Separation Anxiety: Helping kids say good bye (and hello)

The first days of school have long passed and parents, children and teachers have, in many cases, settled into a comfortable daily routine of work, school and/or child-care. Yet some children may still be expressing distress in saying good-bye to their parents/primary caretakers. How do we know when a child's difficulty separating from parents or...
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Pediatric Sleep Apnea

Pediatric sleep apnea refers to brief involuntary breathing pauses during sleep in a child. These pauses may last a few seconds or over a minute and can lower oxygen levels in the blood. When this happens, regulatory mechanisms of the brain wake the child up in order to improve air flow. Because of these repeated...
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Helping Children Manage Their Feelings

A basic method to improve a child's ability to label, measure, communicate about, understand, and cope with feelings   Episodes of intense negative feelings are among the most challenging situations for young children and their parents. Anger can escalate into temper tantrums. Excessive worrying or fear can limit a child's ability to try new behaviors...
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The Serious Business of Play

Imagine studying and working hard, late at night, on an important proposal at work. You are not highly interested in the subject, but success on this proposal will increase your chances of an important promotion at work. You find that your attention often wanders but you are determined to complete the review chapter, plowing through...
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Helping Your Child Have a Smooth Transition into Kindergarten

Starting Kindergarten is the beginning of an educational adventure. For some, it will be their first exposure to school. For others, it will initiate being in a whole new school environment. Transitions to new school experiences are opportunities for excitement and anticipation. They are also times children can feel worried, scared, and apprehensive. This article...
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What Does Research Say About Children in Early Child Care? Quality, Quality, Quality

Choosing if and what type of non-parental child care to use is a major decision for most parents and can be fraught with questions and anxiety. It is a very personal decision based on many factors, including a family’s financial circumstances as well as the beliefs, goals, availability, and needs of each parent. Families are...
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Bedtime – A nightmare or a nice end to the day? Tips for improving bedtime in your home

Bedtime is often a somewhat stressful time of day in households with preschoolers and school age children. After a full day of work, shuffling kids around to different activities, keeping up with household chores, dinner preparation, helping with homework, and chasing after one or more energetic children, parents often have little or no energy left...
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Developing a Toolbox of Strategies in Working With Young Children

Young children require a lot of adult support to help promote their adaptive expression of emotions, practice problem-solving and enhance their coping repertoire. As caregivers, it often can be challenging and stressful when children exhibit noncompliance with adult directives, displays of helplessness, and "meltdowns." When behavioral challenges or problems emerge, usually the adult's natural response...
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Preschoolers’ Challenges with Attention and Impulse Control: The Typical, the Problematic, and What We Can Do to Help

On any given day, and perhaps on many days, all preschoolers could be described as having difficulty with sustaining attention long enough to follow through with instructions and complete a task. It is also quite typical to see preschoolers engage in impulsive behavior such as frequent interrupting. These difficulties are considered normal in preschoolers because...
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Skills for Life

I am sure that many of you heard about the controversy around the book Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, by Amy Chua. In a nutshell, Chua advocates for placing high demands on children in regard to their achievements and enforcing mastery with a resolute determination, at the expense of fun or relaxing activities. The...
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