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Finding Ways to Improve the Lives of Grade School Children
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Can Siblings Be Tutors?

What is more convenient than having an older child who has been what your younger child is going through in school? If the holder child has gotten better grades in the area that your other child is having problems in, should they be able to help? It sounds like a great idea but if you analyze the situation carefully, it actually may do more harm than good.

Your older child may have done excellent in that subject but it all boils down to sibling rivalry. It may sound crazy but it is true. If the younger child feels that they are in the shadow of the older sibling then having that sibling help can make it worse. Think about it, as a parent you may see a cheap solution to a problem that can be simply fixed by an older sibling. But the younger sibling may not learn too much from an older sibling especially if they feel like they are showing off.

Your younger child may feel like the older child is being more superior and therefore, you are going to hear about more fights than anything else. It could harm the learning process if you don't assess the situation properly. Then you can try seeing from the other side of the coin. If your older child is more dependant the last thing they are going to do is want to help their brother or sister with their homework on top of doing their own.

If both children need help in an area, it may be a good idea to have a tutor who can handle both kids. It may actually bond the siblings, by seeing the other get help they will realize that they are just like them. You don't want to favor one child over another so try to treat them the same way. Pay attention to their schoolwork help them correct it of need be. But the most important thing that you can do is not call out the problems of one sibling to other.

When siblings both have trouble in school, it may a good idea to have them evaluated. This can be done by an after school center such as Tutoring Club. Your child may have a learning disability that maybe you were not aware of before. Talk to their teachers and see if they have noticed a decline in the work or if the work from day one has been borderline.

By getting your child help early on, you can help them deal with schoolwork better. They may need extra attention in school but they will catch up with hard work. Most kids hate homework, so they slack in school and neglect homework. But you as parents have to teach them that there is a way to get ahead and that is with hard work and a good attitude. Together with parents and children working together, your child can get the help they need. They should not have to suffer with a learning disorder longer than they have to. Have all of your kids checked, it may run in the family.


Do Employers View Private College Education As Equivalent To Community College Education?

Choosing where to go for post secondary education has gotten harder in the last few years. Even though there are more choices and options available, there are also more people going to college and entering the workforce. Future graduates have always had to think about a college's location, price, accommodation, curriculum and reputation, and nowadays they also have to think about what their school will look like on their resume when looking for work in the future.

A lot of students have the bad habit of changing their minds about what career they would like to have, and unfortunately, this comes with changing majors. Some changes are small, but there are students that completely change direction and have to alter their course load, and this would be more difficult at a private college. Private colleges are much more expensive, and it would cost a student an awful lot of money to change his or her mind!

These days, a student has to make extra sure that they know exactly what they want to do for a living before they decide what kind of school to go to. This way, they will know which school will look the best on their resume. Whether or not an employer will care about which type of college an applicant lists on their resume all depends what career choice someone makes. Some employers barely look at the education part of a resume, caring more about skill and experience, while others scrutinize the education section.

If you are looking to make a career out of a job that is more skill based, it would probably be a better idea to choose a good community college. These types of colleges tend to offer much more hands on experience and learning than private colleges. Employers will be more likely to hire a student right out of college if they have had this type of learning. If your goal is to make a career out of a job that is more knowledge based, a private college may be a good choice. These fields can be more competitive, and employers are more likely to look at the education part of your resume.

There is a middle ground between the two career types discussed above, and for this broad span of career choices, students need not worry about which school to choose. These employers will probably mostly care about the fact that you have the education and experience for the job and will not be concerned about whether you went to a community college or a private college.

If you fall into that "middle ground", you can feel free to make your choice based on what the school offers you, as opposed to choosing between community and private. If you have the money to spend, a private college might be a good choice, and if a community college has just what you are looking for, then it would be just as good a choice for you. There is not a established rule in what is better, it all depends in one's needs.


