Page 1


nderstanding u , g n i vis een

have your first sc o t r en


Twice as Nice Parenting Multiples

erapy, and much m o

Vision Health

th ion

pumpkin patches, cute costumes, and more!


Octoberween Fall Festivals,


Screen Time: How much is too much?

OCTOBER 2012 October 2012 savvy kids





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contents October 2012


Protect Your Child’sVision


Dress Up to Get Down

Our Vision Section is full of information every parent should know. When do you schedule your child’s first eye exam? What are common vision disorders among children? Find the answers here.

From classic costumes to glowing gowns, we found some of this year’s cutest Halloween costumes!

16 Host a Spooky Party 18 Fall Festivals and Pumpkin Patches 20 How to Slay Scary Monsters 24 Twice as Nice-Parenting Multiples 30 VisionTherapy 32 Amblyopia:One of the most common vision disorders among children.

34 Finding the right frames 36 InfantSEE:Establishing a Lifetime of HealthyVision for Infants

38 Alternative Media:Braille and Large Print

42 The One and Only:Aedan 44 Teaching children about special needs

48 Babysitting:Caring for Kids With Special Needs

52 ScreenTime 56 Pennywise 58 PopTopics 4 | savvy kids October 2012

ON THE COVER: Christopher Smith, Alexis Rogers, Kristie Lynn Silor, Caroline Gunderman, MJ Ferguson, Wesleigh Ferguson, Braylon Owen, and Mason Atkins photographed by Brian Chilson.­­

To EvEry MEal ThErE Is a sEason:

Fall sEason Is hErE! Offering everything you need for your perfect meal since 1959.

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October 2012 savvy kids




his issue is our first Vision Health issue. We teamed up with the Arkansas Optometric Association to present you with informational articles from the experts in central Arkansas. Starting on page 28, you can read about when to take your children for their first eye exam, learn about vision therapy, a common eye disorder, the InfantSEE program and about visual aids, like Braille. There is so much parents need to know about these topics. Savvy Kids will continue to bring you more information in future issues. No October issue would be complete without some fun Halloween stories! Starting on page 12 you will find come cute Halloween costumes, learn about upcoming fall festivals and open pumpkin patches, and even learn “How to Slay Scary Monsters.”

Photo by Christy Hollingshead

If you haven’t visited our website ( in a while, you should. We have worked really hard to make our website more interactive for our readers. Stay up-to-date on events, browse “Kids Eat Free” restaurants, enter contests and read some great articles on our blog. Be sure to leave us feedback so we can continue to improve our site for you! While you’re on our site, be sure to submit your kids’ upcoming events. Whether there is a birthday party in the near future, a team gathering, or school fundraiser, we want to hear about it! Fill out the event form on our site and your kids’ event could be featured in the next issue of Savvy Kids!


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publisher Heather Baker, editor Emily Griffin, digital media editor Meredith Martin-Moats digital media producer Bryan Moats editorial art director Patrick Jones graphic designer Erica Schaffer account executives Erin Holland Michelle Miller michelle@arktimescom Tamara Adkins advertising sales assistant Kelly Lyles, production manager Weldon Wilson advertising coordinators Roland Gladden, Kelly Carr, Tracy Whitaker, graphic artists Kai Caddy, Rafael Mendez, Bryan Moats, Patrick Jones, Mike Spain, Sandy Sarlo photographers Brian Chilson, Patrick Jones, Nick Hillemann, Ali Hibbard controller Weldon Wilson accounts payable Angie Fambrough it director Robert Curfman billing/collections Linda Phillips circulation director Anitra Hickman ALL MATERIALS ARE HANDLED WITH DUE CARE; HOWEVER, THE PUBLISHER ASSUMES NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR CARE AND SAFE RETURN OF UNSOLICITED MATERIALS. ALL LETTERS AND PICTURES SENT TO SAVVYKIDS™ WILL BE TREATED AS INTENDED FOR PUBLICATION AND ARE SUBJECT TO SAVVYKIDS'™ UNRESTRICTED RIGHT TO EDIT OR TO COMMENT EDITORIALLY. 201 E. MARKHAM ST. SUITE 200, LITTLE ROCK, AR 72201 501-375-2985. ALL CONTENTS ©2012 SAVVY KIDS™

On the Web At you will find all sorts of information on vision health topics from sports related eye injuries to how to protect your eyes from the sun. You can also search their directory for an optometrist.  6 | savvy kids October 2012

At you will find fun and exciting features your kids will really enjoy. From games coloring sheets to videos and costume patterns, this website offers up everything you expect from PBS Kids with a Halloween twist.

At you will find tons of Halloween sewing projects with FREE patterns. From princess gowns and cowboy vests to goody bags and cat ears, this website has more than 40 fun ideas!

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Bryan and annette armstrong

Photos by Krystina Bullard

Dad: Bryan G. Armstrong, Optometric Physician at Mom: Annette Armstrong, 3rd Grade Teacher Children: Kendall, 13; Kip, 10; Andrew, 9; Emmaline, 7; Elizabeth, 7; Lina Grace, 7; Maggie, 5 Current Projects: Bryan is on the Arkansas Optometric Association Board of Directors, member of the Lions Club, and The Chamber of Commerce- Benton and Bryant. We are members of Cross Roads Missionary Baptist Church, and coach for the USSSA Saline County Cyclones. Parenting Style: ACTIVE- Full involvement with a broad structure for all the kids. Life lesson learned from parenthood: Patience. Enjoy the little details of your children because it is ALL good at the end of the day! Keeping it organized: Calendar, schedules, conversations, and separate work from home. 8 | savvy kids October 2012

Advice for other busy parents to keep it all together: PRAY, laugh a lot, make time for family and yourself. Don’t sweat the small stuff, life is too short! Favorites: Book: Everyday’s a Friday by Joel Osteen Music: Bryan’s and Kip is Country, Annette, the girls and Andrew’s is all genres of music Place to shop for you: Home Depot, Sam’s, Academy Sports Place for kids: The Mall Family Activity: Camping-- anything outdoors!! Restaurant: Kids’ favorite is Sakura in Bryant Guilty Pleasure: Late night eating ice cream Place to go for date night: Grill out at home on the deck Vacation destination: Beach, every summer Won’t leave home without: Saying I Love You!!


