The Business Side Of SitterCity.Com Coupon

Sittercity Coupon Code To avoid misunderstandings, business arrangements need to be discussed before babysitting for the first time ( SitterCity Coupon ). This includes discussing the fee before accepting an assignment, finding out how many hours the parents want the babysitter to work, transportation considerations, and whatever special chores the family wishes done outside of babysitting.

Most babysitters find jobs through people they know or by advertising their services on bulletin boards, in bulletins of churches and other local organizations, and in newspapers. Some babysitters work for agencies that will assign them to jobs. Earnings are based on community standards. A babysitter in New York City or Chicago will earn more than one in rural North Dakota. Earnings are typically an hourly fee. However, older, experienced babysitters will be able to charge more for their services than their younger, less experienced counterparts. Young beginning babysitters often start at $5.00 to $7.00 per hour while more experienced adult sitters will typically earn $10.00 to $25.00 per hour based on the number of children in a family. Overnight sitters often receive a flat fee.

Understanding That Families Are Different

All families do not have the same values. Babysitters need to ask questions to be sure that they understand the way that individual families want them to care for their children. They need to know about limitations on TV time and the types of programs that the children are allowed to watch. The same goes for watching videos and using the computer.

Also, they should know whether prayer is part of such rituals as eating or going to bed.

Babysitter Tool : What Do Babysitters Need on the job?

For all jobs, babysitters need to know where the following items are located in the home:
flashlight candles matches first-aid kit clock cleaning supplies sponge vacuum cleaner paper towels writing paper pencils, pens tissues telephone thermostats

When babysitters watch children in their own homes, they have the additional responsibility of making their homes safe for children. This includes doing such things as:

• Keeping the home tidy

• Placing child-resistant covers on all electrical outlets

• Storing dangerous chemicals and all drugs out of children’s reach

• Keeping firearms locked away

• Making sure cribs meet safety standards

• Safety-proofing stairs

• Installing toilet seat locks

• Keeping knives out of children’s reach

• Storing tools, especially power tools, out of reach


Babysitters have several responsibilities from the moment they enter a home. Their major responsibility will be to watch the children, which includes:

• Playing with the children

• Preventing accidents

• Selecting safe and appropriate toys and games for each child

• Giving the children their undivided attention

• Changing diapers of infants and toddlers

• Bathing and dressing infants and young children

• Feeding babies

• Fixing meals or snacks for the children

• Cleaning up messes • Handling the household

If a babysitting job is going to be long-term, the babysitter must meet with families ahead of time to establish their guidelines and expectations. On first-time assignments as well as subsequent jobs, babysitters need to secure five vital pieces of information before the parents leave:

1. General behavior guidelines

2. Rules on television viewing and snacking

3. The children’s official bedtime

4. Special duties to be performed, such as bathing or feeding the children, doing dishes, etc.

5. A telephone number or information on how to reach the parents in case of an emergency


Unless babysitters understand what young children can and cannot do at certain ages, they will not be able to understand the behavior of their charges or how to choose appropriate activities for them. In Chapter 2, a detailed list of the skills children should have acquired by the ages of fifteen months, two-and-a-half years, and five years are spelled out for ten important skill areas: listening, thinking, fine motor, social, self-help, selfesteem, speaking, prereading, math, and gross motor.

Learning BabySitting Skill in The City

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Taking classes and learning how to care for children is no guarantee that a prospective babysitter will be an excellent one. Certain special qualifications are needed. Babysitters need to have patience to play endless games with children. They should truly enjoy being around children, whether the children are crying babies or rambunctious youngsters. Furthermore,

babysitters need to be confident that they can handle children ranging in age from infant to preteen. Finally, having a cool head in a crisis is an absolutely essential skill, as babysitters must remain calm in emergencies.

Child care classes do give practical training in health and safety and important information about child development. They provide instruction on how to prevent injuries and reduce the spread of infectious diseases. In these classes, babysitters and other child care providers learn how to recognize and care for common childhood illnesses. They also find out how to improve their skills in communicating with children and their parents.

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Working As A Babysitter

Almost every parent has a need for a babysitter either occasionally or on a regular basis. There is always a very high demand for and low supply of babysitters, especially for special occasions. Many child care providers began their careers as babysitters. While most babysitters are teenagers, many are adults who work in the children’s home or their own homes on a part-time or full-time basis.

Even though there are no licensing or training requirements for this job, the more skilled babysitters are, the more clients they have, and the more money they earn. Well-qualified babysitters know the importance of learning all they can about taking care of children. They must be ready to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) in an emergency, handle a child with a sore throat, or treat a sprained finger. These skills are learned through classes at YMCAs or YWCAs, high schools, vocational schools, and community colleges, and through the American and Canadian Red Cross.

The Rewards of Being a Babysitter Sittercity coupon

The care of children in a home setting can be a rewarding career. Nannies are able to provide children with the nurturing care they need; in return, the nannies will receive love and affection from the children as well as high regard from their families. Today’s nannies provide the high-quality in-home care that parents are seeking and receive respect as well-trained professionals.

Schools For Babysitters : Sittercity coupon

Choosing a Babysitters School The International Nanny Association publishes the Annual Directory of Nanny Training Programs, Nanny Placement Agencies and Special Services. The book’s section on schools has information about the length of training programs, program costs, admission requirements, and availability of financial aid for schools that meet the association’s requirements.
Before enrolling in a nanny school, prospective nannies should carefully check out the merits of the school’s program, according to Joy Shelton, former chairperson of the American Council of Nanny Schools.

FAMILY AND CONSUMER SCIENCES– PROFESSIONAL NANNY CERTIFICATE 2305 A One-Year Certificate of Graduation Program Professional Nanny Certificate • Nanny Certificate • Family and Consumer Sciences: Professional Nanny Certificate Intensive training program for Child Care Professionals who will enter family homes and share in the responsibility of rearing their children. This program prepares students to meet the varied needs of the families they serve and integrate their lives with those of their employers. These duties could include adapting menus to special dietary needs, managing the day-to-day affairs of the household, aiding a handicapped or gifted child, and communicating with schools, parents, and children.
Students who wish to continue their education find that the Child Care Professional Nanny Certificate is the first step in their career ladder. These credits received at Vincennes University can be applied toward an associate’s degree. This training can often be applied toward a degree in teaching or other child care professions.
Upon successful completion of 31 semester hours of specified courses, students will receive a certificate of accreditation as a Child Care Professional Nanny from VU.

She offers the following suggestions on how a program should be assessed: 81 Working as a Nanny
1. Talk to graduates.
2. Talk to families that have hired students from the school.
3. Check with the Better Business Bureau and local chamber of commerce to make sure that no complaints about the school have been received.
4. Check with the state’s department of education to determine if the school has a license.
5. Find out if the school is accredited.

The International Nanny Association lists these questions for prospective nannies to ask about a training program:

1. What specific courses does the nanny program curriculum include?
2. If the program requires work with children as part of the training, is the work supervised by an instructor?
3. Is the program accredited by a federally approved accrediting body?
4. What are the qualifications of the instructors?
5. How many students have completed the training program? Were they able to find jobs as nannies?
6. Is it possible to visit the school or sit in on a class?
7. What is the tuition refund policy if the student drops out of the course? Can the course work be transferred to another school or program?
8. Is counseling or tutoring available to the student who may be having trouble with the program?
9. What percentage of students who sign up for the program complete it?

