Posts Tagged ‘ reading ’

Parents Daily News Roundup

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

Goody Blog Daily News Roundup

Ohio Third Grade Reading Guarantee Law One Semester In: PBS Reports On Progress
Ohio schools are one semester into its first year of the new “Third Grade Reading Guarantee” law, but some 30 percent of students — about 40,000 statewide — are still not reading at grade level. (via Huffington Post)

Healthy School Lunch: America’s Obsession With School Meals
With the passage of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act in 2010 and new school lunch requirements from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in 2011, America’s school menus are healthier than ever – even if kids aren’t always happy about it. (via Huffington Post)

Modern Parenting May Hinder Brain Development, Research Suggests
Social practices and cultural beliefs of modern life are preventing healthy brain and emotional development in children, according to an interdisciplinary body of research presented recently at a symposium at the University of Notre Dame. (via Science Daily)

U.S. Launches Study into Youth Sports Concussions
The U.S. government launched on Monday a sweeping study of rising sports-related concussions among the youth, amid concerns that the injuries may have contributed to the suicides of professional football players. (via Reuters)

Review Questions Blood Pressure Tests for Kids
Despite long-standing recommendations that doctors check children’s blood pressure at every office visit, a new review of research says there is not enough evidence to support that guideline. (via Reuters)

Fussy Infants Exposed to More TV
Although doctors say babies should not watch television, some mothers may use the tube as a way to calm fussy infants, a new study suggests. (via My Health News Daily)

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Parents Daily News Roundup

Monday, December 31st, 2012

Goody Blog Daily News Roundup

Pediatricians Say Recess Is As Important as Math or Reading
Recess can be a critical time for development and social interaction, and in a new policy statement published in the journal Pediatrics, pediatricians from the AAP support the importance of having a scheduled break in the school day. (via TIME)

Moms Push to Have First Babies of the New Year
The odds of having a baby in the first minute of the year aren’t far from the odds of getting struck by lightning, said Dr. Jennifer Austin, an OB/GYN at Kaiser Permanente in San Francisco. Yet every year, several mothers strive to do so. (via ABC News)

Every School Needs a Doctor, Pediatricians Say
Despite no federal or uniform state requirements to do so, all school districts should have a doctor to oversee school health services, according to a policy statement from a group of American pediatricians. (via Reuters)

FDA Approves First Tuberculosis Drug in 40 Years
The Food and Drug Administration says it has approved a Johnson & Johnson tuberculosis drug that is the first new medicine to fight the deadly infection in more than four decades. (via Associated Press)

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Receive Free Bilingual Children’s Books

Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

The benefits of reading aloud to children are numerous, but for bilingual families, cuddling up with a bedtime story isn’t always a simple task.

Infinity Car Insurance seeks to help bilingual families read together through its Read Comingo program. Read Comingo is a literacy program that promotes bilingualism by providing parents with free bilingual children’s books bimonthly.

Children and parents can learn from each other with these books that are written in both English and Spanish.

“Read Conmigo is important for Hispanic families because many parents who don’t read English fluently hesitate to read to their children at home in Spanish. Studies show, however, that bilingual reading is equally effective at maintaining and improving reading skills and educational levels,” said Greg Fasking, Infinity Auto Insurance’s vice president of consumer marketing. “This is why our books are in both English and Spanish, so that parents and children can read aloud together at home.”

Since Read Comingo’s launch in March of 2011, it has provided schools and families with over 350,000 free books.

Read Comingo gave us some tips for making the most of your story time:

  • Point to the words in the book, as you read aloud together with your child
  • Create a regular schedule every week to read together as a family at home
  • Asking your children to recall parts of the story in the books, and use the illustrations to help identify words

To receive a free bilingual picture book every other month, sign up at www.readconmigo.org.

Photo courtesy of Infinity Auto Insurance

 

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Engage Your Kids in the Election

Monday, September 17th, 2012

History is always in the making. Important events that your kids will read about one day are happening now. We offered some tips for raising a good citizen, and this election season is the perfect time to get your kids excited about civics.

