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I stopped being a helicopter parent and we are much happier

Lea Lomas

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The COVID-19 pandemic has forced people to stay home. This has also meant that families get to spend a lot more time together. In my case, I have had an opportunity to spend some quality time with my son. I have always been a helicopter parent, which means I have been overprotective of my son. I have taken an excessive interest in their life. At times I found myself double-checking his homework to make sure he has done the best he can. I had installed a camera in his room to monitor what he was doing. I used to check the camera excessively. There was a time he had to on a school field trip. I was so nervous that I decided to join them. I was the only parent to have joined them on the field trip. It was so embarrassing for me but it kept me from worrying about my son. It was just a lot of very unhealthy behavior. I had reached a helicopter parent burnout situation.

One surprising benefit of staying at home has been a change in my behavior towards my son. I have finally learned how to abandon being a helicopter parent. In the past, I have been hovering over my son like a helicopter. I might have to pretend to be chill and laid back but my mind is always on my son. A helicopter parent intends to make sure their child is safe from anything that could hurt them. This is not a bad intention to have. The problem with it is that it can be exhausting for the parent and annoying for the kid. Being home all the time made being a helicopter parent even more exhausting. Where is he? Did he do his homework? Is he hungry? Did he go out of the house? Did he fall? If I kept thinking about my son, I would just not able to do anything else.

Abandoning being a helicopter parent doesn’t mean I completely forget about my son and not care about him. It means being more selective about it. For example, I am still diligent to make sure he attends his virtual math class but I don’t need to know where he is all the time. I encourage him to eat healthy food but I am not overly stressed about every single thing he eats. This has made my son also more responsible for his actions. He now understands that I am not always hovering over him, protecting him, telling him what to do and what not to do. He has realized that is he is running the show, not me.

Staying at home has meant that there no strict schedules to follow. We have learned how to live and let live. We are together in the same house but not intruding into the personal space of the other all the time. We have interesting conversations about various things but I am constantly telling him what to do. Another advantage of abandoning being a helicopter parent is that I am a happier person and my son can feel that. There is more quality time we spend together. I think my son is better prepared to transition to the real world. Eventually, he will grow up and he would have to be responsible for his own life. If I had kept going on as I was, it would have made it harder for him. The COVID-19 pandemic will be always be remembered for the devastation it has caused, but it did allow me to change myself and for that I am thankful.

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Life

Disciplining A Child And Creating a Program To Discipline Themselves

Mackenzie Freeman

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When To Consider Raising or Having Children

1. Some people see that their lives would be enhanced if they were a parent and do not want to miss out on having a child,  especially when they hear their friends or associates praising having children in their lives.  Parenthood is glorified and is considered an extraordinary experience. Still, they do not think that there is any downside to having children because parenthood is a given and considered transcendent when a parent has one good experience with its child and the child,  is not interrupted by a Smartphone, headphones or earbuds, which does not qualify as a higher spiritual plane.  Parenting, being a given, must be thoroughly thought through because it is a full-time responsibility, which carves up all of one’s free time.

2. If your motive to be a parent is that people tell you that if you do not, you will regret this decision. This motive is not a good reason to be a parent.  While regretting not having children is a compelling reason to have children.

3.  If your partner wants to have children, should this motivate yourself to do so, even though you are ambivalent?  Being pressured to have a child by a desperate partner can easily backfire, and your partner’s motivation may be that desperate parent has doubts about the success of the marriage.

4. You should not have any genuine concerns about your parenting skills. While having concerns is not atypical, legitimate concerns should not be ignored.  It is essential that you know yourself and trust your feelings that you had doubts about whether you could love and protect your child.

 5.  When you thought about having a child, one factor was that the child could be an insurance policy to care for you as you age, and you feared to be lonely and neglected.

Parents Discipline of Young Children

It is unusual to determine your discipline strategy for your unborn child, but that issues arise in the early years of the child’s life.  Further, in your discussion with your partner concerning discipline, you may realize if there is a significant difference between you and your partner. That issue should be addressed before determining if your parenting styles significantly differ before you commit to having children.   

Discipline Factors

Discipline is directly related to the emotional well being of the parents, the age and developmental status of the child, and
ethnic and racial differences.  One would hope that the emotional well being of the parent would be explored before the parents deciding to have children.  

Stop Doing Tasks For Your Teenagers

A parents goal is to raise competent and capable adults and decide that disciplining their teenagers when they don’t complete essential tasks is not helping them to become well-functioning adults such as:

1. Ensuring that they wake themselves up in the morning when the snooze button on their alarm clock does not effectively wake them up,
2.  Making their breakfast and packing their lunch.
3.  Completing their school-related paperwork.
4. Bringing forgotten items to their school.
5. Do not cover your children’s failure to finish school projects.
6. Doing their laundry.
7.  Contacting their teachers or coaches. 
8. Becoming too involved with their academic responsibilities.
 
Teaching Children Common Sense Life Skills

Parents are concerned that whether they should use common sense to teach a child life’s skills to ensure that their children can function in the real world, which is unrelated to technology or computer knowledge.  Society expects that parents teach their children common sense life skills and will, in some form, punish parents for not doing so.  Parents have to set aside a home-based program to teach these skills.  The common-sense life skills program must be designed to have consequences putting the final responsibility on their children to show that they will suffer from avoiding tasks and must develop self-discipline.

