Stop Scrolling: 5 Meditations That Take 1 Minute and Will Relieve Your Holiday Stress

Stop Scrolling: 5 Meditations That Take 1 Minute and Will Relieve Your Holiday Stress

Christmas Break Activities for Kids and Survival Guide for Parents

Christmas Break Activities for Kids and Survival Guide for Parents

posted on Momables

Are the kids home for Christmas break and already bored?  If you find yourself out of ideas for them to do over their holiday break, keep reading.

I’ve put together a Christmas Break Activities for Kids and Survival Guide for Parents to help beat boredom and hopefully keep the sibling bickering to a minimum. It’s filled with activities and projects they will love and that even adults will find engaging.

Every year, I wish I had been more organized, browsed Pinterest longer for more things to do, and had more time to try new recipes. In the end, I always wish I had “old school” activities on hand that required no electronic devices and kept my children engaged for hours and helped build memories.

How to Make Holidays Kid-Friendly

How to Make Holidays Kid-Friendly

written by Caroline Miller, published on childmind.org

We are reminded, every year at this time, how difficult holidays can be for people who are lonely or alone. But let’s be honest: even for families rich in children, holidays can be stressful—both for parents and kids.

Why are holidays so fraught? Because expectations are heightened, and holidays can feel like a test of how happy and successful your family is. And if you have children with psychiatric or learning disorders, even favorite traditions can turn into a test of stamina and patience. Here are some tips to help minimize stress and make the holidays more fun and fulfilling.

How to Support Your Child with Learning Beyond the Classroom

How to Support Your Child with Learning Beyond the Classroom

written by Charley Sunday

As a parent, you already know that your child’s education is crucial. However, learning doesn’t just take place in the traditional classroom. Supporting your child’s education by engaging them in learning at home can help reinforce concepts learned in school and lead to high levels of academic achievement. At the same time, at-home learning can help your children learn real-world skills and broaden their perspective on the world. Check out the following tips to learn how you can support your child’s education outside the classroom.

Make Time for Your Kids

When you have a busy job, making time for your family can be tough. But carving out time to spend with your children is incredibly important, especially if you want to support their education at home. No matter how busy your schedule is, dedicate time to your child’s education. It can help to create a plan of attack before a busy season at work. For example, you could schedule an outdoor learning session every weekend or help your kids practice music for half an hour every night. Even if your time is severely limited, your support will go a long way.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for a way to free up more time to spend with your children, working from home might be ideal. For starters, running your own business can be challenging, but if you go back to school for a degree, you can give yourself an edge over the competition. Better yet, if you choose an online program, you can learn at your own pace. There are lots of business degrees available; see your options and decide which is the right fit for you and your family.

Go for an Educational Hike

Getting outside and exploring the natural world is a great learning opportunity. Take your kids on a hike, or visit a local forest trail, and plan some activities to get those minds working. For example, Diary of a First Child suggests having your children look for specific plants, insects, or wildlife. Bring along local guidebooks and species identification guides. You could even bring a camera along so your kids can snap pictures of things for study and examination later. Be sure to use your outdoor excursion as an opportunity to talk to your child about the importance of nature and environmental conservation!

Explore Nature in Your Backyard

You don’t have to travel far to educate your children about the natural world. Your own backyard is home to thousands of plant, animal, and insect species. Exploring your backyard is a great chance to teach your children about biodiversity. Have your kids try to point out as many different species as they can and hypothesize why these species might thrive in your backyard ecosystem. Try to go out during different types of weather and at different times of the day so your kids can see how the natural ecosystem changes and adapts. 

Conduct Science Experiments at Home

Science experiments teach children about physics, chemistry, biology, and other important STEM subjects. Conducting experiments in your own kitchen can help your kids visualize concepts taught in school, like the properties of different liquids or how sound waves move through things. You can find all kinds of fun experiments online, many of which only require a few household items.

Get Your Kids Involved in Daily Tasks

As you go about your day, try to get your kids involved in what you’re doing. There are learning opportunities all around you! For example, if you need to go grocery shopping, have your kids help you come up with a budget and keep track of your spending as you add items to your shopping cart. Your kids can also learn by helping you cook or bake. For example, Kidpillar explains how baking a cake with your kids is a chance to show your kids how carbon dioxide—produced by baking soda and baking powder—helps a cake rise when it’s in the oven. Your kids will pick up countless valuable skills just by shadowing you as you go about your life!

Learning can happen anywhere! Whether you’re heading out for a day trip to the mountains or hunkering down at home on a rainy day, look for opportunities to support your child’s education. And if you’re a busy working parent, schedule time for learning with your kids! You’ll cherish these memories forever.

Charley Sunday understands that every home needs a strong foundation, both literally and figuratively. Charley created A Strong Foundation to help others create a space that meets their needs and helps their families grow. The site offers advice on how to focus on your family’s needs and desires — instead of keeping up with the Joneses or living up to society’s expectations.

8 Gentle Parenting Phrases That Teach Your Child Patience

8 Gentle Parenting Phrases That Teach Your Child Patience

written by Hillary Gruener, posted on Word from the Bird

We’ve all been there. Our child is trying to get our attention, but we’re busy with something else. It can be difficult to know what to say at that moment without causing them to throw a fit or feel like their needs aren’t being met. Before you know it you give in because you want to keep the peace. But is that the solution when you desire to teach them patience? Here are some gentle parenting phrases that will help you healthily communicate with your child that you desire to meet their needs, but sometimes your presence is needed elsewhere.

