Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Happy and Safe Halloween

Halloween can be a fun holiday, but a bit of planning will ensure it's a safe holiday, as well. Here are some tips for your family.

  • Bright and/or Reflective - consider adding reflective tape to costume or treat bags
  • Shoes that fit well
  • Costumes short enough to prevent tripping or entanglement
  • Non-toxic makeup and decorative hats are safer than a mask that can limit range of vision. If using a hat it should fit properly so it doesn't slide over the eyes
  • Costumes made using hoodie sweatshirts and sweatpants are very comfortable, warm and easy to make yourself
  • If purchasing costumes, make sure everything is labeled flame resistant
  • Look for accessories that are safe for the child and others
  • Flashlights for escorts and/or children should have fresh batteries
Pumpkin Decorations:
  • Small children can draw the face on their pumpkin with a marker leaving the carving to an adult
  • Consider a flashlight, glow stick or twinkle lights instead of a candle to light your pumpkin
  • If using a candle, a votive is the safest choice
  • Candle lit pumpkins should be located on a sturdy surface and away from flammable objects and should not be left unattended
Trick or Treat Safety at Your Home:
  • Keep your home safe to visiting children by making sure that the porch, front yard or driveway area is clear of obstacles (toys, bikes, decorations, garden hose, etc.)
  • Make sure outdoor lights are in working order and provide enough light for young children and parents to walk
  • Leaves can be slipery, so it's best to have them swept from sidewalk, porch or steps
  • Make sure pets are secure for their safety and the safety of trick-or-treaters
Out and About Safety Tips:
  • Children should always be accompanied by an adult
  • If older children are going alone, preview their route and agree on a time to return and stay with their group at all time. Consider having a cell phone with the group.
  • Only go to homes with a light on and never enter a home
  • Use the sidewalk and travel on well lit streets
  • Don't cut across yards or travel up alleys - especially for older children out together
  • Cross street at established crosswalks and corners - never between parked cars
Halloween Health:
  • A good meal prior to parties or trick-or-treating will help discourage children from filling up on Halloween treats
  • Children should return home to sort and check treats with adult supervision
  • Non-food treats are a nice option to hand out at your home - pens, pencils, crayons and coloring books or stickers can be a nice alternative
  • Non-sweet treats are another option - packages of crackers, raisins, sugar-free gum, cheese sticks or even a juice box
  • Try to ration treats for the days following Halloween

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Ghost Cookies

by Kelly Miller

For the past seven years I have made these cookies with the children I care for.  They are quick and easy to make because they require no baking!  Have fun!  I have enjoyed making these cookies with toddlers through school age children.

          1 package Nutter Butter cookies
          1 package almond bark
          chocolate chips
          sprinkles, if desired

Melt almond bark.  Dip Nutter Butter cookies in almond bark; completely cover.  Set cookie on waxed paper.  Decorate with chocolate chip eyes, and sprinkles, if desired.  They look like ghosts!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Partnering with Your Child's Teacher

It's Parent Teacher Conference time and it got me thinking about how we partner with schools and teachers. I love to check out other blogs and online sites. This posting came up and you may also find it interesting. As a nanny I was also part of the teacher-parent partnership - volunteering in the classroom, going on field trips, supporting the child with their homework were just some of the ways I was involved. This article is just one parent's perspective.

How Do You Partner with Your Child’s Teacher?

From Blogger Jolene

I’m a big believer in my kids’ education, and I’m also a big advocate of partnering with my kids’ teachers. Sometimes, however, it’s a challenge to partner with a teacher.

Fortunately, I have a lot of friends who happen to be teachers. I have a sister who is a teacher, and my mother and grandmother are retired teachers, so I feel lucky to have inside information about what teachers say about working with parents. When I hear their stories, I then understand why it’s sometimes hard to partner with a teacher.

Because of budget cuts,