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Unplugging to Enjoy Outdoor Activities During the Summer

SportsSummer is almost here and many look forward to more screen time.

Have you ever wanted to bottle up a child’s energy?

Does your teen need to do more than text or use social media?

Yes, they will stop moving when there is a screen in front of their faces. It could be a TV screen or a computer screen but if they can see it they immediately assume a seated position and time will be lost. So even the most active children can have moments of lazy times in front of the TV or playing a video game. This becomes a problem if you would not recognize your child standing up or without that glazed look he gets while staring at the TV.

Sedentary activities can be allowed if they are monitored and do not become a lifestyle.  In today’s world of video games, iPods, Tablets, and texting we see more kids preferring to exercise their fingers over their bodies.  As parents we need to encourage a healthy way to stay active and burn off excess fat and calories before it becomes a problem.

Since children naturally have a ton of energy and love to play then engaging them in physical activity should not be too difficult. It is recommended that a child get 60 minutes of moderately intense exercise a day.

The one hour can be split up in half or quarters but the main goal is to make them sweat for more than not cleaning their rooms for at least 60 minutes daily. This alone can have a tremendous effect on keep their weight now and keeping them healthy.

Ways to keep your child active:

  • Martial Arts
  • Swimming
  • Join a team sport
  • Take the dog for job or a long walk
  • Bike riding
  • A quick morning routine of jumping jacks, running in place, push-ups and crunches followed by more activity later in the day.
  • Raking leaves
  • Doing yard work for an elderly neighbor
  • Walking a neighbor’s dog
  • Toss a football
  • Go on a nature hunt.
  • Play catch in the front yard.
  • Kickball
  • Surfing

There are plenty of ways to keep moving. It seems so many try to calm their child down or have them satisfied by video games and TV. This will not give children the physical activity or mental stimulation they need to live a healthy life. A lot of that pent up frustration and fidgety behavior is an active kid just waiting to throw a football or go on a nature walk.

Make this a family activity and everybody wins.  Families who are active have active children.  With a rise in childhood obesity it is essential that we find activities the children enjoy.  One of the best ways to encourage an activity is by making it a family sport or activity.

Everyone in the family will benefit from working out together.

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Sue Scheff: Summer Programs and P.U.R.E.

Summer is almost here, is your teen failing in school?  Hanging out with less than desirable peers?  Smoking pot or worse?  Do you see your teenager going down a negative path?

Maybe it is time to find a good, positive Emotional Growth Summer Program to help stimulate your teen in a positive direction.  Build their self-worth to make better choices.  Help them to determine where these negative actions are stemming from. 

Being a proactive parent can help you prevent your teen from spiraling out-of-control.  Just say NO to Boot Camps, as many parents believe that beating a child into submission will scare them straight.  In many cases, this is simply false.  It is about building your child back up again.

For more help and assistance, please visit www.HelpYourTeens.com – for over a decade, Parents’ Universal Resource Experts (P.U.R.E.) has helped thousands of families.  Whether we are there to let you know you are not alone or you are seeking outside help, P.U.R.E. is available to you.  Fill out a form today and get a free consultation.

Sue Scheff: 2009 Summer Activities Challenge

educationcomEducation.com Launches 2009 Summer Activities Challenge 

Leading website for parents encourages families to have fun learning together this summer, while preparing for the next school year and earning a chance to win LEGO® Sets or a Dell laptop computer. 

REDWOOD CITY, CA – June 19, 2009

 Education.com <http://bit.ly/summer-challenge> , a leading web destination for parents of school-aged children, has launched its 2009 Summer Activities Challenge to help parents keep their kids excited about learning during the summer break.  All families who complete the Challenge will receive a personalized certificate of achievement and will be entered to win a Dell Latitude 2100 Netbook <http://bit.ly/EQKnC>  or one of 100 LEGO Creator Mini Sets.  To complete the Challenge, parents must register on Education.com and complete at least 20 Education.com activities with their kids during the contest dates of June 22 to August 31.  

Education.com Editor-in-Chief Danielle Wood explains the company’s decision to host the Summer Activities Challenge: “Educators tell us that kids slip quite a bit academically during the three months of summer break. It’s called a ‘break’ for a reason, and no one wants to torture kids with spelling tests and math drills during the summer.  But parents tell us they do want to help their kids avoid that summer slide.

So we’ve designed activities – for preschoolers, high-schoolers, and everyone in between – that are incredibly fun, but sneak in some education, too.   By participating in the Summer Activities Challenge, families can spend some quality time together and keep their brains sharp during the summer. To kids, making backyard bottle rockets and doing secret treasure hunts will just seem like play, but underneath all the excitement, they’ll be learning, and even preparing for the new school year.” 

Education.com has over a thousand activities – organized by grade level and topic – for participating families to choose from in order to complete the Challenge.  Each activity takes anywhere from ten minutes to several hours to complete and the activities typically require basic materials that families will either have on hand, or can easily and inexpensively acquire.  No matter which activities parents choose to do, participating in the Summer Activities Challenge will help their children stay sharp and have fun throughout the summer. 

