Tips for Making Music Part of Everyday Life

Making Music a Part of Daily Life

I grew up surrounded by music – between my time learning to play the piano, my developing love of singing, and the music my tone-deaf-but-enthusiastic mother played around the house, my life was built as much note by note, as it was day by day. You may have heard that involving a child in music on a regular basis helps a child improve their mental abilities, and those musical habits can reach far beyond just a weekly lesson. Here are some ideas for using the bonus listening tracks provided by Hoffman Academy for making music a part of your daily life.

Waking Up with Upbeat and Uptempo Selections

Use an upbeat, cheerful, or rhythmic selection to help your child gear up for facing the day. Spinning Song, Yankee Doodle, and When the Saints Go Marching In are great options from the Listening Tracks. You can also find selections on YouTube or Spotify-type apps such as Sousa marches, Wagner Ride of the Valkyries, or Mars from Gustav Holst’s The Planets. These songs will get you moving, up and at ‘em, and out the door with a hopeful attitude.

Build Music Skills AND Togetherness With Sing-Alongs

Singing is one of the best ways for children to begin to train their ears and develop musical skills that will carry them through the challenges of learning an instrument. And singing TOGETHER can build some fun feelings – especially when doing other chores or household tasks. Grinding Corn, Love Somebody, Mary Had a Little Lamb, and Row Row Row Your Boat are some favorites with all ages!
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Back-To-School Ready With Understood.Org

The back to school season can be a trying time for both parents and children. You have to get your child re-accustomed to waking up at a certain time, picking out their clothes the night before and then there is the dreaded new school year paperwork that seems to never end. But the beginning of a new school year can be an even more challenging time for families with children who struggle with reading and writing, math, focus, and organization.

Understood

One in five children in the U.S. have learning and attention issues, like ADHD and dyslexia. Children with these types of challenges can feel especially stressed during the back-to-school season as they face new subjects, teachers, and schools. Together the Ad Council and Understood.org have partnered together to promote ways children and their families can be First-Day Ready. Understood.org is offering a free First-Day Ready Guide to help parents with students at every age successfully navigate back-to-school transitions and manage challenges with academic, organization and social skills. Below you will find some tips from the guide.

Every child has a different story – some may love school, some may dread the thought of going back, and for some, it may scare them enough to cause real issues for them. Starting school can be an exciting, confusing and even scary time for kids with learning and attention issues, and for their parents. New teachers and classmates, new schedules and demands—these changes can be a lot to prepare for and absorb.
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Taking Savings to a Whole New Level: Yesterday’s Tomorrow

It happens to everyone sooner or later – the big financial emergency that makes you feel like your life may crumble and fall. But if you have a good financial plan from the start, great big one time bills or financial emergencies aren’t as life altering as you might expect.

Yesterday's Tomorrow

Saving money is critically important in today’s society. Unfortunately, a majority of young adults are still struggling with high levels of debt and lack of a personal budget to help save for the future. For the past decade, Ad Council and AICPA’s Feed the Pig campaign has been working to improve financial literacy among Americans by encouraging them to make savings part of their daily lives.

The action you take today could change your life, really. But how do you know what financial decisions are the right ones? There are tons of resources and articles out there on what people think you should do with your finances, but not everyone could possibly understand where you come from, where you are going, and what your future financial goals are.

Yesterday's Tomorrow

Thankfully FeedThePig.org has great resources to help you figure out how and where to save more and spend wisely, including a new game called Yesterday’s Tomorrow. The game is like a “choose-your-own-adventure” in the form of a digital photo album! You get to develop a relationship with a future version of yourself – how incredibly cool is that? You get to jump through key life stages and instantly see the outcomes of those choices you make from teenage years through retirement. As you think through some life decisions like school, job, and awesome vacations, you’ll see how your choices may save, or lose money. No one wants to blow their money needlessly, right?
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Great Tips for Traveling While Studying

Many of us dream of seeing the world. In truth, there is no better time to do it than while you are at college. You’re young enough to enjoy it, experience everything, and have no responsibilities at home, but old enough to appreciate all the world has to offer and be safe while you travel. Unfortunately, however, many students are put off traveling due to the rising costs of both travel and tuition, as well as the worries that they won’t be able to commit to their studies while they travel. This doesn’t have to be the case; if you want to travel while you are at school, you can. Here are some great tips to help you.

Study Online

There are some great options when it comes to online study. With so many courses now available, there is bound to be something that suits you. Degrees available include addiction studies online from the University of South Dakota. Courses such as this in growing industries could offer you a fantastic future career, but studying online gives you the opportunity to study flexibly, and on the move, while you travel.

Travel Out of Season

Avoiding the main holiday seasons is the easiest way to save money. You might be surprised to learn just how much you could save by moving your vacation dates by just a week or two. Traveling out of season also allows you a more relaxing time, and a better chance to experience local life.

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WIN Set of Kids National Geographic Books

National Geographic Kids Books is featuring SIX new titles that are perfect year round or for giving as gifts.  They are big, bold and beautiful hardcovers; cater to book enthusiasts and reluctant readers alike; and are fun, inspiring AND educational (but don’t tell your kids that last part!).

