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Pre-K

Child pressing folded hands against parents hands in an act of apology

Kids, Parenting, and Apologizing

Why Pandemic Parenting Gives Us Lots of Practice and How to Do It Well

I was participating in a meeting last week with a group of parent educators when the facilitator posed these questions as “ice-breakers” before we got deeper into our agenda: What is something you have spent more time on during the pandemic? What has grounded you during this challenging time?  Asking these kinds of questions is, of…  Read More

Ribbon on a typewriter with the words "stories matter" above

Parenting for Media Literacy: Storytelling and Power Matter

I used to teach a course on digital media, storytelling, and social change to college students in Minneapolis. One of our first field experiences every semester was to the artist studio of Minneapolis-based visual artist Ricardo Levins Morales. My students tended to be emerging filmmakers and media makers so many were surprised (and sometimes annoyed)…  Read More

Child blowing a dandelion seeds into the air.

Five Things Kids Need to Regulate and Recharge

“Are we still on summer break?” my oldest asked me yesterday. I wanted to respond, “Who knows anymore?” but I held my tongue. Instead, I answered with a cheery, “Yup! Still on summer break!” Then I handed him a popsicle in a somewhat feeble attempt to assert summer-ness into the day. I empathize with his…  Read More

Child smiling straight into camera.

How to Disrupt Gender Bias in Young Children

A single parent of a toddler sent me this message last week. “Figuring out how to participate in these movements for change during this pandemic with a young child is overwhelming. Most days we are just wrestling with screen time, Cheerios, and sharing toys. It’s so painfully mundane compared to what’s happening in the streets.”…  Read More

Child raising her arms in defiance feeling lots of emotions

The Goal of Emotional Regulation is Not Quiet, Compliant Kids

The lessons we learn about feelings are powerful. From a very young age we are taught in both spoken and unspoken ways which feelings (and associated behaviors) are welcome and which aren’t. A parent shared with me after a workshop a couple of years ago, “I was always told in one hundred different ways that…  Read More

Protesters holding sign that says Black Lives Matter

Practicing Anti-Racism in Parenting

As many of you who follow our work already know, our family lives and works in South Minneapolis. This week our city has been on fire in the wake of the brutal murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer. In reality our city has been burning for a long time. This is happening…  Read More

Small child holding hands with their parent staying connected during challenge

Five Ways to Stay Connected to Kids During Stressful Times

This parent spoke for many others when she shared this recently. “I keep reading that kids need us to stay connected more than ever during this pandemic. But our family is stretched so thin. My partner is working in a grocery store, and I am working from home, teaching my kids, and parenting. I feel…  Read More

Child not motivated to start distance learning work.

Motivation During a Pandemic

You don’t have to go far on the Internet these days to find tips for how to “stay productive” during the pandemic and ideas for how to maintain heavy work loads despite crumbling routines and high uncertainty. The reality on the ground though is that for many of us productivity and high motivation are as…  Read More

Child tantrumming stressed on floor

The Many Faces of Stress in Children and Teens

Last week I walked downstairs to find my two sons playing a game of chess. “How delightful!” I thought to myself. We had been practicing social distancing for a couple of weeks already, and everyone in our family was getting antsy. Seeing my kids getting along like this was like balm for my weary parenting…  Read More

Screen time rules change during COVID-19 pandemic as child does distance learning alongside parent working

Do Screen Time Rules Matter in a Pandemic? Try This Approach

I knew we had reached peak screen saturation in my home as I watched my youngest son log onto a Zoom call and then, realizing he wanted his brother included, walked over and sat next to him on the couch. My eldest was on Facetime and they quickly realized they were live streaming a live…  Read More