elizabear: (Default)
[Note: not to say working parents don't do a lot of the things SAHs do, but it's different when you do it ALL DAY. EVERY DAY.]

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/22/AR2007052201554.html?referrer=facebook

TELL ME ABOUT IT ®
By Carolyn Hax
Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Carolyn:

Best friend has child. Her: exhausted, busy, no time for self, no time for me, etc. Me (no kids): Wow. Sorry. What'd you do today? Her: Park, play group . . .

Okay. I've done Internet searches, I've talked to parents. I don't get it. What do stay-at-home moms do all day? Please no lists of library, grocery store, dry cleaners . . . I do all those things, too, and I don't do them EVERY DAY. I guess what I'm asking is: What is a typical day and why don't moms have time for a call or e-mail? I work and am away from home nine hours a day (plus a few late work events) and I manage to get it all done. I'm feeling like the kid is an excuse to relax and enjoy -- not a bad thing at all -- but if so, why won't my friend tell me the truth? Is this a peeing contest ("My life is so much harder than yours")? What's the deal? I've got friends with and without kids and all us child-free folks get the same story and have the same questions.

Tacoma, Wash.
really - what do SAHs do all day? )
elizabear: (Default)
[Note: not to say working parents don't do a lot of the things SAHs do, but it's different when you do it ALL DAY. EVERY DAY.]

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/22/AR2007052201554.html?referrer=facebook

TELL ME ABOUT IT ®
By Carolyn Hax
Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Carolyn:

Best friend has child. Her: exhausted, busy, no time for self, no time for me, etc. Me (no kids): Wow. Sorry. What'd you do today? Her: Park, play group . . .

Okay. I've done Internet searches, I've talked to parents. I don't get it. What do stay-at-home moms do all day? Please no lists of library, grocery store, dry cleaners . . . I do all those things, too, and I don't do them EVERY DAY. I guess what I'm asking is: What is a typical day and why don't moms have time for a call or e-mail? I work and am away from home nine hours a day (plus a few late work events) and I manage to get it all done. I'm feeling like the kid is an excuse to relax and enjoy -- not a bad thing at all -- but if so, why won't my friend tell me the truth? Is this a peeing contest ("My life is so much harder than yours")? What's the deal? I've got friends with and without kids and all us child-free folks get the same story and have the same questions.

Tacoma, Wash.
really - what do SAHs do all day? )
elizabear: (Default)
The kids told me they wanted to be the Wonder Pets for Halloween. The Wonder Pets are three classroom pets, a guinea pig, a duckling, and a turtle, who rescue animals in trouble. The kids really love the show, and like to wander all over the house playing at being Wonder Pets. Luckily, there was no argument about who was going to be which character, since they have different favorites. Linny, the guinea pig, is the leader, so naturally that would be Z. Ming-Ming, the duckling, is cute and brave. Of course, she's E's favorite. Then there's the third member, Tuck the Turtle. But I only have two kids.
You see where this is going, don't you? )
elizabear: (Default)
The kids told me they wanted to be the Wonder Pets for Halloween. The Wonder Pets are three classroom pets, a guinea pig, a duckling, and a turtle, who rescue animals in trouble. The kids really love the show, and like to wander all over the house playing at being Wonder Pets. Luckily, there was no argument about who was going to be which character, since they have different favorites. Linny, the guinea pig, is the leader, so naturally that would be Z. Ming-Ming, the duckling, is cute and brave. Of course, she's E's favorite. Then there's the third member, Tuck the Turtle. But I only have two kids.
You see where this is going, don't you? )
elizabear: (Default)
We are loving two new kids' shows that just started on PBS: Sid the Science Kid, and Martha Speaks.

Sid the Science Kid is a Jim Henson Co production, and the quality is is, as expected, very high. The format is computer generated animation with motion capture along with some added filmed segments of kids in school. In each episode, Sid starts out wondering about something and then talks to his friends, his parents, and his teacher about his questions. He learns about scientific process, critical thinking, and investigation using different resources, and has a great time doing it. There's also a segment called "Good Laughternoon" where Sid and his three friends tell jokes, which is helping Z to develop his sense of humor. We've seen three episodes so far: learning how to do estimates, using non-standard units of measurement, and different scientific tools. The kids are shown having fun learning about science together, and the family and teacher are shown as supportive and thoughtful, including not being afraid to say "I don't know - let's find out / ask for help". At the end of each episode, Sid incorporates his new knowledge into his life. The overall themes so far have been Investigate/Explore/Discover, and Observe/Compare/Contrast.


