Archives for September 27, 2018

Tips on Choosing After-School Activities from Go Organically Fruit Snacks

School’s back in session—and so are after-school activities! From soccer to singing to scouting, there’s certainly no shortage of kid-centric extracurricular programs where you can spend your time and hard-earned cash. But how do you know which ones are right for your kid? We’re here to help you find out!

 

Gauge Their Interests

The best activity for your kid is the one they’re interested in. Older kids are likely to be drawn to what their friends are trying. Toddlers and younger kids may have trouble articulating what they want to try, but there are sure to be clues to look out for. Are they constantly running around? Maybe soccer would be a good fit. Do they like to bop along to the radio in the car? Perhaps they’d appreciate a music class.

 

Consider Their Personality

Have a shy kid who hides behind mama when meeting new people? An acting class probably isn’t the best idea. As tempting as it can be to use activities to help break kids out of their shell, it’s best to stick with classes that align with a kid’s authentic spirit. The more comfortable they are, the more confident they’ll be—which will hopefully lead to a willingness to try new things later on.

  • Individual Activities

Independent-minded kids tend to enjoy individual sports, such as gymnastics, tennis, dance or martial arts. Non-sport options could include private lessons in music or art. Benefits of these types of activities include building self-esteem, motor skills and attention/focus.

  • Group Activities

Socially-minded kids often prefer the camaraderie of team sports, such as soccer, basketball or hockey. Non-sport options could include scouting troops or theater arts. These types of activities emphasize teamwork, communication and discipline.

 

Take Advantage of Free Trial Classes

Once you’ve narrowed down your options, see if you can “try before you buy” with a free trial class. Many program facilitators understand that kids can be finicky creatures, with a passion for tap one day and taekwondo the next. And it’s a good idea to decide as a family before the program starts whether you’ll let your kiddo quit before the session is over if they don’t enjoy it or ask them to stick it out to the end to honor their commitment.

 

Think About Your Schedule

How many activities are too many? Well, that depends on the family and the child. Some kids have the interest and energy to take a bunch of different classes while others may feel overscheduled and stressed. Budget and work timetables can also be a factor. Only you can know what’s right for your family, so trust your gut and enjoy the ride!

When shuttling kids around to activities, be sure to take along Go Organically Organic Fruit Snacks. Made with real fruit and no artificial colors, our gluten-free, nut-free, dairy-free kids snacks are individually packaged for on-the-go convenience. Be sure to follow us on Facebook for kid-friendly ideas and inspiration!

Check out their blog post: https://www.goorganicallysnacks.com/choosing-after-school-activities/

My family loves their Fruit Snacks!

Self Disclosure: I received free samples to facilitate this post. No other compensation was received. Credit for Tips and image: Go Organically Organic Fruit Snacks. 

Book of the Week: Novelist and abuse survivor Gary Maynard reflects on how a redefining of child abuse can nurture a healthier generation of children

As someone who used to work for an agency that hoped to prevent child abuse, I found this an interesting one to read! Although it is a fiction story, it really addresses the issue of dysfunction and child abuse within the family. It also is action-packed and a book not easy to put down once you start reading it!

How do we, as a society, define child abuse? Ask anyone who’s been abused as a child and they can surely offer their own definition. It can be a controversial, complex subject, certain to arouse all sorts of emotions by its mere mention. 

Author and survivor Gary Maynard observes that the definition of abuse has grown broader since the 1970’s, the setting of his new novel, Plumbelly. And this is a good thing, helping protect many innocent children.

Plumbelly, a work of fiction about young people who set sail from Polynesia to flee abusive parents, explores forms of child abuse that were often passively accepted as a form of discipline, even in “idyllic” settings.

In addition to overt, physical abuse, Plumbelly mines a deeper truth that is relevant today: abuse can and should be seen as any behavior from a parent that is less than nurturing.

Maynard’s main character’s mercurial and physically frightening father is an echo of his own dad. Another of the character’s traditionally loving yet oppressive (and ultimately abusive) homes will resonate with others.

Plumbelly challenges our expectations of an abuse narrative, laying bare the complex spectrum of abuse in our culture, ultimately bending towards hope and triumph.

You can find this book on Amazon.com.

Self Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book to facilitate this post. I received many books and only feature those I recommend.