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. Supporting Your Child’s Education at School and at Home

    parent talking with teacherEvery child has unique learning abilities. Some children thrive in grammar while others respond best to art or science; some learn better visually while others learn better orally. It is important, therefore, that parents and teachers partner together to find the best approach for the child. Because learning is vital to your child’s success in life, it is essential to be involved in your child’s education and schooling experience.

    Here are some tips that can help you communicate effectively with your little one’s teachers and provide your child with a supportive educational environment:

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  2. Biting is for Vampires

    teaching children that biting is for foodToddlers can be so much fun. Spontaneous hugs, easy laughter and endless energy are some of the best parts of this stage in your child’s development. In addition to all of the sweet ways that your toddler already connects with you, he or she may exhibit common baby behavior, such as biting. If this occurs, do not worry; simply use these moments as opportunities to teach boundaries and effective communication to your little one. Explain to your child how to share his or her feelings, and to leave the biting for food.

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  3. Save Money with Trash-to-Treasure Halloween Decorations

    Children Trick-or-TreatingHalloween can be a frightful drain on the family budget, what with candy for the trick-or-treaters, decorations for the home and costumes for the kids. This Halloween season, try saving money by reusing some items destined for the trash or recycling bins to create decorations.

    Here are a few ideas for DIY Halloween crafts:

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  4. Cost of Raising a Child in the U.S. in 2013 vs. 1960 (Infographic)

    The joys of raising a child are countless, but with children come responsibilities such as the need to provide clothing, food, health care and an education.

    Gerber Life Insurance Company has compiled and compared the cost of raising a child in the U.S. from birth to age 18 in 2013 vs. 1960 – the first year that the United States Department of Agriculture published data on the expenditures on Children by Families. The results, which include the average cost to attend college for one year, may surprise you.

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  5. Got Ghosts? Hit the Road for Haunted Places

    Haunted House SignDo you believe in ghosts? During the Halloween season, the politically correct answer is a resounding “Yes!” Even if you think hauntings are hokum, you might want to take the family on a fun outing that centers on ghosts and the paranormal. After all, it sometimes can be fun to get scared out of your wits.

    Ghost tourism in the United States has been fueled of late by popular television shows such as “Ghost Hunters” and “Ghost Adventures,” but fascination with the paranormal is nothing new. Throughout the ages, literature has given us classic ghost stories, from Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” to Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” to Stephen King’s “The Shining.”

    Nowadays, many communities celebrate Halloween with ghost-story hour at the library, haunted houses populated by ghostly characters, and showings of classic movies whose main characters are ghosts. Or, head to the countryside to get spooked on a haunted hay ride or in a haunted corn maze. All of those activities make for great family fun.

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