Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

How to Prepare Your Child for Kindergarten and Beyond

Photo by Rebecca Alison

Not too long ago, before I was a parent, I was a Palo Alto Unified School District kindergarten teacher. One day, I opened an email from a neighborhood parent that shaped my perspective in life both as a teacher and a parent. This mother emailed every kindergarten teacher in the district wanting to know, “How can […]

How to Choose a Summer Camp

Photo by Rebecca Alison

  There are a lot of good summer camps out there. But you want to send your kids to a great one. How can you rest assured you’ve found the “crème de la camp” without losing sleep over summer scheduling? Try this simple checklist to help you separate the great from the merely good.  

Best of the Forum: Preschool, Young Fives or Kinder?


Editor’s Note: Please keep in mind that kindergarten age requirements in California are in flux. This article highlights a PAMP forum discussion regarding kindergarten decisions for the current school year, when a child had to be age 5 by Nov. 1, 2012 to enroll. However, for the 2013–14 academic year, a child must be 5 […]

Two Activities for a Winter’s Day

Photo by Rebecca Alison

To have tons of fun at home on a cold winter day, try these two activities inspired by the Montessori philosophy. The first activity is an experiment with design, and the second is an experiment with sound. They are both designed for children 5 years old or younger Montessori education is based on a discovery model, […]

Book Roundup: Elections and Presidents


  With Election Day fast approaching (Nov. 6), now is the perfect time to introduce children to the concepts of a president and elections. Whether you prefer books about fictional presidential races or true accounts of real-life presidents, all of the following provide great segues to discussing current events.  

Navigating the Road to Reading Readiness

Photo by Richard Lewisohn

The people of Silicon Valley are exceptional. Few places on planet earth enjoy such a high concentration of intelligent, high-achieving and successful individuals (stay-at-home-moms absolutely included). Geographically speaking, this is a speck of a place, yet our collective accomplishments loom large. Will our children carry the same torch of excellence? The tension among area parents […]

Prepare for the PAMP Preschool Fair

preschool fair

Are you looking for a preschool for your child? The upcoming PAMP Preschool Fair (Nov. 3) is a great way to learn about the many early childhood education options available in our community. The variety of choices presented at the fair can be overwhelming, so it’s a good idea to come prepared. Here are some […]

How to Choose the Right Preschool for Your Child

Photo by Rebecca Alison

Zachary is a sweet and lovable 4-year-old boy who is often timid around others. He’s generally happy, but he is easily overwhelmed and can become upset in noisy environments. After enrolling Zachary in the same preschool his sister attended and seeing him struggle, his parents wondered what they should do. What options should they consider? […]

Have You Considered a Bilingual Preschool?

Photo courtesy of Jennifer Chapa

Faced with a myriad of choices, selecting the right preschool for your child can be quite a daunting task.  For many parents, one additional consideration is whether to choose a bilingual learning environment. There is no question that knowing more than one language is an advantage in today’s globalized world. Bilingualism has also been linked […]

Ask the Expert: How Do We Handle After-School Meltdowns?

Photo by Rebecca Alison

Question: Our 3-year-old just started preschool this week. His teachers tell us that he’s doing great, and he really seems to like it. But when he’s home with us, it’s a nuclear meltdown a couple times a day! Clearly this is a really hard transition for him. I don’t want to indulge his tantrums, but […]

How to Build a Parent–Teacher Partnership


Ideally, parents should view their child’s preschool teacher as an extension of their family. The relationship between these adults is the childʼs introduction to the workings of a diverse world and the first stop on the long road of education. The teacher has created a safe and orderly place to nurture children and prepare them […]

Best of the Forum: Preschool Applications and Waitlists


In lots of preschool-related posts, people mention preschool waitlists. A friend recently signed up on a waitlist while still pregnant. Is this extreme, or is it necessary in order to get into a good preschool? I thought I would have more time before thinking about this decision, but now I feel a little unprepared.

How Sign Language Helped My Baby’s Verbal Skills—And How It Can Help Yours, Too

eating - no more NEW (small)

When I was pregnant I heard about this quirky little thing called Baby Sign Language. Apparently—I was told—babies can learn how to use sign language before they can speak. Baby Sign Language is mostly advertised as being good to reduce toddler frustration (at not being able to tell you what they really, really want right […]

Give the Gift of a Second Language


If you knew you could do one activity with your child that would enhance their cognitive skills, give them an advantage in school and increase their chances of professional success, wouldn’t you do it? That’s what it means to introduce your child to a second language before the age of 6. Research shows that the […]

Giftedness: Opening the Gift


Claire was passing through developmental milestones at a faster pace than the baby books indicated. At 6 months of age, Jordan would sit for an hour or more looking through stacks of books with relentless fascination. Maddy gave up her daytime nap by 7 months and was in constant motion when awake. By 2 years […]