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Keep Your Family Healthy During the Winter

Susan Bartell
As the cheer of holiday season ends, the cold and dreary months ahead can seem long and bleak. Both kids and adults usually feel the urge to retreat to a cozy couch where big and small screens beckon us. We then wait out the winter with hot chocolate and other sugar-laden goodies that trick our brains into feeling happy! While this may be a great time to catch up on TV shows, the dark and cold winter months can trigger feelings of sadness, isolation and loneliness. There is also a tendency to gain weight in the winter (even for young children) since we eat fewer fresh fruit and veggies and we’re less active. Despite this bleak picture, it is possible to ensure your family a happier, healthier winter—by following a few simple suggestions. Read all ►

How Musical Training Can Benefit Your Child’s Development

Lise Eliot
Human beings are naturally musical. Every culture in the world has some form of music, which binds people together, communicates feelings, and brings joy to our shared human experience. The reason music is universal is because it employs many of the same brain circuits as language, which is also why musical training is so beneficial to young children. A child who learns to play a musical instrument is essentially bilingual, having two systems of sound and rhythm for communicating his or her feelings. Read all ►

Wintertime Classics – Great Books for Kids – Part 1

Deborah Sharp Libby
It is a great time of year to enjoy a good book. Library and bookstore shelves are filled with wonderful titles. Enjoying books, listening to stories, and singing or saying favorite nursery rhymes all support language and literacy development. Children enjoy reading great stories with their families and daily reading helps develop children’s interest in books and love for reading. Check out some of these wintertime classics for a way to spend a cold winter day with your little ones! Read all ►

Encouraging and fostering dreams in young girls

Susan Bartell
Research shows that it’s important for children to dream about all they can become and everything they want to accomplish in the future—even if these dreams never come true. Dreaming increases cognitive flexibility, encourages creativity and supports healthy risk-taking. Dreaming is particularly important for young girls because it empowers them to begin thinking about themselves as a nurturer (playing with dolls and playing ‘house’), thinking about the ways they might contribute to the world in other ways, and also imagining financial security (pretending to be a teacher, business owner or doctor). A recent survey by VTech confirms that parents recognize and value the importance of supporting their child’s dreams—even when these dreams seem like a fantasy (like being a famous actor or world-class athlete). Read all ►

Creative role-play helps girls grow up to be great

Susan Bartell
Does your daughter love to play ‘school’, pretend she’s a veterinarian, super hero or her favorite pop star? You may not realize it, but she’s doing a lot more than just playing. In fact, this type of imaginative, creative role-play helps her to develop cognitively, socially and emotionally. Read all ►

How to keep your child's brain active during the winter break

Lise Eliot
School vacations give families a nice break from their hectic routine. But, like any time off from learning, winter break allows time for school-aged children to lose some of their recently-acquired knowledge. Parents can help your children stay intellectually engaged by planning fun, but mentally stimulating activities during the winter break. Here are a few suggestions that are not only good for your child’s mind but are great bonding activities for the whole family: Read all ►
Meet VTech's Expert Panel
Deborah Sharp Libby
Early Childhood Language and Reading Expert
Lise Eliot
Early Brain Development Expert
Carla C. Johnson
Science and STEM Expert
Francis (Skip) Fennell
Mathematics Expert
Susan Bartell
Child Psychology Expert
VTech Mom
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