We spoke with Michael J. Berson, Ph.D., professor of social science education at the University of South Florida, about ways to engage your children during this exciting time in history.

1.  Hold a mock vote at home.

The Electoral College can be difficult even for adults to understand and kids may not be able to grasp the concept of the popular vote. A better way to familiarize kids with the notion of voting is by holding a mock election at home.

“Your family can vote on small things, like what to have for dinner that night,” says Dr. Berson. “The idea is to show them the power of choice, which they will carry with them later in life.”

But what happens when one sibling outvotes the other’s choice of mac ‘n’ cheese for dinner? Show your child how to “campaign” for her favorite meal the next night! This will not only teach her how to react when she don’t get her way, but will also help her understand how to enact positive change for an issue she cares about.

2. Read to your kids about elections

“One of the best ways to teach your children about the political process is by reading to them,” says Dr. Berson. “Read biographies of former presidents and don’t forget to read about first ladies as well.”

Here are some of our favorites: 

Ages 4–8: Woodrow for President: A Tail of Voting Campaigns and Elections by Peter and Cheryl Barnes

 Ages 4–8: So You Want to be President? by Judith St. George

Ages 9 and up: Lincoln: A Photobiography by Russell Freedman

Ages 9 and up: First Ladies (DK Eyewitness Book) by Amy Pastan

 

3. Avoid negative TV ads

We often leave the TV commercials on in the background without thinking about them, but negative political ads could send the wrong message to kids. “It’s important for children to have visuals of the candidates,” says Dr. Berson. “Try muting the TV when negative ads come on and use the visuals to explain in positive terms who the candidate is and what issue the ad is talking about.”

 4. Attend political events as a family

This is a great way to for kids to participate in an election, but not all political events are appropriate for children. “Younger children may be frightened by hecklers or negative protestors at speeches and rallies,” says Dr. Berson. “A more developmentally-appropriate option would be to attend a parade that a candidate is in.”

5. Show your patriotism

It may not be appropriate to dress your child in t-shirts or stickers that promote a candidate they are too young to fully understand. Dr. Berson says that a better option is to give your child a flag to wave if you are attending a political event.

6. Keep it positive

Dr. Berson says that it’s good to show children your sense of connection to a particular party or candidate. However, you should always speak respectfully of opposing parties. Teaching your child to respect both sides is a great lesson that will carry over into other relationships in his life.

7. Discuss platforms, not parties

Encourage your child to create his own opinions by talking to him about different sides of issues as opposed to talking about the different parties.

8. Relate the election to your home and community

The best way for kids to understand politics on a national scale is by showing them ways to actively get involved in their home or community. You can start by letting your kids think of ways to improve the area around them by working on community service projects that they are passionate about. Sites like Volunteer Match, Do Something and The Volunteer Family offer great ways to learn about kid-friendly service opportunities in your community.

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Parents Daily News Roundup

Friday, September 7th, 2012

Goody Blog Daily News Roundup

Children of Older Mothers Are Healthier Later in Life, Research Reports
While older mothers are at a higher risk for miscarriage, a new study shows that children of older mothers are healthier in their adult life. (via NBC News)

Pediatric Melanoma Increasing 1 to 4% Each Year
Doctors urge parents to be aware of the signs of pediatric melanoma which manifests differently in children than in adults.(via Science Daily)

Researchers Find Possible Treatment for a Unique Form of Autism
A team of researchers may have found a treatment for a certain form of autism with epilepsy in a common nutritional supplement. (via Science Daily)

Embarrassment Keeps Children from Reading, Research Says
A new study showed that children are reading less because many say they would be embarrassed to be seen reading a book. (via Huffington Post)

Florida Officials Being Investigated for Housing Disabled Children in Nursing Homes
Investigators say Florida officials are violating state law by housing hundreds of disabled children in isolated nursing homes unnecessarily. (via Washington Post)

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Children’s Book Ten Tiny Toes Is On Sale Today!