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Big Heart

The story of how one young lady is overcoming odds and inspiring others along the way. By Emily Griffin

Juliana Weigle is like most kids her age. She will tell you that she enjoys sports, spending time with her friends and riding roller coasters at Silver Dollar City, her favorite being “Fire in the Hole.” Her parents, Monica and Jerry Weigle adopted Juliana from the Ukraine when she was just 17 months old. Juliana was developmentally delayed due to being a premature baby. They later found out she has Cerebral Palsy. Cerebral Palsy is a disorder of movement, muscle tone or posture that is caused by injury or abnormal development in the immature brain, most often before birth. According to the Mayo Clinic, signs and symptoms appear during infancy or preschool years. In general, Cerebral Palsy causes impaired movement associated with exaggerated reflexes or rigidity of the limbs and trunk, abnormal posture, involuntary movements, unsteadiness of walking, or some combination of these. The effect of cerebral palsy on functional abilities varies greatly. Monica described Juliana as having a true survival instinct. She said Juliana has never let Cerebral Palsy slow her down; she just has to try harder to do some things than an abled-body person. As soon as Monica, Jerry, and their three sons brought Juliana home, they enrolled her in school at Helping Hand in North Little Rock ( There Juliana flourished as she received, and still does receive, physical and occupational therapy.

Juliana Weigle’s strength and determination has inspired countless people, and she has big goals for the future.

When I met Juliana, she was walking to the therapy gym at Helping Hand using a walker for assistance. She made her way through the hallways with confidence and purpose. She stood proudly as my photographer took her picture, and then we sat down to talk. She told me she has started playing soccer. She takes dance lessons through the I Can! Dance program, plays baseball with the Miracle League and has a red belt in taekwondo through ATA in Maumelle. She rides horses every week at Hearts and Hooves (Gypsy is her favorite) and she even performed some of her taekwondo moves to the song “Call Me Maybe” during a recent school talent show. Juliana said she has always used a walker to walk. She started walking when she was six years old and her first walker had weights on the back to help her keep her balance. As she became stronger she moved up into the walker she uses now, and from what I was told, Juliana doesn’t let the walker keep her from running and playing like every other 9-year-old.

Photos by Brian Chilson

Juliana is a smart and determined young lady. I asked her if she had any goals for the future in her therapy. She said she wants to become an independent walker by her birthday in April. Her proud mother chimed in to admit that Juliana can walk independently now, for short distances. She said one day she was in the kitchen at their house and out of the corner of her eye she saw something breeze past her. She peeked around the corner and saw Juliana walking without the assistance of her walker. Juliana giggled modestly and showed off her skills there in the therapy gym. I asked Juliana what she would say to her friends who wanted to achieve a goal but aren’t sure how or are afraid to try. “Try your best,” she said simply. “You can do it. Just think about what you need to do to get better.” Juliana visits her doctor three times a year for Botox injections in her legs to reduce the high tone brought on by Cerebral Palsy. She told me she gets 4-5 shots each visit. “I used to cry a lot,” Juliana explained. “But I’m brave now.” I think she has been brave all her life, she’s only just now realizing it. 10 | savvy kids OCTOBER 2012

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Photos by Ali Hibbard

(From left to right) Fischer Vines dressed in Lil’ Frankie Frankenstein, Makenzie Wood dressed in light-up Twinkler Princess, Isabella Ginocchio dressed in Story Book Witch, and Eden Sledge dressed in 80’s Valley Girl.

Dress Up to Get Down By Emily Griffin

Dressing Up in elaborate costumes is a large part of the fun Halloween brings for children. Savvy Kids teamed up with Party City (4822 North Hills Blvd., North Little Rock, and 11218 Rodney Parham Rd., Little Rock) to bring you some of central Arkansas’ coolest costumes. From the traditional witch and vampire to the elegant princess, kids are sure to love these costumes! For a complete selection of costumes at Party City, visit 80’s Valley Girl Have a totally excellent adventure in our Girls 80’s Valley Girl Costume! Girls 80’s Valley Girl Costume features a turquoise t-shirt top with attached awesome pink and black tulle pettiskirt, valspeak printed leggings, and pink satin scrunchy belt. 80’s Valley Girl Costume also comes with one pink fishnet glovette to complete the picture. $34.99­ Light-Up Twinkler Princess Your little princess will light up in this twinkling princess dress! Toddler Girls Light-Up Twinkler Princess costume features a pink ball gown with little interwoven fiber optic lights that flash red on and off throughout the skirt. $24.99 Story Book Witch A witch costume right out of her favorite fairytale. Toddler Girls Story Book Witch Costume features a charming, full skirted, long sleeved black dress with orange rick rac laces and ruffles, attached striped petticoat and apron and matching witch hat. $29.99 Cruz Conrad dressed in Transylvanian Vampire.

