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Supporting Our Children During Turbulent Times
Parent's Place
Published on: 1/27/2021
As we watch the news unfold, remember that our kids are watching us. Children expect adults in their lives to provide protection and security. When current events are disturbing or worrisome to us, children may pick up on our emotional cues and respond behaviorally. This can look like an increase in challenging behaviors, talking back, withdrawing, or crying more easily. As parents, we may also experience higher levels of anxiety and stress, causing us to be less patient and more reactive.
Kids and Conflict: Social Skills That Build Healthy Friendships
Parent's Place Palo Alto
Published on: 10/20/2020
During these challenging and uncertain times, children are socializing in very small groups, if at all. Although a small “social pod” is certainly better than having no opportunity to get together with friends, it can be challenging for children to get along well when they see the same friends all the time and don’t have the chance to expand their social circle. Conflict is a normal and natural part of social interaction, and understanding how to resolve conflicts is an important part of what young children need your help to learn.
Three Ways for Parents to Respond to "I'm Bored"
Published on: 10/5/2020
Does it drive you crazy when your kids say, “I’m bored”? Especially now that many of us are with our children 24/7, it may be helpful to examine three possible ways to respond to their cries of boredom.
The reply you choose depends on how you want to solve the boredom problem. It’s crucial to clarify your intention because you may be responding as if it’s your problem to solve, when in actuality you want your child to solve the problem. This miscommunication can lead to frustration and upset for both of you.
You can respond as a director, collaborator, or supporter. Review the three roles below and ask yourself, does my language match my intention of who should solve the boredom problem?
1. The Director
8 Tips to Support Your Shy Child during COVID-19
Parent's Place Palo Alto
Published on: 9/22/2020
As a parent of a very shy child, I’ve worried that my daughter’s introverted personality will affect the way people see her, and might make them less likely to try to befriend her or engage with her. I worry others won’t see how amazing my kid is. This is especially concerning now that much of her social and academic interactions are via video—she’s even less likely to speak up on this medium where a dozen little voices are vying for attention.
Connecting with Grandparents During Sheltering in Place
Lori Longo, MA
Published on: 9/8/2020
These are certainly difficult times to maintain the important connections that everyone needs to stay resilient during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. One of the many stressful outcomes of the shelter-in-place requirement is that it has kept grandparents apart from their grandchildren, whether they live in the same town or in a different state.
Connection with our family members is important for our well-being. Children benefit from the loving, nurturing, and positive interaction they have with grandparents. Grandparents equally benefit from regularly interacting with their grandchildren. Regular contact with their grandchildren in a variety of creative ways will help balance the sense of isolation that grandparents feel while social distancing. It can be fun for the children and possibly give their parents a short break.
5 Tips For Managing Anxieties around Distance Learning
Published on: 9/1/2020
Back-to-school time is anxiety-inducing even without the backdrop of a global crisis. Many families have had to forego rituals like shopping for school supplies or school clothes, instead focusing on computer and internet access, figuring out distance learning platforms, and wondering whether you need to pack a lunch for your child, or whether you can arrange your online work demands to accommodate a lunchbreak at 11:30 am.
Talking with Children about Race--Resources for Parents
Heidi Emberling, EdD, Director of Parents Place at JFCS’ C
Published on: 6/8/2020
In this special series about Parenting and Race, we highlight the experience of what it’s like to raise kids of color in our society. The intention is to spark courageous conversations, encourage reflection, and provide guidance and support for talking to kids about race and racism at every age, so we can create more inclusive, tolerant, and socially just communities.