Sittercity Competencies related to the physical care of children

• Perform tasks related to the physical care of children

• Maintain appropriate hygienic standards for children regarding bathing, hand washing, and care of the hair and teeth

• Feed, change, and bathe infants

• Prepare infant feedings and care for feeding equipment

• Select clothing appropriate to the child’s physical/social activities

• Plan and supervise rest, bed, and nap times

• Plan and prepare nutritionally balanced meals and snacks

• Care for the mildly ill child

• Recognize symptoms of common childhood illnesses

• Keep accurate records

• Perform appropriate first-aid techniques

• Handle emergency situations

• Observe appropriate safety precautions when traveling with children

Competencies related to domestic tasks and care of the child’s environment:

• Perform domestic tasks related to care and maintenance of the child’s areas of the home such as bedrooms, playrooms, bathrooms, and outside play space

• Launder and make simple repairs to children’s clothing

• Observe safety precautions appropriate to a private home coupon

Competencies related to professionalism Baby Sitter

Competencies related to professionalism, personal development, and social skills:

• Present a professional attitude and appearance

• Use good judgment

• Use appropriate language and manners

• Demonstrate initiative in planning and performance of tasks and an ability to work unsupervised

• Participate in social, cultural, and educational activities to enhance personal growth and maintain and improve competency


BabySitters are the elite of child care workers and are enjoying rising wages. The actual salary that a nanny receives does vary widely based on where the nanny lives and the nanny’s qualifications and experience. The 2006 salary survey of the International Nanny Association showed a range of weekly earnings from a low of $300 per week to a high of $1,000 per week. These results are shown in Table 5.1. Monthly salaries for live-in nannies in Canada vary from C$1,400 to C$2,000 while those for live-out nannies go from C$1,900 to C$3,000.

In addition to a salary, nannies may receive paid health insurance, room and board, a car to drive, travel to exotic vacation spots, membership in health clubs, and an opportunity to attend college part time. Some families even pay college tuition for their nannies. An International Nanny Association survey shows that more than half of all nannies receive paid sick days and national and religious holidays. About one-third of the surveyed nannies received two weeks paid vacation, use of an employer’s vehicle, and paid personal days. Plus, 20 percent of the nannies received 100 percent employer paid health insurance.

Baby Sitter Required Competencies With Family

Competencies related to interaction with parents/employers and to family dynamics:

• Communicate effectively, both orally and in writing

• Articulate a personal philosophy of child care

• Maintain the confidentiality of the employing family

• Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of parents’/employer’s philosophy of child rearing and recognize the special role a nanny assumes in becoming a part of the child-rearing “team”

• Recognize the ultimate authority of parents in making decisions regarding the welfare and care of the child

• Follow instructions and directions in a timely manner

Baby Sitter Required Competencies

Required Competencies Through education, nannies can acquire the competencies needed to provide quality child care and a nurturing environment for all children. The International Nanny Association specifically recommends that a nanny demonstrate the ability to perform competently in the following areas:

• Observe and assess the behavior of children

• Plan and implement consistent daily routines

• Create an environment to foster trust, self-esteem, and independence in children

• Use age-appropriate behavior management techniques in interaction with children

• Plan and implement developmentally appropriate play/learning activities for children

• Choose and care for developmentally appropriate play materials and equipment 77 Working as a Nanny

Babysitter Support Group

The three sitters whose careers are described later in this chapter often arrange playdates for their charges. Besides giving the children an opportunity to play with other children, they also give the nannies an opportunity to share experiences and enjoy adult company. Nannies find it easy to meet other nannies at preschools, parks, and children’s classes. There are also many nanny support groups which provide social opportunities, professional development, and networking opportunities. Visit to find where some of these support groups are located.

Responsibilities to Self : Babysitter nanny

A Babysitter/Nanny shall:

• Present herself/himself as an acceptable adult role model, take pride in personal appearance and professional behavior, and refrain from activity that might injure credibility or produce a negative representation of herself/himself or an employer.

• Continue to improve personal knowledge of child development by seeking contemporary information through formal and informal means, such as membership in child care organizations.

Profile of a Babysitter

As a college student, Sarah Wegert was asked to babysit for a family during her spring break. Although it meant that Sarah would spend her spring break at home in Vail, Colorado, Sarah agreed to help the family who was visiting from Chicago. Sarah quickly bonded with the family and their three young girls, and was asked to nanny for the family for six weeks in the summer back at their home in Chicago. Because Sarah had family in Chicago, she felt comfortable accepting the job.

That summer, Sarah moved in with the family, who provided her with a car, mobile phone, gas, and spending money. Sarah’s day typically began around noon when she picked the children up from their activities. The young girls and Sarah would spend the remainder of the day together, riding bikes, going to the pool, or visiting museums in Chicago. Sarah was asked to rejoin the family the next summer, and she agreed. During her second summer with the family, Sarah joined them on their family vacation to Sydney, Australia for the Olympics. The family provided all accommodations and Olympic tickets for Sarah, and she helped watch the children during the trip.

Sarah enjoyed her experience the most because of the strong connection she made with the family. She said, “They made me feel a part of the family.” Sarah continues to speak with the family and visits them when she is in Chicago with her family. While she had never been a nanny before, Sarah felt prepared because of her many years of babysitting. According to Sarah, a good nanny must enjoy playing with children, be flexible, and feel comfortable working (maybe even living) with a family. Today, Sarah is a thirdgrade teacher in Colorado.
73 Working as a Nanny

On The Job With Babysitter in The City

No two babysitters will spend their time in exactly the same way. Observing how one babysitter spent her day caring for three young children— Mary (7), John (5), and Larry (3)—will give you an idea of what this job can be like:

7:00 A.M. Start work.

7:05 A.M. See that Mary gets on the school bus.

7:30 A.M.–9 A.M. Feed the boys. See that they get dressed. Children then watch television. Help John with kindergarten speech. The children help clean up the house.

9:00 books. A.M.–10:30 A.M. Go to the park first, and then to the library to choose

10:30 A.M.–11:00 for kindergarten.
Prepare lunch for the boys. Make sure John is ready

11:00 A.M.–12:30 P.M. Feed the children. Walk John to kindergarten.

12:30 hold tasks. P.M.–2:30 P.M. Read to Larry. Larry rests. Do laundry and other house

2:30 P.M.–3:00 P.M. Visit with Mary, who has returned from school.

3:00 P.M.–3:30 P.M. John returns home. Serve afternoon snack to children.

3:30 tices piano. The children do their chores and homework.

Mary prac4:30 P.M.–6:30 P.M. The children play during the next two hours with some supervision. Dinner is prepared.

6:30 P.M. Family meal.

7:00 P.M. Day is finished.

BabySitter Training Programs

There are several approaches to acquiring the formal training Sitter need.
Some Sitters obtain associate or bachelor’s degrees in early childhood education. Many attend training programs in private schools, vocational schools, and community colleges. Typical nanny training programs offer a variety of courses related to children and child care. There are courses in child growth and development, psychology, food and nutrition, health and safety, play activities, first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and family dynamics. The programs often include hands-on care of children. Many schools provide the future nanny with information on personal health and grooming, etiquette, social skills, and professional development. Nannies who do not have formal training should have babysitting or daycare experience or have raised their own families.

A Public College Program

Vincennes University in Vincennes, Indiana, has a professional nanny program. The program is a one-year, certificate degree program and requires completion of thirty-one credit hours. Figure 5.1 shows the actual curriculum as it appears in the college catalog.

What is NANNY's Duties?

The job description for a nanny will obviously vary from household to household. In general, nannies have the following responsibilities, according to the International Nanny Association:

• Tending to the child’s basic daily physical needs

• Meal planning and preparation

• Laundry and clothing care

• Organization of play activities and outings

• Discipline

• Intellectual stimulation

• Language activities

•Transportation Any housekeeping responsibilities nannies may have are related primarily to the care of the children.


The International Nanny Association has adopted minimum standards for nannies specifying that a nanny must be at least eighteen years of age, have completed high school or the equivalent, and be in good general health, with proof of immunizations and, where required, negative TB test and/or chest x-ray. The one qualification that all nannies must also have is genuine respect for and devotion to children. The association also lists the following skills that nannies need to have:

• The ability to work in isolation without the support of coworkers

• The ability to handle new and different surroundings

• Knowledge of the basics of taking care of the physical and emotional needs of infants and young children

• The ability to handle an emergency

• Basic knowledge of child development

• Good communication skills

• The ability to be organized 71 Working as a Nanny In addition, families expect nannies to have no history of alcohol or drug abuse and a safe driving record and almost always prefer a nanny who does not smoke. And of course, it certainly helps if a nanny has a sense of humor.

Different Between Nanny and BabySitter ?


Nannies have far greater responsibilities than babysitters. They are filling in for parents all day— not for just a few hours— and play a vital role in the family support system. Unlike babysitters, they may live in with a family. Plus, they will have a much longer workweek of from forty to sixty hours. Like babysitters, most nannies are females; however, there are a few male nannies. Tom Cruise hired a male nanny.


