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July 2009 Newsletter
Friday, August 14, 2009

July 4, 2009  Issue VII Volume 1  
 
Inside this issue...
Monthly Tip for Parents: Preschool Options
 
Blog Topic:New Transformers Movie May Be Inappropriate for Younger Viewers
 
Blog Topic: Too Much Fun
 
Ideas to Help Children Maintain a Health Weight
 
Safety Tips for Using MySpace
 
Parenting Q & A
 
The Learning Community to be Featured on Good Day Atlanta
 
 
 
 
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A newsletter with free tips and resources for parents.  Find more free parenting resources online at www.TheLearningCommunity.us
Monthly Tip for Parents
 
Preschool Options
Finding a preschool that is reliable, safe and can provide stimulating activities based on your child's unique stages of development can be a real challenge. 
 
This month we've put together an overview of the various types of public and private preschools to familiarize you with your choices.  Read more in Tips for Parents: Preschool Options.
 
Resources Added to TLC this Month
  
Blog Topic: New Transformers Movie May Be Inappropriate for Younger Viewers.  My family was all set to see the latest Transformers movie until we heard that it contains more swearing and sexual content than the first as well as racial stereotyping and even more explosive violence.
 
Blog Topic: Too Much Fun  When the cat's away the mice will play...and stay up too late, and eat too much junk food, and watch too much TV...

Ideas to Help Children Maintain a Healthy Weight From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, this free parenting resource details why childhood obesity is a health issue, and gives parents and guardians tips for preventing obesity in children.
 
Safety Tips for Using MySpace  "For teens, MySpace is a popular online hangout because the site makes it easy for them to express themselves and keep in touch with their friends.  As a parent, please consider the guidelines to help your children make safe decisions about using online communities."

TLC News
Parenting Questions...
The Learning Community to be Featured on Good Day Atlanta
 
TLC Founder, Dr. Sarah Stanley, will be interviewed on Good Day Atlanta on July 10th during the 8 AM hour while in town for the Atlantasmart Gift Show.
 
She will discuss Ornaments To Remember and it's mission to support The Learning Community.  She'll also highlight some of the many free parenting resources TLC offers.
 
If you live in the area, be sure to tune in.  We hope to offer a video of the interview on The Learning Community next month.
 
Question: 
What is the appropriate age for my child to start staying home alone?  What is the appropriate age to allow an older sibling to start babysitting his or her younger siblings without adult supervision?
Answer:
A few states, such as Oregon, have laws about the minimum age a child must be to stay home alone.  Beyond that, experts recommend that you base your decision on your child--their maturity, their ability to be able to complete certain tasks such as locking the door, knowing emergency numbers and knowing fire exits.  To learn more about what age your child should be to look after themself for a few hours, read Tips for Parents: What Age Can My Child Stay Home Alone?
 
Children should have at least one year's worth of experience staying home alone responsibly before they begin to babysit a younger sibling.  Other factors to consider:
  • How young is the younger sibling?  Very young children should only be supervised by older teens or adults.
  • Do the kids fight often?  If your kids tend to argue a lot or get in physical fights, it is not recommended you leave them home alone together.
  • Ultimately, make your decision on your children's responsibility, how long you will be gone, and how risky leaving them alone will be.  If in doubt, find a caregiver or make alternate arrangements.
Question:
How do I tell a twenty-something child that it's time to move out of the family home?
Answer:
Helping your child to begin the adult phase of their life can be a positive experience.  Ideally, it's best to help your child plan this transition during the high school years.  However, if that opportunity has passed and you have an adult child taking advantage of living in your home, it's time to set some limits and have a conversation. 

It's important to keep in mind that this is a positive thing.  Your child has become an adult and as such can enjoy building a life of their own. When you speak with them, be certain to give this a positive spin.
 
If your child has already graduated from college, is already in the workforce, or refuses to do either and lacks the motivation to get a place of their own, it's time to set a deadline.
 
Before you begin the conversation, consider if your child can provide for his or her self financially.  If yes, the deadline for moving out will be closer than for the child that must find employment and save money for rental and utility deposits or a down payment on a home.
 
Set a deadline that is fair notice for the child but doesn't allow them to slack off or dawdle.  Make it clear that there will be no extensions and be firm--if they see that you might let them stay after the deadline, some kids might exploit this.  Encourage them during the process, and offer tips for saving money, finding a place and living thriftily if they ask; but don't nag.  Your firmness here should get most kids moving into the next phase of their lives.
 
If, however, you have a particularly stubborn or unmotivated child, you'll have to resort to stronger tactics.  Make living in your home unpleasant by cutting off any money you are giving them, refusing to do their laundry or chores, or letting them eat your food.  Do not give in to begging or excuses.  Always remain calm and firm.  Tell them that if they are not out by a certain date, you will change the locks, and be sure to do it.  Hopefully, your relationship with your child is such that these sorts of tactics won't become necessary.
 
Either way, throughout the process, let your child know that you love them and it is your responsibility as a parent to encourage them to begin their own life.
 
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