My 16-year old daughter was recently tasked with a history assignment about the women’s rights movement of the 1970’s. During our discussion, we talked about the violence women endured during the suffrage movement of the early 20th century, culminating in the ratification of the 19th amendment in 1920, granting women the right to vote. Well … granting white women the right to vote. African-American women were denied full access to voting until the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a fact that shocked my daughter. Reflecting on her response, I realized I haven’t done enough explicit teaching about race and racism
5 Ways to Boost Family Morale While Sheltering in Place
Rachel Sklar, MSW
Published on: 5/25/2020
I missed my cousin’s Zoom bat mitzvah. It was in my calendar for 7 pm, but I’m in California and she’s in Baltimore. When I added the face palm emoji to my apology text, it showed up as my top-used emoji. It’s exactly how I feel too. I’m constantly letting people down and then smacking myself in the forehead for it.
Activities for Kids in Coronavirus Quarantine
Published on: 3/27/2020
Many of us are looking for more activities to entertain and educate our little ones during this challenging time. Check out some of these suggestions from your fellow PAMP members.
How to Talk to Your Kids about the Coronavirus
Published on: 3/10/2020
With coronavirus (COVID-19) in the news and on social media, kids are hearing about it too. This information can be scary and confusing, especially for already anxious kids. Children depend on their parents, teachers, and other trusted adults for their safety and sense of security. This includes looking to the adults around them for information and cues about what to think and how to respond. When the adults in their lives are anxious, worried, or apprehensive about safety concerns, children often take on and internalize this heightened anxiety.
Toddler Tantrums: How to Manage and Prevent Them
Published on: 3/3/2020
Wild, wonderful and ever so challenging. The toddler set, those little ones under three, are delightful … cute and curious, learning so much, so quickly, and with sudden mood changes you wonder what entity took over your child’s body! You were once a great parent, and in the face of toddler meltdowns, whining, and irritability might wonder what happened to the confident, calm, loving parent you once were.

Tantrums are especially challenging at this age! Here are a few things to remember: your adorable child will return until the next unexpected melt down. And, you are not alone! Most parents of toddlers, at some point, feel similarly.
Good to Great: Your Summer Camp Checklist
Published on: 2/25/2020
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, guaranteed to separate the great from the merely good.

1. Safety: First things first: How does your potential camp rank on the safety scale? Accreditation from the American Camp Association assures that a camp meets certain health, safety and program quality standards. Beyond that, ask a few more questions: Is the staff first aid certified? What camper-to-staff ratio does the camp maintain? How are kids supervised during the day and checked out at the end of it? Your camp should take safety as seriously as you do.
8 Tips for Creating a Playful Family
Published on: 2/19/2020
Back to School means back to the grind, right? Endless forms to complete, homework to be done, appointments and schedules, eating and checking in on the go. Yikes!

It doesn’t have to be that way. Even the busiest family can benefit from some important playtime, downtime and family time. Not only will your family experience more joy and bonding, you will reap benefits in other areas of life and help your kids on the road to success.
7 Tools for Your Positive Discipline Toolbox
Published on: 2/12/2020
Knowing when and how to set appropriate and effective limits with young children is always a challenge. What is the appropriate consequence for this behavior? Should I be bothered by this behavior or not? How should I respond when my child hits me? As parents, we are constantly questioning ourselves and looking for the “magic bullet” to end the uncomfortable situation as quickly and permanently as possible. The reality is that there is no “magic bullet”.
5 Proven Ways to Help Your Child Manage Frustration
Published on: 2/6/2020
Life is full of challenging feelings, and kids don’t come pre-programmed with frustration management skills!

Fortunately, with a little bit of guidance and a lot of patience, you can help your child develop coping strategies to deal with frustrations both large and small.

