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Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011
Since bullying (and cyberbullying) is an ongoing, escalating issue, the White House will be holding a conference call on Thursday, March 10 to address ways to prevent it.
Yesterday, the Office of the Press Secretary shared a statement that President Obama, the Department of Education, and the Department of Health and Human Services will be holding a Conference on Bullying Prevention. The conference will be an open dialgoue for students, parents, teachers, communities, and others who have been affected by bullying or are working to stop it.
More about bullying on Parents.com
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Monday, February 7th, 2011
As cyberbullying and internet safety continues to be a big concern among parents, Trend Micro is sponsoring its second annual Internet Safety for Kids contest with partners such as Facebook, ConnectSafely, Common Sense Media, and Web Wise Kids.
“What’s Your Story?” is a user-generated video contest about educating on “how to stay safe when engaging in online activities, including texting, instant messaging, or social networking.” Anyone over the age of 13 (including parents!) can enter the contest.
The contest will launch on February 8 and will have three categories: Being a Good Online Citizen, Using a Mobile Phone Wisely, and Maintaining Online Privacy. Individual and school entries will be awarded with prizes, but just one grand prize winner will receive $10,000.
Visit “What’s Your Story?” for more information about the contest and watch videos from last year’s winners. You can also watch the video of the 2010 grand prize winner below.
More About Internet Safety on Parents.com
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GoodyBlog, Health & Safety, Your Child
Wednesday, January 12th, 2011
Research from the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Ethiopia, appearing in the journal Pediatrics, found that Parents will chose to feed their sons better portions than their daughters in times of food shortages. Female youths generally should be healthier than males, but under these circumstances girls became twice more likely to report illness.
Study Finds Nearly Half of School Social Workers Feel Unequipped to Handle Cyberbullying
In a survey of nearly 400 school social workers at the elementary, middle and high school levels, the researchers found that while all respondents felt that cyber bullying can cause psychological harm, including suicide, about 45 percent felt they were not equipped to handle cyber bullying, even though they recognized it as a problem. Further, only about 20 percent thought their school had an effective cyberbullying policy.
How to teach children to be optimists: listen, don’t label!
A Parent’s outlook on life has the potential to influence their child’s level of optimism. In order to generate a positive approach to life parents must be aware of their influence. Some steps recommended by Dr. Leslie Walker, Chief of Adolescent Medicine at Seattle Children’s Hospital, involve listening, avoiding labels, refrain from dismissive responses, and look for the bright side.
Poor Formula: Fussy Babies Get Solid Food Too Early
The Journal of Pediatrics reported on Monday that the early addition of solid foods and juice adds calories to a baby’s diet. Previous research has linked these excess calories to higher weight and body mass index , a measure of weight per height, in infancy and toddlerhood.
Woman Unaware of Pregnancy Delivers 7-Pound Baby
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Jessica Genaw gave birth New Years Eve to a seven pound ten ounce baby boy. But, she did not know she was pregnant until she was an ambulance on her way to deliver. Genaw had been taking birth control pills throughout her pregnancy and attributed her discomfort to bad stomach cramps. Her and her boyfriend are keeping their son, and named him Blake after his father.
Monday, December 27th, 2010
With the increase in cyberbullying, parents are worried about how to protect their children from harmful messages on computers, cell phones, and smart phones.
To help parents understand the basics of the electronic world, the Federal Trade Commission has an amazing resource called “Net Cetera,” an online community toolkit with resources in both the English and Spanish languages.
For adults, the toolkit includes a short, straightforward book (“Net Cetera: Chatting with Kids About Being Online”) that provides parents with a glossary on the latest technology terms and practical information on social networking, mobile devices, texting, cyberbullying, sexting, phishing, file sharing, and more. A CD is also included to help parents communicate with kids about being online.
For kids, the toolkit includes a “Heads Up: Stop Click Think” pamphlet that helps them understand the importance of safeguarding their online privacy. A DVD is also available to help kids stand up to cyberbullying and protect themselves.
Since it’s debut, the FTC has distributed 1 million copies of Net Cetera to schools and parents. Request a “Net Cetera” toolkit by mail order from ftc.gov today or print the guidelines from OnGuardOnline.com.
