Packing Snacks for Your Summer Camper

Summer camp is practically a rite of passage for kids. In Pembroke Pines, summer day camps feature lots of fun activities and opportunities for kids to make new friends. Unfortunately, it can be difficult for parents to get children to eat healthy foods while at summer camp. The trick is to make healthy snacks look fun to eat. You can see some demonstrations of this when you watch this interview with a registered dietitian.

She explains what she looks for in a healthy snack—primarily a combination of lean proteins and complex carbohydrates to give your child the energy needed for summer camp activities. For instance, you can add a little mustard to some low-sodium turkey slices, and wrap them around a thin, whole grain breadstick. Pack pepper strips and carrot sticks to dip into some low-sugar, plain or vanilla Greek yogurt. You could also stuff some granny smith apples, cinnamon, and low-fat ricotta cheese into a whole grain pita pocket.

Spotlight on Social and Emotional Development in Pre-K Students

Pre-Kindergarten Programs in Pembroke Pines

Your rising pre-kindergartener will make some important strides this upcoming school year. Pre-kindergarten programs in Pembroke Pines lay a foundation for both academic success and socio-emotional growth. No two kids progress at the same rate, but in general, you can expect your four-or five-year-old pre-k student to exhibit greater independence in social situations. At the same time, your child may want to please his or her friends and fit in with them.

Pre-k students usually separate more easily from parents, as they grow closer to their teachers and other trusted adults. They may also take the initiative in social situations, such as by suggesting a fun activity, engaging in complex pretend play, and offering to share with a friend. As your child acquires greater mastery with academic skills and self-care abilities, his or her self-esteem will flourish. You’ll start to notice your child using more complex language to express feelings. Although your child will develop better coping skills, he or she will still seek adult guidance when emotions become overwhelming.

Pre-Kindergarten Programs in Pembroke Pines

Tips for Kindergarten Parents

Girl Attending Kindergarten in Pembroke Pines

Even if your child has attended structured early childhood education programs, the kindergarten year is an exciting milestone, as it’s considered the first year of formal schooling. Your child’s education in Pembroke Pines encompasses important academic skills like math and literacy, but it also involves personal growth and socio-emotional development. Encourage your child to reach for the stars, but have reasonable expectations and give your son or daughter the freedom to simply enjoy childhood. Girl Attending Kindergarten in Pembroke Pines

Nurture your child’s independence.

When your son or daughter reaches kindergarten age, he or she will start displaying greater independence. Encourage this by teaching important self-care skills. Teach your child how to button up clothes, tie shoes, and wash hands. Position the milk jug and snacks on a lower shelf in the fridge, and let your child serve him-or herself. Spills are to be expected, as your child is still learning self-care skills.

Read every day.

Reading with your child every day is one of the most impactful ways to support your child’s education. It lets your son or daughter naturally absorb the rhythm and structure of sentences, and simply get absorbed in the magical world of stories. Reading with your child nurtures the close bond you share with him or her. It sparks your child’s imagination and entices his or her curiosity.

Create a musical home.

Every child has artistic tendencies, and nurturing them supports your child’s self-esteem and sense of wonder. Music also encourages a strong vocabulary, better memory, and dynamic social skills. Sing with your child in the car, or start a band in the kitchen by tapping on overturned pots and drinking glasses. Talent is not important, but enthusiasm is.

Talk often.

When your child was an infant, you probably learned that talking to him or her frequently supported healthy development. During the kindergarten age, this fact still holds true. Encourage your child’s oral language skills by actively listening to him or her, asking open-ended questions, and letting your child know that what he or she says is important to you.

Helping Your First Grader with Reading Skills

First grade is a pivotal year for literacy. Although struggling readers can always catch up, first graders generally establish themselves as competent or struggling readers during this year. You can support your child’s reading fluency and language comprehension by enrolling him or her in a high-quality first grade program in Pembroke Pines, but kids also need plenty of support at home. Talk to your child’s teacher about what you can do to support his or her success. reading - kid

Writing Practice

First graders need lots of repetition and practice to get the hang of reading and writing fluently. Encourage your child put his or her new writing skills to use by asking for help with everyday tasks, like writing reminders on the calendar or adding items to the shopping list. Give your child a visually appealing journal to write in, and help him or her write short letters to grandparents or pen pals.

Word Games

Games are always an engaging way to entice kids to practice their literacy skills. Try Bananagrams, which involves word tiles contained within a “banana” pouch. Ask your child to write a story with you by taking turns adding one sentence to it. Start with a prompt, such as, “Jane was so excited when she woke up this morning because…” You could even create “mailboxes” for each family member. Fold a piece of construction paper in half, and staple the sides together to create a pocket that can be taped to a bedroom door. Household members can write silly notes to each other and “mail” them.

Critical Thinking Questions

Set aside some time each day to read with your child. Take turns reading from a favorite book and ask questions about the story that encourage critical thinking skills. Ask questions such as, “What do you think Jose will do next?” and “How do you think Gretchen felt when her friends did that?”

Screen Time

There are certainly some genuinely educational TV programs and computer games, but these are no substitute for a tangible book. Get your child off on the right foot by limiting screen time. Take your child to the library regularly for new materials he or she can explore during free play time. It never hurts to grab your own book to read silently as your child explores a new picture book or easy reader book.