“Frustration in and of itself is not a bad thing—it helps children learn how to become more resilient,” says Heidi Emberling, MA, Assistant Director of Parent Education at Parents Place.
Girl Power! 5 Tips for Raising an Assertive Girl
Published on: 1/28/2020
“Be kind! Quiet Down! Be polite! Don’t be so sassy! Stop yelling.”
We’ve all said things like this to our daughters. While we do want to raise thoughtful, polite children, our girls receive these messages more often than our boys, and often risk internalizing the idea that they must get along with others and avoid conflict at all costs. In a world in which girls and women are routinely harassed, exploited, and mistreated, it is imperative that we teach our girls to stand up for themselves.
The Joys of Toddlerhood: Tips for Making the Most of this Magical Age
Published on: 1/21/2020
My “Grandtwins” just turned 18 months old. I am so fortunate that they live close by and I get to spend at least one day a week with them. I am being reminded of why I have always loved this age so much and would like to share some of my joys with you.
Positive Parenting: Planning for Success
Published on: 1/8/2020
Which tools are in your parenting toolbox? Having worked with families for over 30 years, I am familiar with various approaches to parenting, discipline, and guidance. The best approaches derive from our understanding of children’s brain development and either provide evidence for what we already know, present current information in a new light, or add something new and inspiring altogether.The Positive Parenting Program, or Triple P, a parenting program from Australia, is the latest evidence-based approach that has been supported by the state of California, among others. You may have taken a Triple P workshop, or seen one advertised. It offers many useful tools and ideas to add to your parenting toolbox.
Create Meaningful Holidays and Minimize Stress: Suggestions and Tips
Published on: 12/23/2019
Holidays, here they come. The plans, the lists, the guests, the travel, the gifts … how about some JOY?

In general, holidays are exciting and happy times for children and many adults. School is out, parties and special events take place, gifts are exchanged, and familiar traditions recur—a great time for many of us.
Experience the Magic of the Holidays without the Stress!
Published on: 12/10/2019
For many of us, the holidays cause frenzy and stress. We spend too much money. We schedule too many activities. We waste hours in crowded stores. Why? Because we somehow got the idea that we have to give our families a “perfect” holiday–which, ironically, can come at the expense of true family meaning and fun.

How can we take back our holidays and enjoy the meaning and magic that they offer?

Think about your and your family’s warmest memories
When you replay your happiest memories, chances are that many of them are relatively simple and spontaneous. This is largely true for our kids, too. Try simplifying by choosing one special outing or activity and then enjoying it as it happens.
Family-Friendly Holiday Activities Here in the Bay Area
Published on: 12/3/2019
Looking for some family- friendly activities to get you in the spirit of the holidays? There are lots of ways to experience the magic of the season here in the Bay Area. We have a list of ideas for you!
Beyond Thanksgiving: How to Cultivate Gratitude in Your Family
Published on: 11/25/2019
Thanksgiving presents families with wonderful opportunities to express gratitude. The traditional Thanksgiving meal offers a pause from the everyday and a rare chance to gather with the express purpose of giving thanks. But what happens when Thanksgiving is over? In the U.S., the holiday season officially begins, and with it often comes a great deal of pressure and stress. We mean well, of course. We yearn to create the perfect holiday for our families, complete with a plethora of gifts. But at what price? Gratitude? Meaning? Joy? Much of that is forgotten soon after the turkey has cooled.
6 Tips for Surviving the Family Road Trip
Published on: 11/19/2019
Family road trips can be a great way to create life-long memories. Planning for those more challenging times of your trip, however, is just as important as packing your toothbrush. No matter how old the kids (or you and your partner!), an extended period of time in a small, enclosed space can be a hotbed for emotions.
Preschool art classes “offer another language with which children can express themselves”
Published on: 11/13/2019
How young is too young to begin teaching art to children?
Community School of Music & Arts teachers start working with young artists as they begin to draw, paint and sculpt as early as 15 months old! Classes for the youngest students are fun and process-oriented, meaning the focus is on the steps of creating rather than achieving an ideal end result. Studies show a strong connection between art education and a student’s academic, social and emotional outcomes* and kids this age are wide open to learning new things.
How to Find a Nanny Agency for your Family
Published on: 11/6/2019
When you need help finding the right nanny for your family, you may want to work with a nanny agency to help you locate the right person. But how do you know which nanny agency to choose? How do you know which agencies have reputable, experienced nannies? We’re sharing some expert advice to help you choose the right nanny agency.
“Mine, Mine, Mine!” 7 Ways to Encourage Sharing
Published on: 10/29/2019
“We have to share!”