High Seas Buccaneer Pirate Set sail for high seas adventures in this scurvy Buccaneer Pirate Costume! Toddler Boys High Seas Buccaneer Pirate costume features a buccaneer shirt with attached leather-look pirate vest, striped pants, broad buckled belt, tricorn pirate hat, bandana and buccaneer boot covers. $24.99 Transylvanian Vampire Is your little prince already bitten by the bug? Toddler Boys Transylvanian Vampire Costume features an elegant looking vest and white shirt combination with a medallion and a detachable high collared vampire cape. $19.99 Lil Frankie Frankenstein Let your little monster become Frankenstein in this scary cute Lil Frankie Costume! Toddler Boys Lil Frankie Frankenstein Costume features a Frankenstein headpiece with soft sculptured bolts details, a plush patched pullover jacket with attached shirt and black pants with attached boot tops. $24.99

Costume Safety When putting the finishing touches on your costume be sure to take extra care that your costume’s accessories are safe for your child. In recent years, decorative contact lenses have become popular to wear during the Halloween season. Take note, these contact lenses, sold without a prescription, can be very dangerous to your vision and your eyes. Never buy contact lenses without a prescription, and contact your eye doctor if you must wear decorative contact lenses with your costume.

Photos by Ali Hibbard

Mehikye’ Harris dressed in High Seas Buccaneer Pirate.

Other costume safety guidelines include: Wear flame retardant costumes. Try on costumes before Halloween to allow time for altering. Hem your costumes so you don’t trip and fall. Apply reflective tape to your Halloween costumes.

Wear comfortable, practical shoes. Keep your costume and wig away from candles. Don’t carry fake swords, guns, knives or similar accessories that look authentic. Make sure they’re flexible and cannot harm anyone.

October 2012 savvy kids

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Halloween is one of my favorite holidays! Each year I eagerly await the first day of fall so I can start covering every inch of my house in pumpkins. I’ve also begun hosting pre-trick-or-treating parties in which I make edible Frankenstein fingers, popcorn balls, spider cookies and slime punch. I’m always looking for something new an exciting to add to the celebration. Here are a few ideas for hosting a frightfully fun Halloween party, direct from Pinterest. Find links to these ideas on our Pinterest page: savvykidsmag.

Monster Cake Take a round cake, add some frosting and cake balls and voila—monster cake! Well, it’s not actually that simple, but you would be surprised how quickly you can turn an ordinary boxed cake into a scary monster ready to be eaten. Find step-by-step instructions at

Veggie Skeleton I know Halloween is full of sweet treats, but let’s face it moms, we have to at least try to sneak something healthy in! Fresh cut veggies and dip strategically placed together make this cute skeleton that is sure to be irresistible for your partygoers. For directions, visit feedingfourlittlemonkeys.

Halloween Cookie Suckers Oreos may be “milk’s favorite cookie” but dip them in white chocolate and add some candy eyes and they are sure to be the favorite of your party guests as well! For step-bystep instructions and links to printable embellishments, visit

16 | savvy kids October 2012

Juice Box Mummies Add a little flash to the typical boxed juice drink by turning them into spooky mummies. Step-bystep instructions can be found at, along with many other fun and unique Halloween ideas.

Googly-Eyed Monster Mini Cupcakes I love things that look really complicated, but are actually really easy. These mini cupcakes are the perfect size for small hands and by just adding a some sprinkles and marshmallows, you can turn a basic cupcake into a funny Halloween treat. Find step-by-step instructions at

“The Kids Have to See Everything!” 

A field trip to the 2012 Arkansas State Fair is a one-of-a-kind educational experience for children!

Special Admission for Kids:

Coca-Cola Kiddie Days – October 15 & 19 Ages 6 and under can ride Kiddie Rides free from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Free gate admission for adults bringing kiddies. (Parking included.)

FFA/FCCLA, Scout Day and 4-H Day – October 20 $3 gate admission for FFA/FCCLA students, Scouts and 4-H members, sponsors and bus drivers.

Discount Group Rates Available

For more information call (501) 372-8341 or visit

October 19-21 and 26-31 6–9 pm

$7 per person (general admission) $15 all-inclusive armband

$1 off for members or advance purchases


.com October 2012 savvy kids

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Fall is here, and that means leaves crunching under little feet, mugs full of hot cocoa, and pumpkins galore! We’ve put together a list of some of the spookiest festivals and activities in the central Arkansas area. From harvest festivals to haunted hayrides, you’re sure to find a way to delight your little ghosts and goblins this October! The Haunted Evening Tour

September 14 - November 30: A popular attraction that introduces you to the ghostly side of Little Rock and North Little Rock. The tour will depart from the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History, purported to be one of the most haunted places in the South, every Friday night. Embark upon this “spirited” adventure as your guide reveals stories about some of the city’s most haunted locations. Learn about funeral customs of the 19th Century and how they relate to modern day beliefs. Admission is $40. For more information contact Linda Howell at 501-681-3857 or visit

Arkansas Urban Legends Haunted House

October 01 – 31: The Arkansas Urban Legends Haunted House will take place in the 300-600 blocks of Main Street in Sherwood. Week night hours are 7-11 p.m. and weekend hours are 7 p.m.-until. Admission is $10. For more information call 501-398-3327 or e-mail stoyne@

21st Annual Boo at the Zoo

October 01 – 31: Don’t miss the state’s largest Halloween festival. Boo at the Zoo is the perfect event for the entire family to enjoy safe, spooky fun. Check the website (littlrockzoo. com) for exact dates. For more information call 501-666-2406.

Spooky Cinema October 04, 11, 18, and 25: Every Thursday afternoon starting at 4:30 p.m. we will enjoy a different “spooky” movie. Call 501-928-3057 or visit to find out more.

