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Fun and Easy Ways to Earn Money (For Young Teens)

Fun and Easy Ways to Earn Money
(For Young Teens)
By Stephanie Falcone

Does your child pester you about doing work around the house to earn a few extra bucks? Even toddlers get a little kick in their step when you toss them a few coins. Around the age of thirteen, teens have an urge to earn money for themselves, especially if you do not supply them with an allowance. Regulations do not permit children so young to work… so how is this possible? Keep reading to discover the choices kids have to work independently and learn a sense of responsibility.

As they get older, there are things your son or daughter will want and need to buy for themselves. Also, helping them pursue this initiative will teach them the value of money, and keep them from burning a hole in your pocket! Win, win! Whether it is clothes, the latest video game, or a ticket for the movies on a Friday night out with their friends… ease their frustration and suggest these rewarding jobs!

Babysitting

Be sure your child is serious about this commitment and aware of what he or she is accountable for when signing up for the job. Training courses are offered by a variety of places. Click the link provided to find a class in your area. On top of professional training to ensure the health and care of the client, be sure to learn more about them as well. Assist your teen in finding a safe family to work for. For example: family/ work friends, relatives, or close neighbors. Babysitting requires a great amount of trust and responsibility and in most cases offers a great payment in return!

Find Classes: Red Cross CPR Training

Kids Fun and Easy Ways to Earn Money

Help Senior Citizens

This is a job that has been around for quite some time. There are always older people who are willing to pay young, strong and willing kids to complete jobs that they are no longer capable of doing. For example: buying groceries, feeding pets, watering pants, and/ or mowing their lawn. Make a friendly call or casual visit to senior citizens nearby offering your services. I’m sure they’ll be pleased to see a new young and cheerful face. Worth a shot!

Dog Walking

What happens to the dog when you have to go to work? That’s where you come in! Make flyers or ask adults in person if they need help caring for their pet throughout the day. Surprisingly, there are such things as doggy daycare but the fees are through the roof! No pun intendedJ. Especially if you are an animal lover… what’s better than taking a dog for a stroll in the park and getting paid at the same time?

 Fun and Easy Ways to Earn Money

Seasonal Jobs

Depending on the season, there are specific tasks lawn owners are obligated to get done. In the fall, there are leaves galore! Offer a hand by raking leaves or unclogging those measly gutters in your neighborhood. In the winter, you guessed it! SNOW! Shovel driveways and sand/salt walkways in exchange for a few extra bucks. House owners will surely be grateful.

Fun and Easy Ways to Earn Money

 

 


6 Kid Friendly Holiday Activities for Winter Break

6 Kid Friendly Holiday Activities for Winter Break !

Christmas is quickly approaching and the kids are now home for a while on Christmas break.  Christmas break is always exciting for kids no school, no homework, free time, and Christmas is right within reach. However it often doesn’t take long before cabin fever sets in and they begin to become rambunctious or bored. That is why its best that you find ways to keep them occupied so you can keep your sanity. What better way to do this then to do holiday and Christmas themed activities! You and the kids will keep busy while having TONS of holiday fun!  Here 6 Kid Friendly Holiday Activities for Winter Break!

christmas cookies 6 Kid Friendly Activities for Winter Break

 

1. Cookie Extravaganza. Tis the season for holiday baking. Everyone loves a sweet treat this time of year especially Christmas cookies. Get the kids involved with helping you baking or the age old tradition of cookie cutters and decorating Christmas cookies! They will love getting creative and helping mom in the kitchen. Stick with traditional cookies such as chocolate chip, peanut butter & sugar OR click here for even more unique holiday cookie recipes or decorating ideas.

Holiday Sled Treats 6 Kid Friendly Holiday Activties for Winter Break

It doesn’t just have to be cookies! With the help of pinterest there are so many adorable and delicious holiday treat ideas just like the teddy bear sleighs pictured! ( For this treat all you need is mini candy canes, mini snickers or milky way’s and a box of teddy grahams. ) Click here for more creative holiday treat ideas.

