You’ve purchased the school supplies, completed the forms, and updated the shots. While many parents consider the school prep done, a little more is needed to give children their best start. First, alleviate their fears. Each new year brings new challenges — different teachers, altered schedules, more difficult assignments. Some children greet the changes with excitement; others with fear. Parents can help turn the fear to excitement. Fear stems from feeling overwhelmed and unprepared. To combat the sense of being overwhelmed parents should help children break the challenges into manageable pieces. Instead of dealing with the larger challenge of Algebra, break the year’s math into steps: learning to factor, dealing with negatives, etc. When children face small bites rather than the whole pie, they tackle the challenge more confidently. Information cures the sense of being unprepared. Listen to your child’s concerns with an ear toward filling in what they don’t know. As you clear the confusion on how to pay for lunch or the process for turning in homework, you help enable your children to face the unknown with enthusiasm. Secondly, help your children set goals. Short term works best for younger children; give a more long-term outlook to your high-schoolers. With younger children, help them write down three goals they would like to accomplish during the first nine weeks. Master their five’s multiplication tables, begin using 20 new vocabulary words, or they might focus on something apart from school such as gathering 30 new specimens for their bug collection. High-schoolers can begin thinking where they want to be at graduation — academically, financially or vocationally — and then establish what they can do in the coming year to achieve that larger picture. Goals excite our children about the possibilities and give a map and focus for their time. The enthusiasm for accomplishing something they desire spills over into working hard at even the tasks they didn’t choose — spelling for example. See Wednesday's Times Sentinel for the full story.
- There arose such a clatter Clement Clarke Moore may have had reindeer on his mind when he sprang from his bed to see what was the matter. But the clamor today resonates to something not nearly as fun as eight tiny reindeer. The fuss is about an anti-nature ad that Toys“R”Us has created.
Fight on over same-sex marriage
INDIANAPOLIS - Oh, it's on. If there was any doubt that the coming fight over the same-sex marriage ban amendment in Indiana was going to be elevated to the national level, it's gone. On Tuesday, Nov. 26, Mary Cheney, the gay daughter of former Vice
- Smoldering artistic spark rekindled Exposure to the arts community in Zionsville has inspired me.
Helping children behave at Grandma’s
As families gather for Thanksgiving and other holidays, many parents worry whether their children will behave. With one ear tuned to the conversation with relatives and the other for misbehavior, parents have a hard time relaxing. A few tips can free both parents and children to enjoy the day.
Thankful for comfy pants
With the holiday season fully kicked off and running, I think it is high time to pay my respects to the most humble of pants, comfy pants.
Smokers' rights could be heated legislative issue
When Indiana lawmakers return for the 2014 session in early January, they’ll step into the highly charged issue of marriage equality as they debate the proposed amendment that would lock a ban on same-sex marriage and civil unions into the state constitution. But it may not be the only heated debate over government intrusion into people’s private lives.
Burn calories while being thankful
Oh yeah — time for Thanksgiving, and for the last two years I have offered eating tips on how to “manage the damage” of Thanksgiving and holiday eating. Let’s change it up and have some fun answering the question, “How many calories do you burn during a Thanksgiving meal?”
- Support Small Business Saturday every day It’s as if it were custom made for Zionsville — Small Business Saturday.
- You can’t have Indian pudding if you don’t eat your meat As I planned the Thanksgiving Day feast for my family this year, I kept feeling like something was missing.
- Band parents help orchestrate Goshen tax increase Never underestimate the power of high school band parents. That’s one lesson coming out of the special elections this month, when voters in four Indiana communities were asked to raise property taxes to provide more funding for their local schools.
- More Commentary Headlines