If you’ve uttered this phrase recently, you probably have a toddler. And you’ve probably been met with confusion, anger or meltdowns.

Sharing, as you might gather, is a difficult concept for young children. Most experts actually think it’s wrong to force young children to share: developmentally speaking, they just don’t have the capacity.
Preparing for a Preschool Fair
Published on: 10/22/2019
Are you looking for a preschool for your child? The Palo Alto Menlo Park Parents Club Preschool Fair on Sunday, November 3rd and other preschool fairs that are sponsored by local area mothers clubs are a great way to learn about the many early childhood education options available in your community. The variety of choices presented at a fair can be overwhelming, so it’s a good idea to go prepared. Here are some suggestions for getting the most out of the fair:
Family Friendly Halloween Fun!
Published on: 10/15/2019
Costumes, spooky decorations, pumpkins, fall treats and so much more. Halloween is full of so much excitement when you are little, and even as a parent you can enjoy the holiday like you did as a child when you take part in all the festivities. There seems to be no better place to celebrate Halloween than the Bay Area. With so many family friendly activities here, your whole month of October can be jammed packed with Halloween fun. Here is a list of just a few upcoming events in the area:
What is Cultural Fluency?
Published on: 10/7/2019
A bilingual education gives a child many lifelong benefits and opportunities – the ability to see through different lenses, an increase in executive function and critical thinking skills, and of course, fluency in more than one language, just to name a few. However, parents may not have considered an additional benefit of a bilingual education that has become increasingly important in today’s globalized world – cultural fluency. Cultural fluency is the ability to live, work, and thrive in non-native cultures – a skill set that is aided by but not identical to language fluency.
Opening the Door to a World of Opportunities: Alto International School
Published on: 9/30/2019
Alto believes in the importance of a globally-minded, progressive education.
Founded in 1988, Alto International School is an accredited International Baccalaureate World School in Menlo Park. Every day, students from all over the world are engaged in a stimulating learning environment where positive dialogue, curiosity, and innovative approaches to problem-solving are encouraged. From preschool to high school, students are exposed to an inquiry-based learning methodology that actively involves them in the learning process.
The Importance of Raising Emotionally Healthy Boys
Published on: 9/21/2019
I believe most parents want their kids to do well at school, to have at least one or several good friends, to “fit in”, and to be on the right track to succeed in a career and life-path. Parents want their kids to be physically healthy and to have the resources they need to do well at school.

