5 Ways to Foster a Child's Creativity

5 Ways to Foster a Child's Creativity
Fostering creativity helps children grow mentally by providing new opportunities for self-expression, problem solving, and trying out new ideas. Parents can have a vital role in creating an open environment where children can be free to explore and self-express. There are some simple yet rewarding ways you can promote creativity in your child. Here are 5 ways to spur creativity in your child. 1. Get outside! Nature can be the best teacher sometim...
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Receptive and Expressive Communication Explained

Receptive and Expressive Communication Explained
When you think about communication skills, you probably think about words and pronunciation, but communication begins even before a baby starts babbling. Communication encompasses what we understand and body language as well as what we say. There are two kinds of communication - receptive and expressive - and it's important for children to develop both. Receptive communication has to do with how one processes and understands what's going on in he...
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Behavioral Changes to Expect When Your Child Starts School

Behavioral Changes to Expect When Your Child Starts School
You might not remember your first day of school - or maybe you remember it a little too well. It's a big transition that includes new people, places, and pressures. Children experience lots of confusing emotions because of this, and if you anticipate certain behavior changes you can help your child navigate this time successfully. As children go to school and learn about new things they might experience fears about criticism and failure for the f...
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​Is it Ever too Early to Start Reading to Your Child?

​Is it Ever too Early to Start Reading to Your Child?
Some parents may be wondering when to start reading to their child. Both of my parents are educators – under their guidance, I learned the value of reading from an early age. Simply put, it is never too early to read to your child. In fact, studies have shown that introducing books beginning at 4 months increases the chance that parents will continue to read to their children throughout their childhood. There are ample benefits to reading early. ...
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8 Tips for Delivering Trauma-Informed Feedback to Your Child

8 Tips for Delivering Trauma-Informed Feedback to Your Child
Children who have experienced trauma often react to both positive and negative feedback a bit differently than other children. Brookes Publishing discusses some ideas for teacher-student interactions on how to give both positive and corrective feedback. These ideas can also translate to how you respond in the home. For positive feedback, make it: Low-key and private . Use nonverbal signals like giving a thumbs-up, a hug or, jotting a few words on...
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Fine Motor Skills Part Two: What's Involved?

Fine Motor Skills Part Two: What's Involved?
Since we learned about the importance of fine motor skills (that it affects learning skills having to do with hygiene, academic performance, how they relate to peers, and more) in another blog post, let's look at what other types of development are involved in fine motor development, including mid-line crossing, ocular motor control, and hand-eye coordination. Read on to learn the basics of each. Midline crossing According to Kid's Sense "the bod...
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Working towards the ideal: Affection in the Home

Working towards the ideal: Affection in the Home
Memories and physical pictures remind me of my relationship with my dad. From sitting in the pew next to him in church or on the couch for a movie, dad wanted to squeeze my ears, arms and fingers.  As I grew up and became more aware of my dad's way of loving, I grew to hate physical touch. I shrunk from it. I claimed he made my ear lobes bigger. I resisted his effort to care in this manner. This took a toll on our relationship, which began t...
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What’s So Important About Developing Fine Motor Skills Anyway?

What’s So Important About Developing Fine Motor Skills Anyway?
You may have heard your neighbor talk about how a certain toy is helping Sally develop her fine motor skills and wondered "What does that really mean?" or "What's the big deal with fine motor skills?" The reality is that the beginnings of fine motor skills lay the foundation for necessary everyday abilities later on. Fine motor skills are basically the things you do with the small muscles in your hands and fingers (e.g. playing a musical instrume...
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Is it a Speech Delay, Language Delay or Bilingualism?

Is it a Speech Delay, Language Delay or Bilingualism?
  Have you ever heard the terms "language delay" and "speech delay" being thrown around almost interchangeably? Perhaps you've heard that children who learn two languages are more prone to speech delays? These terms and possibilities can be very overwhelming, especially when we want the best possible speech outcomes for our children. Hopefully this article will help to provide some clarity and dispel some of the confusion and myths around wh...
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Guest Post: Essential Resources and Tools Every Parent Needs for Every Stage of Childhood

Guest Post: Essential Resources and Tools Every Parent Needs for Every Stage of Childhood
Raising children is so much more than a full-time job for parents — it's a lifelong adventure aimed at raising those children into healthy, happy, and productive adults. So, what's the secret to accomplishing this feat? There's not really one secret; after all, if there was, we would all be putting it to good use to nurture and protect our little ones. But there are some helpful resources and tools that can make life as a parent a little easier. ...
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Child Eye & Vision Checks

