The Gerber Life Parenting Blog

What parents want to know

With work, family and finances, modern parenting can sometimes feel like a juggling act. The Gerber Life parenting blog gives parents advice and tips to help you take on today-and plan for tomorrow. Our parenting blog offers articles on saving money, college planning, family insurance, parenting tips, living green, and health and safety. Although we may not be able to manage your retirement account, drive your all-star athlete to practice, or cook your family's favorite three-cheese lasagna, our parenting blog can provide you with ideas, advice and tips so that you can focus on what matters most: raising healthy, happy kids. We invite you to join the conversation and enjoy our parenting blog.

  1. What Chores are Appropriate for Your Child?

    Son Helps Father With the LaundryDetermining when your child is ready to help around the house and what he or she should be helping with is no easy task. Suddenly, you’ll start wondering aloud, wait, when did I start helping around the house as a child? Was I cooking and cleaning at five? Of course, you’ll eventually remember that you weren’t baby Rachel Ray or Martha Stewart, and you’ll realize that you need to decide on age-appropriate chores for your child.

    To keep things simple, focus less on the specific chore you’re considering and more on what a child can handle and should be learning at a particular age. For example, instead of trying to determine whether your child can realistically mop the floor, think about whether that task would benefit him or her. Ideally, it should be a task that is both feasible and something your child can learn from.

    Still stuck? Don’t worry; we’re here to help. Here are some ideas for age-appropriate chores:

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    Categories: Parenting Tips
  2. Publish Your Child’s Book with This Awesome App

    Children Reading a Book TogetherWouldn’t it be great if your child could write a book of his or her own? Writing is a skill that definitely should be encouraged, and that has many benefits for children throughout their lifetime, including benefits not related to school.

    However, isn’t it really expensive to publish a book? Fifteen or 20 years ago that might have been the case, but nowadays there are book-publishing apps for children that make it easy, inexpensive, and efficient. Learn more about two apps you may want to consider:

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    Categories: College Planning
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  3. DIY Reading Loft Ideas for Your Family

    Most parents want their children to be able to read well and enjoy reading, too. If a child doesn’t enjoy spending time with books, he or she is unlikely to devote the time it takes to learn to read well.

    An ideal way to help foster a love for books in your child is to create a literary-rich environment in your home. This can be partly achieved by providing plenty of books and reading materials, displaying a positive attitude toward reading and writing, encouraging reading and writing for both pleasure and practical reasons, and reading aloud to your child every day at the same place and time.

    Having a dedicated physical reading space isn’t a requirement for a literary-rich environment, but having an enjoyable space can be a huge ally in getting your child to love books. With that in mind, what would be more enjoyable for your child (and you) than having a reading loft for your daily reading sessions? Follow these simple steps and build your dream reading spot:

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    Categories: College Planning
  4. Encourage Reading with a “Words” Scavenger Hunt

    Scavenger HuntWhen a child first learns to read, it’s helpful to give him or her plenty of opportunities to practice with you, such as by sounding out the words on the back of a cereal box, reading road signs or voicing recipe instructions while making dinner or baking a cake.

    To help make reading fun for your child, a good idea is to create games that help bolster the reading skills you’re trying to reinforce. One great game is the scavenger hunt because it can strengthen reading, problem solving, creativity and imagination, among other qualities.

    Here’s how to plan a play-at-home scavenger hunt for kids that’s entertaining while requiring your child to flex his or her reading muscles:

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    Categories: College Planning
  5. How Music Can Improve a Child’s Reading Skills

    Father Teaches Son to Play PianoWhen a child first begins to read, the event can be rewarding and exciting for the parent. However, it can also be stressful if the child finds reading difficult or doesn’t show much interest in the book’s subject. One solution to this problem involves music.

    According to research at Northwestern University in Chicago, musical training can help improve a child’s reading ability. The team at Northwestern, led by Nina Kraus, a professor of Neurobiology and Physiology, found some interesting insights concerning the link between music and reading.

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    Categories: College Planning
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