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

We are happy to announce that our very own Todd Tarpley, general manager for Parents.com, released Ten Tiny Toes, his latest children’s book.

The book celebrates the most memorable moments parents can experience with their little ones, and it revolves around an appreciation for cute baby feet!

Reading to kids is a great way for parents to enrich their children’s minds and show how much they care; Ten Tiny Toes’ combination of an endearing storyline with cute illustrations makes this book fun to read.

Ten Tiny Toes is available here.

Tarpley lives in New York City with his wife and two sons. His first children’s book, How About a Kiss For Me?, was released in 2010.

Marc Brown, illustrator of Ten Tiny Toes is also a children’s book author; he is the creator of the best-selling Arthur Adventure book series and creative producer of the PBS Kids television series, Arthur

Image via Hachette Book Group, LB Kids

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A Perfect Back-to-School Book

Monday, August 27th, 2012

My daughter starts second grade next week, which means only one thing: We’re in a frantic race to finish the summer packet she needs to bring in during the first week of school. She’s down to her final worksheets, one of which requires an extensive summary of a fiction book. She’s been dragging her feet, but I know a perfect book to get her moving: Rocket Writes a Story, by Tad Hills. Maybe your child has read the book this is based on, How Rocket Learned to Read: In it, Rocket the dog reluctantly gets reading lessons from an assertive little yellow bird, and the whole world opens up for him after that. In the sequel, he’s now an avid reader who’s eager to write his own story, but doesn’t think he has anything worth writing about. The yellow bird teaches Rocket about inspiration, and between that a new friend he’s made, he creates a beautiful story. If you read it, tell me if it was just me or if the ending got you a little teary-eyed, too…

 

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Keep on Reading! Children’s Book Week (May 7-13)

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

Children's Book Week 2012 poster David WeisnerIt’s Children’s Book Week, which means this week is another special reason to encourage your kids to read!  This celebration of books (sponsored by the Children’s Book Council and Every Child a Reader) officially began in 1919, though the idea was originally formulated in 1913 by Franklin K. Matthiews, the librarian of the Boy Scouts of America.  To date, this week is considered the longest-running literacy program in the U.S. (Read more about the history at bookweekonline.com)

Each year, events with children’s book authors and illustrators are also sponsored across the country.  Find a 2012 event at a city near you.  You can also request a free copy of this year’s Children’s Book Week poster by David Wiesner (“Art & Max,” “Flotsam,” and “The Three Pigs”) and download a free Children’s Book Week bookmark by Lane Smith (“It’s a Book,” “Grandpa Green,” and “Madam President”).

Since spring and rain are on my mind (it’s been endless wet weather in New York), here are some new and old spring-related books that are perfect for the season:

Gem by Holly Hobbie – The author/illustrator of the “Toot and Puddle” series showcases her superb watercolors in this (mostly) wordless book about a frog and a young girl’s discovery of the world.

And Then It’s Spring by Julie Fogliano – Spare and poetic as a haiku, this first-time author focuses on a boy waiting for his garden to bloom.  Subdued illustrations by Erin E. Stead, who won the 2011 Caldecott Medal for “A Sick Day for Amos McGee,” are a perfect accompaniment.

Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger – A tribute to nature and the environment, Seeger shares the different  shades of green that exist in the world, along with scenes of what a world would be like without green.  Strategic cut-outs on each page also give a hint of what will come next.

The Curious Garden by Peter Brown – Inspired by the High Line in New York City, this story follows a little boy as he plants a rooftop garden with the hope of transforming a dark and dreary world into something bright and bold. (Brown’s signature drawings are detailed, lush, and vibrant.)

Yellow Umbrella by Dong Il Sheen and Jae-Soo Liu – Gentle sounds of rain from the accompanying CD pulls you through this wordless book, which follows a yellow umbrella as it travels through a sea of dark and colorful umbrellas.

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