Magic Screams at Magic Springs October 06 – 28: Magic Screams is an annual event inside Magic Springs, 1701 E. Grand Ave., Hot Springs, which includes daytime activities like painting pumpkins and costume contests, but at night things get downright spooky with haunted houses, a scare trail and more! Magic Screams takes place during the weekends in October. Regular admission prices apply. For more information, visit

74th Annual Arkansas State Fair

free. For more information, visit

“Spooky” at Laman Libarary

October 13: Come to the William F. Laman Public Library Children’s Department for the release of “Spooky”, the newest CD from Brian and Terri Kinder! Brian and Terri Kinder will perform songs from the new CD and children will be invited to dress in costume and receive special “fall” treats. The event will take place in the auditorium of the William F. Laman Public Library. Free and open to the public. For more information call 501-758-1720 or visit

Pooches & Pumpkins October 20: The Good Earth Garden Center’s Annual Pooches & Pumpkins event will be held from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. Everyone is welcome, including your furry pets! There will be many fall themed areas for family photo taking, a pet costume contest (so bring your pet in costume), a pumpkin carving contest (bring your entry with you), free hot dogs, popcorn, beverages, hayrides, balloons, face painting, live music, a fainting goat and much more! We will be adding new fun stuff too so watch our Facebook page for updates. We have invited local rescue groups too so maybe if you don’t have a pooch, you can meet one here at The Good Earth Garden Center. For more information contact Jennifer Gibson at 501-868-4666.

Costume Crunch

October 20: Costume Crunch time ALL DAY. Last minute costumes to be created. Call 501-9183057 or visit for more information.

Fall Shop & Save Sidewalk Sale October 20 – 21: Stop by The Promenade at Chenal for a weekend of great fall specials! For more information, visit

Boo!seum Bash October 25: Join us for games, crafts, door prizes, refreshments and loads of candy during the Boo!seum Bash at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center in Little Rock! This is a safe and fun event FREE for the entire family. You can also support the Arkansas Foodbank by bringing non-perishable items to donate for a chance to win great prizes! Admission is free. For more information, visit

CALS Pumpkin Carving October 27: Come join in on the fun of carving your own pumpkin starting at 2 p.m. Call 501-9183057 or visit for more information.

October 12 – 21: Arkansas’s largest entertainment event with free concerts, children’s shows, exciting attractions, educational exhibits, two nights of PBR Bullriding and over 50 food booths. Livestock shows with over 10,000 entries held throughout the 10-day event. A ten acre midway is filled with carnival rides, games and amusements, located at the Arkansas State Fair Complex, 2600 Howard St., Little Rock. Admission is $8 for adults, $4 for children and seniors age 60 and older. For more information, visit

Halloween Hayride

Terrifying Treats

October 29: Dive into fall with the Jacksonville Boys & Girls Club, 5 Municipal Dr., Jacksonville, from 6-8:30 p.m. Children age 5-12 are invited to the Community Center pool to take the plunge for a chance to win toys, Splash Zone passes and more. Register by calling Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Date, time, and location are subject to change. Admission is $5. For more information contact Marlo Jackson at 501-982-4171 or visit

October 12 and 26: Join us for a fun time in our Halloween Cooking Class starting at 4:30 p.m. where we will create edible horror creations. Call 501-918-3057 or visit to find out more.

HARVEST! Festival October 13 – 14: HARVEST! Festival celebrates the sights, sounds, and aromas of autumn in Arkansas and will take place at Wildwood Park for the Arts in Little Rock. HARVEST! kicked off with the Paws on the Pavement RunWILD 5K, and is home to Wildwood’s Arkansas Pickin’ & Fiddlin’ Championship, which provides a background of bluegrass music for hay rides, a hay fort, pumpkin patch, vendors of Arkansas homemade crafts and wares, a miniature railroad and garden railroad displays, an iron forging competition, a culinary competition, wholesome foods for purchase, and a variety of family arts activities, from making clay leaves to painting pumpkins. A special treat this year features Americana performances provided by Ballet Arkansas. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for children ages 6-12 and kids 5 and under are 18 | savvy kids October 2012

October 27 – 29: Experience a different kind of Halloween as we enjoy a fun filled evening hayride complete with a roaring campfire and treats at Pinnacle Mountain! Perhaps we’ll roast some ghosts (marshmallows)! Advance payment is required. Admission is $10 for adults, and $5 for children ages 6-12. For more information call 501-868-5806.

Boys & Girls Club Pumpkin Patch Plunge

Boo Bash October 30: Come shake a leg and wiggle your arms at our Boo Bash starting at 5:30 p.m. For more information call 501-918-3057 or visit

Halloword Festival October 31: Stop by the Agape Church, 701 Napa Valley Dr., Little Rock, for the Halloword Festival from 6-8 p.m. The free event will include games, activities, candy, meals and concessions, and much more! For more information, visit

A neighborhood shop for all ages!

in Central Arkansas BoBrook Farms 13810 Combee Lane, Roland 501-519-5666 Admission: $6 Activities: Pumpkin patch, hayride, corn pit, hay maze, farm zoo. Garner Homestead Family Farm 1376 Lonsdale Cutoff Rd., Lonsdale 501-463-0510 Admission: $6 Activities: Pumpkin Patch, corn maze, petting zoo, nature trail, playground, hayride, and picnic area. Johnston Pumpkin Farm 31 Rocky Rd., Greenbriar 501-679-5078 Admission: Varies Activities: Pumpkin patch, hay rides, farm animals, country store, and play area. Mary’s Place 3705 Hwy. 5 N, Bryant 501-847-3900 Admission: Varies Activities: Pumpkin patch, tractor-pulled hay rides, gift shop, refreshments, picnic area, farm animals, and train rides. Mimo’s Pumpkin Patch 12490Hwy. 31 N, Ward 501-681-8313 Admission: Varies Activities: Pumpkin patch, gift shop, petting zoo, farm animals, birthday parties, and school tours. Motley’s Pumpkin Patch 13724 Sandy Ann Dr., Little Rock 501-888-1129 Admission: $8 Activities: Pumpkin patch and Christmas tree farm. Tractor-drawn hayride, twisty slides, farm animals, wagon rides, pig races and Halloween decorations.