All kids start school with excitement and anticipation. They will be learning and growing academically and socially. But what about the emotional lives of boys and girls? I’d like you to do a guided imagery for a few moments. Close your eyes, and imagine you are on a school playground. A small girl, age 5 or so has fallen across the playground. You can see she’s crying and distressed, on her hands and knees on the ground. Imagine yourself approaching the child. What would you do and say? How would you interact with her? Now open your eyes. If I had told you the young child in distress was a boy, would you have reacted differently or treated him differently than if it was a
Preschool Friendships: The "Frenemy" and the "BFF"
Published on: 9/17/2019
The preschool years are a time when young children begin to develop deeper friendships with peers. This is the age of the first “BFFs” (Best Friends Forever), when children gravitate toward peers who share similar interests or play styles. Preferences emerge within the preschool classroom, and jealousy may arise when a best buddy wants to play with someone else.
The Power of the Arts for Children’s Growth and Learning
Published on: 9/10/2019
It seems intuitive that our lives – and the lives of our children – are enriched by the arts. As parents, we strive to give our children access to creative materials and experiences that allow them to explore their world, express themselves, and try new things. Schools, too, have an important role to play in this arena.
How to Keep Your Nanny After Your Kids Go to School
Published on: 9/3/2019
It’s a difficult situation: you’ve had the same nanny since your child was a toddler, maybe even an infant, and you couldn’t be happier with her excellent care. Now your child is starting school soon and you don’t want to let go of the nanny you and your family love. She feels like part of the family. But what can you do?
Luckily, there are a few ways to keep your nanny around, such as changing her responsibilities and tweaking her hours.
Start the conversation early
First and foremost, start the conversation about your kids going to school early. Talking about this change in routine early shows your nanny that you are proactive and open, and that you don’t want to lose her. You care about your relationship and want it to continue. Set aside a time to talk about your nanny’s duties before your kids go to school, if possible. For some families, this is a few months before school starts, but it can start much sooner, like when thoughts of preschool or pre-K arise.
4 Ways to Support Your Child During the School Year
Published on: 8/27/2019
The first weeks of the school year are a time of both excitement and worry for many children. While some kids have been eager to reconnect with their friends and begin the new year, other children become increasingly anxious as the first day of school approaches and have a hard time adjusting to the changes. As parents, we can provide our children with the care and attention they need to feel both academically prepared and emotionally held during this time of transition. Here are some tips to support your child in the first weeks of the new school year.
Parent Self-Care Tips for a Smoother Back-to-School Transition
Published on: 8/19/2019
Growing up, my favorite time of year was Back to School! It meant a new haircut, new clothes, new shoes, a new backpack, notebooks with matching pencil pouches filled with freshly sharpened pencils, and more. But it also meant butterflies in my stomach, wondering who my teacher would be. Will my best friend and I be in the same class? Who I will sit next to at lunch? And it also meant a few difficult mornings adjusting to waking up early again in order to get to school on time.
5 Tips to Ease the Transition Back to School
Published on: 8/12/2019
Some parents dread the start of the school year, having enjoyed lazy mornings and extra snuggle and play time with their children. Others of us jump for joy knowing our kids will be back in their routine and we have a nine-month hiatus from arranging camps and managing kids with too much time and too little structure. Regardless of whether you’re already feeling nostalgic about less time with your kids, or can’t wait to push them out the door, here are a few tips to ease the transition into the school year:
Latitude Food Allergy Care —
Published on: 7/23/2019
founded by moms to support and help other food allergic moms protect their children from food allergies.

Nationwide, more than 32 million Americans are impacted by food allergy — an estimated 1 in 13 children (2 in every classroom!) and more than 1 in 10 adults. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the prevalence of food allergy in children increased by 50 percent from 1997 to 2011, and it continues to rise.
8 Great Tips for Raising a Reader
Published on: 7/15/2019
Yesterday I had one of those happy mama moments. In my mind there are very few things more satisfying than watching my two daughters excitedly rip open the packages of new books that arrived in the mail from our monthly book club. Within minutes they were each snuggled into different ends of the couch flipping through their special gifts. The house was quiet, the girls were entertained, life was good.
Sacrifice, Joy and 12 Tips for Surviving as New Parents
Published on: 7/8/2019
Some regard parenthood as the ultimate “sacrifice” in life because it requires us to put another life before ourselves.
Taming Our Child's Anxious Worry Monster
Published on: 7/2/2019
Nearly all children will have fears or worries at some point during childhood—fears of the dark, of heights, of spiders, or monsters. But for up to a third of children and adolescents, their fears become profound and can develop into an anxiety disorder. Most parents strive to protect, comfort, and reassure their anxious children with responses that validate their emotional experience. Saying things like, “I see how worried you are. This is really scary for you.”
Powering Off: Taking a Digital Detox as a Family
Published on: 6/25/2019
At their best modern devices are helpful tools and can make our lives easier. At their worst, they are remarkably addictive, and research now clearly shows that their use can lead to a host of behavioral, interpersonal, and mood issues for people of all ages.
5 Proven Ways to Help Your Child Manage Frustration
Published on: 6/17/2019
5 Proven Ways to Help Your Child Manage Frustration
Let’s Enjoy Outdoor Play
Published on: 5/8/2019
By: Angel Chang, IHSD Marketing and Communications Manager