Baby Sitter schools are looking for candidates who have the backgrounds, interests, and experiences that will enable them to become excellent Baby Sitters after training. Most use a screening process to make sure that enrollees do

not have a criminal record or their name on a child abuse registry. In addition, the schools are looking for candidates with an above-average driving record, a clean drug and alcohol record, and no medical disabilities that would prevent them in any way from caring for their charges. Physically, they should be able to stoop, kneel, crouch, and crawl. Good vision and hearing are necessary, as well as being able to lift fifty pounds. On the personality side, schools want prospective students to demonstrate creativity, time management skills, initiative, responsibility, self-confidence, and a love of teaching and children.

SitterCity Nanny Credential Exam

International Nanny Credential Exam The INA Nanny Credential Exam was created as a way to measure a nanny’s working knowledge in the following areas:

Child Development
Family/Provider Communication
Child Guidance Multicultural/Diversity
Awareness Learning Environment
Personal Qualities of a Nanny
Safety Management Skills
Health Nutrition Professionalism

Because the exam is challenging, it is strongly recommended that anyone sitting for the exam has a minimum of 2,000 hours of professional child care experience and current certification in infant/child CPR and first aid. After the exam is scored, nannies who pass will be given a certificate that can be added to his/her portfolio or résumé.
79 Working as a sitter

Need For Nanny SkyRockets

U.S. News and World Report has described “nanny” as a “hot Job Track,” where demand really outstrips supply, especially in major metropolitan areas. It is also an appealing job because it can offer such benefits as good pay, an opportunity to travel, paid vacations, use of a car, and health insurance. Read the following advertisements from the classified sections of

newspapers and online employment websites, and note the range of positions open for employment as a nanny: NANNY— Loving, exp’d, responsible. M– F. 3 young children. No housework. Health insurance. 30-hour week. 317-555-9872.
Nanny— Part time. Needed for daughters ages 12 and 14. Evenings and weekends. Own transportation and references req’d. Leave message. 212-555-0986.
Nanny— Needed for professional couple. Care for newborn. Transport 2 year old to and from preschool. Must be able to work 10-hour days (M– F). 612-555-4000.
Nanny— Needed M– F 6 A.M.–4 P.M. for quiet 5-year-old girl. Experience and references required. 703-555-2163 after 6 P.M.
Nanny— Must be willing to travel abroad. Twin 5-year-old boys. Contact
Nanny— Two kids. Girl 4, boy 20 months. Four 10-hour days. Competitive pay. Generous benefits. Must drive.

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What it takes to become an Babysitter?

The International Nanny Association strongly supports specialized training for nannies who care for children in an in-home setting. Prospective nannies should contact this international network of nannies, nanny placement agency owners, nanny educators, and nanny employers for career information. Write to International Nanny Association, 2020 Southwest Freeway, Suite 208, Houston, TX 77098, or go online to

BabySitter in The City Responsibilities to the Parents

A Sitter shall:

• Treat parents and other family members with respect by maintaining confidentiality and respecting the family’s right to privacy.

• Work together with parents to create an environment conducive to the healthy development of the child.

• Respect the family’s child-rearing values and parents’ rights to make decisions for their children.

• Support the family value system, cultural expression, and individual characteristics and refrain from imposing personal values or biases on the child.

• Be an advocate for children and work to protect their rights.

• Not hold the child accountable for negative interactions between parents and nanny.

• Inform parents of physical injury, illness, and emotional crises should they occur in the child’s life.

BabySitter Code of Conduct

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The International Nanny Association has adopted a Code of Conduct to promote professionalism and ethical practices among nannies, educators, and those who employ and place in-home child care specialists. By virtue of their membership in the International Nanny Association, members agree to abide by this Code of Conduct and to support quality in-home child care for the world’s most valuable resources— our children.

Responsibilities to the Child A Sitter shall:

• Respect each child as a human being and never knowingly participate in any practice that is disrespectful, dangerous, exploitive, intimidating, or psychologically or physically harmful.

• Maintain a safe and healthy atmosphere that encourages optimum social, emotional, intellectual, and physical development of children.

• Provide various learning opportunities through which a child can explore and utilize his or her continued personal growth and development.

• Recognize the unique potential of each child, encourage questions, and present answers that children can understand.

• Keep abreast of current activity in the areas of childhood development through continued education, either formally or informally.

• Work toward promoting knowledge and understanding of young children and their needs and act as an advocate for children’s rights.

• Be familiar with the signs of child abuse and neglect and be knowledgeable of procedures for dealing with them.

Working As Nanny

The television viewing audience has become far better acquainted recently with the profession of nanny through watching real-life nannies turn around families with poorly behaved children in just a week. It’s rather like seeing the “practically perfect” Mary Poppins in action. While TV nannies have brought attention to this profession, it is definitely not a new one. The original nannies were trained in England at the Norland Institute. On the job, they wore starched brown uniforms with white aprons, little brown hats, and sensible, sturdy shoes. Much has changed since then. Today’s nannies receive their formal training in community and nanny colleges and dress casually for work in jeans and sneakers. While Mary Poppins, the well-known fictional nanny, flew through the air with the Banks children, nannies are now found skateboarding with their charges.


While all child care centers are organized to care for young children, there is diversity in the ownership of these centers. Most centers in the United States are operated by nonprofit organizations. In Canada, it is the same story, with 80 percent of the child care centers operated on a not-for-profit basis— usually by community-based or parent organizations. Although people hear a lot about national child care chains, most of the for-profit child care centers are locally owned. The ownership composition of child care centers in the United States is shown in Figure 3.1.
There are advantages in having so many different types of child care centers. Not only do parents have a choice, but child care workers also can choose the work environment that is most appealing to them.


About 50 million women of the close to 120 million women age sixteen years and older in the workforce in the United States today are working mothers. The U.S. labor force has experienced a revolution with the entry of working mothers in dramatic numbers. As recently as 1975, only onethird of women with children worked outside the home. Now, approximately 70 percent of all mothers work in this country. It’s a similar story in Canada, where about 66 percent of all women with children under the age of three work, and about 75 percent of those whose youngest child is age three to five work. The major impact of this change in the workforce is the overwhelming demand that now exists for child care workers.

As the children of working mothers move through school, there will be a need for more child care workers for supervision of beforeand after-school activities and during vacations and holidays from school. More workers are also needed because of the very high turnover rate among child care workers. Approximately one-third of all child care workers leave this profession each year. The National Women’s Law Center attributes this to the fact that child care workers are among the lowest-paid workers in the United States, with wages only slightly above the poverty threshold. This is also true in Canada, where many workers earn local minimum wages. These very important caregivers in both countries actually earn less than many pet sitters.

MANY CHOICES FOR WORKING WITH CHILDREN As the number of working mothers has increased, a need for a variety of child care arrangements has emerged. This, of course, has created many career choices that center on the care of children. Although approximately 20 percent of all families in the United States and 40 percent in Canada rely on relatives for satisfactory child care arrangements, the rest must look for help beyond their immediate family circle. The two most popular choices are child care centers and family child care homes. This chapter explores the different types of child care centers and the job opportunities they offer.
Careers in family child care homes will be investigated in Chapter 4.

HISTORY OF CHILD CARE CENTERS Before the Industrial Revolution, children were typically cared for in their homes by their families or by caregivers hired to assist family members. In the mid-1700s, factories sprouted up all over England and Scotland, and large numbers of women left their homes to work in them. This change was due largely to the invention of two machines, the spinning jenny and the water frame, which took the manufacture of textiles out of homes and into factories. Women were not able to leave their young children at home nor have the children at their sides in the factories while they were working. To solve this problem, factory owners established rooms for their workers’ children and hired untrained adults, boys, and girls to supervise the children.
These were the first child care centers. The establishment of child care centers in the United States occurred almost a hundred years later, when manufacturing became a major industry and women first joined the workforce.
Besides pioneering child care centers, Great Britain also introduced nursery schools a short time later to improve upon the care children were receiving at factory child care facilities. Robert Owen, a mill owner and social reformer, set up the first program to teach and supervise the children of factory workers and hired people with some teaching qualifications.
During World War II, women were needed to work in the factories. The U.S. government responded by passing the Lanham Act, which provided funds to set up child care centers in defense plants. At the end of the war, these centers were shut down, and many women left the workforce. In the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, women began returning to the workforce and the need for child care centers grew. Today, there are more than a hundred thousand centers serving young children.

