If you can't beat them...
Tue Jul 17
If your child clutches on to his worn hockey stick way past the end of the season and laces up his skates each winter in hopes of becoming the next Mario Lemieux, chances are that the conflicting feelings of pride and fear are not unfamiliar to you. There's nothing that compares to seeing your child do what he loves, but, unlike baseball or soccer, hockey carries an element of violence. Moments of many NHL games already bear a frighteningly close resemblance to a Pay-Per View boxing match, and the situation is not getting any better (one of the league's most notoriously fighting-prone teams just won the Stanley Cup). Seeing the audience cheer as their idols drop their gloves to engage in improvised rumbles certainly doesn't have a positive effect on our kids. A parent can only hope that his or her child will see past this idiocy and is able to concentrate on skating. Unfortunately, not all parents share in these sentiments. Instead, some are enrolling their kids in organized...
Tue Jul 17
Are gossip magazines encouraging their tween readers to participate in the same rehab-landing behavior of celebrities like Britney and Lindsay? It seems that for an Australian magazine, Famous, the answer is yes. The gossip mag is feeling the heat from fired-up parents after it gave away free alcohol-flavored lip gloss in the magazine. The lip gloss, which doesn't contain alcohol, but seems to be priming kids for alcohol addiction, comes in flavors like vodka, tequila and margarita. The whole scenario is vaguely reminiscent (and by vaguely reminiscent, we mean a Xerox copy) of the candy cigarettes and chewing gum "tobacco" of yesteryear.
Parents, step away from the toys?
Mon Jul 16
Anthropologist David Lancy is causing somewhat of a stir in the world of child psychology. In his recent article, published in American Anthropologist , Lancy claims that the often-promoted idea of parents participating in play time with their young kids might not be the only way to raise happy, well-rounded individuals. In fact, most cultures would roll their eyes at our habit of squatting on the floor next to our kids with plastic trains and Barbies. All kids play, regardless of culture, but in most communities parents don't enter the picture, Lancy asserts. According to the Boston Globe , his findings do more than reveal our differences to other cultures: they challenge the necessity of many widely used (and marketed) lessons in parenting. Many initiatives, like the Parent-Child Home Program in Massachusetts, teach low-income families parenting strategies like "play activities" that are said to promote literacy. Representatives of this traditional approach aren't...
Password: Mommy's credit card
Mon Jul 16
For years, parents and public figures have deliberated on the dangers of children's internet use. The frightening number of creeps populating cyberspace is an obvious cause for parental concern, as is the widely accessible amount of unfiltered information. If kids only stuck to particularly kid-friendly web sites for tightly regulated windows of time, adults would have no reason to worry, right? As always, the answer isn't simple. According to several news outlets, the marketing-oriented makeup of popular children's sites like Webkinz is teaching our tykes some not-so beneficial habits. You see, the Webkinz site (a social networking utility reminiscent of Facebook) requires its users to own a $15 plush toy from its line of dolls, and buying a toy gives a child access to the site for a year. In a clever marketing strategy, kids are expected to buy at least one toy per year in the series of collectibles. According to CBS News , the user numbers of Webkinz have grown 13...
Events for kids by date
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