Parenting Preschoolers: A Starting Place for Social Graces

I decided to share with Simple Kids readers this post by Amanda Morgan of Not Just Cute, which originally appeared in May 2010.  With the start of school just around the corner, I thought many of you would find it helpful or perhaps have some insights to share in the comments. I know this is one of the posts that I personally have found so helpful as a parent of preschoolers. – Kara

From the moment I got this assignment to write about supporting social skills in preschoolers, every time my own preschool-aged boys threw a fit or tackled a playmate, I had to laugh at myself. “And I’m supposed to be an expert on this?”

The truth is the task of teaching our children social skills is a huge job. It’s not something any parent does perfectly, and it’s certainly not something that can be covered in its entirety in one neat and tidy blog post.

Beyond meeting our children’s basic needs, we as parents tend to worry most about their social development. Will they be polite when they play at their friends’ houses? Will they behave appropriately at school? Will they ever stop fighting?

There are a few things to keep in mind as we consider the social development of our children. They are reminders to help us to take a deep breath and respond with a proper perspective.

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Weekend Links

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Tips for kid-friendy green smoothies

My friends, we’re enjoying a few days of rest and relaxation and getting a jump on our weekend.  So, today I’d love it if you joined me over at Rockin’ Granola where earlier this week I shared some tips for kid-friendly green smoothies.

Green smoothies (or orange, pink, purple, or red) are one of this Granola Mama’s secrets to getting healthy things into her kiddos.  All manner of good things my children might not otherwise eat they will happily consume in the form of a smoothie and green smoothies are one of my favorite treats, as well.

From kale to spinach to carrots and even pureed sweet potato or pumpkin, adding a little extra veggie dose in our fruit smoothies has become a regular part of the rhythm of our days.  In fact, we usually have a smoothie in the color of the day as part of our afternoon snack, though sometimes we have them for breakfast or with lunch, too.  I’ve even made popsicles out of them.

You can, too!

[Read the rest at Rockin’ Granola …]


Holiday Gift Craft-along (the early bird gets to put her feet up in December?)

Written by Kara Fleck, Simple Kids editor and Rockin’ Granola mama.

I interrupt your Summer fun to announce that December is coming. I know, I know.  It is the middle of July, temperatures are in the triple digits, and the farthest thing from your mind right now is preparing for the December holidays, let alone holiday gifts or crafting.

It was the farthest thing from my mind, too.  That is, until I glanced at the calendar and saw that next Wednesday is July 25, which means I have exactly five months until we celebrate Christmas.

Since I like to give each of my children at least one handmade thing every year and I also like to have all of my holiday crafting finished up before December 1st, that means I have approximately four months to select, create, and finish up a minimum of four handmade items.

Hmmmmm, a little daunting to look at it that way, eh?

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Games we play: Bug Bingo (thrift haul)

Written by Kara Fleck, Simple Kids editor and Rockin” Granola mama.  This post will be linked up to Simple Design”s Thrift Haul, a fun weekly link-up for sharing your second-hand treasures.

A few months back we had a fantastic thrift store haul: several gently used board games, with all the pieces intact, and priced around $3 a piece.  Sold!

Since then, our family Friday Night Nest game and movie night has included some classics such as Life, Monopoly, and Apples to Apples as well as a few new-to-us games, such as Bug Bingo.

Bug Bingo

The gold sticker that proclaimed Bug Bingo as a “Dr. Toy 10 Best Games Winner” caught my eye at the thrift store, while the full color illustrations of critters such as mayflies, orb web weaver spiders, mosquitoes, and cicadas grabbed my entomologists-in-training childrens” attention.

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