In the mid-1960s, the federal government began to play a more prominent role in the care and development of young children. The Head Start program was launched to help prepare the children of poor families for school. Activities were designed to stimulate the social, emotional, mental, and physical growth of young children. Many parents of children in this program work in centers as aides or as volunteers. The Head Start program continues today. Also, the federal government began to provide some child care services for mothers receiving welfare payments who were enrolled in job training programs.

Many proposals for federally sponsored child care programs have been introduced since the 1960s in the United States and Canada. A comprehensive proposal, the Child Development Act, was passed in the U.S. Congress in 1971 but was vetoed by President Nixon. This legislation would have expanded Head Start and provided preschool education for all children who needed this help before enrolling in school. Every year child care bills are introduced in Congress; however, no comprehensive national child care plan has yet emerged. Some states have begun to offer prekindergarten programs for four-year-olds in their most disadvantaged school districts. And others are considering legislation requiring all schools to offer programs for threeand four-year-olds. A wide variety of child care programs 25 Working in Child Care Centers

CAREERS IN CHILD CARE are subsidized by federal, state, and local governments, and more will appear in the future to meet the demand for quality child care. Canada now has a Universal Child Care Benefit that will give parents C$1,200 a year per child under age six but, for the present, has rejected a plan to create muchneeded, licensed child care spaces.
During the 1980s, business and industry became aware that working mothers with young children had more absences from work and left their jobs more often owing to the responsibility of caring for their children. The problems were greatest with the mothers of preschool children. In response, employers devised child care options to help their working mothers. A few have developed both on-site and off-site child care centers. In some cases, a group of employers have joined together to provide child care for their employees. An employer may also establish a referral service to help families find child care. Many employers offer vouchers for child care or include some form of child care in their benefits packages. With research showing that employer-sponsored day care programs improve morale and cut personnel costs, more companies have started some type of child care program. This trend is expected to continue, and to accelerate, in the future.

The early years curriculum 1: Birth to Three Matters

Since 1997 there have been a number of initiatives regarding the care and education of young children, including very young children. One of the most important things to happen was the bringing together of childcare and education and a recognition that what happens to children in their earliest years may be critical to their subsequent development.

Increasingly, women who are mothers want or need to return to work after the birth of their children. There is still a view in the United Kingdom that these women are ‘bad’ mothers, who put their careers or their financial security before the well-being of their children. There is also a general and lingering suspicion of childcare away from the home, despite a substantial body of evidence highlighting the benefits of children being with other children and other adults. Dahlberg et al. (2004), in the most recent edition of their book looking at quality in early childhood provision, talk, deliberately, of early childhood institutions rather than of early childhood services. They point out that a service implies a giver and a taker, a buyer and a seller. This is the language of the market. Talking of institutions, they argue, takes the discussion into a more public arena where aspects of culture and society, fairness and equity, may be discussed.
Despite the bringing together of care and education, parents are still faced with a plethora of perplexing choices when making decisions about what to do with their young children. The wealthy might employ a nanny or an au pair, or send their child to a private nursery. Some might opt for playgroups, where parents often play a role. Many will try to get their children into the nursery school if there is one in their area and if there is a space. These are often like gold dust! Many will send their children to day care centres and more and more will select children’s centres offering all-day provision.

Think about these words: Nursery, crèche, childcare centre, daghem, asilo nido (which means ‘nest’), nursery school, nursery class, kindergarten, école maternelle, scuola d’infanzia, children’s centres, wrap-around care, maintained schools, private schools, special schools, independent schools, playgroups

And these: Teacher, teaching assistant, nursery nurse, educationalist, carer, pedagogue, volunteer, helper, manager, childminder, nanny, au pair childcare centre worker, practitioner, manager, Sure Start And these: Montessori, Reggio Emilia, High Scope, Sure Start, Steiner, schemas, Te Whaariki,

Foundation Stage, Birth to Three Matters, Every Child Matters Are you confused? Not surprising, really. These words have been taken out of several current and popular books on early childhood education and care, and it is no wonder that those working with children or thinking about their learning and development feel that they are walking through treacle. We are not going to unpick all these terms now, because there is not the space. You have been asked to think about them purely to get a sense of the complexity of the field.
In 1997 the UK government decided that the time was ripe for developing what it called a framework to support those working with children from birth to the age of three. Already in place was the Curriculum Guidance for the Foundation Stage, which applies to children from the age of three to the age of five-plus. (We will turn our attention to that in the next chapter.) The resulting document was called Birth to Three Matters (Department for Education and Skills 2004b), a title which holds the promise of a recognition of something we all know. In the foreword to the document, Baroness Ashton tells us that the publication of the document constitutes a milestone in recognising and valuing our youngest children and the contribution made to their growth and development by the adults who work with them. It raises the status of work with this important age group and marks our commitment to supporting quality and effective practice with children from birth to three.

The New ChildCare Bill

We have seen a new document relating to the care and education of children from birth to the age of three (which we discuss in detail later in this chapter) as well as the publication of the significant document Every Child Matters and a revised Children Act 2004. Arising out of all this will be the Childcare Bill, which is due to be published before the end of 2006, resulting in what will be called the Early Years Foundation Stage— due to be introduced in 2008 and effectively merging Birth to Three, the Foundation Stage and elements of the National Standards for under-eights day care and childminding. This will be compulsory for all those currently registered with OFSTED as well as for independent, maintained and non-maintained settings catering for children under the age of three. The new regulations will apply to all children from birth until 31 August following any child’s fifth birthday. It will have the same legal status as the Foundation Stage currently has under the National Curriculum and will remove the Foundation Stage from the National Curriculum.

The Early Years Foundation Stage will start with six areas of learning and development. These are:

• personal, social and emotional development;

• communication, language and literacy;

• problem-solving, reasoning and numeracy;

• knowledge and understanding of the world;

• physical development; and

• creative development. You will see that there are few changes in the six learning areas, but those there are, are significant. Mathematics, for example, currently in the Foundation Stage, is to be replaced with the more relevant and meaningful problemsolving, reasoning and numeracy. The new documents will specify early learning goals, educational programmes and assessment arrangements, and it is encouraging to read that these are going to be largely based on the observations adults make of children at play. Another change is the introduction of aspects of welfare— things like the qualifications and training of the adults, the suitability of the premises and resources, how complaints are dealt with and how records are kept. In a press release called ‘Direction of Travel’ (December 2005) we are reminded that the current Foundation Stage was built on research into early childhood provision— specifically the Effective Provision of Pre-school Education (EPPE)—a longitudinal study— and Researching Pedagogy in the Early Years (REPEY). Birth to Three was based on a reading of relevant literature and publications, including a project carried out by Professor Edward Melhuish in June 2004 for the Daycare Trust. This

showed that three aspects of interaction between children and carers were key: affection, responsiveness and communication.
The new document will highlight the importance of children learning through selfchosen activities— that is, through play— and will advocate that there is a sensible balance between childand adult-initiated activities. The starting point for all provision will be the five outcomes detailed in Every Child Matters and the Children Act (2004):

• Be healthy.

• Stay safe.

• Enjoy and achieve.

• Make a positive contribution.

• Achieve economic well-being. Settings will use the four aspects of Birth to Three Matters, work towards the early learning goals and look ahead to the five aspects outlined above. The fourteen national standards may also apply. It is a far-reaching proposal, making some needed changes and bringing together currently separate strands into one document and one legal framework.

Partnership with Parents

Partnerships with parents You can be left in little doubt that it is generally considered to be a ‘good thing’ for parents and carers to be intimately involved with the schools and settings which care for and educate their children. Birth to Three Matters, the Curriculum Guidance for the Foundation Stage and the Foundation Stage Profile: Handbook all remind us of this. Parents, we all know and appreciate, are children’s first educators. Current UK government thinking places parents high on the agenda, talking about ways of helping parents (particularly mothers) go back to work or study and offering them that ‘golden’ word: choice. Indeed, in December 2004 the government published a policy document called Choice for Parents: The Best Start for Children and described the policy as a tenyear strategy for childcare. The goals of the policy are laudable: more money, more training, more inter-agency work. The policy arises out of the research mentioned in an earlier chapter (Daycare Trust 2004) and the Effective Provision of Pre-School Education (EPPE) Project. Here are some of the things being proposed:

• The setting up of children’s centres where the youngest children are brought together in one setting so that there is care and education for babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers.

