As a child I did not go to a local school, and it was always my dream to be able to walk to class. Now grown up with kids of my own, I live in a very foot-friendly Los Angeles community. From the moment my kids could take off on two feet, we have been promenading in the park and walking to the library, the grocery store, the farmer’s market, and our multiple options for fro-yo. I like to think that I have modeled safety and caution, and hope that's been absorbed by my children.
My daughter is off to middle school next year and I know she is going to want to walk. Should I let her? Yes. No. Maybe. It is possibly more difficult to parent a middle schooler than to be one.
The back-to-school season is filled with anticipation, excitement and stress—for kids and parents. There are new clothes and school supplies to buy, lunches and snacks to plan, and classes to prepare for (no easy task after summer slump). If you're worried that you'll never get it all done, stop, take a deep breath and check out our Back-to-School Guide, which is packed with simple tips and advice to help take the edge off.
The first day of kindergarten for Boston Public School students is September 12, and the organization Countdown to Kindergarten has plenty of information to help kids and families make the transition a smooth one. Highlights from its website include:
Kindergarten Days Parties - Celebrations are going on in each Boston neighborhood from now through September 9th. They are a great way to meet other students and families from your community. Check the calendar to find a Kindergarten Days Party in your neighborhood.
Countdown to Kindergarten Celebration at the Boston Children's Museum - Join Mayor Menino, Superintendent Carol Johnson, and others at the 12th annual citywide kindergarten celebration at the Boston Children's Museum on Tuesday, August 30th from 4:30 to 7:30.
Volunteer at a local Boston Public School on the first day of kindergarten. The first day of school is exciting and fun, but sometimes scary and overwhelming for young children. School staff welcome volunteers to help provide additional support to new students and families as they start kindergarten. To sign up, contact Sonia Gomez-Banrey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What kids eat is very important and having the right snack can actually improve a child's ability to learn. Our school occupational therapy consultant, Casey Halper, put together a list of sensory smart snacks just in time for back to school. That means that they are snacks that help kids stay alert and focused in school without making them hyper and restless. These are great snack ideas for children in school, but would be equally great snack choices for toddlers too. Some of the themes for healthy sensory snacks are:
Crunchy and chewy foods help make kids more alert by engaging their senses.
Sipping or sucking can help organize and calm children.
And of course fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and calcium rich foods make them healthy overall.
We're glad you're here at Mommy Poppins Boston, your free online resource for everything for families and kids in the greater Boston area. We'd love to hear from you with any questions or suggestions! — Tara