Gingerbread House 6 Kid Friendly Holiday Activities for Winter Break

2. Build a Gingerbread House.  Gingerbread houses are a holiday tradition & a delicious one at that. The kids will have a blast with this! I mean what is more fun than building a play house out of candy… that you can EAT! Build a big one as a family or let each kiddo make their own! What you will need is graham crackers, frosting, gum drops, peppermints, candy canes, licorice, M&M’s, and whatever other candy you’d like! For more ideas on how to make the perfect gingerbread house click here.

Popsicle Stick Ornaments 6 Kid Friendly Holiday Activities for Winter Break

3.  Popsicle Stick Ornaments & Decorations! Popsicle sticks are the ultimate craft because you can make almost anything out of them including Christmas decorations! Christmas a tree, reindeer, snowmen, snowflakes, picture frames, sleds, or Santa the possibilities are endless. All you need is Popsicle sticks, glue, paint or markers, beads, googly eyes, or glitter, and string if you want to make it into an ornament.  For more ideas on Christmas crafts made with Popsicle sticks click here.

homemade christmas paper 6 Kid Friendly Holiday Activities for Winter Break

4. Homemade Wrapping Paper.  This is a fun way to get the kids involved in the gift giving of Christmas plus it puts an adorable personal touch to your gifts! For small gifts you can use the inside of paper groceries bags or you may need a roll of brown or white paper. You can use acrylic paints, markers, or crayons. To get perfect Christmas shapes you can trace cookie cutters or if using paint you can use sponges. Also if you’re feeling brave enough to let the kids get a little messy they can use their handprints!

homemade christmas card 6 Kid Friendly Holiday Activities for Winter Break

5. Christmas Card Making. Continue you and your kids work as Santa’s little elves and decorate your very own Christmas cards. It is an activity that the kids will enjoy and your friends and relatives will cherish when they receive them. For homemade Christmas card ideas click here.

grinch movie 6 Kid Friendly Holiday Activities for Winter Break

6. Christmas Movie Marathon! Christmas themed movies are always a hit with kids they can sit down and rest from all the crafts or take time to eat some of the treats you have been making. It is also a way to keep them occupied while you get some holiday baking, cleaning, or gift wrapping done. An idea is to let each kid pick out a movie and then maybe you share one of your holiday favorites with them. Click here for a list of popular Christmas movies for kids.

Hope you and the kids enjoy these fun activties! Happy Holidays!

Photo Sources:

http://www.squidoo.com/popsicle-christmas-crafts

http://teensatthedanvillepubliclibrary.blogspot.com/2012/11/teen-gingerbread-house-and-craft-program.html

http://www.momtobedby8.com/2011/12/homemade-wrapping-paper-craft.html

http://coffeeandpie.net/?tag=cards

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0170016/

http://goodtaste.tv/2012/12/plan-a-cookie-exchange-party-today/

http://pinterest.com/pin/220817187950546369/


Tis the Season to Give Back !

Tis the Season to Give Back!

Tis the season for Give back!  It is very easy for us to get lost in the hustle and bustle of everything that goes on during the holiday season. This time of year is a great time to give back to your community and those less fortunate. There is no better feeling than knowing you helped someone in need and made their seasons bright! It’s also a great time to discuss with your kids the importance of giving back. Here a just a few ideas of ways you and your families can give back right here in the Kansas City Area.

Tis the season to give back helping hands

1. Adopt a family. Wouldn’t it be awesome to feel like Santa and his elves and provide holiday joy to a family who otherwise couldn’t celebrate? Well through the Salvation Army Adopt-A-Family Program you can do just that. They will match you or your group with a less fortunate family and give you all the information you need including family size, gift wishes, and clothing sizes in order to provide the family with an entire Christmas. Visit The Salvation Army Kansas & Western Missouri to learn more!

