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The Family Center: enrichment programs for families and professionals

Achievement Culture, Part 2 of 2

Ask the Experts by Mary Beth Garvey, LMSW with questions by Becky Weiland, reporter for the GPS Tower Newsletter

Q. Do you think this is unique to this community, which consists of many privileged students?

A. While I don't think this achievement culture is unique to privileged communities, it can exacerbate the issue. We live in a community where many parents have the resources to provide kids with a broad spectrum of opportunities and experiences.

Of course, this is a positive. But anything in excess can become a negative. It is our responsibility as parents to help children develop passion, resilience and engagement. This means we need to help kids to choose what is most meaningful to them. This involves giving them the opportunity to experiment, create, have down time, fail and recover.

Read more: Achievement Culture, Part 2 of 2

 

Achievement Culture, Part 1 of 2

Ask the Experts by Mary Beth Garvey, LMSW with questions by Becky Weiland, reporter for the GPS Tower Newsletter

Q. Why do you think teens feel pressure to exceed expectations and where do you think these pressures come from?   

A. I think there is a cultural demand to perform strongly across the board - in academics, sports, community service and extracurricular activities - particularly in privileged communities like ours.

Being good is becoming a less acceptable standard and kids are feeling pressure to excel in multiple areas.  The pressure comes from a variety of sources - parents, peers, teachers, and it can also be self imposed. 

Read more: Achievement Culture, Part 1 of 2

 

Kroger Community Rewards Program

Kroger's Community Rewards Program makes fundraising for The Family Center automatic every time you use your Kroger Plus Card.

APRIL is here and time to RE-ENROLL in the Kroger Community Rewards program to support THE FAMILY CENTER!
It’s also a great time to enroll as a NEW member.
We earn funds directly from Kroger based on your Kroger shopping purchases, it’s as easy as that!!

Read more: Kroger Community Rewards Program

   

Skills for Kindergarten Sucess

Ask the Experts by Beth Moran, Early Childhood Teacher

Q. What Skills Does My Child Need For a Successful Kindergarten Experience?

A. It is vital in the preschool years to provide your child with experiences to help him/her gain skills and build a foundation for school. But, does my child really need to identify colors, shapes, letters and numbers before entering kindergarten? The answer is YES! Kindergarten is no longer just play time. It is now like first grade used to be and our children need to be prepared.

Read more: Skills for Kindergarten Sucess

 

Stuttering and Language Skills

Ask the Experts by Christine Yeskey, M.A. CCC-SLP, Grosse Pointe Speech and Language

Q: My child repeats words over and over and tends to get "stuck" on certain words and sounds. Is this normal?

A: What you may be describing is called a fluency disorder or stuttering. Children who have difficulty speaking fluently may repeat parts of words, whole words, entire phrases, or use fillers ("um") more often.

Read more: Stuttering and Language Skills

   

Couple's Quest for Communication Success

Ask the Experts by Kim Steggles, M.A., L.L.P.,

Q: How can I get my partner to help more at home and with the children?

A: The way you deliver your request can make or break your partner's reaction. For instance, "Honey, here's this weekend's to do list. How can we tackle it together?" may be more effective than, "Don't make any plans for the weekend, we have a lot to get done."

Read more: Couple's Quest for Communication Success

 

Baby Blues

Ask the Experts by Jennifer Buszka, MSN and Pamela Dzialak Moffitt

Q: My wife delivered our third baby two months ago and she is very emotional. How do I know if her crying is more than the "baby blues?"

A: Baby blues, which affects almost 80 percent of new mothers, usually begins one or two days after delivery and lasts two to three weeks. Baby blues rarely require treatment other than rest and support from family and friends.

Postpartum depression, on the other hand, occurs gradually and can begin anytime in the first year after delivery. PPD occurs in 15 to 20 percent of mothers and can become chronic without treatment. Treatment options include: support, education, psychotherapy, medication and alternative therapies.

Read more: Baby Blues

   

Healthy Lunches, Eat This, Not That

Ask the Experts by Dan Kellogg, Executive Chef

Q: I am a fourth grade teacher and notice that at about 10 a.m., my students suddenly appear tired or sluggish. I'm confident they are having breakfast, but are there "energy" foods that I could suggest to them and their parents?

A: Absolutely! Any breakfast that includes oatmeal, whole wheat cereal or whole wheat bread will provide lasting energy, without a lot of calories. Some kids may balk at whole wheat products but they do provide the most nutrients. If you use whole wheat bread for French toast and add a little cinnamon to the egg mixture, they won't even know they're eating whole wheat bread. Another suggestion is adding a child's favorite fruit to whole wheat cereal.

Read more: Healthy Lunches, Eat This, Not That

 

Sleep Struggles with Infants and Toddlers

Ask the Experts by Lori J. Warner, Ph.D. and Kim Steggles, M.A.

Q: My friend's 6-month old baby "sleeps through the night" and my baby, who is almost 6 months old, still wakes during the night to eat. Why is my baby still waking for her feeding?

A: Babies usually start to sleep 8-13 hours a night by the time they are 6 to 8 months old. "Sleeping through the night" may mean midnight to 5 a.m. or for eight hours or more. There is much variability in sleep patterns in children at this age. It's best to discuss with your pediatrician what's best for your baby in determining if your baby is ready to miss that night feeding.

Read more: Sleep Struggles with Infants and Toddlers

   

New Driver Workshop

Ask the Experts by Rev. Richard Yeager-Stiver

Q: Our sixteen year old was waiting for the light to turn green when her cell phone rang. While reaching for the phone her foot came off the brake and she hit the car in front of her. She pulled her car over to the side of the road as did the other driver. She claims he said there was only a small bit of damage and that she doesn't need to worry about it because that is what insurance is for and there is no need to contact the police. She got into her car and left the scene. Later that day our daughter was being questioned by the local police because several witnesses claimed the accident she caused was horrendous and she simply left the scene of a crime. Why didn't she know she should call the police to make a report?

Read more: New Driver Workshop

 

Skills for Success in Kindergarten

Ask the Experts by Beth Moran, Early Childhood Teacher

Q. What Skills Does My Child Need For a Successful Kindergarten Experience?

A. It is vital in the preschool years to provide your child with experiences to help him/her gain skills and build a foundation for school. But, does my child really need to identify colors, shapes, letters and numbers before entering kindergarten? The answer is YES!

Read more: Skills for Success in Kindergarten

   

Slow = Fast: 5 Practices to Become More Focused

Ask the Experts by Christina Pitts 

Q.  My kids barely have time to enjoy one activity before moving on to the next.  Any ideas about helping them to be more engaged in the "here and now"? 

A:  Appreciating the "here and now" is something we all benefit from; nature and horses are great teachers.  In our work, we partner with horses in natural settings to provide learning experiences that enrich relationships and optimize experiences for anyone in any circumstance.

Read more: Slow = Fast: 5 Practices to Become More Focused

 

Kindergarten Readiness - Social and Emotional Development

Ask the Experts by Lori Warner, PhD 

Q:  My daughter has a late birthday so she will still be four when kindergarten starts.  However, she is advanced in her reading skills and I don't think another year of preschool is needed. How do I decide if she is ready for kindergarten? 

A:  This is always an individual decision parents need to make, but enlist the help of others to make your choice.  Talk to her preschool teacher and to the kindergarten teacher to find out if your daughter is socially and emotionally ready for kindergarten. 

Some children will be young like her, whereas others may have completed an extra year of preschool and will be a full year older.  Academic skills are not the only criteria for deciding if kindergarten is the appropriate choice. 

Read more: Kindergarten Readiness - Social and Emotional Development

   

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