• The leaders of these children’s centres to be offered training through a one-year programme focusing on leadership (currently being trialled).

• By 2008 there are supposed to be children’s centres serving 2,500 communities.

• The setting up of childminding networks to link childminders caring for children in homes rather than settings to be linked into the system.

• The setting up of extended day programmes for schools, allowing parents to be offered care for their children beyond the hours of the traditional school day. • Funding for childcare through working tax credits which is aimed to go beyond the current figure of £135 per week for a single child and £300 for two children in a family.

• Joined-up services for families.

• A proper qualifications strategy for childcare workers.

• Attention paid to parental leave and to flexible working. It is up to you to decide whether this approach takes seriously raising the status of childcare as a profession, of childcare workers within society, of children within our culture. Sceptics might suggest that the policy has more to do with getting parents back to work to boost the economy than about offering universal, free quality care and education to all children whose parents want it. In terms of parental participation there is a wealth of documented evidence showing that where parents and practitioners work closely together, children thrive. It is imperative that in any setting a genuine two-way partnership is established. This means

Partnerships with parents You can be left in little doubt that it is generally considered to be a ‘good thing’ for parents and carers to be intimately involved with the schools and settings which care for and educate their children. Birth to Three Matters, the Curriculum Guidance for the Foundation Stage and the Foundation Stage Profile: Handbook all remind us of this. Parents, we all know and appreciate, are children’s first educators. Current UK government thinking places parents high on the agenda, talking about ways of helping parents (particularly mothers) go back to work or study and offering them that ‘golden’ word: choice. Indeed, in December 2004 the government published a policy document called Choice for Parents: The Best Start for Children and described the policy as a tenyear strategy for childcare. The goals of the policy are laudable: more money, more training, more inter-agency work. The policy arises out of the research mentioned in an earlier chapter (Daycare Trust 2004) and the Effective Provision of Pre-School Education (EPPE) Project. Here are some of the things being proposed:

• The setting up of children’s centres where the youngest children are brought together in one setting so that there is care and education for babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers.

• The leaders of these children’s centres to be offered training through a one-year programme focusing on leadership (currently being trialled).

• By 2008 there are supposed to be children’s centres serving 2,500 communities.

• The setting up of childminding networks to link childminders caring for children in homes rather than settings to be linked into the system.

• The setting up of extended day programmes for schools, allowing parents to be offered care for their children beyond the hours of the traditional school day.

• Funding for childcare through working tax credits which is aimed to go beyond the current figure of £135 per week for a single child and £300 for two children in a family.

• Joined-up services for families. • A proper qualifications strategy for childcare workers.

• Attention paid to parental leave and to flexible working. It is up to you to decide whether this approach takes seriously raising the status of childcare as a profession, of childcare workers within society, of children within our culture. Sceptics might suggest that the policy has more to do with getting parents back to work to boost the economy than about offering universal, free quality care and education to all children whose parents want it. In terms of parental participation there is a wealth of documented evidence showing that where parents and practitioners work closely together, children thrive. It is imperative that in any setting a genuine two-way partnership is established. This means

50 Best Beauty Tips of All Time

Band-Aids for wrinkles, deodorant before bed, and sugar packets to thicken hair. What other secret tricks did the 100 experts we consulted divulge? Read on ...



Nail polish cap won't budge? Wrap a rubber band around it for a better grip.

--Julie Kandalec, L.A. manicurist



Draw a line with cream shimmer down the bridge of your nose. The highlighter reflects light, creating the illusion of a straighter sniffer.

--Tasha Reiko Brown-Jovel, L.A. makeup artist

Nars the Multiple in Copacabana, $37;



After plucking ingrown hairs, crush two aspirins (an anti-inflammatory) into powder, then add a few drops of water to create a paste. Apply over tender area and let dry.

--Peter Kopelson, L.A. dermatologist



Remove polish with acetone polish remover; wash each nail with soap and dry well. Wipe again with remover. This gets rid of any oils that prevent polish from adhering completely.

--Jaimi Brooks, L.A. manicurist




To get the most natural look, alternate between using a small and a large curling iron. This creates tousled waves that vary in size.

--David Babaii, L.A. hairstylist



Dab your pout with peppermint oil. It's an instant lip plumper, setting off a small allergic reaction that causes swelling.

--David Bank, Mount Kisco, N.Y., dermatologist



Choose a shade that matches the pink of your knuckles when making a fist.

--Dustin Lujan, N.Y.C. makeup artist for Le Métier de Beauté



Affix adhesive butterfly bandage closures to facial lines before bedtime to stop yourself from frowning in your sleep.

--Francesca Fusco, N.Y.C. dermatologist

Band-Aid butterfly closures, $2/10;



Warm it in a microwave-safe bowl for 15 seconds. The heat helps open up the hair cuticle, causing the conditioner to penetrate more deeply.

--Tippi Shorter, N.Y.C. hairstylist



A fast and inexpensive fix for greasy hair: Combine equal parts baking soda and baby powder, sprinkle over hair, and then brush. The baking soda helps remove buildup, and the baby powder soaks up excess oil.

--David Babaii



It sounds crazy, but toilet seat covers make perfect blotting papers. The thin tissue absorbs oil like a sponge.

--Bruce Grayson, L.A. makeup artist

Johnson's baby powder in Cooling Cucumber Melon, $4; at drugstores.



Your body temperature is higher at night, so the deodorant will permeate more deeply into the sweat ducts. It will block wetness the next day, even after you shower.

--David Bank



Before putting on mascara, dust lashes first with a translucent powder to add instant volume.

--Tasha Reiko Brown-Jovel

Laura Mercier translucent loose setting powder, $34;





Rather than polish the whole nail in one fell swoop, break the process down into at least three strokes: First, paint the center, then swipe along each side, keeping the coats thin to prevent chipping.

--Bethany Newell, N.Y.C. manicurist



For a finished, professional look, always leave a small space between the cuticle and the polish line.




Before removing polish, brush cuticle oil on each nail to avoid staining the base of the nail or fingers. The oil creates a barrier that keeps the color from penetrating the skin as you rub it away.

--Tabitha Belesis, N.Y.C. manicurist



If you really like the way lipstick looks in the tube, prime lips with a touch of foundation before applying. That way, you start with a blank canvas and the color appears more true.

--Anthea King, N.Y.C. makeup artist



Don't dare go in the sun without first misting your hair with a mixture of equal parts water and sunscreen--it will keep color from fading and hair from drying out.

--Giselle, N.Y.C. colorist



Wrap wet hair in a towel that's been soaked in ice-cold water. This seals the shaft, so as hair dries, it will stay frizz-free.

--Ursula Stephen, N.Y.C. hairstylist



Warm it with a blow-dryer up to a maximum of three seconds before using it on your lashes. The heat will open up the cuticle of the hair, boosting the curl.

--Christy Coleman, L.A. makeup artist

Shu Uemura eyelash curler, $19;



Wash with a mixture of grape Kool-Aid powder (just a pinch) and four tablespoons of your regular shampoo. The purple blue cancels out the brassy gold orange in overprocessed hues because it's on the opposite side of the color spectrum.

--Tippi Shorter



Spritz a small amount of nasal decongestant on red areas to decrease the color in a flash. The spray, which lessens the inflammation that triggers nasal congestion, will do the same for a pimple.

--David Bank



Add two sugar packets to a 20-ounce bottle of water to create a natural volumizing spray.

--Oscar Blandi, N.Y.C. hairstylist



When coloring hair at home, start your timer as soon as you begin applying the dye, not when you finish. Otherwise the first sections you do (front, hairline, and nape of the neck) will be overcolored. If the rest of the hair isn't timed perfectly, it doesn't matter as much because it's not as visible.