2. TOYS FOR TOTS. With your help this successful program sponsored by the U. S. Marine Corps Reserve has been bringing holiday joy to children for many years. Their mission is to collect new unwrapped toys and distribute them as Christmas gifts to less fortunate children in the local community. Local Toys for Tots campaigns run through mid to late December before the toys are distributed. Drop off your new unwrapped toy at any of the Kansas City Area collection boxes positioned at local businesses all around the area including Toy’s R US, Baby’s R US, & MORE. There all also many KC area events sponsored by Toys for Tots. You can also make a online monetary donation to your local Toys for Tots campaign!

tis the season for giving back angel tree

3. Angel Tree. Sadly many children in the Kansas & Missouri area will not have a Christmas tree or gifts under it on Christmas morning. However by participating in the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Program you can make that their holiday dreams come true!  Adopt an angel off of the tree at any of these area locations: Wal-Mart, Oak Park Mall, Commerce Bank and MORE! You will be provided with sizes and wishes of your Christmas Angel to guide your shopping and instructions on where to drop the gifts off at.

4. Feed the hungry. Everyone deserves a nice meal during the holidays and there are a few ways you can do this. First you can participate in a canned food drive. Rather its organizing your own or donating to another food drive or food pantry this is an easy way to give back to those in need. Another way to help the hungry is to volunteer at a local soup kitchen. Your service will be sure to fill their stomachs and leave smiles on their faces.  Visit: Harvesters Community Food Network, Foodpantries.org, Feeding America, HSD Missouri, & HSD Kansas for more information on food pantries, food banks, & soup kitchens in the Kansas City Area.

5. Simply lend a helping hand- It doesn’t always have to be about money and donations. In fact with the economy some are on a tight budget and just can’t afford it. Instead you can donate your time by raking leaves, shoveling snow, hanging Christmas lights , or taking a plate of food to an elderly or lonely friend or neighbor. Your acts of kindness will likely be greatly appreciated.

These are just a few ideas of how you can give back this holiday season! Happy Holidays to you & your families.

Photo Sources:

http://www.photosof.org/hands_with_love_heart_made_of_snow-wallpapers.html

http://www.kuar.org/kuarnews/82152-salvation-army-in-central-ark-collects-toys-and-clothes-for-needy-children.html


Work vs. Stay at home

Congratulations! If you are expecting a child, especially if this is your first born, you are probably bursting with questions. And one of the biggest decisions…

Work vs. Stay at home

This will help you eliminate your insecurities about your upcoming decision.
Take note of your personal pros and cons as you read.

How will this affect my child?
This is a mixed category, all depending on the quality of child care you are looking into. Obviously everyone wants the very best for their child, but with the best, comes other problems (that we’ll discuss next).
PRO: Studies conducted by the National Institutes of Health prove that child care can in fact benefit children. Quality child care at a young age scored higher than most students in areas such as vocabulary before entering kindergarten.
CON: Discipline problems have been recorded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development for preschoolers who have attended child care for more than a year. Without one on one attention, by the parent or consistent guardian, children tend to disobey orders because they are not being carefully watched.

Can I afford this?
This can go both ways. Can you afford to take a leave of absence from your job? OR Can you afford the costs of child care? Compare the two are decide which you will benefit from most, financially.

“In 2007, BabyCenter online estimated that sending your baby or toddler to a daycare center cost between $4,388 to $14,647 a year. It estimated that sending your baby or toddler to a home daycare cost between $4,128 and $9,508 per year. Personalized care from a full-time nanny was estimated to be between $26,004 and $36,396 a year.” (Miller, LiveStrong.com).

Also look into a relative or family friend to care for your child part time. This way you can still possibly keep your job by working part time and also stay home some days with your little one.


What are my values as a parent?
Staying home with your child as he grows is the ideal choice, but sadly, it is not always that easy. Many parents strongly believe a parent should raise the child, and if that is the case, work at it! Decipher which parent is best to leave their job behind to raise the baby. By electing one parent to stay at home, an income will still be coming in, and your child’s “firsts” will be witnessed by the one he/ she is loved by most, a parent. Cutting back on usually outings or shopping sprees will most likely need to be limited, but having a parent home will make up for it in the long run (if this is a value of yours). Or even better… both work part time. I know, easier said than done… but it doesn’t hurt to try!


