She's six, and is kind of timid. The other kids like her, but she daydreams when the coach is talking, and is noticeably less athletic than her teammates. I was always terrible at team sports, but feel like I missed out on some personal development by not playing. Should I keep her in soccer, or are there better things she could be doing?
My wonderful partner has a 7-year-old, 2nd-grade son who is having a little trouble keeping up with his peers in the reading department. We're trying to give him some extra attention in that area so that he can catch up, and we'd like to try and foster in him a genuine interest in reading. What books (or comics, or anything) could we give him that he might like, and which would be appropriate for his reading level? [more inside]
Help me brainstorm ideas for small gifts/treats to include in a Halloween “advent” sort of calendar for my goddaughters. [more inside]
My mom says I shouldn't really encourage my just-turning-4-year-old daughter to read too soon because she'll just get bored in school. I hadn't thought of this. Is there possibly some truth to this? [more inside]
My 2 year old son loves numbers. He can count by himself well into the 50s and can tell you what number he's looking at to at least as high as 110. As for me, well, numbers and I have never been the best of friends. How can I, a numbers-adverse dad, encourage and nurture his talent? [more inside]
What are teenagers, and college-age kids calling each other when they are trying to flirt? [more inside]
My 5 year old son /loves/ playing Minecraft on my grandmother's iPad when she visits. I have a chromebook that I can put linux on. What is the best way to transition him from a touchscreen interface to keyboard+mouse (or bluetooth controller?)? What other differences are there between the touchscreen & computer versions, it has been at least 5 years since I've played Minecraft on my computer, and never on the iPad.
My SO's kids are becoming a bigger part of my life, and she and I would like to start taking them on camping trips as a way to have fun, bond, introduce them to the outdoors, and find some precious peace and quiet out away from the roar of the city. We live in New Orleans, Louisiana; what are some good places to take them for weekend camping adventures? [more inside]
Help me talk to my five year old child about death age appropriately. We've talked about Fred Rogers. We've talked his feelings. We've talked about what he knows about it. He's concerned because his great-aunt died about a month ago, and now he wants to make sure we'll always be there. The problem is, in very short time his grandfather, my dad, won't. [more inside]
Our 9yo has (finally!) shown interest in searching for and listening to his own music on his iPod. Any suggestions for the easiest way he can do this where the music is either free to stream, or we can place limits on how much he purchases/downloads? [more inside]
What's a good video game controller for a toddler? Absolutely required: A reliable way of connecting it to a Windows 7 or 8 laptop. I don't mind using JoyToKey or 3rd-party drivers if necessary. Preferred: Wireless, so it can't be used to pull the laptop off the desk; Durable and/or cheap, in case it gets thrown or dropped; Simple, few inputs. [more inside]
Outdoorsy things to do within an hour or so of Pine Grove, Calif. when camping with a 7-year-old? [more inside]
We're having our daughter's first kids-only birthday party and we don't know how to do this. I'm looking for advice, especially for games and activities. [more inside]
I have a baby, a preschooler, a commute, and a spouse who works late. I need dinner to magically appear on the table within minutes of walking in the door. I don't know if this will involve a genie, a person, a recipe, or "one easy trick restaurants don't want you to know" like those shady sidebar ads. [more inside]
I am converting my home office into a nursery for impending child. It's not technically a bedroom as it has no windows and is about 10x12' (very high ceilings though). I've gotten a little nervous reading some home blogs where commenters freak out saying a kid will die in an airless room (these are mostly on converted closet arrangements, e.g. here). What should I worry about? How can I best prepare/alter this room? [more inside]
The missus and I are working through the decision to procreate or not. She's not so interested, I kinda am. I'm looking for insight and experience from people who chose not to have children, but still care about and like to spend time with kids. Details inside. [more inside]
Every night my 9 year old daughter asks to watch a movie while we eat dinner. We are big movie people, rarely ever watch commercial TV and don't have the Aussie version of cable, but we like to buy DVD TV series' or stream them. Some nights dinner is the perfect 'eat on the couch' meal, but a movie is too long if it's during the week. I am looking for some suggestions of shows we could all enjoy that are 30 minutes, or an hour. [more inside]
Looking for a recommendation for a park or conservation area within an hour drive of Toronto. Travelling with kids who love swimming, and exploring waterfalls, but aren’t up to long or rugged hikes. Hoping to encounter waterfalls, ideally combined with the swimming area. Requirements – kid friendly swimming, some kind of washroom available, parking / drive in location. Does this place exist?
What is the best site, app, or program for kids' worksheets? Math, science, handwriting, grammar, etc. [more inside]
My son had two nasty playground falls within 30 minutes of each other yesterday. Since then he's complaining of pain in the space behind his knee, and walking stiff legged. Occasionally he'll put weight on the leg, and it buckles. You are not my pediatrician, but can you help tell me how worried I should be, and what questions I should ask at our appointment later today? (Please please please tell me my baby didn't tear an ACL). [more inside]
What are some really magical and unusual places to visit/things to do with a 4-year-old for fun in DC? He's visited most of the usual museums/zoos etc. (including 826 DC) that would be good for kids. Also acceptable are magical and unusual things happening at one of the usual places :-).