To Consolidate or Not to Consolidate Your Student Loans

Find it hard to find unbiased information on student loan consolidation? Let me help with that. When I graduated from college, I had somewhere around $12,000 in student loan debt. Seeing how I would have multiple payments to different lenders, and fearing increasing rates over time (yes, your rate can vary depending on the loan type and the lender), I decided to investigate a potential consolidate student loan. But before I tell you what decision I made, let me give you a few benefits and problems with student loan consolidation:


1. The ability to make a single payment with a single lender, thus reducing the headache of paying multiple lenders.
2. Most lenders offer a fixed rate of interest over the life of the loan.
3. Typically, consolidate student loan companies will offer a lower interest rate than many of your current student loans.
4. Lenders will usually offer a longer repayment period, thus allowing for a lower monthly payment.
5. Student loan interest is tax deductible, thus making a longer repayment period more attractive for tax purposes.
6. Some lenders will even offer an interest rate discount for good payers - more on this in a minute.
7. If you are struggling to find a job, many consolidation lenders will allow a deferment of forbearance, allowing you more time to acquire stable income, and may grant a lower interest rate for doing so, due to the lender accruing interest during the deferment/forbearance period.


1. Longer repayment periods. Yes, I know I mentioned it as a benefit above, but it can also be a problem. While longer repayment periods tend to reduce monthly payments, the overall interest paid over the life of the loan is more, sometimes much more.
2. Unwillingness to negotiate. During my repayment period, I called to ask if an agreement for a principal deduction could be reached or if there was help from other organizations to pay off the student loan, and absolutely no help was provided by the lender. I guess the felt I already got a good deal with an interest rate of 3.5%
3. Default - Do not, I repeat, do not default on your student loan. Bankruptcy, and any other legal attempts to welsh on student loan debt won't work - student loans are like cock roaches, they just will not die. Be sure to pay your student loan back.

Alright, now that we understand a few of the benefits and problems, I am going to tell you what I did. I decided to do a consolidate student loan. I felt there were just too many benefits involved. The company I went with was Nelnet, and they offered a 15 year loan repayment period with 3.5% interest and a 1% interest rate discount if I made the first 36 payments on time. What a great deal! As with all things, be sure to research several different offers before selecting a consolidate student loan company.


A Few Ideas To A Holistic Remedy In Dealing With Kids With Hyperactivity

Children with ADHD run the risk of suffering, from the long-term side effects, that the medications prescribed by their physician, have on the developing brain. Also, at risk are heart related problems, psychiatric disturbances, and or have the increased potential for abuse.

Most of the well known drugs in the treatment of ADHD include antidepressants, Ritalin, Dexedrine, Aderall, mood stabilizers, as well as, a variety of other medications. While there are some prescription medications with the lesser of the extreme side effects, there has been proven to be some very successful natural treatments, as well. Some of which are listed below.

1. Diet: The diet plays a key role in the life of a child. Some foods are actually contributors to enhancing the symptoms of ADHD. Foods that are processed, containing large amounts of sugars and additives as well as preservatives have been proven to actually aggravate the symptoms. An alternative would be a healthy diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meats and lower fat dairy. Soy is also a good choice, if dairy bothers the digestion system. Healthy oils, as in canola, sunflower and olive oil are ideal to cook with.

2. Vitamin Supplements: Since it is difficult to gain all of our vitamin and minerals from our diet on a daily basis, supplements are a beneficial way to make sure that our bodies have what they need. Iron, magnesium and omega-3's, are essential in the diet of a child with ADHD, it has even been proven that children with ADHD, have a deficiency, which is all the more reason to include them as supplements.

3. Exercise: Exercise is an important aspect in everyone's life, but especially in the life of children with ADHD. Since children with ADHD have an increase in hyperactivity, restlessness and impulsive behaviors, exercise is a wonderful way to engage the child in activities to release stress, allowing them to focus better. When one exercises, the chemicals released, dopamine and epinephrine allowing the body to react much like one who has just taken the usually prescribed drugs.

4. Herbs: There are a great many natural herbs that work well for the ADHD child. Consulting a good homeopathic specialist is a great way to enlist their help, as to what herbal remedies work best.

5. Natural Medications: Upon visiting a homeopathic professional, within their practice they have developed many medications that work very well for the ADHD symptoms. Their solutions have become much more popular, due to the side effects conventional drugs have. Parents, these days, are looking for a more natural approach, in the care of their child. The natural treatments for ADHD have been found to be as effective as their prescription alternatives. And being that they are "natural", they have the added benefit of improving the brain functions, as well as, the overall health of the body.

As a reminder to all parents, when starting a new approach to the care and treatment of your child, it is most important that you research all options available, and talk to many professional doctors as well as naturalists. It is your child's health and well being that is the focus, not the illness, and there are more natural solutions to help in managing this disease.


