An Eye Opening Experience: Picking the Perfect Pediatrician

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An Eye Opening Experience: Picking the Perfect Pediatrician

My first job as a TV reporter was in Midland, Texas. The small town the Bush family is from. Yeah, the two Presidents. One of my photographers and pals at the station was Woody Lockwood. Those were the days before kids and responsibilities. But now, we're all grown up and he wanted to share an important message for all new parents. Take a look at Avery's story.

My youngest daughter, Avery has been the joy of our lives. We've been taking her to the same pediatrician since birth. They use a device there called Spot Vision.  Just recently, they found a problem. This is a Vlog about what you should look for in a pediatrician and why it can make all the difference.  -Woody

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Inspiring a Love of Learning

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Inspiring a Love of Learning

How can you help your child become a lifetime learner? How can you ensure that your child is learning to the best of his or her ability? There are ways to guide your child toward a happy and successful schooling experience.

So, where do you start? One exceptional resource is The Kelter Center, founded by Sasha Borenstein. Borenstein is an educational innovator and teacher of children, adolescents and adults for over 40 years. Her passion is the translation of neuropsychology, cognitive psychology and educational research into teaching programs that work.

The Kelter Center uses state-of-the art, research-based methods to assess each student’s learning abilities and tailor a one-on-one instructional program to close the gap between the student’s current performance and the student’s potential performance.

Watch the video to see if your child might be struggling. Find out what to look out for and how you can ensure your child’s success.

For more information about the Kelter Center: http://www.thekeltercenter.com/

*This is a re-post from a few months ago. SMN has had many inquiries recently about learning and a child’s educational track.

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12 Weeks to Read a Million Words

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12 Weeks to Read a Million Words

Need some ideas to get your kids reading more?

The Million Word Challenge encourages children, preschool – 12th grade, to read MILLIONS of words outside of school between February 17, 2015 and May 8, 2015. By reading together as a family, parents can help improve their children’s literacy skills and improve their chances of graduating from high school.

According to the California Department of Education, 56 percent of third grade students in Los Angeles County are not reading at grade level. As a way to incentivize children preschool-12th grade to read more outside of the classroom, Families In Schools is launching its 13th annual Million Word Challenge, a campaign that promotes the culture of literacy at home and academic achievement at school. Reading is important for children to succeed in school and life!

To participate, families are required to register with Families In Schools. When families register for the Million Word Challenge they will receive a Family Reading Guide, weekly family learning tips and activities,as well as several opportunities to win prizes throughout the 12 week campaign.

For more info about the Million Word Challenge and to register, please visit FamiliesinSchools.org or call (888) 766-2242.

Are you up for the challenge?

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STEAM/STEM Toys! Best Brain Boosters for your Kids!

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STEAM/STEM Toys! Best Brain Boosters for your Kids!

‘Tis the season for TOYS! So this year, SuperMommyNot.com breaks down the best brain booster toys out on the market.

We’re talking STEM and STEAM toys: Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math toys!

What is STEAM? STEMtoSTEAM.org explains:
In this climate of economic uncertainty, America is once again turning to innovation as the way to ensure a prosperous future.

Yet innovation remains tightly coupled with Science, Technology, Engineering and Math – the STEM subjects. Art + Design are poised to transform our economy in the 21st century just as science and technology did in the last century.

We need to add Art + Design to the equation — to transform STEM into STEAM.

STEM + Art = STEAM

STEAM is a movement championed by Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and widely adopted by institutions, corporations and individuals.

The objectives of the STEAM movement are to:
-transform research policy to place Art + Design at the center of STEM
-encourage integration of Art + Design in K–20 education
-influence employers to hire artists and designers to drive innovation

I asked my sister, Dr. Nicole Tetreault, a neuro-scientist to take a look at some of the top toys for brain boosting and explain how these types of toys are great for your egghead! Take a look at the video:

And for more great brain games and toys check out the links below:

PBS.org

ParentMap.com

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Is Your Child Gifted? How to Identify Giftedness, Part 1 & 2

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Is Your Child Gifted? How to Identify Giftedness, Part 1 & 2

“The term ‘gifted and talented,” when used with respect to students, children, or youth, means students, children, or youth who give evidence of high achievement capability in such areas as intellectual, creative, artistic, or leadership capacity, or in specific academic fields, and who need services or activities not ordinarily provided by the school in order to fully develop those capabilities.” That’s the Federal Definition for the Gifted and Talented.