How to prevent a holiday meltdown

How to Prevent a Holiday Meltdown

Do you feel stressed around the holiday season?
Well don’t let this time of year get the best of you. This is a time filled with love and laughter and finger lickin food! Don’t let a batch of burnt cookies get you down. Hug your little ones, laugh off the little things and don’t stress the storm you can’t control.

How to Prevent A Holiday Meltdown fireplace

This is not a movie scene or a picture perfect moment in time… your holiday get together will be full rowdy kids, rambunctious pets, and those infamous “OOPS!”. Take a deep breath and accept the holidays are not perfect. What is perfect is spending time with the ones you love and seeing the smile on your child’s face when they open their first gift from Santa this year.  Don’t set the bar so high with expectations and simply go with the flow. Especially if you’re the host of this year’s holiday celebration… if you have expected guests, then I’m positive you have a willing helping hand close by!

How to Prevent a Holiday Meltdown Banner

With the holidays comes a handful of invitations… and to dos and deadline and who and where to bring the kids. It’s easy to find yourself being dragged in every direction this time of year. To prevent this from happening and bring your stress level from 10 to 2, don’t overbook yourself. Say no… I know… easier said than done. Organize your time with those tasks you HAVE to do with some of those holiday activities you enjoy.

How to Prevent a Holiday Meltdown Christmas Baking

The holidays can put a toll on relationships. Or the mere fact of just seeing that relative may make you cringe. Don’t let the unaccepting in-laws or overbearing siblings spoil your time. Interact with them in small doses, otherwise surround yourself with those who make you smile.

Don’t substitute your sleep in order to be the first in line at the toy store. Manage your time better to get both your wrapping done AND a good night rest. They’ll forgive you for just tossing their toy in a gift bag… but nobody likes a grumpy parent.

Keep calm and enjoy your holiday!

Stephanie Falcone

 


PSST… Move Over…

Do you hear this late at night after you’ve already tucked in your child? Well you’ve got a case of the cozies! Yes, it is comforting for you as a parent to sleep with your child tucked in next to you (and we all know they’re loving every minute of it), but there comes a time when they need to sleep in their own bed. Here are a few suggestions to stop a child from sleeping in their parent’s bed:
The University of Michigan’s Health System states children should begin to sleep in his or her bed between the ages of two and three.
What’s under the bed?
Is your child bombarding you at night because he is frightened? Confront his fears and discuss the problems and questions he may have. As a child, it is overwhelming to be alone for so long, especially in the dark, so continuously talking him through it may be a worthwhile routine before bed. Monsters are a common worry amongst the little ones, so instead of just insisting there isn’t any, try something new!

Comfort can be found is a variety of different ways, stuffed animals placing first in children’s favorites. Provide them with a stuffed animal to cuddle up with and maybe even a flashlight or nightlight by their bed just in case.

A clever idea is also putting a spray bottle on their bed side, as if it were monster repellent. Assure them there are no monsters under their bed or in the closet, but if he were to spot one, just give it a spray!
Inch by inch 
it is going to be a difficult transition from your bed to a big bed of their own. This should be a gradual process, step by step, inch by inch. Start by climbing in bed with them, in their bed, and leaving once they fall asleep. As the nights progress, spend less and less time comforting them to sleep.Eventually, they will learn how to fall asleep on their own without fears or concern.

The last thing a parent wants to see is their baby cry, but it is important not to get off track. If you have to decided to teach your little one to sleep on his own room, stick to it. Be firm. Do not give in and let him climb back in bed with you just to keep him from crying. You may encounter many temper tantrums because they will feel as though you are leaving them forever, but it will all be worth it in the end. Stick to these steps and you’ll all be sound asleep and smiling in no time.

Resources:


http://www.livestrong.com/article/105608-stop-child-sleeping-his-parents/


A Little Less Messy…

Do you ever have trouble getting your children to finish their vegetables… or even touch them for that matter? Well I’m here to help you eliminate all the begging and pleading and keep your day with the kids running smoothly.

