occupational therapist & child development specialist

Author: Anne Zachry (Page 1 of 27)

Sleep Problems Solved: Get Cool Koala Child-Friendly Bedtime Meditations!!!

It can be challenging, and sometimes nearly impossible, to get your kids to fall asleep quickly and get a good night’s rest. Now, there is a solution to this problem! Cool Koala, created by music therapist Ryan Judd, is a program of relaxing, engaging, bedtime meditation sessions. Ryan’s intuitive and deliberate approach to his work with children is evident in this amazing product. Every evening, your child will have access to a unique, child-friendly guided meditation. With fun characters like Cool Koala, Busy Beaver, and Cranky Cat, your child will look forward to relaxing and going to bed. Not only will your nighttime routine go more smoothly, but your child will also gain skills that will help them relax, focus, and find peace on a day-to-day basis moving forward. I highly recommend Cool Koala Meditations!

To learn more about Ryan Judd, visit his website, The Rhythm Tree!

How to Get Ready for Kindergarten

Parents frequently ask me what their child needs to do to get ready for kindergarten. I like to share this list of 25 “readiness” skills that kindergarten teachers have told me are important for a child to be successful in the kindergarten classroom.

Kindergarten Readiness Checklist

1)    Speaks in complete sentences

2)    Listens without interrupting

3)    Follows two-step directions

4)    Begins to share with others

5)    Is able to recognize authority

6)    Understands concepts such as “top,” “bottom,” “big,” “little,” “more,” “less”

7)    Able to follow basic rules

8)    Recognizes rhyming words

9)    Identifies some alphabet letters

10) Bathrooms independently

11) Button shirts, pants, coats, and zips up zippers

12) Can sort objects that are the same shape, color, or size

13) Recognizes and names at least 5 colors

14) Recognizes own first name in print

15) Recognizes letters in own first and last name

16) Begins to write some of the letters in own first name

17) Cuts with scissors

18) Trace basic shapes

19) Draws a line, circle, X and +

20) Works simple puzzles

21) Counts from 1 to 10 in correct order

22) Identifies the beginning sound of some words (C is for cat)

23) Runs, jumps, hops, throws, catches, and bounces a ball

24) Knows first and last name of parents

25) Adjust to new situations without parents being there

So get ready for kindergarten by practicing these skills with your preschooler and your little one will have a much smoother transition into school!

Got Parenting Anxiety?

How many times have you heard someone say that parenting is the most important job in the world? Actually, I totally agree with that statement! As a parent of three, I am constantly worried that I am going to screw up in a major way. To be honest, it brings tears to my eyes when I think that I am responsible for raising these three human beings, and I’ve got one shot, and one shot only. “Don’t blow it, don’t blow it, don’t blow it,” is constantly running through the back of my mind. It’s no wonder that I’m a fairly stressed out person. However, I do have a positive way of dealing with my stress. I read.

How I deal with parenting anxiety?

“What do I read?” you ask. I read parenting research! Zero to Three, Child Development, The Journal of Marriage and the Family, Pediatrics, The American Journal of Occupational Therapy, Journal of Pediatric Psychology, etc. I can’t think of a better way to tackle two birds with one stone. I can deal with the origins of my stress (parenting anxiety), and reading in general tends to reduce my stress. Ahhh… I’m feeling better already.

Parenting research

So what does this have to do with you, my dear friends? Well, not only do I stay current on all of the latest parenting research, I am a child development specialist and parenting expert, so I have a responsibility to share my knowledge! That is what this blog is all about. In future posts, I will address a variety of parenting topics, and I will share research-based information with you to help you better deal with your parenting dilemmas.  Basically I will provide parenting advice, parenting tips, summaries of great parenting articles…you name it! And as an added bonus, if you have parenting or child development questions, just click on the “contact me” button and fill out the form. I’ll address your question as soon as possible!

Blessings!

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