How to Help Your Preschooler Hold a Pencil Correctly

November 27, 2017

It’s not uncommon for children in early elementary to really struggle with handwriting. Not being able to write well can demotivate children, make them feel stupid, or cause them to dislike school.

But did you know that handwriting problems are often connected to the way your child holds a pencil? If your child arrives at kindergarten holding a pencil incorrectly, it usually takes a while to correct this grip, which, in turn delays proper handwriting and can cause the serious problems above. 

In other words, problems with handwriting often begin several years before kindergarten. They're often several years in the making.

You may remember that your child’s doctor began testing his or her pincer grip around a year old. These muscles in the thumb and pointer finger are crucial to holding a pencil correctly.

Just like any other muscles, these muscles require development. Teaching your preschooler how to hold a pencil correctly can ultimately serve to facilitate proper handwriting and encourage active learning.

Here are five ways to teach your preschooler to hold a pencil correctly.

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My Preschooler is Anxious

September 21, 2017

It's not uncommon for children to be nervous at the beginning of a new school year. Now that we're a few weeks into this year, it may be that your child is still struggling with being anxious. 

How should you respond? Should you tell him to toughen up? Should you wait it out? Should you be taking some important action right now? 

While every child is different, here are four steps to help your preschooler work through anxiety. 

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What Do Preschoolers Learn?

August 28, 2017

Whether you've just enrolled your child in preschool or are considering it in the near future, it's important to realize what your preschooler will learn. While every program is different, most preschools will help your child learn in the following areas.

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Is My Child Ready for Preschool?

July 17, 2017

Judging whether or not your child is ready for preschool is difficult. It seems so subjective. And there's no magic answer or one-size-fits-all approach. So how do you determine the answer to this important question? 

I'm going to suggest a three-part plan.

  1. Evaluate
  2. Investigate
  3. Discuss

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Is Juice Bad for Kids?

May 29, 2017

Whenever I'm around other parents and their kids, I can't help but notice all the juice boxes. It's like their going out of style. Have you ever taken the time to read the nutrition facts on one of those little boxes? Yes, I'm even talking about the all-nature, responsibly-sourced, organic, free-range, grass-fed juice! 

I don't feed my child juice—except as a rare treat. We just drink water and a very occasional glass of milk. Best of all, she likes it! Whenever I tell another parent, "We don't do juice," I either get looks of skepticism or disbelief. 

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Is My Preschooler Eating Enough?

May 15, 2017

I once had my child's doctor tell me, "I've never had a parent ask me if his child is eating too much, but almost every parent asks if his child is eating enough."

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Five-minute Activities to Increase Your Child’s Creativity

May 11, 2017

No school can take the place of an involved parent. Don't get me wrong; every school does its best to develop the children under its care. It's just that there's no replacing a good parent.

I've never met a parent who thinks they've done enough for their child, so this isn't a reprimand. And I think every parent I know feels stuck between wanting to do more and having no time.

Are their ways you can help your child develop that don't cost an hour of your time? Can parents really expect to develop their child's creativity when life is so busy?

Yes, we think so! We've pulled together several five-minute activities that you can use to increase your child's creativity.

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Screen Time Guidelines for Preschoolers

April 20, 2017

Parenting as a single parent can prove difficult, particularly when it comes to occupying your children. You have to provide dinner while watching your children. The easiest solution to this paradox involves media.

Here are your options: 1) let your children sit and watch TV or play with an iPad and get dinner ready or 2) watch your child tear the house apart while you distractedly try to get dinner together.

Is there any danger for your preschooler in media? How can you set up realistic, safe screen time guidelines?

First, let's examine the effect of media on preschoolers. We'll be better positioned, then, to offer some suggestions for screen time guidelines for your preschooler.

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Developing the Imagination of Your Preschooler

April 3, 2017

In a 1929 interview with The Saturday Evening Post, Albert Einstein said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.”

According to several scientific studies, imagination is a crucial ingredient in proper child development. How can you foster imagination in your child? How can you help develop the imagination of your preschooler?

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Helping Your Child Overcome Shyness

March 30, 2017

We've all seen it done poorly. The child is in tears. The parent is embarrassingly trying to pry the child off her leg. Everyone watching is not sure what to do.

The truth is, some children really struggle in new situations. Some children are terrified of meeting new people. Some children are just plain shy.

When I was five or six, my grandma from Georgia came to visit us. I hadn't seen her in several years, so I did what any shy five or six year-old would do. I hid behind our front door.

Helping your child overcome shyness is not an easy job. How do you avoid hurting your child or driving him to terror? How can you help your child overcome shyness?1

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Teaching Your Children to Love Reading

March 13, 2017

You know the scene. You arrive home from a long day at work, prepare dinner, clean up, and then try to spend a few precious moments with your son or daughter.

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8 Ways to Ease Your Child's Preschool Separation Anxiety

March 2, 2017

Preschool brings many emotions: joy, excitement, anticipation, and fear. For three or four years, your preschooler has learned your family's routines. Now they're about to embark on a new journey.

If children typically fear the unknown, parents typically fear that their child will feel abandoned. How can you ease your child's preschool separation anxiety1? How can you ease your own?

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