No more airplane spoons or renaming fruits and vegetables to trick kids to eat them (because I think they’ve caught on to the x-ray vision carrots!). Instead, design your children’s meal in the shape of their favorite toys, animals, characters, etc.

Let me explain…

First decide what it is you would like to feed your children. Sneak in some extra veggies for these meals because they’ll be so in awe, they just might eat every bite.

Next, observe your child’s latest obsession, whether it be tractors, dogs, helicopters, etc. This is where you’re creative side takes a turn. I’ve found, as a frequent babysitter, that no matter what the food (greens or not), rearranging it in the shape of something they are fascinated by will get them to eat it.

Without having to trick them that the food is unhealthy or has super powers, oranges for example, simply create a plate full of something they love.  This will be sure to show them how enjoyable fruits and veggies really are!

Can’t think of anything?
Here are a few examples I created to help jump start your imagination.

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                 tractors

 

 

Porcupine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

helicopters                                                                                                                                                                 happy faces

Give it a go! Let’s make the lives of parents, nannies, and babysitters just a little less messy around lunch time!

Author: Stephanie Falcone

 


Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

Thanksgiving seems to mark the true beginning of the holiday season: shopping, baking, snow, family time, and so much more! But what about seasonal family fun activities you can do right here in the Kansas City Area? Well there is plenty! Around the KC area there are tons of places that offer family friendly holiday experiences that your kids are sure to never forget! Here is your Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide!

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

1. Choose your own REAL Christmas tree!  This year take a visit to Fort Osage Christmas Tree’s in Independence MO where they offer acres of fresh and fragrant “choose & harvest” home grown trees along with a great family friendly atmosphere.  Along with your tree choosing, sip on a complimentary cup of hot chocolate, take free family snapshots in front of their holiday scenes, and receive guidance to your perfect tree! You may even get the help of an Alaskan Snow dog! PLUS the kids can meet SANTA, take a FREE snapshot with him, and receive a complimentary candy cane & coloring book!

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

2. A perfect age old holiday tradition for a family outing is ICE SKATING! Bundle up in your hats, coats, and gloves and Glide around the rink with the ones you love for some holiday fun!  The Crown Center Ice Terrace is the ONLY public outdoor skating rink in the Kansas City area. It’s like a winter wonderland, enjoy holiday music as you skate as well as view the beautiful holiday décor at crown center!

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

  • 3. Enjoy Christmas lights one the most beautiful and fun holiday traditions. Rather driving around your neighborhood or going to a showing, lights are always a fun sight to see! One thing everyone in the Kansas City Area should do at least once is see the amazing lights at the Country Club Plaza. Thanksgiving night is the Plaza lighting ceremony where everyone can gather for giveaways, concerts and entertainment while they wait for the “flip of the switch” where the lights come on for the first time of the year! Even if you can’t make it to the ceremony you haven’t missed out the beautiful lights shine from 5pm-3am daily spreading holiday cheer through January 13!

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

4. Take the kids out for an unforgettable holiday meal. Trex Café at the Legends Outlets is offering Breakfast with SANTA CLAUS throughout the month of December. Reserve your spot NOW and you and your kids can enjoy a delicious breakfast buffet along with caroling, FREE goodies, Raffles and, cool prizes all in the company of Jolly Ol St. Nick himself!

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

5. Give the kids a unique Santa experience they will cherish FOREVER by taking a ride on a Christmas train! You can take your ride on the Midland Railway with Santa himself on board! Enjoy caroling, cookies, hot cocoa, shopping and sitting on Santa’s lap! PLUS each little rider will receive a gift from Santa! Another option is to take a road trip to the Branson Scenic Railway and board the Polar Express. Little ones can board the train in their pajamas and enjoy Christmas stories, caroling hot cocoa, and treats all on their way to the NORTH POLE where they will meet Santa and receive special gifts! Both trains provide great holiday fun. Tickets for both are ON SALE NOW!