Martha Speaks has been developed from a children's book series with a lot of involvement of the author, ensuring that the show stays close to the original quality. Research has shown that kids with a larger vocabulary do better in school, so the goal of the show is to expose kids to new words or different definitions of previously known words through the premise of a talking dog named Martha. The animation is nicely done, and the characters are fun with good voice work (though Martha reminds me of Ellen de Generes' voice and delivery). The vocabulary is introduced in groups like words related to a job or law and order or a farm, and it's done in a fun way that holds up to lots of repeated viewings.

So both kids love these two shows, and DSR and I think the content is terrific and we are happy to remain in the room while they're on.
elizabear: (Default)
We are loving two new kids' shows that just started on PBS: Sid the Science Kid, and Martha Speaks.

Sid the Science Kid is a Jim Henson Co production, and the quality is is, as expected, very high. The format is computer generated animation with motion capture along with some added filmed segments of kids in school. In each episode, Sid starts out wondering about something and then talks to his friends, his parents, and his teacher about his questions. He learns about scientific process, critical thinking, and investigation using different resources, and has a great time doing it. There's also a segment called "Good Laughternoon" where Sid and his three friends tell jokes, which is helping Z to develop his sense of humor. We've seen three episodes so far: learning how to do estimates, using non-standard units of measurement, and different scientific tools. The kids are shown having fun learning about science together, and the family and teacher are shown as supportive and thoughtful, including not being afraid to say "I don't know - let's find out / ask for help". At the end of each episode, Sid incorporates his new knowledge into his life. The overall themes so far have been Investigate/Explore/Discover, and Observe/Compare/Contrast.


Martha Speaks has been developed from a children's book series with a lot of involvement of the author, ensuring that the show stays close to the original quality. Research has shown that kids with a larger vocabulary do better in school, so the goal of the show is to expose kids to new words or different definitions of previously known words through the premise of a talking dog named Martha. The animation is nicely done, and the characters are fun with good voice work (though Martha reminds me of Ellen de Generes' voice and delivery). The vocabulary is introduced in groups like words related to a job or law and order or a farm, and it's done in a fun way that holds up to lots of repeated viewings.

So both kids love these two shows, and DSR and I think the content is terrific and we are happy to remain in the room while they're on.
elizabear: (Default)
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=76838288

For most of human history, children played by roaming near or far in packs large and small. Younger children were supervised by older children and engaged in freewheeling imaginative play. They were pirates and princesses, aristocrats and heroes.

But, while all that play might have looked a lot like time spent doing nothing much at all, it actually helped build a critical cognitive skill called executive function. Executive function has a number of elements, such as working memory and cognitive flexibility. But perhaps the most important is self-regulation — the ability for kids to control their emotions and behavior, resist impulses, and exert self-control and discipline. Executive function — and its self-regulation element — is important. Poor executive function is associated with high dropout rates, drug use and crime. In fact, good executive function is a better predictor of success in school than a child's IQ.


More than just examining the problem, the article contains examples and concrete suggestions for moving things in a more positive direction.

(thanks for the pointer, [livejournal.com profile] its_just_me)
elizabear: (Default)
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=76838288

For most of human history, children played by roaming near or far in packs large and small. Younger children were supervised by older children and engaged in freewheeling imaginative play. They were pirates and princesses, aristocrats and heroes.

But, while all that play might have looked a lot like time spent doing nothing much at all, it actually helped build a critical cognitive skill called executive function. Executive function has a number of elements, such as working memory and cognitive flexibility. But perhaps the most important is self-regulation — the ability for kids to control their emotions and behavior, resist impulses, and exert self-control and discipline. Executive function — and its self-regulation element — is important. Poor executive function is associated with high dropout rates, drug use and crime. In fact, good executive function is a better predictor of success in school than a child's IQ.


More than just examining the problem, the article contains examples and concrete suggestions for moving things in a more positive direction.

(thanks for the pointer, [livejournal.com profile] its_just_me)

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