But what does giftedness mean day to day? How can parents help their gifted children thrive? Just because a child is gifted does not mean he is set up for success. In fact, a gifted child can experience social and emotional difficulties, keeping him from reaching his full potential. See more at: National Association for Gifted Children

iq

Here at SuperMommyNot.com, we try to break down some of the elements of giftedness. In our two part series, today we begin with the IQ test and how to help your gifted child manage his/her gift. Check out the videos below.

What is a gifted kid? Gifted consultant and mother to two gifted children, Sharon Duncan, explains the IQ test and what it means. Giftedness is not just about academics (math and science.) It’s about a different way of experiencing the world. Find out more in the video below!

How can you help your gifted child? Sharon Duncan says “FEED THE BEAST!” Watch the video for more!

In part two of our series, we will go in depth to explain the different characteristics of the gifted. Parents will also get more insight into how they can better understand their gifted kid. STAY TUNED!

And for more information on gifted children, head on over to Sharon Duncan’s website: GiftedIdentity.com

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Flu Shot Or Not?

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Flu Shot Or Not?

With flu season in full swing the CDC is spreading the word to get vaccinated. There are so many myths about the flu, but here’s what you need to know.

Flu Myth: The seasonal flu is annoying but harmless.

There has been a lot of focus on swine flu, but it’s important to remember that the run-of-the-mill seasonal flu can be a serious condition itself. “A lot of people just think of the flu as a very bad cold,” says Curtis Allen, a spokesman for the CDC in Atlanta. But it’s much worse than that.

Flu Myth: The flu vaccine can give you the flu.

There is simply no way that the flu vaccine can give you the flu. It’s impossible, according to the CDC.

Flu Myth: Antibiotics can fight the flu.

Antibiotics only fight bacterial infections. Flu — whether it’s typical seasonal flu or swine flu — is not caused by bacteria, but by a virus. So antibiotics have absolutely no effect on any kind of flu. (Source: CDC)

So, who in your family should get a flu shot? Watch the video for all the information you need.

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Back-To-School Eye Health

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Back-To-School Eye Health

Back-to-school means heading back to the pediatrician for check-ups and visiting the dentist… but what about your kids’ eyes? SuperMommyNot takes a look at eye health and what every parent needs to know. Sunglasses aren’t only cool, but necessary! Watch the video!

Eye Health Facts:

Annual Comprehensive Eye Exam: Only 7% of kids have had a comprehensive eye exam by the start of first grade and only 50% – by the time they graduate high school . Most of a child’s eye health problems can be fixed, stopped or prevented at a young age. It’s estimated that 80% of a child’s learning is visual , but simple visual screening required by schools detects only 5% of vision problems. Poor vision puts children at a disadvantage when learning how to read, write and understand what is happening in the classroom. According to Dr. Mark Jacquot, Clinical Director of Vision Care for LensCrafters,“vision may change frequently during adolescence and it is essential that children receive annual eye exams. Back-to-school is the perfect time to schedule a comprehensive eye exam for your child so he or she can start the new school year off on the right foot.”

Screen Time: Children age eight to 18 spend more than seven hours each day with electronics. With 52% of children having access to tablets and one-third of U.S. high school students owning a smart phone it is important to keep an eye on screen time.

Tips on reducing the damaging effects of ‘blue light:’

Follow the 20/20/20 Rule: Every 20 minutes look away from your screen- 20 feet ahead- for 20 seconds. It is important to consistently give your eyes a short screen break.

Wear Glasses: The drying effect from staring at your screen can be especially uncomfortable for those who wear contacts. Swapping your contacts for glasses will give your eyes (specifically your corneas) a rest.

Use Artificial Tears: Artificial tears will help to hydrate the corneas. Eye doctors suggest putting them in before bed, after a child wakes up and in the afternoon.

Eat an Eye Friendly Menu:
-Antioxidant vitamins and minerals, lutein, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids all help protect your eyes. To make sure kids receive enough of these natural vision helpers, be smart about school lunches and snacks.
-Yellow and orange fruit and vegetables like peppers, carrots, oranges and bananas, along with egg yolks, contain eye healthy nutrients. Scrambled eggs with bell peppers for breakfast will help to start the day off right.
-Upgrade school lunch with homemade fish fingers at least twice a week – cold water fish such as tuna or salmon helps prevent eye disease and maintains healthy eyes for life.
-Make sure kids eat at least one serving of leafy greens per day. Their nutrients act like sunscreen for your eyes. A handful of spinach or kale and a few almonds in an after-school fruit smoothie make a yummy and healthy treat.