Outdoor Activity Gives You Healthy Kids

The physical benefits of a child playing with outdoor toys are evident in children who enjoy playing outside. It is a not secret that obesity, along with other health issues, is a growing problem in children and is part due to lack of time kids spend outdoors. Being overweight increases the possibility of many different health conditions. When a child plays outdoors, riding a bike, swinging or running amuck he or she is more likely to stay at a healthy weight, an important precursor for their adult body weight.

Obesity is only one problem that is associated with kids not playing outdoors; many kids are vitamin D deficient. Vitamin D is important for the body to absorb calcium and control the protein and rennin that is associated with blood pressure. When kids spend time outdoors, the sunshine helps their bodies to make the vitamin D that they need for ideal overall health.

Because playing outdoors with toys gives kids the opportunity to run, climb, jump, ride, yell and use excess energy, it can also lead to improved behaviour and better sleep. Playing is also important because it builds muscles, conditions the lungs and strengthens muscles.

Not only is outdoor playing important for physical reasons but also for emotional and social reasons. It can encourage improvement in a child's ability to reason and think logically. Taking risks and using their imaginations are also encouraged. When kids play outdoors with other kids, it builds social skills that are needed to form relationships throughout life. Playing outdoors makes kids happier and offers many development perks.

Gardening is one activity that kids can benefit from in many different ways. Garden toys help build a strong relationship between a child and nature. Gardening helps kids learn patience as they tend to fruits and vegetables as they grow. They also learn about how to nurture and what it takes for something to live. Working as a family in a garden teaches kids how to share and work together.

Working in a garden, kids are surrounded by moments filled with teaching. With garden toys, they are able to learn about the world hands on. Gardening also has a calming effect; a time to connect with nature and relax. Walking, bending and moving provide a great and fun way to exercise. Planting a fruit or vegetable garden makes it much easier to feed children healthier and makes kids more eager to choose better foods.

Watching a seed turn into a fruit or vegetable is a miracle of life and kids who garden learn how to appreciate that. Kids see that sunlight, water, dirt and care are necessities in the plant world as well as in the human world. Gardening give kids a way to love the simplest things that life has to offer.

The benefits of being outdoors are many and it is sad to see that the amount of time kids spend outdoors has drastically declined over the years. Time spent on games and television instead of outdoors can never be taken back or replaced.


Is Your Child Struggling in School? Get Him (Or Her) Music Lessons

It is counterintuitive to add more studies to the schedule of an already busy child. Our natural response to seeing our child struggle is to find a way to help, not to add to the burden. If a child is struggling, why should we risk setting them up for failure in music lessons?

The answer is simple. Playing music has been discovered to have a direct and almost immediate effect on the brain of the student. That's right. Music lessons have been shown in a German study to have a significant impact on the way the brain functions after as little as five weeks!

What they found, when comparing a group of students taking music lessons with a control group that was not, was that students who had taken as few as ten music lessons over a five week period exhibited a significant ear to hand link.

So? What's the big deal? Life doesn't make much use of ear to hand connections unless you want to play an instrument by ear (I've always thought that provoked a strange mental picture; imagine the ears you would have to have to play the trombone!). The significance is two fold. First, it means that music lessons lead to brain development which ultimately means that music lessons have the effect of giving the individual that is taking the lessons improved brain function from which to draw in the rest of his or her life. Second, (and I saved the best for last) the ear to hand brain connection from music lessons is significant because researchers in Hong Kong took the study one step further and tested a group of students with music lessons and a group without music lessons for verbal memory and found that the group that was taking music lessons outscored their nonmusical peers by a significant margin.

It gets better still. The same groups of students were tested a year later, even after some of them had discontinued their music lessons, and found that they still outscored their nonmusical peers in verbal tests!

The moral to that story is get your child (or even yourself) into music lessons if you want your child to have every advantage possible in life, because even though these are only benefits that we know of for sure, there are bound to be far more yet to be discovered.

At the same time, many children who originally objected to music lessons discovered that they had a talent for music, and went on to practice on their own without having to be reminded. Still others found that by playing an instrument they could join the school band and go on trips and participate in marches and parades and football games. And others discovered they could improvise on their instruments, and so joined jazz groups and swing groups and many other types of combos and bands.

The bottom line is that music study enhanced their lives and their other studies rather than distracted from it. And that is a benefit too huge to be ignored.


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