How Things Work (ages 7-10, $19.99) – Discover the secrets and science behind bounce houses, hovercraft, robotics and everything in between in this book that provides both the quick answers AND complete explanations for all things high tech, low tech and no tech (how DOES glue work???). Detailed diagrams, revealing photos, hands-on activities and and fascinating facts all help to demystify many common items — like how a microwave works, how an eraser makes pencil marks disappear and how an iPad or tablet can do so much —  and also delves into the more futuristic — but very real — inventions like bionics, invisible cloaks and  tractor beams.  “Tales from the Lab” and profiles of talented engineers, inventors and scientists provide plenty of inspiration.  How Things Work is perfect for the kid who thinks “just because” isn’t a REAL answer.  Several spreads from How Things Work can be found by clicking here.

Ultimate Oceanpedia (ages 7-10, $24.99) – Perfect for the ocean-obsessed, this book is the most complete ocean reference ever! Ultimate Oceanpedia is overflowing with amazing facts, photos, art and diagrams that take the reader on a journey through the ocean. Whales, dolphins, porpoises, turtles, sharks, fish, crustaceans, sponges — from the weird to the wonderful — they are all featured in breathtaking photographs with easy to read captions. Wild weather, underwater exploration and tips and pointers on how to help keep our oceans thriving round out this thick, keepsake volume.

Tales from the Arabian Nights: Stories of Adventure, Magic, Love and Betrayal by Donna Jo Napoli (ages 8-12, $24.99) — “A brilliant tapestry woven not of yarn but of stories, both fresh and faithful to its historical routes” — starred review, Kirkus
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Attention and Learning Issues Need to #BeUnderstood

Attention and Learning Issues Need to #BeUnderstood

Raising a child with learning and attention issues is a journey. And it’s one that’s full of ups and downs, successes and challenges, questions and decisions. It can be very hard on parents and equally as hard on children – especially because they are the ones who are struggling to be understood. But what if your child is struggling and you do not even realize it IS a learning or attention issue?

In the U.S., 1 in 5 children struggles with brain-based learning and attention issues that affect reading, writing, math, focus and organization. These issues are a lot more common than most people think, and while learning and attention issues may not be as visible as other health issues, they’re just as real. Unfortunately, many kids go undiagnosed because parents to think that their children are just being lazy, need to work harder, or that they are in a phase that they will grow out of.

Understood.org has launched the new #BeUnderstood campaign to generate awareness about learning and attention issues and encourage people who are seeing or experiencing signs of learning and attention issues to visit Understood.org, learn about these issues, and take that crucial first step in getting their kids the help they need to thrive in school, at home and in life.

Attention and Learning Issues Need to #BeUnderstood

If you are sitting there reading this, stressed out and feeling alone, don’t be. You are definitely not alone. Understood is an organization that was created by a coalition of 15 nonprofits, and its content and tools were informed by a survey of more than 2,200 parents of children with learning and attention issues. Understood offers free daily access to experts through chats and webinars, a safe online community that encourages parents to reach out to and learn from each other and a suite of specially designed, first-of-their-kind tools.
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Missing School Can Lead To Chronic Absenteeism

Chronic Absenteeism

Have you ever heard of Chronic Absenteeism? It was a new word for me. Are you one of those parents who make your kid go to school, even when they are sick? Or are you more likely to just let them stay home and figure the rest out later?

We all know things happen, kids get sick, last minute vacations, deaths in the family – I could go on. But that isn’t really what we are talking about here. For most of us, we are very blessed in the fact that we have the tools, resources, and wherewithal to make sure our kids do not fall behind if they do have to miss school. Chronic absenteeism is more than that. There are MILLIONS of children all over the United States who are missing school due to struggling in the classroom, having trouble with bullies, or dealing with challenges at home.  These are the students who are falling behind and struggling to graduate later in life.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M8SIX2o2N1c]As a parent, you’re in a powerful position to help your child both improve their grades and increase their love of learning. Parents who get involved with their children’s schools—by meeting teachers, attending afterschool and sporting events, participating in PTA meetings, and volunteering in the classroom—are more likely to be able to advocate for their children within the school community.

A student who misses just two days of school each month — 18 days total in the year — is considered to be chronically absent. However, many parents don’t realize that, even when absences are excused or understandable, absences add up and can greatly impact a child’s education. In the United States, more than 6 million children are chronically absent from school each year.
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Win Tickets- Curious George at the Liberty Science Center #LSCCuriousity

 

 

liberty science center

The Liberty Science Center in nearby Jersey City, NJ has a ton to do for kids and families. They also constantly rotate exhibits and events so no one ever gets tired of doing anything. The latest event is Curious George: Let’s Get Curious, which opened this weekend.

“Letting curiosity and inquiry be their guides, children explore familiar buildings and locales from the “Curious George” books and television series on PBS Kids in Curious George: Let’s Get Curious! The exhibit presents key concepts in science, math, and engineering, which are woven throughout the exhibit. Activities invite children to learn like Curious George does—through direct experience and problem solving!

You can also meet Curious George in person at the Science Center. George will visit October 1, November 11, November 25, December 28, and December 29. Come take photos with him and give a big, friendly hug. Curious George can’t wait to meet your family!”

liberty science center

You can also get plenty of Curious George souvenirs in the gift shop.

All the fun an excitement was a wonderful way to get kids and adults to learn science and mechanics in a hands on way, while having tons of fun- the true Liberty Science Center fashion. The kids also loved meeting Curious George himself.  The exhibit will run until Jan. 8, 2017.

hands on learning

 

There is also the “Bodies Revealed” exhibit that older kids, parents- and really anyone will enjoy. It does cost more, so as a premium exhibition, it is available with the Premium Pass or a Combination Ticket.
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