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Educating Our Children

To Include or Not?
The Jewish Day School Dilemma
An academic self-contained/social inclusion model does not just benefit children with special needs. Typical children learn a lot from this model as well. They learn patience, kindness, acceptance and tolerance for children who may be different. These lifelong lessons will help the typical child as these students grow into adulthood . . .
Spare the Rod?
Parents usually parent in the style that they do, not because that's what's good for their kids, but rather because that is what is suitable to them, the parents, in the moment. Let's be honest here. The way that we react to our kids has more to do with us and how we are feeling than with what the kids actually did...
To Do or Not to Do?
Striving Towards Our Goals
Sailing taught me that to reach a goal, you have to strive and strain. It also taught me that sometimes, striving towards a goal requires relinquishing control and doing absolutely nothing...
Lessons from a Smoking Toddler
The public is enamored by videos of Ardi’s smoking because he is a baby acting like an adult. But in Ardi’s defense, he couldn’t be acting more like a baby! After all, what is a baby if not a little vulnerable sponge, soaking up our every mood, word, and—more obviously—action?
Eating Disorders
The pressure of dieting and physical appearance is something that my eight-year-old daughter is already aware of! Occasionally she will pat her round little belly and ask me if I think that she is fat. She is a little chubbier than some of her friends, but certainly nothing unhealthy or out of the ordinary. Should I put her on a diet?
Straightening It All Out
This was only a three-week workshop. After three weeks, I would become a much more effective disciplinarian, communicator and authority figure in my home...
A Teacher's Kind Gesture
When big problems loom that have no real solutions and life just seems too hard to bear, a friend can feel at a loss as to how they can help...
Dripping Water: Gentle Parenting
Think of the child as a crop. There are different ways of watering crops. You can pour water on them with rotary sprinklers, a whirling deluge; or you can conserve your energy and work on the roots, gently...
When Your Child isn't Welcome at the Playground
When my son was born, I smugly assumed that I would do better. I assumed that no child of mine would ever be the terror of the playground. However, inexplicably, as my son turned two, his sweet and mellow disposition gave way to aggressiveness...
Less Than Perfect
I woke up to the sound of my daughter screaming at her little brother. "Why did you do that?" she repeated. "Tell me! Why did you do that?" Then the door slammed...
A Link In the Chain
My Daughter's First Prayer Book
So here I sit at my youngest daughter's siddur party, my digital camera poised in one hand, and my other hand wiping away a stray tear...
Mommy 500
If I denied my baby adequate exposure to bubbles and clapping songs before he learned to roll over, I would irreparably hinder his chances of getting into Harvard...
When Sorry Isn't Enough
Frustrated and wounded by her rejection, the boy clenched his fist, leaned back, and belted my daughter right on the nose...
Controlling the Control
The hardest part is not relying or resorting to a solution that may appear harmless, is cheap, convenient, easy, mobile and works. Kind of.
The Optimal Balance
Respecting Yourself, Respecting Your Child
Many modern parents have a fear of being the big bad wolf, the scary disciplinarian who drives his or her suppressed children straight into the arms of a therapist...
How Less is More
It seemed absurd, and yet, when I looked into my son's droopy brown eyes, I understood that this "non-invitation" was a genuine disappointment...
The Sticker Trade
Children and Materialism
A child's world may seem simple, but it is where the complex task of forging an inner value system takes place...
One Step at a Time
I held his hand until he went on the school bus; I kissed him and then sent him on his way, alone. The whole time he was in school, I found myself thinking of him, worrying about him, praying for him. The phone would ring and I'd grab it...
Special Time with My Father
Coke? My father was buying Coke!? My mother was an avowed health food nut, and Coke was not a part of our household staples. My father responded with a conspiratorial wink. I knew that look well . . .
This was the first time I had ever come to the Western Wall with a family member. In the past, I had only come alone. But now I had brought my daughter with me, and a deep sense of comfort welled up in me...
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