The Gerber Life Parenting Blog

Parenting Tips

Advice for raising well-balanced children

When you left the hospital to take your newborn home for the first time, you may have hoped that the baby bag contained some kind of manual giving parental advice on how to handle the next 18-plus years. Then you remembered that babies don't come with a set of instructions for parents on how to teach a child values, resolve a conflict with a sibling or help a child study for an upcoming test. Our tips for parents can help prepare you for various situations, as well as provide ideas for activities that you can enjoy as a family.

  1. DIY Crafts: How to make a plaster cast of your child’s hand or foot

    November 27, 2015

    Plaster cast hand- and foot-printKids seem to grow up overnight. Although you can’t stop the hands of time, no matter how much you’d like to try, you can capture a fleeting moment of your child’s formative years by creating a plaster cast of his or her hand or foot. As your child grows, it can be fun to reminisce about how small he or she used to be.

    This DIY craft project – how to make a plaster cast – is easier than you might think.

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    Categories: Parenting Tips
  2. Thanksgiving Fun Facts

    November 26, 2015

    Thanksgiving fun factsDid you know that turkey wasn’t even served at the first Thanksgiving, in 1621?

    Or that in 1939, Thanksgiving Day temporarily was moved up a week by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, to help boost the depression-era economy by giving retailers more time to earn money from holiday shoppers?

    This year, family and friends once again will gather together to celebrate Thanksgiving Day – traditionally the fourth Thursday in November, and traditionally a day of food, fun, and football games. Meanwhile, here are some more Thanksgiving fun facts, served by the writers at

    Have a Happy Thanksgiving, from all of us at Gerber Life Insurance!

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    Categories: Parenting Tips
  3. Should you limit how much time your child spends in front of a screen?

    November 25, 2015

    Girls looking at cell phoneUp until recently, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) took a very hard stance on managing children’s technology use. In the academy’s research-based AAP guidelines, they advised that “screen time” (or the amount of time a child spent using a device with a screen, such as a cell phone or tablet) should be prohibited for children under age 2 and limited to two hours a day for children over 2 years old.

    The guidelines, initially published in 2011, were recently revised, however, to reflect the explosion of technology and apps aimed at young children. According to the non-profit Common Sense Media, more than 30 percent of children in the U.S. first play with a mobile device while they are still in diapers. Nearly 75 percent of 13- to 17-year-olds have smartphones, of which 24 percent admit to using their phones almost constantly, reports the Pew Research Center.

    According to the AAP, “screen time” is becoming simply “time,” and so they set out to review and update their guidelines, including through a two-day “Growing Up Digital: Media Research Symposium” in May. The goal of the symposium, notes the AAP website, was to evaluate available data, identify gaps in research, and consider how to provide thoughtful, practical advice to parents based on the evidence.

    Here’s a recap of the AAP’s key messages and updated guidelines for managing media usage and screen time for kids:

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    Categories: Parenting Tips
  4. DIY Craft: How to Make a Paper Pinwheel That Spins

    November 24, 2015

    Boy holding pinwheel on the beachPaper pinwheels are surprisingly easy to make and can give children an immense amount of joy. This simple project offers a wonderful blank canvas for your child to express himself or herself with color and originality, and requires a little adult supervision for cutting and attaching the pinwheel to a stick.

    Ready to get started? Here’s how to make a paper pinwheel that can spin and spin and spin:

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    Categories: Parenting Tips
  5. Encourage Your Child Through Words of Affirmation

    November 23, 2015

    Mom hugging son with basketballEveryone needs external reinforcement to be their best self, including your child, who relies on you for encouragement and words of affirmation. Use the following tips to help encourage your child or to lift up his or her spirit, and to inspire your child to keep developing his or her unique talents and abilities.

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    Categories: Parenting Tips