting the summer reading lists their child will bring home.

Last year, some angry parents were offended by authors who pushed boundaries beyond acceptability for their child’s developmental level.

As books deal with the weighty and complex issues kids face today, some authors do not censor traits and behaviors of their characters. They argue that authenticity is essential to the story.

But how real is too real?

We’ll see where teachers and administrators set the boundaries this summer.