These days, it seems like fewer kids are seen actively playing outdoors and rather more are seen indoors glued to a screen. With technology advances in mobile media, it’s not uncommon to find young children sitting at a park with a smartphone in hand and completely oblivious to the environment. So here …
How to Teach Your Child Financial Literacy
Published on: 5/8/2019
By Susan Sachs Lipman

April is Financial Literacy Month and there’s no time like the present to give your kids some lessons that they can use for their entire lives. This is especially urgent, given some recent alarming statistics about financial literacy that include high rates of student and credit card debt and low rates of financial education and comprehension. No matter …
Ask the Expert: Financial Planner Q&A
Published on: 5/8/2019
This month, Chris Hutchins from Grove is answering members’ questions about financial planning. Q 1. In this housing market, is it more prudent to invest in real estate, real estate REITS or stocks in general?A–Due to its great appreciation over the years, the San Francisco housing market presents a unique challenge when answering this question. It may seem like a …
10 Tips for Returning to Work after a Career Break
Published on: 5/8/2019
Are you considering a return to work? Whether it’s because our children are starting kindergarten (or leaving for college!), financial necessity, or just the desire to dust off the resume be among other working professionals, many of us think about a career re-entry at some point. Only problem is, once we start thinking about this, the doubts and questions come …
Family Finance 101: 5 Things You Can Do Today to Secure Your Tomorrows
Published on: 5/8/2019
by: Chris Hutchins, Founder/CEO Grove

Even if you consider yourself to be a financially savvy person — you read the blogs, listen to the podcasts, etc. — a whole new world of considerations surface when your personal finance lens shifts from just you, to you and your family. For some, it can be a challenge to actually start thinking of themselves …
Anxiety After Baby, Do You Have It?
Published on: 5/8/2019
What if you’re a new mom and instead of feeling exhilarated, you find yourself feeling very anxious, sad, irritable or lonely? What if you feel guilty for being a “bad mom,” as you find yourself not living up to what seems like everyone else’s “baby bliss?” Many new parents are surprised to learn that at least 1 in 7 women …
Teaching Our Children to be Kind
Published on: 5/8/2019
We all want our children to be kind. In fact we find ourselves stunned and embarrassed when we witness them being anything but kind. But childhood is a series of growth lessons and learning to be kind is one such milestone. We all assume our children know what being kind means, however it is important to define it for them …
Spring Fun at the Farm is Saturday, April 27
Published on: 5/8/2019
You won’t want to miss this event! Back by popluar demand is Fun at the Farm Day! Saturday, April 27th10am-1pmPastorino Farms, Half Moon Bay PAMP Members are invited to enjoy a fun day at Pastorino Farm! There will be Pony Rides, a Petting Zoo, Hayrides, a Bouncy House and Farm tours. We will provide light snacks and drinks, and you …
Four Ways to Shift the Dynamic of Sibling Rivalry
Published on: 5/8/2019
By Maneesh Saini, LMFT, Senior Clinician at Parents Place, San Francisco

“It’s my turn to use the computer!” “Mom said I could sit in the front seat!” Sound familiar? It can often feel as though siblings argue about just about everything. While such conflicts can feel exhausting and often overwhelming for parents, these moments can also be opportunities to teach your children …
How to Manage Aggression in Children
Published on: 5/8/2019
You’re sitting relaxing for a few minutes before getting ready to make dinner, and you hear yelling echoing from the back of the house. You tear back there to find your child in what looks like a brawl with a friend. Once separated you proceed to yell back in order to make clear your disapproval. Sound familiar? Parents, teachers, and …
Developmental Milestones: What are they and why is it important?
Published on: 5/8/2019
As parents, we all are so excited to bring our bundles of joy home. It can be challenging at times like knowing which cry means the little one is hungry, tired, or just wants some mommy and daddy attention. We scramble to get our hands on any “parenting book” available and make sure we have scheduled all the pediatrician appointments. …