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Peebles Farm Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze 76 Woodruff 249 Rd., Augusta 870-919-6162 Admission: $8 Activities: 20 acre corn maze, 10 acre u-pick pumpkin patch, 3 acres of sunflowers, farm animals, play area, concessions, general store and picnic area.

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Schaefer Corn Maze 863 Lollie Rd., Mayflower 501-269-7903 Admission: Varies Activities: Concession stand, picnic area, corn pit, tricycle corral, straw tunnels, horse shoes, hay bales to climb, sack races. Schaefers & Collins Pumpkin Patch 862 Lollie Rd., Mayflower 501-470-3127 Admission: $5 Activities: Pumpkin farm, hay rides, hay tunnels, sandbox, swings, slides, concessions. Scott Pumpkin Patch 501 Morris Rd., North Little Rock 501-920-2901 Admission: $8 Activities: Barnyard nursery, kid’s maze, playground, pig races, hay rides, concessions and petting zoo.

(501) 661-1167

BoBrook Farms

Pumpkin Patch and Sunflower Maze M a ze e l a b y Ha

H ay P y ram id

Farm Animals

e H ay R id

C or n P it

Come and visit our 235 acre real working farm

Patch Admission $6

Under 2 free

Visit or like us on facebook 501-519-5666 13810 Combee Lane Roland, AR  72135

October 2012 savvy kids

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How to Slay Scary Monsters

(and Other Childhood Fears) By Heidi Smith Luedtke, Ph.D.

“Mom. Come here, now,” my three-year old whispers urgently as he pulls me toward the yard. “Red eyes,” he says, shivering with fear. “Red eyes.” My son believes we have a monster downstairs, but only at night when we are upstairs. Other monsters live in bushes at the back of our yard, where they feast on stray baseballs and Frisbees. That is why he is worried now. I am called in to retrieve the ball he has lost. I grab the ball and run back to him as if I’ve narrowly escaped. “Monsters are just pretend,” I say.

A Big, Scary World

As their understanding of the world increases, so do kids’ fears. Infants may be fearful of separation or loud noises, and those fears stick with kids into the toddler years. But as their experiences and imaginations grow, toddlers may also develop fears of animals and insects (dogs, snakes, spiders), characters in costumes (beware Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny), and things that lurk in the dark (ghosts and monsters, bad guys and robbers). They may also fear they’ll be sucked down the toilet or the bathtub drain, despite your constant reassurance that they won’t. School-aged kids may get over their fear of the boogeyman but grow anxious about social disapproval and failure. “Anxious thinking – for all of us – is notoriously distorted, exaggerated, and unreliable,” notes Dr. Tamar Chansky, psychologist and author of Freeing Your Child from Anxiety: Powerful, Practical Solutions to Overcome Your Child’s Fears, Worries, and Phobias. But don’t dismiss your child’s fears as childish or irrational. Confronting even the silliest scary scenarios helps kids learn to deal with real-life woes and worries. When your daughter shrieks and clings to your leg because the neighbor’s border collie bounces her way, embrace the teachable moment. Parents can help kids confront fears so they don’t grow bigger and scarier.

Fight Fears Together

Respect feelings. Fear feels uncomfortable. Your child’s heart is racing, 20 | savvy kids October 2012

her palms are sweaty, and she wants to escape to safety. Be her ally and accept her anxiety. If she isn’t ready pet the snake at the zoo or sleep without a night light, don’t push it. Word up. Kids can’t always express what scares them, especially when the body’s fear response is energizing them to fight or flee. Help your child identify specific concerns using age-appropriate words. Ask “what is it about the dog that worries you?” or “what might happen when the lights are off?” You can’t devise monster-slaying strategies if you don’t know the enemy. Do reconnaissance. Fear festers when our imaginations get the best of us. The more your child learns about the feared situation, the less powerful his imaginary thoughts will be. Hold hands while you both check the basement for monsters. Go online and read about snakes together. Pretend you are engineers studying how self-flushing toilets work. Knowledge is power. Talk back. Encourage your child to argue against the frightening thoughts or to repeat a calming phrase such as “I am fast and strong. Ghosts can’t catch me!” Talking back shrinks scary thoughts. Dr. Susan Mather recalls that her son was sure there were monsters under the bed and in the closet. “We put a sign on the door that read ‘Monsters KEEP OUT’ and they obeyed!” she says. Baby steps. “The best way to face a fear is a little at a time, from a safe distance,” says marriage, family and child therapist H. Norman Wright, author of Helping Your Kids Deal with Anger, Fear, and Sadness. Face a fear of heights by imagining the scary situation first. Then, move on to climbing a low structure, followed by a taller one, and so on. Give high-fives as kids conquer each challenge. Be there. Kids need to know you’ll stick with them when they face their fears. Contiued on page 22

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Contiued on page 22 Don’t let your own distress or embarrassment cause you to shut down or disappear. “Research indicates it takes about 20 minutes for the anxiety to subside when a fear is confronted,” Wright says. Work toward this goal with your child.