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Life

Canadian IGA Rooftop Gardens Feeds Local Customers

Mackenzie Freeman

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In 2017, when the bourgh of St. Laurent in Montreal began pushing for rooftop gardens IGA Extra Famille Duchemin wanted to participate. Today it is one of the first supermarkets in Canada to grow produce on the roof. The garden is 25,000 square feet and  grows organic produce that is LEED Certified.The store grows and harvest over 35 different types of vegetables. They have beehives in the garden that produce honey sold to customers.

The store grows organic carrots, kale, spinach, green beans, eggplant, tomatoes, lettuce, basil, radishes, and more. The design of the garden is shaped like the letters IGA. When viewe  from a plane the garden is a striking design to see. IGA Extra Famile Duchemin staff hoped it might serve as an example to other stores.Co-owner Richard Duchemin says that the vegetable sell very well and when they decided to go with a rooftop garden they asked the questioon why don’t supermarkets have rooftop gardens as many restaurant do.

They knew they would be able to sell what they grow and this was a big factor in deciding to have a rooftop garden.The green roof regulates temperatures in the building below and the produce feeds the local customers. The garden is watered by using water from the dehumidification system in the store that is reclaimed. This garden has become a habitat for birds and bees. Growing their own vegetable on the roof saves the store, money because they do not have to transport it. 

The project was managed by a company called Ligne Verte a landscaping company in 2017 and they had a year round staff of two. It is the largest commercial rooftop garden in Canada. During busy times, they have an additional six month contract. Growing seasonal  produce results  in selling  out of produce. They can keep prices reasonable since they have no transportation costs. They planted strawberries recently  because it seemed to be a fruit that would be easy to grow. The gardeners  will eventually try to grow cherries.

The store installed a digal kiosk that allows customers to order produce from the garden on the roof and see how they grow the garden. The digital touch screen shows customers how the produce is grown and harvested. VIF Tele designed the digital touchscreen system that integrated hardware and software for ordering and viewing marketing content. They system updates inventory available continuously.

This kiosk is interactive and customers can view products available in real time grown in the rooftop garden. Orders are sent immediately from the garden to wireless tablets used by the rooftop team and the inventory of vegetables is updated regularly. Customers can see staff picking their order in the garden and  walking down 44 steps to deliver the order to the customer. The interactive technology increased sales by 25 percent. It creates a direct link between their customers and farmers growing the produce on the roof. 

IGA Extra Famile Duchemin uses social media to expand the advertising and marketing of their rooftop garden. In addition to growing their own produce the buy and sell produce from locall organic farms. They have videos of their rooftop garden on YouTube that has increased their customer base. They hope to make rooftop gardens a trend for other supermarkets.

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Life

First-Ever Black Valedictorian for Princeton University in 274 years

Leslie Tander

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Based out of New Jersey, Princeton University is one of the most prestigious universities in the United States. It is part of the exclusive private Ivy League group of universities.  It has a proud 274-year old history and at that time it has never had a black valedictorian. That is until the year 2020. Princeton announced that Nicholas Johnson of the class of 2020 as its first-ever black valedictorian. Although Princeton has been a primarily white Caucasian university, it is proud of its growing student diversity and celebrates this achievement by Nicholas. Princeton University has taken conscious steps to promote racial diversity. As of 2020, Princeton has increased its black student body to 8% in its undergraduate programs. This almost double the percentage at other rival universities such as Duke and Dartmouth.

Nicholas Johnson belongs to Montreal, Canada. At Princeton, he was studying operations research and financial engineering. The announcement for the valedictorian was done in April 2020 and Nicholas will be speaking at the virtual commencement ceremony to be held on 31st May 2020. It unfortunate that with the COVID-19 situation, Nicholas will not be able to speak at an in-person commencement ceremony. In any case, this moment holds a special place for Nicholas, given the historical ties of Princeton University to the institution of slavery. Nicholas was not expecting this honor and is extremely thankful to his parents and grandparents for instilling the values of hard work in him and for all the sacrifices they have made for him. He is also proud of his African American heritage and looks forward to keeping up his academic excellence. He hopes his achievement will inspire future generations of black students.

During his time at Princeton, Nicholas was actively involved in extracurricular activities. He participated in internships abroad and was part of the cultural immersion trips to South America, Asia, and Europe. His senior thesis was based on the development of software to combat obesity in Canada through a preventive community-based intervention system. His research also included social distancing measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Nicholas was worked as a software engineer at Google’s state headquarters for California.

Nicholas is an avid fan of the Toronto Raptors from the NBA and also enjoys playing basketball. In his free time, he enjoys playing chess and having meaningful discussions with his teammates on various topics such as academics, sports, and world history. Nicholas was a popular student amongst his classmates. He was always ready to help fellow students and was extremely down-to-earth in his demeanor. He was friendly to classmates from all races and was a promoter of cultural diversity and participated in several events in the field of debates, dramatics, and sports.

The faculty at Princeton describes Nicholas as a personable and hardworking individual. They were able to recognize his outstanding brilliance while teaching him. They were particularly impressed with Nicholas’s interest and drive in solving some of the pressing challenges of the world such as obesity. Nicholas was ready to go above and beyond the requirements of the curriculum. They believe with his work ethic and ambition, he could change the lives of millions of people. The faculty is proud of his achievement and wish him the best in the future.

For the future, Nicholas has ambitious goals. This coming summer he will intern as a software developer for the D.E. Shaw Group, which is a well-recognized technology development company. After his internship, Nicholas will begin his Ph.D. program in operations research at the famous Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, MA.

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