--Rita Hazan, N.Y.C. colorist



Comb mustache wax onto eyebrows. The wax coats each hair and locks it in place.

--Troy Surratt, N.Y.C. makeup artist

Clubman Moustache wax, $5;



Apply an opaque white polish before your neon shade. The flat base brings out the pigment of the color and illuminates it from underneath.

--Patricia Yankee, N.Y.C. manicurist

OPI matte Nail Lacquer in Alpine Snow, $9; for stores. Zoya nail polish in Paz, $6;



To dry up oily secretions, spray a makeup sponge with clear antiperspirant and dab it on the pimple before putting on your makeup.

--Jake Bailey, L.A. makeup artist

Secret antiperspirant and deodorant aerosol spray in Powder Fresh, $5; at drugstores.




Clean your face with anti-dandruff shampoo to decrease flaking. It reduces the yeast levels that cause scaly skin.

--Elissa Lunder, Wellesley, Mass., dermatologist



Lather your tresses with a flake fighter and let sit for 20 minutes. This revives color and even removes the green tints that may result from chlorine.

--Sean James, L.A. hairstylist



Shampoos that contain salicylic acid can also help with breakouts on your back.

--Monica Schadlow, N.Y.C. dermatologist

Kérastase Bain Gommage, $39;



Apply black mascara, then tip the ends of your lashes with a mascara in plum or navy to make the whites of your eyes look brighter.

--Brett Freedman, L.A. makeup artist

Diorshow mascara in plum and black, $24 each;



To get the clearest view of your upper lash line, hold a hand mirror below your chin and look down.

--Tasha Reiko Brown-Jovel



A drop of Coca-Cola will reinvigorate your mascara's consistency. The syrup in the soda adds just enough moisture without making it watery.

--Brett Freedman



Keep separate hair and face towels so the oil from your scalp doesn't cause breakouts.

--Amy Wechsler, N.Y.C. dermatologist



Rub the inside of a lemon directly onto the backside of your hands. Lemons have high concentrations of citric acid and vitamin C, which stimulate connective tissue production. The sting lasts a few seconds, but it's worth it.

--Macrene Alexiades-Armenakas, N.Y.C. dermatologist



Slather on sunscreen before every flight, and choose aisle over window seats. There's a greater level of UV rays at high altitudes than on the ground.

--Elissa Lunder

Aveeno Positively Ageless sunblock lotion SPF 70, $10;



Always keep a sheer golden lip gloss in your makeup bag. It instantly warms up any lip color and gives you a brand-new shade.

--Anthea King

L'Oréal Paris Colour Juice lip gloss in Golden Splash, $9;



Don't forget to cover the area beneath your eyes when spreading on sunscreen. The skin around your eyes is thinner, making it more susceptible to damaging UV rays.

--Jeanine Downie, Montclair, N.J., dermatologist



Once they're partially dry, run nails under cold water. The icy temperature will speed up setting your polish.

--Bethany Newell



Wash your makeup tools regularly with a clarifying shampoo to rid them of product buildup that can cause blemishes.

--Tasha Reiko Brown-Joval



Tea is a natural astringent. To reduce oil, splash your face with cool black tea, but do not rinse.

--Peter Kopelson




Drop cuticle oil on each nail just after polishing. The oil makes nail surfaces slippery, serving as a buffer between the lacquer and any object that might tarnish it. This works for pedicures too: Immediately after applying top coat, add cuticle oil; then slip on sandals for a flaw-free trip home.

--Jaimi Brooks



Oops! Already spoiled your freshly painted manicure? Brush cuticle oil onto the nail and gently rub out the crease with fingers.




A spot of cuticle oil adds a nice sheen to lackluster lacquer. It hydrates nails, while sinking into every nook and cranny to smooth out imperfections.


Jessica Phenomen Oil intensive moisturizer, $14;



Crush broken blush in a bowl--the back of a spoon will do the trick--until it's a fine powder, then blend with a lip balm for a perfect cream blush.

--Fiona Stiles, N.Y.C. makeup artist

broken powder blush + lip balm = cream blush

Sue Devitt Silky blush in Los Angeles, $20; Chapstick lip balm SPF 4, $2;



Soak fingers in denture cleaner for about three minutes. The liquid's oxidizing agents will help remove stains.

--April Foreman, L.A. manicurist



Dip a washcloth in soy milk and rest it on your face for 10 minutes once a week. Soy is a skin brightener and contains phytoestrogen, a plant-derived estrogen that is thought to help prevent wrinkles.

--Debra Luftman, L.A. dermatologist




For a creamy eye shadow that won't crease, use waterproof eyeliner pencil. Draw over the eyelid, then blend with finger.

--Jake Bailey

Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes in Champagne, $17;



Clear liquid soap adds great body to hair. Plus, it comes out easily when you wash it out.

--David Babaii



Add a few eyedrops to dark eye shadow. The drops are mess-free and sterile, which means you won't introduce dangerous bacteria into your makeup.

--Troy Surratt

MAC eyeliner brush No. 210, $18;

Clarins Single Eye Colour in Totally Black, $20;

Rohto V Cooling Redness Reliever lubricant eye drops, $7;

growing pains

What do you do when your well-mannered kids suddenly go off the rails with a certain behavior? Parents and child-development experts explain how to get back on track.

Once you made it through those sleepless nights with an infant and your child responded to English, it seemed most problems could be tackled with a stern no. Or maybe three. But even kids who initially follow every rule eventually start veering off course. Suddenly a child who loved green beans refuses anything but waffle fries. To help you straighten out those wayward souls, Real Simple talked to moms who have done it, then consulted experts to find out why these women's solutions were successful. So no matter which path your kids choose, you can keep them moving in the right direction.

"My child started throwing tantrums to get what he wanted."

--Rachel O'Connell, Ashland, Massachusetts

the problem: A two-year-old who learned that a screaming fit usually resulted in a toy. "My son would let loose these truly bloodcurdling screams that would go on until one of us would give him whatever it took to make that awful noise stop," says O'Connell. "One day he screamed so much he lost his voice."

the fix: A nifty disappearing act. As soon as her son launched into one of his fits, O'Connell and her husband would calmly and promptly remove themselves from the action. "We'd go into another room right away, but we'd tell him he could come find us when he was finished," she says. "Knowing that we weren't going to get riled up or be around did the trick eventually. Within a week, the screaming sessions were down to less than a minute."

the expert take: "When you say, 'I'm not going to stay in the room with you for this,' it's removing attention from the tantrum, which says, 'This is not acceptable,' " says Rex Forehand, a professor of psychology at the University of Vermont, in Burlington, and a coauthor of Parenting the Strong-Willed Child (McGraw-Hill, $16). "Toddlers might erupt like Mount Vesuvius, but then they have to vent and let go of upset feelings," says Robert A. MacKenzie, a family therapist and the author of the Setting Limits book series (Three Rivers Press). Stuck in Target? You can't leave a screaming child in housewares. Forehand suggests picking up the child, leaving the store, and putting him in the backseat of the car--alone--while you stand outside with the keys. Wait a few minutes; if the tantrum stops, let him out and go back inside.

"It took two hours to put my child to bed."

--Kerri Eastham, Torrance, California

the problem: A bedtime process that dragged on into the wee hours. Eastham's 2½-year-old daughter had, over time, become a master of delaying bedtime. "Some requests were legitimate, like 'One more trip to the bathroom.' Others were ridiculous: 'One more dinner, please'? " says Eastham.

the fix: A photo-driven bedtime routine. "I took pictures of my daughter brushing her teeth, washing her face, and so on. We laminated them and taped them in order to a strip of paper. When each one was completed, she would say, 'Check!' " says Eastham. "And if she asked for another drink of water, I'd show her the chart and say, 'See? We already did that.' It worked right away."

the expert take: "Kids love clarity--they crave it," says MacKenzie. "An approach like this answers all the questions: What's next? How far can I go? How much is left?" To keep the novelty of the chart from wearing off, MacKenzie recommends updating it from time to time--which Eastham has done by subbing in new pictures (showing off new teeth or new pink pajamas) and adding in stickers that function as check marks (and peel off easily from the laminated photos).

"My kids rushed through dinner just to get to dessert."

