Why Kids Need Unstructured Fun
Not so long ago, kids would be shooed out the door to play and told to return home at meal time. But the rising use of digital devices and kids’ highly scheduled sports and school activities, as well as parental fears about safety, has made that kind of unstructured play rare—with resulting drops in children’s independence, resilience and creativity, experts say. (read more…)
Trading Clutter for Calm
When Denaye Barahona, of New York City, became a parent, she felt compelled to buy everything for her son. “We are inundated as a culture with so many products for our kids that it’s hard to differentiate what we need; it really wears us down,” she says. (read more…)
The Fun of Growing Their Own
It’s May, and the temperature is rising, as is the sap and green shoots. It’s the perfect time to involve kids in growing their own garden that will get them outdoors, teach them planning and perseverance, and develop their motor, literacy and scientific skills.
A South Korean study found that gardening provides both high- and moderate-intensity exercise for kids. It builds good eating habits, too: A British study of 46 9- and 10-year-olds found (read more…)
Tips to Help Children Breathe Easier
For one in seven U.S. children, spring brings the start of seasonal allergies that can last through the fall. Seasonal allergies such as hay fever and allergic rhinitis occur when an airborne allergen comes into contact with nasal membranes, triggering the release of inflammatory histamines. The result can be sneezing, congestion, itchy eyes, coughing and runny nose. While not life threatening, these symptoms tend to interrupt a youngster’s sleep, weaken concentration and keep him or her from participating fully in play and school. (read more…)
Outdoor Adventures for Kids
Getting kids off the couch and into the great outdoors can be a challenge when they tend to be better acquainted with the popular Angry Birds video game characters than with the real warbling ones. Unfortunately, studies show that digital devices, parental work overload and media-stoked fears of the outside world are currently making our kids nature-deprived. (read more…)
Keeping the Homefront Allergy-Free
An allergy is a dramatic overreaction of the immune system to environmental agents that are harmless to most people. Antibodies fight allergens with the release of histamines, and a runny nose, (read more…)
Natural Remedies Restore Calm
Kids and teens have always had plenty to be stressed about, such as family finances, parental bickering, the birth of a sibling and other challenges on the home front. Then there are the age-old tensions of taking school exams and squabbles with friends and other classmates. (read more…)
A Promising Approach to Healing
With the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) on the rise—now affecting one in every 59 school-age children, according to estimates from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) —identifying effective, integrative remedies is more important than ever. (read more…)
Gifts that Evoke Kids’ Creativity
Choosing thoughtful gifts for kids can be a challenge, especially when opting for creativity over this year’s hot toy. It’s possible to find gifts that appeal to both parent and child, involving the whole family or working as solo projects. Some expand beyond the boundaries of home. (read more…)
Reversing a Rising Tide of Chronic Conditions
The statistics are startling—as many as a quarter to one half of American children now have a diagnosed chronic condition, according to studies that include one in Academic Pediatrics that includes obesity. Over the last few decades, the number of children with asthma has tripled to affect one in eight; those with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have doubled to one in 10; and autism diagnoses have increased at least 10-fold, to affect one in 50 (one in 31 boys). (read more…)
How to Power Up Their Defenses
Strong immunity is a cornerstone of optimum health, and may be weakened or enhanced by what we eat and how we manage our emotions. Starting young in incorporating good ongoing habits can go a long way toward building a better immune response to whatever a person encounters.
Why Less Means More Happiness
by Deborah Shouse
Parents wishing to simplify child-raising seek less stress and more fun; less scheduling and more casual time; less “shoulds” and more “want-tos” less second-guessing and more confidence.
For a happier family life, experts encourage parents to stay true to their own values, strengths and sense of family purpose, focusing on the wonders of their children instead of endless daily tasks. It begins with each child feeling loved. (read more…)
Gardening Connects Kids to Nature
Children benefit from a close connection with nature, and there’s no better place to learn about plants and soil than a garden. Families don’t need lots of space, as even a small collection of potted plants holds fascination for youngsters. The first step is to understand a garden as seen by a child that may be more interested in creative play than in making things grow. (read more…)
Kids Love These Homemade Drinks
At day camp or the pool, on the playing field or in the backyard, kids can get really thirsty, especially as temperatures climb. Although filtered water is always a good choice, sugary, carbonated, artificially colored and flavored beverages can be tempting. Having homemade options ready can entice kids to stay hydrated in a healthy way. (read more…)
Nature Helps Kids Build Skills and Character
A movement is afoot to get kids grounded in nature. Wilderness awareness programs, also known as primitive skills or Earth-based education, teach life-changing survival skills that build courage, compassion and camaraderie.
“We help youth experience a true aliveness in nature. Kids gain knowledge of the outdoors and increase awareness, confidence and self-reliance, while having fun, positive experiences,” says Dave Scott, founder of the Earth Native Wilderness School, in Bastrop, Texas. (read more…)
Five Steps to Positivity
by Tamar Chansky
This is a family master plan for helping both children and adults resist negative thinking.
Step One: Empathize with a Child’s Experience
While the desired outcome is to help a child embrace a different point of view of their situation, the first goal is not to come on too strong with an agenda of (read more…)
How Teens Can Learn to Love Their Looks
Many young women don’t feel comfortable in their own skin. A 21st-century global study sponsored by Unilever’s Dove brand found that 90 percent of girls from 15 to 17 years old wanted to change at least one aspect of their physical appearance, especially their body weight. University of Minnesota research following adolescents for 10 years showed that about half of the female participants had dieted in the previous year, twice the number of males. (read more…)
Food Choices that Prevent Obesity
Small changes in daily eating routines translate into healthier weight for America’s kids.
In 2010, President Obama and Michelle Obama launched Let’s Move! as their signature initiative to tackle epidemic levels of U.S. childhood obesity. While modest progress has been made, it remains a public health crisis. A brief by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that the obesity rate remained fairly stable at nearly 17 percent between 2011 and 2014 for children 2 to 19 years old. (read more…)