More Resources from the Federal Trade Commission:
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Friday, December 17th, 2010
Kids Got The Blues? Maybe They Don’t Have Enough Friends
Friendless kids can become social outcasts who risk spiraling into depression by adolescence, according to new research from Concordia University, Florida Atlantic University and the University of Vermont. Yet for most shy and withdrawn children, as the study reports in the journal Development and Psychopathology, friends can be a form of protection against sadness. (Medical News Today)
Cyber Bullying Suffered By More Than 25 Percent Of Teenagers In The Past Year
Cyber bullying is an emerging phenomenon that is becoming increasingly common among teenagers. Research by the University of Valencia (UV), based on a study carried out in the region, shows that between 25% and 29% of all teenagers have been bullied via their mobile phone or the internet over the past year. (Medical News Today)
A Child’s Healthy Eating Largely Influenced By The Mother’s Diet
As health professionals search for ways to combat the rise in obesity and promote healthy eating, new research reveals a mother’s own eating habits – and whether she views her child as a ‘picky eater’ – has a huge impact on whether her child consumes enough fruits and vegetables. (Medical News Today)
Mom’s Voice Plays Special Role In Activating Newborn’s Brain
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A mother’s voice will preferentially activate the parts of the brain responsible for language learning, say researchers from the University of Montreal and the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Centre. The research team made the discovery after performing electrical recordings on the infants within the 24 hours following their birth. The brain signals also revealed that while the infants did react to other women’s voices, these sounds only activated the voice recognition parts of the brains. “This is exciting research that proves for the first time that the newborn’s brain responds strongly to the mother’s voice and shows, scientifically speaking, that the mother’s voice is special to babies,” said lead researcher Dr. Maryse Lassonde of the University of Montreal’s Department of Psychology and the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Centre. (Medical News Today)
Researchers Develop Mouse Model to Help Find How a Gene Mutation Leads to Autism
Researchers from Mount Sinai School of Medicine have found that when one copy of the SHANK3 gene in mice is missing, nerve cells do not effectively communicate and do not show cellular properties associated with normal learning. This discovery may explain how mutations affecting SHANK3 may lead to autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). (Science Daily)
Monday, December 6th, 2010
As bullies go digital, parents play catch up
Parents not only have to be informed on what their child is saying online, but also on what others are saying about them. Cyber bullying is becoming more of a problem and presents challenges beyond the normal responses. In most cases it is an off campus matter in the eyes of schools, so it is important that parents know the appropriate measures to take. Most cases have to be handled by the police, if severe enough of an issue. (MSNBC)
Lithium Batteries Pose Deadly Threat to Kids
More than 35,000 reports of children swallowing button-sized batteries are recorded annually, and 13 cases have been the cause of death. Although all small objects should be kept out of the reach of children, these batteries should never be left out or unmonitored. (ABC News)
Miscarriage Linked to Broken Hearts
Repeated miscarriages have been linked to individuals who later suffer from high heart attack risk. The German Cancer Research Center found that women who incur 3 or miscarriages are five times more likely to suffer from heart attacks later in life. (ABC News)
Tocophobia, or Fear of Child Birth, on the Rise
Although there are no records in America, a British analysis showed that 1 in 6 women are overwhelmingly frightened to give birth. The fear may arise from adolescence or be secondary to a traumatic delivery, and can be a symptom of prenatal depression. The condition is more commonly linked to women with type-A personalities. (ABC News)
Labels, dosing devices on kids’ meds called confusing
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Researchers found that about half of adults give children the wrong dose of over the counter medicine. After, looking at the top 200 pediatric over-the-counter medicines sold in the US they found that over a quarter of the products did not include measuring devices, 99 percent had some sort of mismatch between the written dosing directions on the bottle or label and the dosing markings on the measuring device, according to the study. (Paging Dr. Gupta)
Tuesday, October 26th, 2010
The national concern over bullying continues. In an effort to reach schools and educators across the country, the U.S. Department of Education will be sending a 10-page “Dear Colleague” letter today that will “clarify the relationship between bullying and discriminatory harassment” and “remind schools… to properly consider whether the student misconduct also results in discrimination in violation of students’ federal civil rights.” The urgency of the letter comes on the heels of recent student suicides as a result of bullying.
The letter outlines different forms of harassment (race, sexual, gender, and disability) in order to differentiate them from bullying. Since bullying can lead to “lowered academic achievement and aspirations, loss of self-esteem and confidence, and self-harm and suicidal thinking,” the U.S. Department of Education hopes schools will “take immediate and appropriate action to investigate or otherwise determine” when any type of bullying and harrassment have occurred.
Read more about bullying on Parents.com
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Tuesday, October 19th, 2010
If you’re a parent who has ever wished there was a spam folder for unwanted and unauthorized mobile phone texts and photos, a new mobile application (app) called My Mobile Watchdog is here to help screen your children’s calls and stop unwanted cyberbullying. Robert Lotter, CEO of eAgency Mobile Solutions, developed My Mobile Watchdog (MMWD) as a way for parents to monitor what apps, sites, and communication their children is having with the outside world in order. We interviewed Lotter for his thoughts on cyberbullying and how My Mobile Watchdog can combat it.
How would you describe cyberbullying? How is it different from regular bullying?
Bullying can be defined as an act of intimidation against a weaker person to make them do something. In the past, the bully was usually physically or mentally stronger than the one being bullied. However, in this world of computers and modern technology, cyberbullying means intimidating another person online through emails, mobile phone text messages, digital pictures, and social media sites such as Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter. Cyberbullying can make a child feel overwhelmed, as if the entire world is against them when, in reality, it is only the universe of school. (more…)
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