Vision and Exercise: Young children spend more time inside and engage in more fixed reading distance activities than ever before. This contributes to an almost 20% increase in myopia (nearsightedness) in kids from 1970s to 2000. Macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss. Exercise can reduce the risk of developing this disease. It also increases the levels of growth factors in the bloodstream that contribute to the health and well-being of retinal neurons.

AccuExam: AccuExam is LensCrafters’ exclusive, state-of-the art digital eye exam system. The technology allows the doctor to spend more time with patients, helping parents leave with a better understanding of the health of their child’s vision. According to Dr. Mark Jacquot, Clinical Director of Vision Care for LensCrafters, “AccuExam is comprehensive, advanced, and precise.”

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Summer Book Club For KIDS!

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Summer Book Club For KIDS!

Summer is here! And it’s all about fun and exploration, but how can you keep your kid’s brain plugged in? How about a book club? We just started our own book club- BOYS ONLY – and the kids are off and READING!

Their first selection, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.”

Extension activities and rating the book are always going to be extra fun for the kids during the meeting. Our Charlie extension activity will be a ‘chocolate tasting!’

Check out the video to get your own book club started- it’s easier than you might think!

charlie.jpg

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Preventing Suicide

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Preventing Suicide

With the devastating loss of Robin Williams, here’s a re-post of a segment on suicide prevention.

(Posted 9/2012)
Here at Super Mommy Not we often get queries about children (teens and tweens) threatening suicide. One mom writes: “My 13 year old girl says she’s going to kill herself. What do I do?” So what can a parent do and how can he or she understand and handle such a frightening situation? SMN is committed to helping families deal with this very difficult part of life. We have teamed up with ConnectiVISION to bring you this story.

And news just out this month, according to a new study: More Americans now commit suicide than die in car crashes, making suicide the leading cause of injury deaths.

Children and young people are at risk for suicide as well. Year after year, suicide remains one of the top three leading causes of death for young people ages 15 to 24.

Please watch the video below to see how you can determine if your child is at risk and find out what you can do to protect your child:

If someone you know exhibits warning signs of suicide:
-Do not leave the person alone
-Remove any firearms, alcohol, drugs or sharp objects that could be used in a suicide attempt
-Call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), a free, 24/7 service that can provide suicidal persons or those around them with support, information and local resources
-Take the person to an emergency room or seek help from a medical or mental health professional
(Source: National Institute of Mental Health)

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Fighting Childhood Obesity—Session 3

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Fighting Childhood Obesity—Session 3

SuperMommyNot.com is producing a year long series in which we will focus on the issue of childhood obesity. Dr. Stacy Wadlington, a licensed clinical psychologist, will be guiding a mother and her daughter through therapy in an effort to help them make healthier choices. We have been invited to sit in on their therapy sessions and learn from the work this family is committed to.

In session three, Felicia (the mother) and Simone (the daughter) sit down with Dr. Wadlington to discuss how a lack of discipline in everyday life was detrimental to Simone’s well-being and feelings about food and nutrition.

Dr. Wadlington is in private practice in Beverly Hills and Pasadena California. She has worked extensively with children, adolescents and adults for over sixteen years providing clinical services in the form of individual, family, couple and group therapy. Dr. Wadlington’s assessment experience includes conducting psychological and forensic evaluations to a wide variety of patient populations, including candidates for Cosmetic and Bariatric Surgery. For more information about Dr. Wadlington you can visit her website. http://www.drwadlington.com/

Below is a look at Sessions 1 and 2

http://www.supermommynot.com/fighting-childhood-obesity-session-1

http://www.supermommynot.com/fighting-childhood-obesity-session-2

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Fighting Childhood Obesity — Session 2

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Fighting Childhood Obesity — Session 2

SuperMommyNot.com is producing a year long series in which we will focus on the issue of childhood obesity. Dr. Stacy Wadlington, a licensed clinical psychologist, will be guiding a mother and her daughter through therapy in an effort to help them make healthier choices. We have been invited to sit in on their therapy sessions and learn from the work this family is committed to.