No one wants to disappoint their child. But at the same time, teaching your child patience will be one of the most beneficial assets in your parenting journey.

My younger son, who’s now 3 ½, LOVES to be with me. It doesn’t matter whether I’m sitting on the toilet or cooking meals, he’s there, looking up at me with his big blue eyes, asking me all kinds of questions. And while I thoroughly enjoy this and know for certain I will miss it one day, I can’t always give him my attention one hundred percent of the time. I have myself, another child, a husband, a garden, animals, and a job. You know. Life.

Soon, this became a problem. Why? Because I kept giving in to keep the peace. And when I didn’t, I felt guilty.

 

5 Tips for Raising a Resilient Child With Strong Coping Skills

5 Tips for Raising a Resilient Child With Strong Coping Skills

Our best bet is to equip our children with healthy coping skills. Resilient children can stand tall in the face of challenges and use problem-solving skills to forge ahead. They are confident, curious, and independent.  Here are some ways you can foster resilience and build coping skills in your child.

Talking to Children About Cancer

Talking to Children About Cancer

posted on Mesothelioma Hope

Supporting a Child Whose Loved One Has Cancer

Having a loved one who has cancer can flip a child’s world upside down. Most times, this situation is a child’s first time experiencing illness and death.

It is important to provide your child with the support they need during this difficult time. Taking the time to teach your child healthy coping mechanisms and answer any questions they may have about cancer can help them get through this new and challenging experience.

How to Tell a Child That a Family Member Has Cancer

The thought of explaining that a loved one has cancer can be very overwhelming and devastating. Telling your children that their loved one is ill can be very difficult and emotional for everyone involved.

Your child may be upset, angry, confused, or frustrated when they find out that their loved one is sick. Mentally preparing yourself for your child having all these different emotions can help you navigate this topic in a healthy and understanding way.

"The various psycho-educational testing Dr. Liz conducted on our son gave us critical clues about where his learning strengths and weaknesses lie so that his needs could be better addressed at home and school. Moreover, because of their warm, kindhearted personalities, both Dr. Liz and her associate, Stephanie, formed an immediate bond with my son. He eagerly looks forward to his weekly therapy sessions. We are so lucky Dr. Liz came into our family's lives when she did! For stressed-out families trying to help their children as best they can, she is a calming voice of reason!"
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"Dr. Matheis has an amazing ability to read kids and connect with them. She has been an invaluable resource for our family over the past several years and has helped us with everything from educational consulting, to uncovering diagnoses as well as family therapy. Working with Dr. Matheis never feels clinical and most importantly, our children love and trust her. We can not thank you enough Dr. Liz!"
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"My teenage son had been seeing Dr. Matheis through his senior year of high school, as he was only diagnosed with ADHD at 16 years old.  Dr. Matheis came highly recommended from our pediatrician and she has done wonders for our son as well as our family, navigating new ways for him to deal with his diagnosis without the use of medication.  She taught him ways to organize himself and even when something did not work for him, she patiently continued teaching him new ways to keep himself on track.  She has also helped us as parents to understand how his mind works so that we did not continue to blame his lack of focus on him, rather on his unique way of thinking.  Thank you Dr. Matheis!!!!"
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"Dr. Liz is the best! Our family was directed to her by our Pediatrician to assist with figuring out severe mood changes, severe anxiety, strange new fears and food aversion that had come onto one of our children literally overnight. After just a couple of visits, she suggested that the issues may actually be rooted in a physical issue and suggested we immediately take our child to be swabbed for strep, because Dr. Liz suspected PANDAS (a pediatric autoimmune disorder brought on by strep). The same Pediatrician that suggested Dr. Liz would not do the swab (they do not believe in PANDAS and we no longer go there) but I took my child to my doctor who did the swab and it was positive for strep. When our child went on antibiotics, within 24 hours all symptoms went away and our child was back :-) Dr. Liz then recommended a PANDAS specialist who helped us and our child is in complete remission and is happy and healthy. We are incredibly grateful to Dr. Liz for her knowledge of all things, even the most remote and unusual and for helping us so much! Thank you!"
- Anonymous
"The various psycho-educational testing Dr. Liz conducted on our son gave us critical clues about where his learning strengths and weaknesses lie so that his needs could be better addressed at home and school. Moreover, because of their warm, kindhearted personalities, both Dr. Liz and her associate, Stephanie, formed an immediate bond with my son. He eagerly looks forward to his weekly therapy sessions. We are so lucky Dr. Liz came into our family's lives when she did! For stressed-out families trying to help their children as best they can, she is a calming voice of reason!"
- Anonymous
"Thank you, Dr. Liz. Although we have told you countless times, it will never feel enough. You have listened when J could barely speak and continued to listen when he was sad, angry and confused. You've challenged him and directed us in our roles as parents. You've helped J face his fears while the list evolved and changed, and yet you've stayed committed to 'the course.' We pray that your children realize that time away from them is spent helping children learn and that vulnerability is a sign of strength and bravery."
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"My son was admitted to an Ivy League school when only 2 years ago, you assessed him and saw his struggles, his Dyslexia. We are grateful that he no longer has to carry that deep feeling of inadequacy or shame that must have kept him so self conscious and from reaching his potential. He has the PERFECT program for him. He has A's in high math and economics. He became a Merit Scholar, a Boys State legislature, the HEAD captain of the football team and help a job ALL while studying and managing his classes and disability. I am PROUD of you, a young doctor, who knows and sees the vulnerability of children and helps them recognize "it's NO big deal" God bless."
- Anonymous

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