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Chaperoning a Kindergarten Class: Not as Easy as It Looks

Sherry Rucherman

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When you see a group of kids out with their teachers, you might be worried that their group will get in front of you in line. But you probably don’t think much else about the large, organized group sharing your space in the museum, restaurant, or wherever.

The children are usually in pairs, holding hands, and walk single file down rows and sidewalks. The whole thing seems so organized that anyone who has never actually been on one of these field trips as an adult doesn’t realize how much work goes into making those trips manageable.

Daddy Blogger 

Clint Edwards is the owner of a blog called “No idea what I’m doing: a daddy blog.” Like most first time parents, he quickly came to the realization that parenting was not what he expected.  Children are their own little people, and any expectations he started with were quickly crushed. 

In his blog, Clint talks about the adventures he gets to have as a parent.  He blogs about how he came to spend so much time with his children, and how different his life was before them. He talks about challenges, like supporting his daughter with ADHD. In one recent blog, he recounts how a coworker told him how tough he makes parenting look. But Clint knows he has great kids, and nothing can make up for the magic of being a parent.

Volunteering Looked Easy

Most schools welcome parent volunteers during field trips, and some would have difficulty without the extra help. Having parents means being able to split into smaller groups, so each adult only has to keep eyes on a smaller number of kids at once.

Clint volunteered to chaperone his daughter’s kindergarten class when they got to make a trip to a pumpkin patch. He was responsible for keeping track of just five small kids, which sounds perfectly doable. 

Other People’s Kids Are Harder 

While he is glad he volunteered, and happy he got to spend extra time with his daughter, Clint was shocked at how much more difficult it was than he thought. 

He was only with the group for four hours, but spent the time worrying he’d lose one of the children and something horrible would happen. There were other problems, like mud and strange smells, and he worried that he wouldn’t be able to keep the children clean, safe, and behaving. 

Teachers As Heroes

Even while he worried, the teachers were in charge, making it look easy.  They got the children to change shoes at the beginning and end of the trip, and they kept everyone focused on the trip. Not only did they do a great job keeping order, they did it all with patience and big smiles on their faces.

Clint says he hasn’t had a drink for 16 years, but he really wanted to after the field trip. Instead, he had a handful of Tylenol, a long, hot soak in the bathtub, and more cookies than he really needed. 

Gratitude 

Clint quickly realized that he had no problem spending the day with his own children, but being responsible for other people’s children is much harder. He realizes teaching is not the job for him, but he has so much respect for the teachers who dedicate their lives to their students. 

Clint wants to send a message to teachers about what a great job they’re doing, and to parents that they should thank their children’s teachers and give them a pat on the back. 

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Parenting

Mom had put medical school on hold to raise her daughter. Now they will be residents together.

Sherry Rucherman

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Dr. Cynthia Kudji Sylvester had put her medical school on hold to raise her daughter. In a rare situation, now both mother and daughter will be doing their medicine residency together. In an interview with People magazine, Cynthia shared how her visit to her birth country, Ghana, inspired her to become a medical doctor. When Cynthia was visiting Ghana, a local family had come up to her asking for medical help. There was a child in the family who was sick and they didn’t have enough money to afford medical treatment. The local family assumed that because Cynthia had come from the US, she must be a doctor. That incident shook Cynthia. The divide between people from developed countries compared to people from poor countries was very disturbing for her. Cynthia thought everyone deserves the basic needs of life such as food, education, and medicine. At that time, Cynthia was just a college student.  After her visit to Ghana, It had become her life’s goal to become a medical doctor.

During her final year of college at Tulane University, Cynthia became pregnant. Once she found out that she was going to be a mother, she knew that her ambition of becoming a medical doctor had to wait. At that time, Cynthia thought it would probably be a break of a couple of years before she can rejoin medical school. However, as fate would have it, she couldn’t go back to medical school for many years after giving birth to her beautiful baby daughter, Jasmine.

Cynthia had to work to support to daughter. She was also conscious about giving the attention and focus that her daughter deserved. It was not easy for Cynthia to put her dream on hold, but her love for her daughter overpowered any dreams she had. She put her daughter above everything else. To support her daughter, Cynthia became a nursing assistant. She wanted to be part of the medical profession so being a nursing assistant was a good option for her.

As a single mom, Cynthia worked extremely hard to raise her daughter. Not only did you provide for the financial needs of Jasmine but also took out time to spend with her daughter. It took Cynthia 10 years to become a nurse practitioner. While raising her daughter as a single mom, Cynthia never gave up on her dream to become a medical doctor. The dream had been delayed but it was not canceled. As a single mom, it was difficult for Cynthia to save enough money to be able to afford medical college while saving enough for her daughter’s future.

After many years of hard work, frugal living, and some help from family members, Cynthia was able to join a medical school. However, before she could spend money on herself, she made sure Jasmine had enough to fund her education. Jasmine saw her mother work hard and was inspired to do the same. She too worked hard to achieve excellent grades in school and got admitted to medical school. This was a proud moment for Cynthia who had sacrificed a lot for this moment. Finally, it was time for Cynthia to resume her dream of becoming a medical doctor. She joined her daughter in medical school. They will be doing their residency together. The story of Cynthia and Jasmine is a heartwarming reminder of how some parents sacrifice their dreams so that their children can fulfill their dreams. In this case, fortunately, Cynthia was also able to eventually fulfill her dreams but not without years of sacrifice.