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

  • 6. Head to the City Market for their Whoville Holiday Weekends! Who’s of all ages can meet and take a picture with the GRINCH, PLUS kids are invited to come to Cindy Lou Who’s home to make tons of fun arts and crafts! Whoville Holidays is a FREE event but donations are encouraged for the “Help a Who” campaign. You can bring canned goods, or new unwrapped toys! Give back while having fun!

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

7. If you have older kids they may enjoy going with you to the Kansas City Ballets Annual Production of the Nutcracker. With elaborate sets and costumes you will be transported to a magical world of Christmas toys, ballerinas, and sugar plum fairies accompanied by magnificent music and amazing dancing. Now being performed at Kansas City’s new Kauffman Center! Tickets on sale NOW for Dec 1-23!

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

8. Give the little ones a chance to get their shopping done at the “Children’s Small Mall” at the C.W Parker Carousel Museum in Leavenworth, KS. Tons of gifts are donated from vendors. Each child will get to shop the store accompanied by one of Santa’s Elves and choose gifts of their choice for their Mom, Dad, Grandparent, or loved one. While the kids are shopping parents can sit, visit and sip hot cocoa. After the kids check out they can take a ride on the museum’s historical and fun Carousel! Check out these photos from last year’s event.

Kansas City Family Holiday Fun Guide

9. After the Christmas Holiday winds down comes New Years Eve. Always a fun holiday for both adults and kids. Those kids that are too young to make it midnight are in luck! They can ring in theNoon Year” at Wonderscope Children’s Museum. This event runs from 9am to 1pm on New Year’s Eve and includes performances by Mr. Stinky Feet, Fun Games, Crafts, a balloon drop, snacks and MUCH more! REGISTER NOW! They will have a blast PLUS their party will be out of the way and maybe their parents can enjoy a night out!

There you have it! Who knew KC offered so much family friendly holiday fun!? Hopefully this guide will help you and your kids have one of the most exciting holiday seasons yet. For even more holiday happenings around the area visit: http://www.visitkc.com/events/holiday-events/index.aspx?pix=0&orderBy=

 

Photo Sources:

http://www.fortosagechristmastrees.com/

http://www.crowncenter.com/Attractions-Theaters-List/Ice-Terrace

http://www.360kc.com/Attractions/CountryClubPlaza.html

http://manhattaninfidel.com/2011/12/20/my-exclusive-interview-with-santa-claus-2/

http://www.midlandrailway.org/home/special-events/

http://www.bransontrain.com/

http://thecitymarket.org/events/overview

http://www.kcballet.org/

http://www.firstcitymuseums.org/carousel_pages/act_pastevents.html#xmas

http://www.wonderscope.org/programs_and_events/wonder_eve.aspx


Do you like your teen’s friends?

Do you like your teen’s friends?

This is a tough question and even tougher to answer. No parent wants their child to fall into the wrong crowd. But how do parents prevent that from happening? Is it preventable? Is it bad parenting? Do parents push children into these misbehaving groups?

Do You Like your Teen's Friends?

 Dr. Kenneth Rubin, a Professor at the University of Maryland and author of The Friendship Factor, says that even “Good kids, with good parents and good friends, aren’t immune to the temptation to associate with peers who are doing unacceptable things, or to the appeal of a crowd that seems to be exciting or even somewhat dangerous.”

Do you like your teen’s friends?

Young friendships are a large factor in the shaping of a child and molding them into the adult he or she will grow to be. Teenage friends have the ability to validate and support each other in ways parents cannot (or at least that’s what they think at that age!). As a parent, it is normal to be concerned with your child’s social life but there are a few underlying rules a parent must follow in regards to a child’s privacy. If you are having trouble with your teen’s choice of friends… keep reading! These five tips will keep you in check with the “rules” and guide you with your next move as a parent.

