Q: My 9-year-old son really likes to play video games, and most of the time, he does well and enjoys himself. However, when he struggles or loses a game, he becomes very upset -- to the point of tantrums -- and often throws things and cries. Why does he get so upset? How can I help him to understand that it is just a game and is supposed to be...Read more
But while the problem is common, it isn't always easy to resolve. I'd encourage you and your wife to seek professional help from a trained therapist who is skilled in working with stepfamilies -- and to do so sooner rather than later. With the challenges your children are facing as a result of the breakup of your first marriage, it's important ...Read more
From a modern tale about a mechanically smart Cinderella to a purplish way to banish nightmares, these bright new children's books empower kids and motivate them to conquer old stereotypes and fears.
"Interstellar Cinderella" by Deborah Underwood; illustrated by Meg Hunt; Chronicle Books; 32 pages; $16.99.
From the author of "The Quiet Book"...Read more
A list of some of the more memorable elements of pre-1960s parenting is in constant circulation on the Internet and is especially popular with people my age who can for obvious reasons relate. The items include that we drank from garden hoses and survived, didn’t wear bike helmets and survived, could only take a test once and never had to see ...Read more
If Tom Schneider has his way, the image of chubby, pasty children hunkered down in front of their computers or personal devices will become a thing of the past.
Schneider is the creator of T.R.U.E. Fit, a training regimen that he hopes will promote activity and a healthy lifestyle among people of all ages. But it's kids he's focusing on.
"A ...Read more
Q: My daughter is 5 years old and in kindergarten. She has two very close friends in her class, who are also girls. The three little girls continue to get along very well, but my daughter often complains after school about one of them being left out and the other two deciding they are "best friends," if only for that day. From what I am ...Read more
Q. My ex and I split up about six months ago. We were married for 10 years and share custody. Last week the kids came home from his house and told me, "Daddy had a woman spend the night." I was horrified! I didn't think he would ever do that! What do I do?
A. You think you know your ex because you lived with him or her for a number of years, ...Read more
Dear Mr. Dad: I've got twins -- one girl, one boy -- and we love wrestling together. I always thought I was treating them the same, but a few days ago, my wife told me that she's thinks I play very differently with them -- very physically with my son and much more gentle with my daughter. I started paying attention and I have to admit that she...Read more
Q: My sons are in middle school, and with as fast as time flies, I worry that I am not doing a good enough job now of preparing them for life after high school and college. As a primarily stay-at-home mom, I have always just taken care of the majority of household chores and yardwork, and my sons are asked to do very little. They are good, ...Read more
Q: How do we establish workable media standards for our teenagers? I understand the importance of teaching thoughtful discernment, but sometimes I feel the need for more solid guidelines in order to gauge the merits of movies, television programs and music. Can you suggest anything?
Jim: Personally, I think it's a good idea to avoid extremes. ...Read more
CHICAGO -- For New Trier High School sophomore Sophia Pellar, a pair of special earplugs recently donated by a North Shore audiologist has put an end to the pain she suffered when playing flute in the pep band.
Still, the Mozart-loving north suburban Kenilworth teen giggles nervously when she explains that the earplugs -- tethered by a bright ...Read more
Question: Our son is going to be 13 next year and we’re trying to be proactive about the coming storm. He’s been a good kid and relatively easy to raise to this point, but we’ve heard the horror stories and dread what may be around the corner. Do you have any tips?
Answer: The notion that biological changes going on during...Read more
Q: My fifth-grade son has recently started a new behavior at night that has my husband and me worried that something may be bothering him. He will be fine all day, during the evening and at bedtime, but within about 30 minutes after we tell him "lights off," he will show up in our room in tears saying he can't breathe or his chest hurts. We ...Read more
Dear Mr. Dad: I'm a new dad, and I sometimes get incredibly angry when my son cries. Of course, I haven't acted on my anger, but I'm feeling really guilty that I get so mad in the first place. I've always been a pretty patient guy, but I don't think I've ever had such intense feelings before. Am I a bad parent?
A: Babies have an amazing ...Read more
Q. My ex and I live an hour away from each other. We've been broken-up for two months, and we are attempting to share our three-year-old daughter. My ex doesn't want my new boyfriend at the exchanges -- we actually started seeing each other before I moved out -- but my boyfriend is the only one with a driver's license. I don't know how to pick...Read more
BALTIMORE -- Fifth-grader Aiden Coldsmith has memorized the streets around his family's home in the Waverly neighborhood. He knows every mud puddle, the homes of dogs both friendly and fierce, a park where a group of middle school girls hang out. The 11-year-old walks alone the few blocks to an art program or hardware store with "really good ...Read more
Q: I have two children, ages 11 and 5. Both are very bright, loving and well-behaved. It would honestly be difficult to wish for children any better, but my husband and I are continually frustrated by their lack of interest in any hobby or activity that does not involve the TV, a video game or the presence of another person. It would be nice ...Read more
Q: We have a young, growing family, and I'd like to do everything I can during this formative period to encourage everyone in the house to develop healthy habits. Can you provide me with any helpful tips?
Jim: Great question! Intentionality is an important part of promoting good health. According to Focus on the Family's Physicians ...Read more
April is Poetry Month. But all year long, kids can enjoy these imaginative, funny and inspiring ditties.
"Hypnotize a Tiger" by Calef Brown; Henry Holt; 138 pages; $17.99.
Author and artist Calef Brown calls himself an "enthusiologist," which is apparent in this lively book of whimsy and quirky verses. His 138 pages of oddities bring up ...Read more
Tammi Leader Fuller, 55, is outdoors most of the time, running her Malibu, Calif.-based sleepover camps for grown-ups. Yet, she knows she does not get enough of D, the "sunshine vitamin," because it requires ultraviolet rays to be absorbed.
"I'm always covered with sunscreen because I've had skin cancer," said Leader Fuller (www.campowerment....Read more