Be Afraid, But Not Too Afraid

Fear is essential for survival – it helps us to escape dangerous situations. But if your child’s fears keep her from engaging in everyday activities, it may be time to seek professional help. Some kids’ fear

systems are much more sensitive than others. Anxious kids may be trapped in a whirlwind of fearful thoughts, and paralyzed by nagging “what ifs.” According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, thirteen percent of children are affected by anxiety disorders, which include phobias, panic disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Talk with your pediatrician or school psychologist if your child’s fears are overwhelming you both. Heidi Smith Luedtke is a personality psychologist and mom of two kids who believe in zombies and fear flushing toilets. She shares psychology lessons for life at


It is no accident that most children’s books and movies have villains. Vicarious scares allow kids to practice coping from a safe emotional distance. These books confront kids’ fears head-on without keeping them up at night with please-check-what’s-in-my-closet concerns.

Story and Picture Books Junie B. Jones Has a Monster Under Her Bed (1997) by Barbara Park. Junie scares away an invisible under-bed monster using an ugly school picture of herself as a weapon.

A Not Scary Story About Big Scary Things (2010) by C.K. Williams. A growling monster begs a brave boy to believe in him in this silly story.

On A Scary Scary Night (Can You See What I See?; 2008) by Walter Wick. Search for objects in spooky scenes with your child to encourage conversation about scary subjects.

Wemberly Worried (2000), by Kevin Henkes. Anxious kids will recognize themselves in Wemberly, a shy white mouse with lots of worries.

What Was I Scared Of? A Glow-in-the Dark Encounter (2009) by Dr. Seuss. The narrator of this delightful classic is terrorized by an empty pair of pants that is equally scared of the narrator.

Self-help For ages 6-12: What to Do When You Worry Too Much: A Kid’s Guide to Overcoming Anxiety (2005) by Dawn Huebner. This book educates and inspires kids to confront their anxieties with proven cognitive-behavioral techniques. For ages 9-13: What to Do When You’re Scared and Worried: A Guide for Kids (2004) by James J. Crist. Kids learn practical Fear Chasing and Worry Erasing strategies and find out when to seek expert help for more serious anxiety disorders. 22 | savvy kids October 2012

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Twice as Nice P a r e n t i n g By Meredith Martin-Moats

“Is there a baby in there?” I asked impatiently. It was my first ultra-sound and I was waiting for the technician to confirm this welcome surprise of a pregnancy. Her silence was unnerving. “Yes, there is definitely a baby in there,” she answered. “But hold on just one . . .” her voice punctuating the word “one” and trailing off as she moved the stethoscope around my belly. My husband, watching the screen intently, shifted his weight, uncrossed his legs, sat up a bit straighter in his seat. “Um, there’s actually twooo babies,” she said, clearly anticipating our surprise. Afraid to gaze up at the screen until that point, I whipped my head around. And there they were: a set of alien-looking tadpoles, side by side, heads pressed close together, floating together in a big sea of amniotic fluid. I cried and laughed; feeling joyful and a wee bit terrified. If you feel like you’re seeing more twins these days, you’re right. Twin pregnancy is becoming increasingly common due, in part, to the increased use of fertility drugs and women waiting later to have children. In fact, twin pregnancy accounts for approximately one in every thirty-two pregnancies compared to every one in 65 in 1980. Thanks to medical advancements and increased in-utero monitoring, carrying and delivering multiples is not necessary the high-risk event it once was. Unlike our mother’s generation, routine use of ultrasounds have made it virtually unheard of for a woman to deliver twins without being aware she’s carrying multiples. While nothing can truly prepare a parent for the insanity of two infants, at least they no longer show up completely unexpected. It’s been over three years since I first saw those little tadpoles on the screen, identical twin boys we named George and Elijah. As they grow older and explore the world, filled with questions and curiosity, I remain in awe of these two small people who share almost everything. Forming a bond with one another that confounds even their closest caregivers, twins captivate the cultural imagination and draw attention to themselves (it’s hard to push a double stroller inconspicuously) leading random strangers to stop twin parents on the street and ask questions ranging from the harmless “Are they identical?” to the boundary-crossing, “Are they natural?” But it’s not just the larger populace that has questions. New parents find 24 | savvy kids October 2012

M u l t i p l e s

themselves pondering unique situations word-of-mouth advice and traditional baby books seldom address. Twin pregnancy and delivery gets a good bit of ink these days, especially information about pregnancy and delivery. Yes, it’s possible to carry twins to term. And yes, many women deliver twins naturally. But for many twin parents, the real questions come once the miracles are out of the womb and they’re faced with dilemmas that aren’t covered in that big pile of What to Expect When You’re Expecting-style books. Questions such as, “How exactly does one person nurse two floppy-headed infants at the same time?” Or, “Is it possible to push a double stroller and a grocery cart with each hand,” you may ask. There’s the heart wrenching questions like, “If both babies are screaming at the same time whom do I tend to first and how do I deal with the guilt of making choices like this on a daily basis?” In a sleep-deprived haze you may even begin to contemplate largely existential questions like, “What exactly is sleep and, if it is real, will I ever experience it again?” I sought out the expertise of a few members of the local Mother’s of Multiples group, asking how they survived the infant stage, the two babies walking and putting things they shouldn’t in their mouth at the same time stage, and the dual terrible-twos tantrum stage. Here are a few stories and words of wisdom for those expecting multiples as well as for their friends and family who play an instrumental role during the crazy chaotic days of life with young twins.

