Helping Children Who Struggle to Learn

4 Tips For Finding The Best Summer Day Camp For Your Child

If you want to make sure that you are finding the best summer day camp for your child, you will want to review the following four tips.

Consider The Availability Of Kids Your Child Will Already Know

If you would like to make sure that your child already knows as many kids as possible when first arriving at the day camp, it may be best to select a camp that is located as close to your home or school district as possible. However, if you would like to place your child in a situation where he or she will be more inclined to reach out to make new friends, you may want to consider a summer day camp that is a little further away from home.

Learn About The Focus Of The Camp

When you are looking into the various summer day camps, you will want to inquire about their main focus. For example, while some camps provide an experience that is well-balanced with a variety of activities such as arts and crafts, swimming, nature walks, music, archery, sports, or fishing, other camps focus more on one thing. Therefore, if you would like your child to learn a lot about swimming and water safety in general, you may want to find a day camp that focuses more on that than anything else.

Interview The Camp Counselor In Charge

You want to make sure that you are thoroughly aware of what the experience will be like for your child. To do this, you will want to ask questions regarding how arguments between kids are settled, how medication is dispensed, what the typical daily schedule looks like, how staff are selected and trained, and how many counselors there are compared to the number of children that will attend the day camp. Learning about such things will help you decide if this is the type of summer day camp that will be best for your child.

Consider The Expectations Of Your Child

While you may already have some of your own expectations, your child may have some as well. To help ensure that he or she will enjoy the experience, you will want to consider what they have to say. This way, you are less likely to end up with a bunch of phone calls about your child wanting to give up and come home early or quit altogether.

With those four tips in mind, you should have a much easier time finding the perfect summer day camp for your child. 

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3 Excellent Ways To Prepare Your Child For Preschool

When your child goes to preschool for the very first time, this is going to be a big deal for them and for you. In order to make this experience a positive and successful one, the key is going to be to prepare your child. Your child will not only feel more confident if they are prepared, but you will also have more peace of mind when leaving them there. There are several excellent things that you can do to prepare your child, and this article will discuss 3 of them. 

Socialize Them With Their Peers

To help your child get socially ready to attend preschool, you can start socializing them with children that are their own age. Set up play dates that allow your child to have one-on-one play time, as well as group play time. This will allow your child to learn how to interact in social situations, and it will also help them to see that other children have different thoughts, actions, and opinions than their own, which is a key social concept that all children must learn. This will give them the experience that they need to transition more smoothly into a preschool environment and will make it easier for them to interact with the other students and make friends. 

Read Books About Preschool 

A great way to help your child better understand a situation is to read them a book about it. There are several books out there that discuss what goes on in preschool and how it can be a fun and exciting experience for your child. These books talk about all of the learning the takes place in preschool, all of the friends your child will meet and make, and all of the exciting activities that they will be able to participate in. 

Sit Down And Talk With Them About Their Feelings 

After you have read books about preschool and taken your child to the preschool, then it can be a good idea to discuss with them how they feel about the whole preschool experience. You can ask them if they have any questions regarding what is going to happen at preschool and what is going to be expected of them. You can also ask them how they feel about going to preschool and if they are scared, nervous, anxious, excited, etc. Talking about these emotions can help them to better understand them and feel more comfortable going to preschool.  

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Considering Private School For Your Child? 3 Tips For The Parent Interview

If you want to send your child to private school, you’re eventually going to have to attend a parent interview or two. Do you remember your admissions interviews when you were applying to colleges? There’s a chance that you may find your child’s private school admissions interviews even more nerve-wracking, if only because you care so much about making sure they get the best education possible. But relax and take a deep breath – here are some tips to help you get through it.

Think Of It As A Conversation

They may call it an interview, but they expect you to ask questions too. So, what you really want to have is not an interview, but a conversation. And that’s good, because a conversation is much less intimidating than an interview.

You definitely want to keep up your end of the conversation, so do some prep work so that you know what you want to ask. Check out the school’s website – you don’t want to waste your time and the admissions director’s time by asking questions you could easily get the answers to on your own. Ask the questions that you really need answers to – if your child has a special talent or a special need, for example, you need to know exactly how they can nurture that talent or meet that need. Don’t downplay your child’s needs – a school that can’t meet them isn’t a school that you want to be at, so it’s best to find that out right away.

If you get stuck for an idea, ask what type of child and family excels at that school. See if you recognize your child and your family in the answer.