--Gia Blout, Pasadena, California

the problem: Using dessert as a reward for eating well eventually turned dinner into an afterthought. "My two boys would rush through dinner and eat the bare minimum to earn their 'reward.' There were constant negotiations and power struggles," says Blout.

the fix: Blout began to serve dinner family-style, with all the dishes--even dessert--presented at once. The boys were expected to serve themselves and make their own choices without any intervention from their parents. "The first night, my younger one grabbed a cookie and inhaled it. But then he relaxed and ate a complete meal," says Blout. Eventually she began phasing out dessert at every meal--without protests.

the expert take: "It's important to stop distinguishing between 'good' and 'bad' foods," says Adele Faber, a coauthor of How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk (Collins Living, $16). "Making food attractive, like arranging peas in the shape of a smiley face or cutting fruit into shapes, will make kids more likely to eat it." Considering dessert as a part of the meal, rather than as an overvalued treat, eliminates it as a bargaining chip. And if your child does eat six cookies before serving himself any spinach, consider this: "In studies, when kids were allowed to eat whatever they wanted, they just ate dessert at first. But within a few weeks, they were back to a balanced meal," says Kevin Leman, a psychologist and the author of Have a New Kid by Friday (Revell, $18).

"My child was obsessed with TV."

--Elizabeth Williams, Hoboken, New Jersey

the problem: A nonstop loop of Duck Tales: Raiders of the Lost Harp. "Our four-year-old son became obsessed and wanted to watch constantly," says Williams.

the fix: Williams didn't want her family to spend their waking hours glued to the tube or have television be the go-to source of entertainment, so she banned it during the week--for Mom and Dad, too. "Exceptions are made for presidential debates and speeches and baseball opening day," she says. "It was clear-cut, and the rule applied fairly to everybody." Williams subbed in plenty of card games (Uno was a favorite), kitchen science experiments, and even timed "drills." "I would say, 'How long will it take you to walk backwards around the apartment three times? I'll time you!' He loved being timed," she says.

the expert take: "The idea of limiting time in front of the set is great, but whether you need to cut it out altogether is up to you," says Forehand. Even if you do allow your kids to watch during the week, there are ways to diversify the subject. Use your child's interest in particular programs to create an educational experience. "Say, 'Oh, you're interested in ducks? Let's learn more about them. We can go to the library and find books that tell us what they do,' " suggests Faber.

"My daughter went berserk when we left her with a babysitter."

--Jan Schwieters, Eden Prairie, Minnesota

the problem: Temper tantrums at the sight of a sitter. "Our three-year-old became hysterical when we left her with someone else. We would hand over a screaming toddler and bolt. It was terrible," says Schwieters.

the fix: An earlier arrival and special activities. "If we were leaving at seven, I'd have the sitter come at 6:40 and set them up for a popcorn party or outside play time," says Schwieters. Her daughter felt secure enough to get fully engaged in the thing she was doing, since Mom and Dad were still home, and she barely batted an eye when they left.

the expert take: "This is an excellent solution for three reasons," says Forehand. "It takes the stress out of the parents' leaving, it gives the child the opportunity to see that being with a sitter is fun, and it creates a distraction." To make the tactic even more successful, "have fun activities that are reserved for times when the sitter is there," says Nicholas Long, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and a coauthor of Parenting the Strong-Willed Child. Make up a new cookie recipe (Baby-sitter Butterscotch Bombs!) or let them build a fort your child can sleep in.

"My daughter's room was a disaster site."

--Michelle LeMasurier, Duluth, Minnesota

the problem: A formerly neat 14-year-old whose bedroom slowly morphed into a landfill look-alike. "At its worst, you couldn't see the floor," says LeMasurier.

the fix: Top Secret Operation Heave-Ho. LeMasurier bagged all her daughter's out-of-place belongings (clothes, books, papers, toiletries) and moved them to the garage while she was out one afternoon. "Wow, did that get her attention," LeMasurier says. To get the items back, her daughter had to reorganize. "We reworked her closet area--she helped design it--and she arranged things the way she wanted to keep them in the future," says LeMasurier. Now her daughter is proud of her room and keeps it spick-and-span to show it off.

the expert take: "Shock value definitely works," says Leman. "Older kids don't like their stuff touched." The key to success is to remain unemotional (no giving in when she starts crying over her gymnastics trophy). "Just say, 'I got tired of looking at it, and you'll find your stuff out in the garage,' " he says. Don't want to deal with the (literal) heavy lifting? Try skipping ahead to the second step. Get your child involved in the organization (shopping for new bookcases or cool baskets helps), and teach her about tidiness in the process.

"My son suddenly wouldn't touch healthy food."

--Samantha Meiler, Millburn, New Jersey

the problem: A two-year-old whose picky eating suddenly went extreme--he shunned anything but waffles, grilled cheese, French fries, and ice cream. "For six months, we tried reasoning with him," says Meiler.

the fix: Surprise! "Doing nothing at all," she says. "We put different foods in front of him. If he didn't eat them, we didn't make a big deal about it." (There was always one option they knew he would eat, like fries, in addition to the others.) It wasn't always easy. Meiler says she would occasionally leave the room to avoid getting frustrated. But the patience paid off. About a month into the new approach, "he started trying things. Suddenly he was eating chicken, strawberries, raisins, apples, corn. We were diligent about exposing him to new foods, and one day he simply ate them," she says. (Research shows that kids may need to be exposed to a food 15 times before they'll readily eat it.)

the expert take: "Hunger becomes a teacher," says Leman. "When a kid refuses to eat something, don't fuss over it." Many parents underestimate the downside of being too pushy, says Long: "Sometimes if we back off, they'll try things on their own. When you're more relaxed, their curiosity can take over."

Back-to-School Fair puts spotlight on kids' safety

The Lake County Community Traffic Safety Team will present its annual Back-to-School Safety Fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Lake Square Mall, 10401 U.S. Highway 441, Leesburg.

The fair, which helps families prepare for the school year, will include bicycle- and helmet-safety programs, a child-seat safety checkpoint, a child-identification program, face painting and more.

Sir Gus Jr. the camel will be there.

Other agencies participating include the Lake County Department of Public Works, local law-enforcement agencies, Lake County Schools' Parent Resources, Children's Home Society, Florida's Blood Centers, Florida Division of Driver Licenses, LakeXpress bus transportation and SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions).

The Lake County Health Department also will offer free required immunizations for students. Children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian and must have proof of immunizations -- a Florida Certificate of Immunization or "blue card." The blue card is supplied by family physicians or local county health departments.

Business after hours

The Lady Lake Area Chamber of Commerce will have a Business After Hours on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. in the commission chamber at Lady Lake Town Hall, 409 Fennell Blvd.

Lady Lake's growth-management staff will answer questions about day-to-day responsibilities of the department, general process and procedures, and services offered to the public.

Refreshments will be served.

Reservations: 352-753-6029.

Marion County chief elected

The Florida Fire Chiefs Association recently elected Marion County Fire Rescue Fire Chief M. Stuart McElhaney as its 54th president.

McElhaney has served on FFCA board of directors for the past nine years and will serve a year term as president. He has been the fire chief for MCFR for 15 years.

Music and food

Pine Lakes Community Association will have a fundraiser beginning at noon Aug. 15 at the Pine Lakes Community Building, 31635 Lakeview Drive, off State Road 44 near the fire station.

The Hilltop Ramblers, a local group, will perform. Lunch and drinks will be available for purchase.

Proceeds will go toward the community building.

Classes for older drivers

AARP's Driver Safety Program helps participants refine their skills and develop safe driving habits. Upon completion of the course, Florida drivers 50 or older might be eligible for insurance discounts.

The cost is $12 for AARP members and $14 for nonmembers, which includes a workbook. Payment must be by check; no cash or credit cards.

The program, an eight-hour, two-day course, will be offered Monday and Aug. 12 from 1 to 5 p.m. at Leesburg Senior Center, 1211 Penn St.

Registration: 352-326-3540.

Safe Sitter classes

South Lake Hospital in Clermont will offer Safe Sitter, a course designed to train baby sitters for girls and boys ages 11 to 13.

The program teaches baby sitters how to handle crises and how to nurture and guide a child. Thousands of adolescents have been trained by Safe Sitter to handle life-threatening emergencies. Youths will get advice on safety and security precautions, such as what to do if a stranger comes to the door and when and how to call for help.