7 and 6-year-old combining their efforts to hunger strike against everything I make. How do I make it stop!? [more inside]
My almost 11 year old son has started developing what I fear is an obsession with exercise. [more inside]
In the next few weeks, I will need to attend a series of late-running formal dinners... with a five-year-old in tow. Please recommend your most magical, engrossing, dinner-table-friendly activity books, games, small toys, etc. for the early school-aged set, so we can keep her quietly in her seat and out of everyone's hair. [more inside]
Can you help us generate a list of movies for family movie nights? Netflix or from the local library both OK. [more inside]
My husband has a job in Campbell, CA, and we've been looking at Craigslist and Zillow and Realtor.com for places to live. We've already had an attempted scam via CL and I don't want to waste time with other useless sites. Any recommendations? [more inside]
My baby girl's birthday is this week and I am hunting the perfect song to back a slideshow of photos of her first year. I do not want anything overtly sappy. My kiddo is known for being adventurous and fun so I want to find her a song that is suiting to her personality. Help please! :) [more inside]
I should start by saying I'm a big fan of folding bikes and have been using one to commute to work for the last 8 years.(Brompton SL-2) We have two girls who can now both ride bikes, and are living overseas in the UAE. We can buy bikes where we live but the prices are higher and the selection's a bit limited. I'm thinking of buying a pair of Dahon Boardwalk single speed coaster break folders and bringing them back when we return next week. Has anyone tried folding bikes for kids? I've had our older daughter ride my Brompton--she does fine on it. My sense is they would not be as excited about them initially as opposed to something more kid-like, but that over time it would just come to be seen as what it is--a bicycle we can bring anywhere. I'm wondering if others in the MeFi community have tried folding bikes with kids--have they worked size wise? Lasted over the years? Or languished in a corner of the garage?
Which organisations, companies, community groups, etc support and encourage embracing both arts/humanities AND STEM (especially technology)? [more inside]
I want to leave my husband and need to understand the potential impact to my daughters, aged 10 and 11. Please tell me what your parents' divorce was like, and the different ways in which it affected you. [more inside]
What precautions, if any, need to be taken in this situation? [more inside]
Recently there is this family brings their super noisy kids(about 5-6) to run and scream on the street infront of my apartment everyday from 6pm-10pm. The street is in a quite neighborhood, there are families, but I never hear or saw a single kids making such noise outside of there home on the street. One day I went down and talked to the parent and kids, that they shouldn't make noise like this, but they didn't listen and was quite rude, both the parent and the unruling kids. I really can't take this, it's extremly noisy, the screaming can't be stopped by closing my windows and putting on earplugs, not to mention it's hot summer that I need a little bit of breeze and peace in the evening at home. What Can I do? this is in NYC, is there any code for noisy street kids? thanks!
We'll be in New York in early August for a few days. What shows would be good for a six-year-old girl? [more inside]
What's a good town or smallish city in Spain to visit in the summer with kids (ages 2 and 5) in tow? We're looking at 3 weeks in late July/August, and would prefer a walkable place that's on a train line (or are they all?) so we wouldn't have to rent a car to explore locally or beyond. [more inside]
Mr. TEA, preschooler TEA, and I are going from our home in the U.S. to the Algarve next month to visit family for a few weeks. This will be the first trip out of the U.S. for our preschooler, and the first trip back in a long while for us adults. What advice can you give us about how to help our preschooler prepare for the trip? About what to do as a family while we're there? About traveling with kids in the Algarve?
Are restaurants okay with people smuggling in their own food for little kids? Do they see a difference between a zippy cup/handful of goldfish crackers and a full-on meal? [more inside]
Our 17 year old cousin is coming to visit. He comes from a sheltered environment, not allowed to watch TV at home, and they don't have wifi. We'd like to enjoy some really good TV together. I'm looking for good quality shows that are sophisticated and fun, with minimal romantic/sexual content. On the kid's last visit, he really enjoyed the Firefly and Justified series. [more inside]
I'm hoping to get some thoughts from the green about the possibility of getting a cottage located on a cliff. The question is about fears, rational risk assessment, and Ontario Geology. [more inside]
Our daughter is 6. Since potty training 4 years ago, she hasn't been wiping herself well after going to the bathroom. We though the problem would resolve itself (and sometimes wipe her butt ourselves if she goes at home) but it's not, and what used to cause skin irritation is now causing vaginal infections. [more inside]
I have been reading Zita the Spacegirl to my kids (7 & 5, boy and girl) very night. For those who haven't read it, it is a terrific graphic novel for kids full of adventure and strange creatures, with a great message. What else would you reccomend, as we approach the end of this great series? Specifically thinking of a modern, adventure-filled (but not overly mature) graphic novel or series. Science fiction or fantasy would be ideal.
How can I get my six-year-old to stop licking his lips, which results in a chapped ring around his mouth? [more inside]
We have two adorable cats and an even more adorable 4-year-old son who we've just confirmed is allergic to cats. What now? [more inside]
What is the best beach in Galveston to take a bunch of eleven-year-olds for a couple of hours? [more inside]
My son has been sleeping in my bed since he was a tiny infant. He's nearly six now. So how can I gently and kindly get him to sleep in his own bed, in his own room? A few more pertinent details follow below. [more inside]
What are the pros and cons of buying physical books vs. relying primarily on library books from the point of view of exposing one's future children to a wide variety of books? [more inside]
My husband and I have decided to seperate. [more inside]
10-year-old that struggles with many things who, for a few years now, has, when feeling sad/depressed, talked about how no one likes him, he's not good at anything, has no special qualities, isn't smart... etc. Looking for ways to help him. [more inside]
We traveled a couple of weeks ago, and my 7 month old got a respiratory virus and got very sick. Sent from pediatrician's office to ER to PICU sick. Based on timing, Occam's Razor says she caught it on the plane. We will be flying again in a few weeks. I would like practical tips for things we can do on the plane to minimize the risk of her getting sick again. [more inside]
Thoughts on our New England itinerary? Drive Pittsburgh to Boston then up to Salem, Gloucester, Rockport, Portsmouth (I saw the great thread on the kid trips centered around Portsmouth), Portland, Acadia National Park and back bypassing Boston on the return. [more inside]
I've been sorting through youtube trying to find some animated shorts to show a group of kids, turns out there is a lot of flotsam! I'd appreciate any links. [more inside]