Child Eye & Vision Checks
As someone that has had glasses since sixth grade, contacts since high school, and lasik later on, visiting the eye doctor was part of my regular life growing up. But when should children start  going to the eye doctor? According to the American Optometric Association  children should receive their first eye exam sometime between 6-12 months old. During this comprehensive eye exam, your optometrist will test for: ​ E...
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Book Conversations: How to Get the Most Out of Your Time Reading Together

Book Conversations: How to Get the Most Out of Your Time Reading Together
Before working at Help Me Grow Utah, I spent ten years as a children's librarian and fell in love with early literacy. No, I was not teaching toddlers and preschoolers to read, but I was instead teaching parents to put into practice the underlying skills kids need to be good readers when they are ready. Those practices boil down to things parents do with their kids all the time, like talking, singing, reading, writing, and playing! The best thing...
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How to Help Your Child Have a Good Night Sleep

How to Help Your Child Have a Good Night Sleep
Growing up I always loved summer. I loved being able to play in the sun, spend more time at my grandparents and most importantly not having to go to bed early! It was always a sad time when my parents started putting us to bed early to prepare for school. With school approaching quickly I wanted to talk about sleep - why it is important and how to make it easier for both you and your kids! This is the suggested amount of sleep kids should get acc...
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Guest Post: Weaning from the Bottle & Cup Introduction

Guest Post: Weaning from the Bottle & Cup Introduction
Many parents do not realize that it is recommended to wean babies from the bottle by 18 months. Getting rid of the bottle can turn into a frustrating experience for both parent and baby! However, there are some things that you can do to make it easier. Here are some ideas on how to wean your baby off the bottle and using normal cups. When should I wean from the bottle? The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends weaning befo...
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Tell Your Story! 3 Ways to share Help Me Grow Utah

Tell Your Story! 3 Ways to share Help Me Grow Utah
A surprisingly common question we get here at Help Me Grow Utah is "Can I tell my friend about this program?" Our answer is always "Yes! Please do!" While we love that most parents feel like Help Me Grow Utah is just for them, we want all parents in Utah to know they can feel that way too! Help Me Grow Utah envisions a vibrant community in which all families have the desire, resources, and confidence to make the best decisions during pregnancy an...
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10 Alternative Tummy Time Activities

10 Alternative Tummy Time Activities
We all know that tummy time is important! Tummy time helps your baby develop her neck, back, and shoulder muscles. Not only does tummy time help your child be ready to crawl and walk, it also helps her to be ready to drink from a cup and eat solid foods. The recommended time for tummy time varies upon who you talk to, but the goal is for baby to spend as much time as they can on their tummies. Do tummy time for as long as the child can tolerate, ...
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Lying and the Theory of Mind: A Newfound Ability in Preschoolers

Lying and the Theory of Mind: A Newfound Ability in Preschoolers
"Johnny, did you just take a cookie after I told you not to?" "...No..." When you find out that your child has lied to you, it can be pretty distressing. Your sweet, innocent child chose to deceive you, which could only mean that they are now headed down a road full of deceitfulness, bad choices, and possibly crime. Well, not necessarily. Before you start drawing conclusions and panicking, it's helpful to take a step back and to try to understand...
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Tantrums: A Good Thing?

Tantrums: A Good Thing?
As a Parent Support Specialist, one of the most common concerns that I hear about are tantrums. Often irrational, unpredictable, and unpacifiable, it comes as no surprise to me that tantrums can be so concerning to parents that are simply trying their best to keep their child happy and breathing. What is a parent to do when it appears that their child is the only one crying on the floor in the grocery store, or when they seem to still throw a tan...
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A Parent's Experience with Help Me Grow Utah

A Parent's Experience with Help Me Grow Utah
  Being with Help Me Grow has been one of the most rewarding experiences. I have worked with Help Me Grow for nearly 2.5 years, and I have learned so much from all of my coworkers and the parents I've talked to. As I reflect on all of the things I have done with regards to this job, I hope that I have helped make a difference in the lives of the parents and families that I've worked with. One of the mothers that I've worked with for over 2 y...
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The Princess Bride and Fear of Public Restrooms

The Princess Bride and Fear of Public Restrooms
You just spent the last several weeks inside the house (hopefully during winter) watching "The Princess Bride" over and over while potty training your toddler. It wasn't exactly like climbing the cliffs of insanity, but close. Now that it's Spring you want to get out of the house and go on an outing, but there's one problem: What do you do if she's gotta "go" while you're out? Inconceivable! Public bathrooms are scary, loud, and often less than s...
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