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Parenting

A 4-year-old girl gives makes a video on how boys should show manners to win over girls

Leslie Tander

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A 4-year-old girl named Delilah used her mom’s phone to make a short video on how boys should learn manners if they want to impress girls and win them over. Boys of all ages should listen to her advice. In the video, Delilah talked about how she was just enjoying her day in the park when some boys started making obnoxious animal noises to gain her attention. Delilah ignored the boys but she couldn’t help but think that those boys had got it all wrong. Why would anyone like to be spoken to like an animal? Girls are not impressed with bad behavior at all. The boys thought by making such noises, they could get Delilah to come to play with them. A better way would have been to walk up to Delilah and ask her if she would like to play with them.

The boys were much older to her, so she felt a bit intimidated by them. Delilah is a strong girl and the noises from the boys did not stop her from playing in the park. She continued to enjoy her time on the swings. However, after a while, the noises became more disturbing to her and she left. When she went to the car, she asked her mom if she could make a video. Once she recorded her message, she asked her mom if this video can be shared online so that her message can reach as many people as possible. Her mom was extremely proud of the way Delilah handled the situation. The mom expected Delilah to cry and complain about what the boys were doing but she showed great restraint and character. She also did create a scene at the park. She tried her best to keep ignoring the boys for as long as she could.

This was not an isolated incident for Delilah. She often observed boys misbehaving to get attention. She has not figured out the reason why boys misbehave to get attention. For some reason, they think by behaving in such a manner, they could get the attention they seek. Maybe it is because it makes them look “cool” to behave like this. In any case, the video made by Delilah is a reminder for all us that bad behavior is not going to get you any friends.

The cute video went viral on social media and was shared by many people online. If a 4-year-old girl can feel the need to make a video and offer some advice to the boys on how to behave, that means she must have felt very strongly about this matter. Although the video was cute and funny, such matters need to be taken seriously. Such incidents can leave a lasting impression on the impressionable minds of young kids. For the kids who misbehave, it is the responsibility of the parents to teach their kids how to behave.

This particular incident was about boys misbehaving but it’s not about boys vs. girls. There are incidents where girls misbehave too. The message in this video is about respecting other people regardless of age, gender, race, etc. One of the mistakes made by parents is to not take such incidents seriously. It is true that when kids were young, they tend to do stupid things. However, this is also the age when habits start to form. If no one tells them what is right and what is wrong, they will not learn. Training your kids to have manners is a good foundation to develop their character for life.

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Parenting

RESEARCH-BACKED WAYS TO THRIVE THROUGH THE TODDLER YEARS

Leslie Tander

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A lot of parents out there have some preconceived notions about the toddler years necessarily being difficult and unpleasant. While it’s true that it can at first be difficult to deal with the sometimes over-the-top emotions of toddlers, parenting a toddler doesn’t have to be hard. 

The truth is that there are a lot of misunderstandings out there about parenting toddler-aged children. The number one thing to understand is that toddlers are not going to act rationally. If you want parenting your toddler to get easier, it’s time to start empthazing. Things will go more smoothly once you succeed at understanding all the trials and tribulations of your toddler experiences while learning to handle a bewildering new world that’s as yet still quite unfamiliar.  

The growing toddler

As a toddler grows, he or she goes through a few spurts of growth. Growth spurts can have a significant impact on how a toddler behaves. As a parent, you should look out for the signs that your toddler is dealing with a growth spurt. One clear sign that your toddler is in the middle of a growth spurt is that he or she is behaving erratically. 

When your child starts to act cranky or erratic, it’s a good idea to try to channel his or her energy into educational play. Find toys that your child likes that further his or her development. Remember that play is an essential part of toddler growth and entertainment. Invest in toys that help to build skills as they entertain. This can provide some wonderful distraction amidst tumultuous periods of growth and change in a toddler’s everyday life. 

It’s important to realize that play is probably the most important aspect of everyday life for a toddler. In fact, play is practically a toddler’s responsibility. Toddlers need to be entertained or they can start to grow restless and misbehave. Help your child to learn to entertain himself or herself. This will keep your toddler independent and happy so that you have some time for yourself. 

Teaching your toddler empathy

Another thing that’s important when you’re parenting a growing toddler is teaching your toddler to empathize. The toddler years are a time of key emotional growth and development. You want to work on developing your toddler’s emotional intelligence. This doesn’t just help your child to thrive during the toddler years, but also later in life as well.

Help your child learn to empathize by taking the time to answer all his or her questions and thoroughly explaining the unfamiliar. While you’re trying to empathize with your child, you should also be trying to get your child to empathize with yourself and others as well. The toddler years are a time when it’s important to start teaching your child manners. Encourage your child to be helpful and kind to those around them. 

If you’re a parent whose child is just approaching the toddler years, have no fear! These years don’t have to be challenging. If you know how to approach toddler parenting, you can minimize tantrums and misbehavior and start teaching your child how to live with and get along with others. 

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