Reese and Riley Melissa Hoffmans was around seven weeks pregnant when she went in for her first ultrasound. When her doctor asked if twins ran in her family the thought was so far removed from her mind that she didn’t catch on. “However, when he turned to my husband and asked the same question, she says, “My husband gave him a strange look and said, “No, why?” THAT’S when my heart began racing. I could tell by the look on my husband’s face that something was up. Today Melissa’s twins, identical girls Reese and Riley, are eight months old. “Having two is amazing,” she laughs. “It’s double the hugs.” With these being her only children, it’s hard to gage, she says, how it would be different with only one. “I don’t know any difference,” she explains. Like Continued on page 26

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Department of Human Services Division of Child Care and Early Childhood Education • 1-800-445-3316 Matching a Child Care Facility to Your Child’s Unique Needs Matching a child care setting to your child’s individual strengths and needs is key to having a successful child care experience. Each child has certain personality characteristics that should be considered when selecting child care. Different types of programs appeal to different personality needs. Visit our website and access a wealth of information on finding the right child care setting for your child. October 2012 savvy kids

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Twice as Nice

Continued from page 24

all twin parents, those first few weeks after coming home were difficult, especially the sleep deprivation. As you’re providing care for the newborns, you may forget yourself and your own nutritional needs, or simply not have the time or opportunity to prepare or eat food, she notes. In the case of multiples, the question becomes “Are you getting proper care?” After her husband, a local business owner had no choice but to go back to work, the Hoffmans sought out the help of a twin specialist who came to live with them and help get the babies on a similar schedule, which eventually helped the newborns (and the parents) sleep for longer stretches of time. The twin specialist, Hoffman explains, was recommended via word of mouth, and it was a lifesaver for the family. For parents who don’t have access to a twin specialist, the help of friends and family can make all the difference. Even if the mother is exclusively breastfeeding, volunteers can stay for a few hours at a time, offering to let the mother take a nap or shower, which can be a sanity savor for someone who hasn’t slept, or eaten, in days. For those who don’t feel comfortable caring for newborns, friends can offer to clean the kitchen, do laundry or provide prepared healthy meals, all of which can greatly help the mother who, as Hoffman noted, will, in those first few weeks, be consumed with simply feeding the babies.

Luke and Calla Martha Lurcher is the mother of 22-month-old boy-girl twins Luke and Calla who are quickly making their way into the fast-paced days of toddlerhood. At around eighteen months, says Lurcher, their speech “took off” and they chat endlessly with one another. She’s unsure if they always understand one another, but she’s certain that their mixture of gestures, words, and laughter is an essential part of their budding communication. They want to be involved in everything, she says, including unloading the dishwasher, watching the garbage truck pick up trash, and mimicking the animal sounds of every creature they encounter. As every twin parent notes, watching twins interact is a truly magical experience, that only becomes more amazing as their vocabulary and conversations grow. What can be a bit less magical is keeping up with two toddlers like tornados heading in opposite directions. Even during infancy, after a few months most parents of multiples attempt venture out of the house for groceries. Yet doing so requires a good bit of forethought and strategy. As Lurcher points out, there’s no such thing as placing your baby on your hip and running in the store. Many mothers of infant twins swear by snap in strollers that allow you to move the baby seat straight from the car to the stroller. For toddlers, double strollers remain essential, as they provide a way to keep your children from harming themselves and the store. Such 26 | savvy kids October 2012

doublewide devices, however, can be pricy and often require special orders. Lurcher suggests checking out the Mothers of Multiples sales where parents buy great used twin gear, as well as checking out ebay and Craig’s List. The other dilemma is getting doublewide strollers through the doors, making those local, hole-in-the wall stores virtually off limits. When all else fails with babies, you can put one in a single stroller and wear the other in a sling or baby carrier. Not the easiest thing to do, but it works. My twins are three now, and one of their favorite phrases is “I do it by myself.” They still need me, of course (“I do it myself” is the phrase that usually proceeds the making of a huge mess), but they’re no longer two floppy-headed infants that seem to have more needs than my two hands are capable of meeting. Now they entertain one another while I sit back and watch (and clean up afterwards). Twin infancy and toddlerhood, I can see now, goes by in a flash. But it doesn’t feel that way while you’re in it. It’s magical and it’s, sometimes, really, really hard, especially if you’re trying to go it alone. If you’re a twin parent, or know someone who is, there are numerous and diverse resources out there that can help you meet the challenges of multiples, including the special needs of twin pregnancy, childbirth, nursing, or raising infants. Visit to see a list of resources, both local and national, and while you’re there please take a moment to share your own stories about raising twins! If you’re a friend of a twin parent, take a few moments to bring over a casserole, take the dog for a walk, or rock a baby (or two) while the parents take a power nap. You could be just the lifesaver they need.

Reese and Riley

Baptist Health Family Clinic-West The comprehensive care from Baptist Health — right in your neighborhood Our newest Family Clinic is now open at the corner of Highway 10 and Chenonceau in Chenal Valley. From pediatrics to geriatrics, Baptist Health Family Clinic-West and Dr. Christopher Pittman are dedicated to serving the healthcare needs of this community. Preventive screenings and wellness exams are a big part of keeping your family healthy. Call today to schedule an appointment.

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Parent Involvement is Linked to Student Performance

If you want your child to get better grades and test scores, then getting more involved in your child’s education can make a big difference. Studies indicate that parent involvement is key to student performance. Children of less involved parents typically have less positive academic outcomes. So be sure to attend parent-teacher conferences this month.

LRSD Parent-Teacher Conference Day Monday, October 22 (Students Out)

NEW! Homework Hotline

This fall LRSD will be launching a new homework assistance program on LRSD-TV. The program will focus on Common Core math concepts with bonus literacy segments.