Students also will learn the basics of infant and child CPR using a mannequin.

The $50 two-part class is 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday and Aug. 11 at the National Training Center on the hospital's campus, 1109 Citrus Tower Blvd.

Seating is limited. Preregistration is required by calling 352-394-4071, Ext. 4419.

Books for a good cause

The Lake County Agricultural Center, 1951 Woodlea Road, Tavares, is selling the Bath Pond series written by Central Florida author Lowell Teal through the end of September.

The fictional series is a look at a Florida citrus family during the Depression. Half of the proceeds from the book sales will benefit the 4-H club's citrus project. Citrus growers, processors, packers and other support industries purchase citrus trees for members of the 4-H program so they can learn about the citrus industry, as well as complete a record book of their tree's care.

The four novels, which include Bath Pond, Fortunes Crossing, Inherited Journey and Promise to Poppy, are $14.95 each for softcover or $24.95 for hardcover. Cash and checks are accepted.

Details: Maggie Jarrell, 352-343-4101.

Recycle newspapers, magazines

W.T. Bland Public Library in Mount Dora has a newspaper-recycling bin in the library parking lot, 1995 N. Donnelly St.

Acceptable items include newspapers, magazines, catalogs and white office paper.

No telephone books, plastic bags, cardboard, wrapping paper, bows or trash will be accepted.

Funds made from the recycling collection will go toward purchasing youth materials for the library.

Details: 352-735-7180, Option 5.

Mail community news to Debbie Manis, Orlando Sentinel, 1898 E. Burleigh Blvd., Tavares, FL 32778-4366, fax 352-742-5938 or e-mail

Credit: The Orlando Sentinel, Fla.

Runaway teen who fears family after Christian conversion ordered to DCF custody

She looked more like a timid child clinging to her protector than an Ohio teen runaway brazen enough to flee her Muslim family out of fear for her life.

The girl, who turned 17 on Monday, is at the center of a custody dispute in Orlando, where she sought help from a family she barely knew -- a pastor and his wife willing to take in a teen who feared her own family's retribution because she converted to Christianity.

The Orlando Sentinel is not identifying the teen because of her age.

The girl appeared before a crowded courtroom full of lawyers and spectators on Monday when an Orange Circuit Court Judge ordered her into Department of Children and Families emergency custody.

It was another in a series of legal decisions in a complicated case: Beyond the girl's religious preferences, the court must solve jurisdictional issues related to child services and courts.

In addition, the teen, a native of Sri Lanka, is not a U.S. citizen.

Her dispute with her family became news several weeks ago when the girl ran away from her home in Columbus, Ohio. She hitch-hiked to a Greyhound station and boarded a bus to Orlando.

Once here, she borrowed a cell phone to call Beverly Lorenz, who with husband Blake Lorenz is a pastor of Global Revolution Church in Orlando. The Lorenzes met the girl through a prayer group on Facebook.

Although the girl was a stranger, Beverly Lorenz told her they would house her. The teen told the Lorenzes she feared her family would hurt her, kill her or send her back to Sri Lanka, Beverly Lorenz said.

"We are doing everything we can to protect her," said Blake Lorenz, who said he has been told his life may be in jeopardy.

Meanwhile, the girl's parents reported to Ohio law enforcement authorities that their daughter was missing. They put together a flier, with her picture on it, asking for tips to her whereabouts.

Beverly Lorenz said they called an abuse hotline, prompting a visit on Friday from the Orlando police. Officers picked up the girl to be placed in state custody.

The Lorenzes appeared in court with the teen Monday, as did her father from Ohio.

When the petite girl walked into court, she immediately bolted for Beverly Lorenz, who held her. The teen then joined Blake Lorenz at a table with lawyers. He comforted her throughout the entire hearing with his arm around her shoulder.

Rosa Gonzalez, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund, told Orange Circuit Judge Gail A. Adams the teen is in fear for her life. The sight of her father makes the teen "frantic and hysterical," Gonzalez said.

The teen's father said little during the hearing.

Reached by a Sentinel reporter by phone, the girl's mother said little. "Yes, of course" her daughter would be safe should a judge eventually order her back there, she said.

And her father would not harm his daughter if she wanted to be a Christian, the woman said. She referred other questions to her husband. He did not answer his cell phone after the hearing.

Gonzalez said her organization, which sends pro bono lawyers to work on cases involving Christian issues, is concerned the teen could be returned to her parents.

"We don't take those threats lightly," she said.

Imam Hatim Hamidullah, with the Islamic Society of Central Florida, said the Muslim faith does not call for a father to hurt his child, should she convert to another religion.

"It is not Islam for the father to bring harm upon his blood daughter or any other human being because of anger," he said. "Our position is to exhaust all measures that would bring peace and harmony back to the family," Hamidullah said. "Being angry and threatening the life of someone is not one of those methods."

A DCF spokeswoman said the agency is working with Ohio officials to ensure the teen's "safety and well being."

Attempts to talk to the teen after the hearing were unsuccessful -- her legal guardians ushered her out of the building without letting her speak to a reporter.

On a baby sitter Web site, the girl described herself this way: "One of my favorite things to do in my spare time is cheerleading for my high school and of course tumbling as well. I have a little brother who is about to turn 5 years old. With this, I have had a lot of experience with toddlers and many years of sitting for him."

Blake Lorenz, who retired after serving as pastor at Pine Castle United Methodist Church for several years, said the teen believes her dad will kill her.

"We are doing everything we can to protect her," he said.

Lorenz said he has been told his life may be in jeopardy.

After Monday's hearing, Blake Lorenz said he was relieved the teen is not returning back to her family in Ohio immediately, but he's still cautious. He's "very concerned that the system will let her down."

Walter Pacheco contributed to this report. Amy L. Edwards can be reached at or 407-420-5735. Rene Stutzman can be reached at or 407-650-6394.

Questions, answers on local stimulus plan

Call it our own local economic stimulus plan. Or call it what we're calling it: "$20 on the 22nd." Regardless of the name, the campaign's goal is to encourage local residents to step up and give our community a much-needed economic boost. How? Simply spend $20 more on the 22nd of August on local goods and services you would not have otherwise purchased that day.

Ahhh, but you have questions. Let me try to answer a few anticipated ones to give you a better understanding of why we're doing this.

Why the 22nd?

Actually, we were tempted to go with "$20 on the 20th," but the 22nd is a Saturday, when most folks can get out to shop and dine.

Why $20?

There is a lot you can do with $20. We know times are tough, but we're hoping most of us can find $20 to inject into our local economy as our contribution to the cause.

Do you really think my $20 will make a difference?

Yes, we do. Consider this: If every adult in Yuba, Sutter and Colusa counties spends an extra $20 on the 22nd, that will mean an additional $2.7 million pumped into our local economy. Not only will it generate the sales taxes that pay for police, parks and potholes, but it helps businesses stay in business and pay employees who continue to put money back into the local economy.

But what happens after the 22nd?

Studies show money changes hands about six times in a community, Laura Nicholson, executive director of the Yuba- Sutter Chamber of Commerce, said in a recent A-D story:

"You buy a car, go to the bank, you take that money and go out to a restaurant, where you tip the waitress, who goes home and pays the baby sitter, who buys a soccer uniform for her son, who plays in a game sponsored by (local businesses)," Nicholson said.

Besides, if this program proves successful, we can do it again.

What's in it for the A-D?

We're just trying to do our part in sustaining the vitality of our community.

Let's face it: The newspaper is only as healthy as all the other businesses within our area, so we all share a vested interest in surviving the current economic mudslide. And yes, we hope that lots of businesses buy newspaper ads to let resident shoppers know what they have to offer for $20. Nonetheless, we're going to sell those ads to businesses at $20 each, which is heavily discounted from our regular rates. We're not doing this to make a buck right now -- we see it as an investment in our future and that of our community.

So there you have it. Set aside two bucks each weekday for the next two weeks and you'll have your $20 for the 22nd. Go spend it and have fun!

Contact Appeal-Democrat Publisher Dave Schmall at

Credit: Appeal-Democrat, Marysville, Calif.