Review Your Application

The night before the interview, it’s not a bad idea to go back over your application to the school and any essays that you or your child submitted. The admissions director is likely to ask you what interests you most about that school and why you believe your child would be a good fit, among other things. Looking over the materials you submitted can help remind you why you wanted to apply in the first place.

This is especially helpful if you’ve applied to several different schools (which you should do – it’s best not to put all your eggs in the same basket). It’s easy to mix up the high points of two different schools if you’ve been thinking a lot about both of them recently.

Think About What You Can Contribute

It’s a well-known truism in the educational field that parental involvement is key to student success. Parental involvement is also a good thing for the school – it helps them turn out more successful students and it also helps them offer more to those students. This is true for both public and private schools – the difference is that public schools have to take students regardless of their parents’ level of involvement with the school. But in a competitive private school, a parent with something special to offer – or at least a great willingness to jump in and volunteer their time or energy – could be the thing that tips the scales in your child’s favor.

If you have a special talent to offer, or plenty of time to devote to booster club activities or band field trips, it couldn’t hurt to bring it up during the parent interview. And if you haven’t considered how you might get involved with the school before now, it’s a good idea to think about it before you go in for the interview. However, stick to actual involvement – don’t whip out your checkbook and promise a big donation. At one time that might have been an acceptable tactic, but many of today’s admission directors will consider it a faux pas. Your child’s school will happily take donations after your child has been accepted, but they’re likely to be offended at the implication that they would let you bribe your way in.

Once the interview is over, take a moment to send a short and sweet note of thanks to the director – or to whichever staff member conducted your interview. Send that off, then do something fun with your child and try not to worry about the outcome. One way or another, your child will end up in the school that’s right for them.

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Tips For Getting Your Child Off To Their First Day Of Daycare

If your child is going to daycare at a place like Cottonwood Montessori for the first time, you will find that the first day can be the hardest. Not only will it be a big change in your child’s routine, but they may also be nervous. There are some steps you can take to make that first morning go smoothly for the both of you. The smoother things go, the easier that first day will be on the both of you. Follow the tips below on your child’s first day of daycare.

Wake up before your child

Your morning routine is going to be much different on this day. Therefore, you want to go through the preparation process before your child gets up. Wake up earlier than normal and make any snacks they need to take, lay out their clothes, put their daycare bag together and take care of as much as possible before they wake up. This gives you extra time to deal with anything that comes up without the stress of being late.

Only give them one reminder about daycare

Once your child is awake, give them one reminder that they start daycare. Help them get excited about it. If they want you to tell them more about it, then do so. However, if they act like they don’t want to hear it then talk about other things.

Dress them in their favorite outfit

Let them wear their favorite outfit, even if it isn’t one that you would have chosen. It’s most important for your child to feel good about the way they look so they go to daycare feeling confidant. If you feel the clothes they picked will make them too hot or cold during the day, pack another outfit and let the daycare worker know your child can change once they are comfortably settled in at the daycare center.

Let them know you put a surprise in their bag

You can get your child a first-day-of-daycare surprise and put it in their bag. When you get to the daycare, let your child know there is a special surprise in their bag for them and they can have it during playtime. You should also inform the staff so they are aware to let your child get in their bag at playtime. The surprise will help your child have something positive to focus on and help them get excited about their first day at daycare.

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Want Your Child To Have More Freedom In Learning? 5 Benefits Of A Montessori Education

Public schools have structured classrooms, and the teacher generally sets up the lesson plan for each day. A Montessori education was created by Maria Montessori. This type of education uses a child-centered approach that encourages your child to have independence and freedom within limits when it comes to learning. Below are three benefits of this type of education so you can make the best informed decision for your child.

1. Pace

A Montessori education helps your child learn in their own unique way. The teacher sets up an individualized plan for each child, and then guides them through each level. Your child will not have to worry about competing with any of the other children in the classroom, and being able to take their time helps them to learn the subject material much better. For example, if your child is young and learning how to tie their shoes, they will not be rushed while they are learning. If your child is learning the alphabet, they will not have to rush through it. If they are better at math than other students are, such as learning to add numbers much more quickly, they could move up to division before everyone else in the class does.

2. Self Discipline

Your child will have the ability to choose the activities they want to do each day, as well as how long they want to stay on each task. The teacher will have some rules and guidelines set in place, however, to ensure your child is learning what they need to. But, allowing your child to choose on their own helps them with self-discipline, as well as motivation. 

