Friday, July 13, 2012

Weekly Reads: From baby technology, to gossiping about our children

This was my husband's took a week or so to grow on me...and now I have to admit to him that it is a good idea!  I'm starting this weekly series to share what I read in my spare moments besides board books, and Curious George.  My goal is to use this as a summary to share interesting articles and posts, primarily about early childhood, and parenting, as well as my thoughts and opinions on them.  I enjoy a good discussion about these kinds of topics, and have been known to go from quiet to chatty in two seconds if someone even mentions child development, so please join the conversation that I hope to share with you.  I believe that learning never ends, and one way to achieve that is to always be reading!

This week I'm highlighting 4 articles:

1. Instead of “Don’t,” Think Name, Verb and Paint  An article written by a certified Conscious Discipline consultant, that draws attention to how we speak to our children.  I am a huge fan of Conscious Disciple (no I am not a paid affiliate, I truly feel this way), it changed the way I look at children's behavior, and how I react to it.  Reading this was a great reminder for me when I talk to my  older son.  We must show our children what TO DO, in order for them to get it.  I've seen so many parents shouting "stop it," "don't," "quit," which may halt behavior for a few minutes, but there is usually no follow through, the child is left wondering, what should I do instead?  To help children in the long term, showing what to do instead, will introduce a valuable tool they have available to them.  Her analogies and examples are great, it's one that you'll want to save for later to refer to if you get frustrated, or forget!

2. Sink or Swim Spoke to me personally because my own son has been learning to swim this year.  The underlying message in this article speaks volumes to me as a parent.  I've been guilty of trying to push certain things on my son that he wasn't fully interested in, and not realizing it until he got mad at me, or I got mad at him.  I've had to give myself a timeout and reassess what I was trying to achieve with him.

The writer strikes a cord with me when she states,  "I'd do well to remember that no one goes to college using a pacifier, drinking from a sippy cup, or wearing diapers."  It makes me think about today's kindergarten standards, and how our society seems to want our children to learn more faster, at a younger age.  I don't care for it, and I'm scared my boys will be burnt out before they hit third grade.  There is a natural rhythm of learning that our country seems to have gotten off beat with.  We need to strike the right chord, and use the right strokes, because children will get there on their own time!     

3. Gossiping about our children brought back some embarrassing memories for me.  I've been caught by my own child when he gives me a look of disappointment, signaling that I've hurt his feelings, which brought up feelings of my own when I've been whispered about.  It's easy to get pulled into a conversation that turns into venting.  You feel better after you get it out, but your kid feels worse!  I get very uncomfortable around parents who feel their child won't understand, or don't care, when they rant about their frustrations in front of them.  I applaud this writer for encouraging others to spread the love, because if I were to never hear anything good about myself, I would wonder what would be said when I'm not around!

4. Where Apps Become Child’s Play was honestly an article that made me feel sick the more I read   it.  I believe technology should be a part of childhood, but in moderation, and not until a certain age!  A toy company bombarding cuddly iPads on babies is ridiculous.  Our automatic world has caused some parents to think babies can be raised with automatic products to do their job for them, and the infant researcher at Fisher-Price mentioned in the article is not helping , or doing a very good job at understanding babies.

I've seen video of a baby trying to swipe the pages of a magazine with her finger.  I smiled for a moment, but quickly realized her fine motor skills were not being exercised.  She wasn't making the connection that her fingers needed to grasp the edge of the paper, pull up, and over.  It was sad, because a screen can never give her this experience.

I did breathe a sigh of relief when this doctor was quoted in the article...“Infants learn best from real people and playing with real toys,” said Dr. Ari Brown, a pediatrician in Austin, Tex., and the author of “Baby 411.” “They learn how to communicate, how to engage with others and how to problem-solve using their five senses. While technology can offer a virtual way to learn some of these skills, they will never replace the value of interacting with humans or being able to manipulate and play with toys in one’s hands.”  Thank goodness!  The parents who read this article will have at least heard from someone who really knows "the growing needs of families today!"

I love hearing from you, please share your thoughts on these articles!


  1. These were great articles! I really could relate to the first two...I agree that it's so important to explain to your child (or student, if you're a teacher) how to correct what they may be doing wrong or why they shouldn't be doing it. Especially if it is unsafe for them or others. Kids can understand a whole lot more than we think they do. :) It was great to have a way to remember that as a parent. Sometimes we get lost in the moment.

    The second one was just what I needed. My son tends to push against certain things like swimming or walking in public places on his own. I sometimes forget that he just might not be ready. He didn't start walking until a lot later than some other kids his age, but he did on his own time, eventually. And that was just fine.

    I can't wait to read you next Weekly Reads! Thanks so much for sharing!

    1. Thanks Gina! There's so much thought provoking content out there, especially when it comes to children. The 2 articles you mentioned were more personal for me as well, I think that's why I chose them, and it may become a pattern as I continue with these weekly reads.


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