Your Kiddo’s Grades: How Involved Should Parents Get?

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 September 24th, 2016|Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

Parents & Homework: Too involved? Anyone remember the days of report cards that showed up in the mail? I have vivid memories of my sisters and I awaiting anxiously by the mailbox at semester's end. We would intercept the mail to check for any surprises before my parents got ahold of it... just in case. This scenario is certainly a blast form the past, as the majority of  schools these days allow students and parents to easily (and sometimes compulsively) check grades via the internet. There are certainly advantages to such access, as it allows for communication between [...]

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Boogers, Bubbles, and Zits … Therapy with Kids is Great

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 August 22nd, 2016|Adults, Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

I love kids. I think they're incredibly unique and insightful. Just when I think I know what I'm doing, a kid puts me in my place ... and I'm immediately humbled all over again. And kids are absolutely hilarious. The other day I was thinking about the reasons I love working with kids, and I decided to compile a list to share with you all. So here it is (in no particular order): Kids have no judgments. Kids are not afraid to tell it like it is. One time I was testing a 7-year-old boy and he told me he couldn't [...]

7 sure-fire ways to boost your kiddo’s self-esteem going into the school year

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 July 30th, 2016|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Tweens (ages 10-12)|

Healthy self-esteem development is essential for the success and well-being of every child. And summer is a perfect time to give your kiddo's self-esteem a powerful boost so he can hit the ground running when school starts this fall. Here are seven sure-fire habits to build into your daily repertoire with the kids this summer (note: I use male pronouns for reading ease throughout this blog post but advice can be applied to children of all genders): 1. PROVIDE UNCONDITIONAL LOVE A lot of parents think too much love or affection will make their children "soft." While you definitely don't [...]

Squash summer sibling rivalry today

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 June 24th, 2016|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Tweens (ages 10-12)|

It's summer, it's hot, and the kids are bored. And when kids are bored, they squabble. Like chickens. About anything and everything... from whose turn it is to sit in the front seat of the car to who ate the last popsicle. If you're like the majority of parents, you're sick and tired of the senseless arguments. You may even be beyond yelling at this point, because nothing seems to quiet the masses that are your bickering children. Instead of giving up and pounding your head against a wall, hoping it'll drone out the constant conflict, give these strategies a [...]

On becoming a grandparent: The unexpected joys of the “golden years”

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 May 4th, 2016|Adults|

In honor of Mother's Day, this month's blog features a special guest writer, Darlene Martin. Darlene is an accomplished mother of three and grandmother of five. Her writings offer a personal view on the subject of grandparenting and just how she's become an expert: On becoming a grandparent: The unexpected joys of the "golden years" By: Darlene Martin I remember being a sleepless young parent back in the 1980s, rocking my babies in the middle of the night, dreaming of what it would be like as they grew. At that time, my mind often skipped along the milestones that were [...]

Employment in high school: Should you encourage your teen to work?

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 April 2nd, 2016|Teens|

The research on adolescent employment is mixed, with almost all experts agreeing that the question "Is it good for teens to work?" is oversimplified. Having a job as a teenager can have both positive and negative effects and depends on many factors (e.g. level of investment in employment, specific experiences teens have while working, and motivation to work). Teens who do benefit from high school jobs are more likely to be highly intrinsically motivated to succeed in school. That is, they value earning good grades and self-select to work fewer hours in order to keep up with schoolwork, participate in [...]

Kids and allowances: To give or not to give?

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 February 27th, 2016|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

Many parents struggle with decisions about how, when, and if to give their children allowances. While there is really no one correct answer to each of these questions, there are some great opinions and research on this topic. As a child psychologist, I support giving children an allowance; it can be a valuable parenting tool if done effectively. Below I explain my reasoning for allowance giving and provide answers to some of the common questions parents often ask me: What's the purpose of giving an allowance? Allowances provide children with valuable educational tools. If your children have access to their "own" [...]

I’m sorry for my ADHD, Mom; Let’s have a better life

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:57+00:00 January 24th, 2016|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

I think we sometimes forget that kids who have Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) don't chose the problems they have. Whether it's talking too much, bouncing off the walls, or having the attention span of a gnat, kids with ADHD often truly cannot control their behavior. They are many times labeled as annoying, socially immature, self-centered, out-of-control, and rude. While these labels certainly do describe typical ADHD behaviors, they certainly don't help us to understand and intervene with kids who struggle with ADHD. In my work as a child psychologist, I help several kids and families with ADHD. The ways in which [...]

Win the holidays with cheer: 5 simple tips for a stress-free holiday season

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:57+00:00 November 22nd, 2015|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

The holiday season is here. Wahoo! Or is bah-humbug? Although the holiday season brings excitement and cheer for many parents, the added stress of prepping for the holidays can be extremely overwhelming. It's easy to lose your holiday spirit, but with a little planning and focus, you can be jumping up and down with excitement alongside your kiddos. Here are 5 simple tips to minimize your stress this holiday season: 1. Start early and plan. Squeezing in an extra errand a few days a week is less stressful and more realistic than completing all holiday prep a day or two before the [...]

Toying with guns: Is play with toy guns okay?

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:57+00:00 October 18th, 2015|Adults, Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9)|

Back in the day, no one batted an eye at children running around playing cops and robbers with toy pistols. But in today's day and age, toy gunplay isn't viewed so innocently; now we’re busy searching for answers to the multitude of recent school shootings and other tragedies involving gun violence in our nation. Today parents are more cautious than ever when it comes to allowing children to play with toy guns. A study published in Pediatrics found that of 830 parents surveyed, 67% believed it was never "ok for a child to play with toy guns" and 66% reported never allowing their [...]