3. Learning Styles

Some children learn better by doing, while others learn better by listening. For this reason, Montessori teachers are trained to accommodate the different learning styles so your child will be able to learn the materials much better and easier.

For example, if your child is learning about how volcanoes work, some children may learn quicker by listening to the teacher, while others may learn better by creating their own volcano. Your child will also have the choice to work on their own if they prefer. The teacher will make sure they are learning the materials, however.

Visit a Montessori school like Piedmont Hills Montessori Academy & School to help you make the final decision on if this is the right type of education on whether this is the right education for your child. The administrator can go over with you in detail how each classroom works, and you will likely be able to tour the classrooms while they are in session.

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5 Things To Look For When Finding A Charter School For Your Gifted Child

Charter schools offer alternative educational choices for children throughout the country. Each charter school will have a different approach and central philosophy and it really opens the doors on the education that is available for your child. If you have a gifted child, you may be looking for an educational alternative that works better for your family and situation. A charter school may be the perfect solution. There are five things you should look for when hunting for a charter school for your gifted child.

Focus on the Child

A child-centered school focuses on helping the children find their strengths. There is often more room for exploration in the classroom, and the focus is on child growth and learning. This is a good fit for a gifted child because the focus is on learning and not other issues.

Flexibility in Acceleration

According to the Colorado Board of Education, gifted children need the opportunity to study at an accelerated rate in a variety of different subjects. Many charter schools offer more flexibility in allowing children to study ahead or to move between grades to complete their schoolwork. Look for a charter school that has a clear plan in place for advanced students.

Parent Involvement

Another aspect you should consider is the amount of parent involvement that is expected at the school. Many schools have a minimum number of volunteer hours that need to be met each year. In addition, learn where those hours are spent with the children or doing more administrative work. You can get a good idea of the focus of the school from the type of volunteer hours they need.


Take the time to review the charter school’s reputation in the community. You can look at online sites, but you should also check with current parents of children who are attending the school. Additionally, you need to check with local board of education that is overseeing the school to see if there are any complaints or citations. There are wonderful charter schools out there, but there are also some not so great ones and it is important to do your research.

The Right Fit for Your Child

Take the time to find a charter school that is the right fit for your child. Many schools will allow your child to visit a classroom for the day or for part of it. A school tour is also an important part of choosing the school. Look at the classrooms and the discipline structure to make sure that this environment will be the right one for your gifted child. Each child is different and so is each school, so will need more info. You should be able to find a good match for your child.

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Being The Fun Babysitter: Tips When Watching Toddlers And Young Children

Whether you are watching a friend’s kids for the evening, or if you work with children every day, there are some ways to engage and please young children when they are under your care. You will be known as the best babysitter around when you come up with ways to entertain, teach, and please your young charges, which is not always easy. Try some simple suggestions that may help win you accolades, while also making the experience a bit better for everyone.

Tips to be the best babysitter ever include the following:

Teach kids about giving.

Instead of typical games and art projects, do something with kids that will teach them about giving to others. You can help children of all ages make blessing bags, small bags of basic everyday items, and donate them to an area shelter or church. These may consist of inexpensive items such as hygiene products, socks, candy, pens, or stamps, and can be a true blessing to those individuals receiving your thoughtful gift.

Appease picky eaters.

If you have the problem of finicky eaters, try feeding kids using ice-cube trays. Fill each compartment with foods that they like or that you think they may enjoy or that parents have suggested. This ensures foods don’t touch, and it is kind of a fun way to eat!

Make a sleep fort.

At bedtime, set up a sleep fort in the living room or other common area of the home. This will help children that are apprehensive about being away from home be more comfortable and secure. Pitch a tent or drape linens to create a cozy nook where kids can lay on sleeping bags or cuddle with blankets.

Lights, camera, action!

Shoot a video or make a movie of kids’ adventures, which is a great thing to share with parents when they come to retrieve their children. These can be as elaborate or as off-the-cuff as you wish, although providing costumes or props can be fun for kids to engage in. If you are not into video, take some fun photos of the kids that you can use later on to create customized cards or gifts for the child’s family, such as at holiday gift-giving time.

Don’t let babysitting get boring. Engage and interact in ways that will not only entertain kids, but that may teach them something in the process. Try these suggestions the next time you are sitting for someone’s child, or give it a go with your own kids!

If you love caring for children and are interested in taking your babysitting job to the next level, consider working at a daycare like Mountainside School.

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