  • Keep an open mind. Clothing, hairstyles, music, and slang are very different now a days. Parents… just because the children may seem unusual compared to your child or even your OWN friends way back when, give them a chance. Like they always say, “Do not judge a book by its cover”. Values and morals are not worn on the outside.
  • Never forbid a friend. You know how that goes… Teenagers and people in general, strive for things that others bet against. Just as your motivation to succeed kicks in twice as hard when someone accuses you of failing, forbidding a friend will only make your teen want to hang out with them twice as much (maybe even behind your back!).
  • Never attack a friend. Now I don’t mean physically haha… well of course I mean that too, but mentally, with your words. As teenagers, the last thing a child wants to hear is you accusing THEIR friend of something. This is just a rule of life people tend to forget… if you don’t know about it, don’t act like you know about it. It won’t get you anywhere…
    • Advice: Talk to your child about what is bothering you about him or his friend. Do not go on assuming and accusing.
    • Welcome friends. Do not try to intimidate your teen’s friends. Welcome them with open arms, talk to them, and get to know them a little. This will give you a sense of who they are… and most times, leave you at ease with who your child is spending time with. You will gain their respect by showing them respect.
    • Set clear rules. These rules should be known by your child, of course, as well as your teen’s friends. To ensure this, reiterate your rules and expectations out loud when your teen’s friends come over/ pick up your child. The more friends who are familiar with your rules, the more likely it is for your teen and their friends to obey them. (They will have your rules in mind, being constantly reminded, and feel guilt if disobeyed).

“We shouldn’t! Your mom said no!”  Trust me, it works.

By Stephanie Falcone


Say Y.E.S. to the B.U.S.

How often do you drive your child to school? Every day? Every other? When they miss the bus? Driving your child to school may sound like the best option, but in fact, it is NOT. There are several variables assessed to answer this question so hop on board and I’ll tell you why.
Safety is the number one factor. Driving a school bus is much more difficult than an average size vehicle. That is why all bus drivers are required to pass a written and skill based driving test. Once a Commercial Driver’s License is obtained, additional training is provided by the school’s district. Not only must the driver be accustomed to the rules of the road, but also how to load/unload passengers, and carry out emergency procedures if need be. Not just anyone is permitted to drive students to and from school. A thorough background check and drug/alcohol tests are conducted on all applicants prior to obtaining a license to drive a school bus. This systematic process ensures the children, our rising students, are in the hands of an exceptionally safe driver.
“I’m worried about my child being bullied. 
I don’t want my child around bad language. I don’t feel comfortable with my child around the big kids.”
I’m sorry to say, but it is honestly impossible to remove your child from every off-putting circumstance. This is how children learn. Children, depending on the way they are raised, will make decisions on their own regarding whether to join in on carving their names in the back of the school bus, or quietly chatting with friends in the front. There comes a time when you need to give them a little push and let them leave the nest.
As for bullying, districts monitor the behavior now a days with video cameras inside and outside of the buses. This ensures the children are aware there is an extra eye on them and will not get away with sticking their tongue out at the bus driver when he or she turns around. Bullying is a serious issue and is never treated lightly by school administration.
National Center for Safe Routes to School declared 20 to 25 percent of morning rush hour traffic is attributable to parents driving their children to school.
You may be more comfortable with driving your child to school, but each and every parent that feels this way has a negative effect on traffic congestion. It is understandable to chauffeur your child to school if he or she may have missed the early morning bus, but every day is a tad excessive, don’t you think? With the abundance of parents dropping off their child at the school door, school buses and faculty are held up. Holding up the staff and bus traffic causes a domino effect to occur, causing school to be delayed. If all students were to hop on the designated t bus at their correct time and place, the well designed school morning system would go as smooth as silk.
Enough with the worries. What about the positives? Give your child the opportunity to meet new friends. Allowing them to spread their wings and meet new people will make them more comfortable as they grow older. If they are always being held tight, driven to and from school, their communication skills will be hindered. Plus, it’ll give you a little extra free time!


What do you say? Say yes to the bus!

Safe Routes: Traffic Congestion

Parenting Squad: Should Your Kids Ride the Bus to School?

 

Written By: Stephanie Falcone