Posts Tagged ‘Halloween costume’

Three Things Nobody Tells You About Preschoolers

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

Welcome, Jen Singer, who is guest posting today!
Jen is the creator of and the author of presents: Stop Second Guessing Yourself – The Preschool Years (HCI, September 2009). She offers up three things nobody tells you about parenting preschoolers — and how to deal with them…

If you’re just coming out of the exhausting, filled-with-major-milestones toddler years, you may wonder what lies ahead. Preschoolers are like tiny teens in light-up sneakers: increasingly independent and yet in dire need of your supervision and guidance as they spend less and less time with you. A few tips:

1. Their milestones are far more nebulous. Your toddler hit the Grand Slams of Milestones: walking, talking, potty training. But your preschooler’s milestones are a little less concrete. As you parent your three-to-five-year-old, you’ll come to learn about fine and gross motor skills, socialization and kindergarten readiness, among others. They’re a wishy-washy bunch of milestones, but you can learn to deal with them as your child gets ready for preschool and beyond.

What to do. One of the most-important milestones is getting your child get ready for school. Picture a preschool teacher trying to help 20 three-year-olds on with their coats, and you’ll see why these teaching your child these basics are as important as going over counting and colors. The school-readiness three:
a. Teach him to put on his own coat.
b. Teach her how to share with playdates, playgroups and have lots of patience.
c. Teach her how to sit still (or at least more still than usual) with floor time and bedtime reading.

2. Discipline becomes more difficult as your preschooler becomes more verbal.

You’ve decided that your preschooler should wear her pink dress on the first day of school, but she has different plans – and she tells you so. Before you know it, you feel like you’re in mediation with a very skilled lawyer who has compiled compelling reasons why her Cinderella Halloween costume would be more suitable garb for the occasion.

What to do: Step up the sophistication of your discipline plan as your three-to-five-year-old gets more and more savvy. Preschoolers have great verbal skills and a frighteningly proficient ability to push your buttons. The Time-Outs that worked for your toddler need to be amped up now. Here’s how:
a. Choose which behaviors are misdemeanors and which are felonies beforehand, so you know what to correct as they come.
b. Be as emotionless as possible when you dole out consequences, because preschoolers love to get your goat.
c. Don’t set up a Time-Out in a fun spot, like the middle of the playroom.
d. A Time-Out should equal one minute for each year of age.
e. Revisit the infraction after the Time-Out ends by talking about it.
f. Stick to your guns. If you skip a Time-Out now, your preschooler will make note of it for later.

3. Preschoolers can be far more independent than we give them credit for.
Your preschooler just got up from the kitchen table, leaving behind his empty plate and cup. You think nothing of it. After all, you’ve been waiting on him since he was born. But now that your child is more dexterous and able to focus better than when he was a toddler, he’s ready to take on more tasks around the house.

What to do: Anybody who actually likes to sing the Barney ‘Clean-Up’ song ought to be put to work. I’m not talking about scrubbing floors while singing songs from ‘Oliver,’ but preschoolers can do a variety of chores – and they may actually enjoy them. Get started by:
a. Making it easy. Stick to simple tasks, like putting toys in the toy box or putting cups in the dishwasher.
b. Giving guidance. Break out tasks with simple steps, such as “Put your doll in the toy box… Good! Now put your socks in the hamper… Good!”
c. Set a deadline. She’ll be more likely to clean her stuff off the coffee table now if you tell her to finish it by the time the egg timer rings.
d. Praise, praise, praise. Who doesn’t want some positive feedback when they help out around the house?

Get Your Halloween Safety Tips Here!

Friday, October 31st, 2008

Happy Halloween! I hope you're looking forward to a fun day — and a spooky evening — with your kids.

While you're busy getting those costumes and bags (and bags!) of candy ready, make sure you're up to speed on Halloween safety tips, too.

It's easy. Just click here and scroll down the page a bit to hear my tips on the Rob & Joss show on Froggy 92.9 in Sonoma, California.

Happy Halloween!

Sexy Halloween Costumes for Girls: Where Should Parents Draw The Line?

Monday, October 27th, 2008

I still remember seeing her when my now-seventh-grade son was in first grade: the 6-year-old girl in the midriff-baring Britney Spears Halloween costume, tossing her hair and trying to give off a decidedly sexy-teen vibe.

She was SIX. And I remember thinking to myself, even then: “This girl will be in trouble someday.”

Never mind that the elementary school allowed her to strut her stuff in the school Halloween parade, in obvious violation of the stated Halloween dress code. Where were this girl’s parents? And what were they thinking?

In today’s Los Angeles Times, Melissa Healy’s article, Sexy Halloween Costumes… For Little Girls? talks about titillating Halloween outfits being marketed to kids. It’s a trend that’s picking up even more steam this year, apparently.

What’s a parent to do? Check out the article and tell us what you think.

Let The Force Be With Your Kids This Halloween

Wednesday, October 8th, 2008

Looking for an adorable, fun (and cozy) Halloween costume for your baby or toddler? I fell hard for the $19.99 Princess Leia costume featured in a fun post, by Oz Spies, over at DailyBabble. The little hat with the "buns" just slays me.

I like the fact that the Daily Babble post features costumes at different price points, including a too-cute $19.99 Yoda costume.

With many families watching their budget more closely right now, a $20 costume (or making your own costume for even less) is looking a lot better than some of the over-the-top get-ups you'll find for $65 or more.

The site provides links so you can order online. My only piece of advice: Having stood in line at a local costume shop in late 
October, surrounded by frustrated parents and cranky kids, I'd highly recommend ordering online — and ordering early.

Happy Halloween!