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  • The Skillz Zone: The Sweet Spot for Learning

    The Skillz Zone: The Sweet Spot for Learning

    We’ve all set goals, to some degree, throughout our lives. Some were easily achieved while others we just gave up on completing. This is because most plans are either set in the comfort zone or the danger zone. And while our initial motivation generally puts on a path to setting lofty goals, it can lead us to failure. Finding a balance between these two zones is critical in increasing productivity and avoiding stagnation. The “SKILLZ zone” is the optimal place to do this. By teaching children this early on, we can ensure that they have the necessary tools for consistent future successes. We are all very familiar with the comfort zone. This is where we feel secure ....

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  • Whole-Brain Parenting: Engaging the Brain for Optimal Development

    Whole-Brain Parenting: Engaging the Brain for Optimal Development

    On any given day, we may experience moments of high emotion in reaction to an event, or we find ourselves trying to control everyone and everything around us. Either way, our mental well-being is in danger, especially if we find ourselves stuck in either scenario for long. It can be difficult for children to get unstuck without some help from a parent or other adult. To give children the support they need when faced with this, parents must have a basic understanding of their child’s brain development. By incorporating this knowledge into interactions, parents can support children in learning and growing through a whole-brain approach. To help us get a clear understanding ....

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  • The Developing Mind - Understanding Your Child's Behavior

    The Developing Mind - Understanding Your Child's Behavior

    One of the biggest struggles in parenting is understanding why perfectly sweet and smart children can, in an instant, turn into the most difficult beings ever faced. It’s often as if a switch was flipped and chaos has ensued. This typically results in parents becoming frustrated at their child and disciplining them in the heat of the moment. And while this may seem like the best option, it can be counterproductive in many ways. When parents become knowledgeable about the basics of brain development and how this affects behavior , they can help integrate all areas of the brain and have better parenting success. The key to whole-brain integration is ....

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  • Preparing Children to Return to School - An Emotional Approach

    Preparing Children to Return to School - An Emotional Approach

    Preparing Children to Return to School – An Emotional Approach As back to school plans continue to change almost daily, children’s emotions will remain unpredictable. One day they are thinking about returning to their friends and teachers at school, and the next, they are told they won't be returning for another few months. Because of this, our children's emotional needs have never been greater. And while the uncertainty of everything is still present, what we do know is that we must prepare our children, emotionally, for a return to school, whenever that may be. For those that return to a brick and mortar school, they may experience some separation ....

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  • Preparing Children to Return to School – A Social Approach

    Preparing Children to Return to School – A Social Approach

    Over the past few months, interactions have been minimal, and our social skills are rusty. Since prolonged school closures have a negative impact on children’s social development, we are now faced with how to regain skills while moving forward with new skills. Though some children will return to a brick-and-mortar school, others will virtually engage with teachers and classmates. But no matter how they attend school in the beginning, all children will return to in person classes eventually, so w e must prepare them now so they can feel confident as they re-engage with friends, classmates, and teachers when the time comes. The extended time away from school, in conjunction with ....

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  • Resilience: Helping Children and Teens Build Coping Skills

    Resilience: Helping Children and Teens Build Coping Skills

    Stress is a significant part of our lives today. And while we all experience it, children and teens have a more difficult time managing it. Academic pressure, social tensions, family stressors, etc. all impact a young person’s mental well-being. For this reason, it’s important for parents to help their children develop coping skills by guiding them through tough times instead of jumping in to save them from any discomfort that may come along. Children and teens often present stress as what adults call a meltdown or a tantrum. Psychologists call it “flooding.” This happens when a wave of strong, negative emotions flood in and rational thinking goes out the door. The ....

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  • Mindful Tips to Use When Kids Don’t Want to Attend Class

    Mindful Tips to Use When Kids Don’t Want to Attend Class

    Kids are not naturally self-motivated. When your child’s mindset is not in the right place, even the most fun activities can be a struggle to get to. With that said, here are some strategies to help you work around lack of motivation when trying to get your kid to class. Be attentive to what your child is doing in the moment he/she is supposed to get ready for class. If he/ she is playing or having fun with a friend, then be ready for a battle. With that said, have your child participate in a chore or task that’s not as much fun around 10 to 15-minutes prior to getting ready for class. Be attentive to your own projection of emotions as you get your child ready for ....

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  • Punishment vs. Discipline

    Punishment vs. Discipline

    Good behavior is a learning process for children, and we are their roadmap. Children usually behave per their own emotions and impulses. At the same time, being a parent is also a learning process and sometimes we rely on our own emotions and impulses to teach. Usually, that means we divert directly to punishments when a child misbehaves, missing a crucial opportunity to teach them. With that said, I am going to break down how to teach good behavior through discipline vs. punishment. Let’s compare the two words and what they really mean: Punishment – means to inflict pain or suffering as a penalty. Discipline – means to teach. It’s understandable that we ....

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  • Empowering vs Enabling – The Fine Line of Parenting

    Empowering vs Enabling – The Fine Line of Parenting

    We live in a competitive world and most parents would jump at the chance to give their child every advantage imaginable. The world can also be unkind and, as parents, we feel a need to protect our children from everything possible. And yes, parents are supposed to help and protect their children but when does supporting children turn into overhelping? The difference between the two is a very fine line and is often very difficult to decipher. Responsible parenting means proving food, clothing, and shelter, giving attention and love, and protecting our children from danger. It does not mean doing everything for them and protecting them from anything that may bring them grief. This ....

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  • Brain Development for 18 – 36 Months

    Brain Development for 18 – 36 Months

    Healthy brain development is one of the most important aspects of childhood development. More specifically, the first few years of life are a significant time for this because synaptic connections are at a peak level. This is the time when positive and nurturing experiences are vital so that the brain can form strong networks that set the foundation for learning. By understanding the importance of early synaptic connections, parents realized that having their children participate in enriching programs, such as Mini SKILLZ, that assist in this development is worthwhile. Synapses are connections between neurons that transmit signals to each other in the brain. Around 2 to 3 years old, ....

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