All posts in parenting

Play and neurodevelopment: Have fun=building brain

Happy belated Easter. I hesitate to say happy spring given this very un-spring-like weather. I keep telling myself that any moisture we get at this time of the year is great for our plants and trees. It’s only somewhat successful at warding off melancholy.

In preparing for a meeting I came across this article from the Child Trauma Academy about play and brain development. The article is a wee bit dense but nice and short and super interesting. I might be biased because I think anything about play or brain development is fascinating. Anyhow, I hope you think it’s interesting too!

 

https://childtrauma.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/CuriosityPleasurePlay_Perry.pdf

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Spring break!

Spring break is upon us and although it can be a great time to slow down, get away and spend some time together, for many families it’s a week of flexing work time, patching together childcare options and scrambling to keep kids busy and engaged.

Here’s an interesting article on the impact of breaks from school on mothers, in particular.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/moms-bear-the-brunt-of-spring-break-chaos-psychologist-says-1.4041469?utm_content=buffera2da4&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

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Working Parents: The struggle that parents face to be the best in both worlds

As a parent and a professional woman, I am constantly feeling the tug between accelerating my career while still being the kind of mom I want to be-present, available and engaged. I have no doubt that most parents, moms and dads, experience similar feelings whether they work because they need to or want to.

I just finished reading a book called Unfinished Business by Anne-Marie Slaughter. Ms. Slaughter argues that the discussion around “working moms” needs to change to a discussion about the demands of “care” and “competition”. She suggests that this is the next phase of the feminist movement, one that must include both women and men, and that challenges the value placed on traditional male and female roles and responsibilities. She argues that the lack of value and prestige placed on caregiving by our society is the most significant barrier to women’s ability to reach true equality in the workplace and I couldn’t agree more. Whether caregiving occurs in an unpaid setting like the home or a paid one like daycares and nursing homes, it is obvious to me what little value our society places on these professions.  Just ask what your daycare worker is paid in comparison to a financial advisor! The feminist movement is ultimately about full inclusion and about choice. It’s time that both men and women have a true choice in the way they parent and pursue a career.

I highly recommend this book. It is thought-provoking and challenges our beliefs and understanding about women’s engagement in the workplace, about traditional male/female roles, and about the so-called “work-life balance”.

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Childhood fears: What’s normal?

Hi! I’ve always said that the best thing parents can do is inform themselves about typical childhood development. Have you ever noticed how much information there is out there on prenatal development (hello, babycentre app?!) and development in the first year but then once your little person turns 1 it’s like, ‘Ok, doesn’t really matter what’s going on with their development anymore. Time to just wing it!’ Often times parents’ frustration comes from a misunderstanding of what is normal for children (e.g. stop beating yourself up every time your 1.5 year old steals toys from other kids. They are cognitively unable to understand sharing at this stage!).

Here’s a website I came across that talks specifically about childhood fears and what’s typical at certain stages of development.

Child Therapist’s List of Childhood Fears by Age

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Happy New Year!

Typically this time of year is a time for looking forward, setting goals, renewing commitments and turning the proverbial new leaf. But not me! I want to take a moment to look back at December to tell you about a fantastic conference that I spoke at. The #2016ParentConference: Beautiful Things by #access52 was a packed morning of inspiring speakers all focused on the beauty and challenge of parenting. Each speaker inspired the audience to challenge themselves to find beauty in the messiness of parenting children and adolescents. I truly hope that everyone in attendance walked away feeling uplifted and with renewed confidence. I am so very proud to have been invited to participate. Thanks #access52 !

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