Category Archives: Family Resources

A Parent’s Guide to Helping Teens Organize College Applications

You made it through the newborn days, handled the toddler and teen years with style, and now you’re facing the arduous task of helping your son or daughter apply for college or university. Does the fun ever end? Now is a good time to start the year off on the right foot so you avoid a last-minute panic looking for all the necessary documents.

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Coding Camps: What to Look For

Have you considered a boot camp for your student this summer? We’re not talking about basic training, but a new kind of boot camp: coding boot camp. That’s right: there are camps that teach kids to code. As the name suggests, these can be pretty rigorous. But if your student spends a lot of time on computers, they might like a good way to keep them busy over the summer – while they learn. Read more…

Student and counselor

The Many Benefits of Volunteering

Looking for a fun activity to try with your teen? Have you considered volunteering together? Teens who serve as volunteers benefit in the same ways as adults. They learn skills associated with the volunteer work they choose. Encouraging our teens to reach out and help others is not only a great bonding opportunity for you and your child, it can help their future. Read more…


Finding the Time: Tips for Parents of College Applicants

With an eye on college admissions, how can today’s students balance the demands of school, volunteer work, extracurricular activities and part-time jobs – and still fit in some occasional downtime?  And what can parents do to help their teens manage their time?

Educational consultant Brittany Maschal says that while students should be encouraged to explore their interests, get involved with their community and be active, their focus should start to narrow as they move through the high school years.

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Gearing Up for the FAFSA – Start with the FAFSA ID

As 2015 starts drawing to close, it’s time to start thinking about what lies ahead in 2016.

Our predictions?

Well, in a perfect world, January 1, 2016, will be the day every high school senior sits down to file the FAFSA. After all, it’s important to complete the FAFSA as soon as possible. Some schools and states award aid money on a first-come, first-served basis.

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Bring Out Their Best: Encourage a Winning College Application Essay

Helping students with their college application essay can be a balancing act. You want their true voice to shine through, but you also want the essay to sound professional and promising.

The biggest role of counselors, parents and teachers is encouragement. Giving students the confidence to express themselves will help them write well and show their personality. But the essay must be the student’s own work – 100 percent written by them. Some colleges ask them to sign a statement guaranteeing that the writing is their own.

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Classroom students

Conquering Test Anxiety

It’s October. You might feel a chill in the air. You might crave a pumpkin spice latte. And educators might sense a lot of text anxiety in the classroom. Test anxiety rises as the SATs and ACTs approach and for some students, the effects can be debilitating. The American Test Anxieties Association website reports that 16–20% of students have high test anxiety.

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Turning Aptitudes Into Abilities

The greatest value in the world is the difference between what we are and what we could become.”
— Ben Herbster

One teen may have a strong and clear voice, but unless this voice is recognized as an aptitude, trained in music and developed through practice, he will never have the ability to sing.

Another teen may move swiftly and gracefully on long, well-formed legs, but until she learns to run and practices to develop this skill through competition, she will never be an athlete.

The difference between aptitudes and abilities is the difference between what we are and what we could become.

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The Market for Educational Toys

Who doesn’t love toys? Even adults find it hard to not pull all those colorful gizmos off the shelves and start playing with them. Toys are an $80 billion industry, according to the Toy Industry Association.

One area of toy sales is particularly hot. According to the NPD Group, a consumer and retail information provider, sales for learning and exploration are on the rise.

If you’re interested in turning your love of toys into a career as a toy designer, it might be a good idea to educate yourself about the educational toy market.

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