In session two, Felicia (the mother) and Simone (the daughter) sit down with Dr. Wadlington to discuss how Felicia’s parenting may have negatively impacted the way Simone viewed/views herself.

Dr. Wadlington is in private practice in Beverly Hills and Pasadena California. She has worked extensively with children, adolescents and adults for over sixteen years providing clinical services in the form of individual, family, couple and group therapy. Dr. Wadlington’s assessment experience includes conducting psychological and forensic evaluations to a wide variety of patient populations, including candidates for Cosmetic and Bariatric Surgery. For more information about Dr. Wadlington you can visit her website. http://www.drwadlington.com/

Below is a look at Session 1-

http://www.supermommynot.com/fighting-childhood-obesity-session-1

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Fighting Childhood Obesity—Session 1

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Fighting Childhood Obesity—Session 1

SuperMommyNot.com is producing a year long series in which we will focus on the issue of childhood obesity. Dr. Stacy Wadlington, a licensed clinical psychologist, will be guiding a mother and her daughter through therapy in an effort to help them make healthier choices. We have been invited to sit in on their therapy sessions and learn from the work this family is committed to.

Dr. Wadlington is in private practice in Beverly Hills and Pasadena California. She has worked extensively with children, adolescents and adults for over sixteen years providing clinical services in the form of individual, family, couple and group therapy. Dr. Wadlington’s assessment experience includes conducting psychological and forensic evaluations to a wide variety of patient populations, including candidates for Cosmetic and Bariatric Surgery. For more information about Dr. Wadlington you can visit her website. http://www.drwadlington.com/index.html

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When Mom Has a Life-Threatening Illness

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When Mom Has a Life-Threatening Illness

Michelle Posen is a mother to a three year old girl, Ellie. And Ellie's childhood, so far, hasn't been typical. Ellie has literally grown up watching her mom fight cancer. Here is Michelle Posen's inspiration story and the lessons along the way.

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Yoga for Kids

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Yoga for Kids

yoga for kids

I have never practiced yoga on a regular basis, Pilates is my thing, but there was a period in time where my husband and I did try out Bikram yoga, (Bikram Yoga is ideally practiced in a room heated to 105°F and is the most popular form of hot yoga) needless to say, we’re just not tough enough. But I have so many friends who swear by yoga as their work-out.

So, when it comes to our boys and their “sports” activities, they’ve done tee-ball and swimming, I would never have thought to enroll them in yoga classes. As it turns out, the preschool they attend offers yoga classes regularly to the kids. My boys love it and come home often showing me poses. It’s cool and so I wondered what yoga is all about and how kids can benefit from learning this physical, mental and spiritual discipline that originated in ancient India. What I found out is that there are so many reasons to choose yoga for kids! Take a look at the video!

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The Real Sugar Story

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The Real Sugar Story

Did you know that the average American consumes 88 grams of added sugar a day? That is as much as two to seven times more than we should consume in a given day.

It’s important to distinguish between added sugar and naturally occurring sugars. Fruits, some vegetables and dairy products already have sugar which we call “naturally occurring sugars” and it’s safe to say that everything else (soda, candy, cereal, etc.) has sugar that has been “added.” There are even some foods with “hidden sugar.”

According to the American Heart Association, children should only have 12 grams of added sugar a day, adult women 24 grams and adult men should have no more than 36 grams of added sugar in an entire day.

So where does this leave us? And where does this leave our children? Unfortunately, beginning with breakfast, the cereals in our markets are packed with more sugar than in one dessert. In some cases, some of the cereals have up to 20 grams of added sugar in one serving.

Reducing the amount of added sugar in your child’s diet is one of the quickest and simplest ways to improve overall health and well-being. Many people who reduce the amount of added sugar in their diets report improved moods, increased weight loss and less fatigue.

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Measles On the Rise

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Measles On the Rise

California now leads the U.S. in measles cases, this year, with 28 reported cases.

According to the CDC, during 2008, more measles cases were reported than in any other year since 1997. More than 90% of those infected had not been vaccinated, or their vaccination status was unknown. Dr. Janesri De Silva explains what you need to know to protect your family.

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Understanding Teenage Brains

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Understanding Teenage Brains

The teenage years are difficult, there’s no getting around it. But understanding what your child is going through can ease the pain. According to Dr. Mayumi Prins, director of the BIRC Education Program at UCLA, if you have the knowledge as a parent, you can educate and empower yourself as well as your teen. Watch the video!

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