Lying and the Theory of Mind: A Newfound Ability in Preschoolers

Lying and the Theory of Mind: A Newfound Ability in Preschoolers
"Johnny, did you just take a cookie after I told you not to?" "...No..." When you find out that your child has lied to you, it can be pretty distressing. Your sweet, innocent child chose to deceive you, which could only mean that they are now headed down a road full of deceitfulness, bad choices, and possibly crime. Well, not necessarily. Before you start drawing conclusions and panicking, it's helpful to take a step back and to try to understand...
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Am I a Good Enough Parent?

Am I a Good Enough Parent?
I think every now and again we all struggle a little with self-worth. We are not perfect people. We all have our good days, and those days we wish we could change. Although we may be faced with fears of self-doubt on our parenting journey, remember that there is no one exactly like you. You have a unique perspective. You have unique experiences. And it's more than likely that you are a good parent; even on those hard days. As stated by Theodore R...
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Special Time: Beyond Just One-On-One Time

Special Time: Beyond Just One-On-One Time
When talking to families about special time, parents often respond, "I already spend all day with my children" or "We have lots of one-on-one time together." I love hearing when parents are able to be home and enjoy spending time with their children! I also wanted to highlight some of ways that "special time" differs from other one on one time and the benefits it can offer to ALL families – whether you are home with your children all day or not. ...
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How To Keep Your Child From Falling Behind During Summer Break

How To Keep Your Child From Falling Behind During Summer Break
Summer break is one of the most exciting times to be a kid; a time to forget about the most demanding part of life-- school. But does a summer break without learning really help children in the long run? A report pointed out that, on average, children forget the last month of learning from the previous school year, with some areas reporting a greater loss of 25-30% of the learning of that same year! The greatest loss of learning was measured to b...
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Three Ways to Make Meaningful Moments with Your Child

Three Ways to Make Meaningful Moments with Your Child
Take a moment to think of someone you just love to pieces. Are you thinking of them? What is it about them that you love? Do they have to act a certain way to earn your love? I can think of two people that are very special to me. My parents. I love to joke around and have fun with them, I love to listen to their stories and talk with them, and I love to share experiences with them. Some of the most important attributes my parents have which make ...
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Kindergarten: Is Your Child Ready?

Kindergarten: Is Your Child Ready?
This week I went to Target and saw that all of the school items are out and school shopping has already begun! As a result to this sighting, I was laying in bed reminiscing on my kindergarten experience. My son is not nearly old enough for Kindergarten, but I wonder how his experience might be different from mine when that day does come. I remember a few things from Kindergarten very distinctly, like coloring a picture of an apple on my first day...
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Tantrums: A Good Thing?

Tantrums: A Good Thing?
As a Parent Support Specialist, one of the most common concerns that I hear about are tantrums. Often irrational, unpredictable, and unpacifiable, it comes as no surprise to me that tantrums can be so concerning to parents that are simply trying their best to keep their child happy and breathing. What is a parent to do when it appears that their child is the only one crying on the floor in the grocery store, or when they seem to still throw a tan...
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What Children Do For Us, and How to Say "Thank You"

What Children Do For Us, and How to Say "Thank You"
Children are funny little people that are capable of great creativity and joy, and are very talented in bringing out that joy, love, and innocence in others. I admit, whenever I see a baby at the grocery store or at church, I just have to point them out and say something about them to others. They are just...too...adorable. There are indeed times when they are a handful, to say the least, but at the end of the day, you know you love them. Okay, b...
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The Grieving Child

The Grieving Child
When we contemplate of the grieving process, we tend to think of the five stages of grief ( Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and Acceptance) first proposed by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in her 1969 book On Death and Dying. Many people's general understanding of these stages is that you move from one to another at a steady pace. You are supposed to start with 'denial' and end with 'acceptance'. Right? When my father passed away a couple of years ...
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A Parent's Experience with Help Me Grow Utah

A Parent's Experience with Help Me Grow Utah
  Being with Help Me Grow has been one of the most rewarding experiences. I have worked with Help Me Grow for nearly 2.5 years, and I have learned so much from all of my coworkers and the parents I've talked to. As I reflect on all of the things I have done with regards to this job, I hope that I have helped make a difference in the lives of the parents and families that I've worked with. One of the mothers that I've worked with for over 2 y...
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11 Helpful Phrases to Confidently Parent the Toddler Years

