Raising a Thinking Child through the Age of Magical Realism

By Shannon S. Moon

As a parent, one essential question illuminates my journey: How do I raise children who can think critically and yet maintain their sense of wonder about the world?

My oldest daughter, almost four, currently resides in what I call the Age of Magical Realism. The boundaries between what is real, what is fantasy, what is possible, what is probable—these are moldable, fluid. She is not alone. On a recent rainy day at school, cocooned inside, I looked up to see children: chasing monsters with drums and jingle bells; creating Picasso-esque dogs from paper bags; populating a “zoo” of lions, dogs, unicorns and Continue reading Raising a Thinking Child through the Age of Magical Realism

Feel Free to Elaborate: Using Praise More Effectively

By Kelly Carcione

What we say to our children matters. Inherently we know this yet we often spend more time telling our children what not to do than commenting constructively on their efforts and triumphs.

I’m sure you’ve heard the theory that we praise our children too often; rewards are given for every small achievement in the name of building self-esteem, that telling a child that he’s smart too often will lead to a life full of anxiety. So, to praise or not to praise? Continue reading Feel Free to Elaborate: Using Praise More Effectively