For more information about Education.com’s 2009 Summer Activities Challenge, including complete contest rules, visit http://bit.ly/summer-challenge

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 About Education.com

Nearly 1.5 million parents a month come to Education.com to get the information they need to support their children’s unique educational and developmental needs, and to find ideas for how to make learning more fun.   From kindergarten readiness to college prep, Education.com is the leading destination for involved parents.  Often called ‘The WebMD of education,’ the company has teamed up with leading universities, nonprofits, and research organizations to offer highly credible parenting, developmental, and educational information.  The site also offers printable activities, community resources, access to best-of-breed educational services, and SchoolFinder – a tool that gives parents comprehensive data on the nation’s 125,000 public, private and charter schools.  Education.com was founded in 2006 and is headquartered in Redwood City, CA. The company is backed by leading venture capital firms, Azure Capital Partners, TeleSoft Partners, and California Technology Ventures.  For more information, please visit www.education.com .

Sue Scheff: Managing ADHD Survival Tips for Parents

powermomsunitePower Moms Unite!

I love this website!  Maybe it is because I can relate so well, after raising an ADHD son or how it explains in simple language the challenges parents of ADD/ADHD children have. 

As summer is almost here, read these fantastic “Summer Survival Tips” for families of ADHD children from Power Moms Unite website. 

adhdbalancinactStriking a Balance: Summer Survival Tips for Families Managing ADHD

One major issue with ADHD and summer vacations is the bored factor. Once the novelty of having all that free-time-to-do-anything wears away, what to do with all that free time becomes a problem.  On the other hand, over-scheduling and over-planning the summer can lead to burn-out and irritability for both parents and children.  The art of managing ADHD during the summer is really about the art of finding balance.  Several strategies can help strike this balance.

Keep a calendar: Use a monthly or weekly calendar and write down vacation, camp and community trip dates.  Kids need routine to feel secure, but be sure to leave some dates empty to allow for free time to simple create and imagine in the back yard.

Prescript your day: Early in the day, sit with your child and review what they want to accomplish and what you need to accomplish.  Negotiate how each of you will spend your time so as not to conflict.  Explicitly state how you expect your child to behave for any important activities (like that very important conference call at 1PM) and be sure to reward them for following the “script.”

Make a summer contract: Use the summer as an opportunity to help your child explore their interests, reinforce their academic skills, and find their passions.  Write out a contract with your child, in which they list their goals for the summer.  Goals could include places they would like to visit, books they would like to read, cub scout activities they would like to complete, models they would like to build- the list of possibilities is endless.  Include goals you and the teacher identify as well.  If you have a therapist, consult them regarding activities to persue over the summer break.  Activities can be focused on building a friendship with a particular friend, trying new foods with dinner, volunteering at a local soup kitchen, or learning the steps to complimenting a sibling. Set a due date and reward for completing each goal.  Consider rewarding the child with a bonus for completing all their goals for the summer.

Loosen up but keep a routine: Part of the brillance of summer is the long days and lazy nights without a tight schedule to keep.  The occasional later bedtime and relaxation of the rules are part of the inherent beauty of summer vacation.  That being said, basic family rules, chores, and routines still need to be followed.  Be mindful that a little sleep deprivation can lead to meltdowns for both parent and child any time of year.  Rules about not playing on the computer all day, still need to be followed, even during the summer.  Too much screen time robs kids of opportunities to build social skills and develop interests as well as leads to irritability.

Manage medicine:  Some parents take a medication vacation over the summer, in an effort to allow their children to gain some weight and height.  There is little evidence however, that ADHD medications permanently impact a child’s height.  Kids often grow slower than their non-medicated peers, but do eventually catch-up.
Before taking a medication vacation, consider all the aspects of your child’s summer.  Will you be taking a long trip, during which time your child will need to sit still? How will you all survive the trip?  Will your child be in camp, where she will need to follow directions?  Will ADHD behavior make it hard for her to participate in group activities or attend to social cues from new friends?  Will your child have lots of unscheduled time with neighborhood kids, in which impulsive behavior could result in unsafe decisions or poor peer interactions? Before taking a medication vacation, consider all these potential situations.

ADHD is a chronic lifelong condition that needs to managed- will your child’s self-esteem, self-image, and social skill acquisition benefit from a medication vacation?  Consider your goals for your child’s summer and how a medication vacation could affect your child’s success in their summer activities.

In lieu of a complete ADHD medication vacation, consider the use of shorter acting medications for the most challenging activities of your child’s summer- like a long car ride or plane trip.  Shorter acting medications can cause fewer appetite- suppressing effects.  Speak with your child’s physician, and collaborate with your child, as you make these decisions.  Remember that as you are modeling healthy management of a condition that will likely be a lifelong journey for your child.  Fuel their passions, provide opportunities to build skills, and model a healthy approach to symptom management.

Relax: Use the summer to reconnect and play.  Just as your kids schedule time to do homework during the school year, schedule regular time to play with your kids every day after work.  Play catch, go for a swim, bike down to the ice cream shop- do activities together to build your relationship and create a healthy self- image. Enjoy your summer together!

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Parents Universal Resource Experts (Sue Scheff) Summer is Approaching

It is the time of year that many summer programs are actually filling up!

 

Finding a good summer programs, such as Leadership Programs, can help your child build their self esteem to make better choices as well as motivate them to reach their highest potential.

 

If your child is starting to struggling in school, whether it is peer pressure or other issues, you may want to consider summer alternatives.

 

CAMP FINDERS is a fantastic resource for parents and a free service to help you find the perfect camp to fit your child’s interest.

Sue Scheff (P.U.R.E.): Summer Camps and Summer Programs are filling now

militsummer.jpgIt is the time of year that many summer programs are actually filling up!
Finding a good summer programs, such as Leadership Programs, can help your child build their self esteem to make better choices as well as motivate them to reach their highest potential.
If your child is starting to struggling in school, whether it is peer pressure or other issues, you may want to consider summer alternatives.