11 Helpful Phrases to Confidently Parent the Toddler Years
We've all been there (or will be there soon!). Your child is trying to tell you something, but you just can't figure out what he is trying to say. Your child isn't ready to be done with the activity he is in the middle of when it's time to leave. Or maybe you are trying to play referee between two children. My amazing friend and coworker put together some phrases that all parents can benefit from. This list is too amazing and helpful not to share...
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Guest Post: 4 Fun Activities for Parent-Child Bonding

Guest Post: 4 Fun Activities for Parent-Child Bonding
I can remember the fun times that my brother and I often had with my dad growing up. We used to cook while watching movies together, and talk about what we would cook later. Oftentimes, I can remember my dad and brother playing basketball in the backyard while I played with the dog. I'd often practice throwing razor sharp knives while my brother played with nunchucks… Wait a minute, knives and nunchucks? Now that I've got your attention, let's fo...
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The Princess Bride and Fear of Public Restrooms

The Princess Bride and Fear of Public Restrooms
You just spent the last several weeks inside the house (hopefully during winter) watching "The Princess Bride" over and over while potty training your toddler. It wasn't exactly like climbing the cliffs of insanity, but close. Now that it's Spring you want to get out of the house and go on an outing, but there's one problem: What do you do if she's gotta "go" while you're out? Inconceivable! Public bathrooms are scary, loud, and often less than s...
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Screen Time Recommendations for Children

Screen Time Recommendations for Children
We have all heard that we need to limit our children's screen time. In this technology-driven time it is hard to know what we should let our children watch, how much, and what that could be possibly doing to our children's development. Defining screen time has become difficult and while many parents know that children over two should not watch more than 2 hours a day, the amount of digital media our children are exposed to has changed. There are ...
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The 20 Minute Challenge: How Reading Just 20 Minutes a Day Can Help your Child's Learning

The 20 Minute Challenge: How Reading Just 20 Minutes a Day Can Help your Child's Learning
Growing up, I had a very difficult time with reading and writing. My mild dyslexia and difficulties with reading comprehension made picking up a book a dreadful chore. Thankfully, when I was starting to fall behind with my literacy skills, my dedicated mother and teachers challenged me to read at least 20 minutes a night. For 10-year-old me, I thought 20 minutes of reading was a steal compared to the hour I was doing before. However, you'd be sur...
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Guest Post: Grooming Online: What Parents Should Know

Guest Post: Grooming Online: What Parents Should Know
Grooming is a process where a sexual predator identifies and gets access and the trust of a child for the purpose to sexual exploitation and/or assault. Unfortunately, the Internet has provided a medium in which this exploitation can be shared and traded, and children can be accessed more easily. We teach young children "stranger danger" but when it comes to sexual abuse, young children under age 12 are most likely to be victimized by family memb...
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Tantrums: What’s Behind Them, and How to Help Your Child Through Them

Tantrums: What’s Behind Them, and How to Help Your Child Through Them
What's behind a tantrum? When a toy goes missing, when their cookie falls on the floor, when another child won't share. In a toddler's world, moments like these can result in every parent's nightmare: a tantrum. Hidden behind these intense reactions to life experiences is the process of recognizing what emotions are, and how to regulate them. While these experiences can be frustrating, and sometimes embarrassing, there are ways we as parents can ...
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Parenting with Temperament in Mind

Parenting with Temperament in Mind
Ever wonder how your child can react to and behave in situations so differently than you do? Though parents surely have an influence on children's behavior and mannerisms, temperament is also a unique influence that a child brings on their own. Temperament needs to be taken into account to not only have successful parenting, but also a secure attachment between parent and child-- which impacts a child's exploration, independence, and relationship...
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Easy Sensory Activities to do at Home

Easy Sensory Activities to do at Home
As adults, we use each of our senses everyday to help understand and process the world around us. As children develop, they are learning how to use each of their senses too. Some children may struggle with sensory processing, either feeling overstimulated easily or having a hard time processing any sensory input at all. Whether or not your child struggles with sensory processing, doing sensory activities at home can be really fun and help any chi...
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9 Ways to Use Rattles with Your Baby or Toddler

9 Ways to Use Rattles with Your Baby or Toddler
When I was pregnant with my first child I knew that I didn't want to have a bunch of big, loud, obnoxious toys filling my small apartment. It was important to me that we have toys that were developmentally appropriate, safe, and could fit into a small storage space. Lucky for us, one of the gifts we received included a rattle! This is a wonder toy - such a small and simple thing that is capable of teaching and doing so much. Now that I have anoth...
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