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Protecting your child’s

VISION By Emily Griffin

Healthy eyes and vision are a critical part of kids’ development. Their eyes should be examined regularly, as many vision problems and eye diseases can be detected and treated early. According to Dr. Derek Long of Maumelle Eye Care (115 Audubon Dr., Maumelle; 501-8033937), your child should receive their first comprehensive eye exam by the age of one. During that first exam, the doctor will be looking to see if your child’s eyes are pointing straight, and to see if there is a significant difference in the prescription of each eye. If your child has not had an eye exam some things Dr. Long suggests parents watch for include eye turn (lazy eye), squinting while watching television or reading, constant eye rubbing. These are common signs your child needs a comprehensive eye exam. Dr. Long also said many parents are concerned that allowing their children to sit too closely to a television could cause vision problems. That’s 28 | savvy kids October 2012

not true; however, this can cause eye strain which will lead to headaches. If your child has frequent headaches, one a day or once a week even, you should schedule an eye exam. A comprehensive eye exam will determine if your child is suffering from eye strain, which can be easily treated, or if it is something more severe, like a neurological issue.

Why are comprehensive eye exams important? “School screenings are an excellent tool to catch the majority of students with poor vision, but still some will slip through,” Dr. Long said. “An eye exam is much more thorough.” Comprehensive eye exams are necessary to detect problems that a simple screening can miss, such as eye coordination, moderate amounts of farsightedness and astigmatism. Vision screening programs are intended to help identify children with eye or vision problems that threaten sight or impair their ability to develop and learn normally. However, vision screenings are a limited process and cannot be used to diagnose an eye or vision problem, but rather to indicate a

potential need for further evaluation. A child may be able to see letters 20 feet away but that does not tell whether his eyes are able to work together to read materials 12 inches away, or if there is an eye health problem or vision perception problem. According to a report from the American Optometric Association, less than 50% of the children identified as needing professional eye and vision care ever receive that care, and of those who do, the average time between the screening and the examination is 18 months. According to A Report of Vision Screenings in Arkansas Public and Charter Schools from the Arkansas Department of Education/Arkansas Department of Health School-Age Eye and Vision Commission, children in Arkansas schools who have failed their school screening are not getting the recommended comprehensive eye exams by an eye care professional. It’s never too late to schedule a comprehensive eye exam for your child, and early detection is the best way to prevent vision problems down the road.

Don’t delay scheduling your child’s exam. Go to to find a local optometrist.

Arkansas Optometric Association | 411 S. Victory Street, Suite 206, Little Rock, AR 72201 Phone: 501-661-7675 | Email: October 2012 savvy kids

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Vision Therapy By Emily Griffin

When you read the term “vision therapy,” your brain throws up a question mark. Many people have never heard of vision therapy or even know what it is. However, vision therapy can be extremely beneficial to improving vision, and has changed many lives through the process. To learn more, we talked to Dr. Justin Franks at the EyeCare Center of Saline County (3401 Hwy. 5 N., Bryant; 501-847-9797). Below is what we learned. Did you know that 80% of learning is visual? Many parents rely on vision screenings in school to check for eye problems, but that isn’t enough. Screenings aren’t always accurate and even when they are performed perfectly, they do not evaluate the entire visual system. Seeing 20/20 is just part of the picture. The entire visual system must work together for successful learning. The main skills are: Saccades (directing both eyes at the same object at the same time), Pursuits (following an object as it moves), Accommodation (focusing flexiblity from switching from near to far or far to near and maintaining focus at near), and Perceptual (skills and comprehension), which are needed for efficient learning. If any of these skills is not developed the child may have difficulty learning. Studies indicate that 60% of children identified as “problem learners” actually suffer from undetected vision problems. According to the American Optometric Association’s American Eye-Q® survey, only 39% of adults understand that behavioral problems can be an indication of vision problems. The symptoms of ADD and ADHD are very similar to visual problems. Therefore, alot of children are misdiagnosed. It is very important in the evaluation of ADD and ADHD to have a comprehensive visual workup to rule out visual problems.

VISION THERAPY The human visual system is complex. The problems that can develop in our visual system 30 | savvy kids October 2012

require a variety of treatment options. Many visual conditions can be treated effectively with spectacles or contact lenses alone; however, some are most effectively treated with vision therapy. Vision therapy is a sequence of activities individually prescribed and monitored by the doctor to develop efficient visual skills and processing. It is prescribed after a comprehensive eye examination has been performed and has indicated that vision therapy is an appropriate treatment option. The vision therapy program is based on the results of standardized tests, the needs of the patient, and the patient’s signs and symptoms. The use of lenses, prisms, filters, occluders, specialized instruments, and computer programs is an integral part of vision therapy.

automatic, enabling individuals to achieve their full potential. The goals of a prescribed vision therapy treatment regimen are to achieve desired visual outcomes, alleviate the signs and symptoms, meet the patient’s needs, and improve the patient’s quality of life. While Dr. Franks is not the only eye doctor in Arkansas who offers vision therapy, much of The EyeCare Center of Saline County is devoted to pediatric eye care. “From routine exams to treatment of eye infections and injury, we are prepared to take excellent care of children,” he said. The American Optometric Association contributed to this story.

Vision therapy is administered in the office under the guidance of the doctor. It requires a number of office visits and depending on the severity of the diagnosed conditions, the length of the program typically ranges from several weeks to several months. Activities paralleling in-office techniques are typically taught to the patient to be practiced at home to reinforce the developing visual skills. Research has demonstrated vision therapy can be an effective treatment option for: • Ocular motility dysfunctions (eye movement disorders) • Non-strabismic binocular disorders (inefficient eye teaming) • Strabismus (misalignment of the eyes) • Amblyopia (poorly developed vision) • Accommodative disorders (focusing problems) • Visual information processing disorders, including visual-motor integration and integration with other sensory modalities Vision therapy is prescribed to treat diagnosed conditions of the visual system. Effective therapy requires visual skills to be developed until they are integrated with other systems and become Photo by Brian Chilson

we Believe your suCCess stArts with your vision

NORTH AMERICA’S PREMIER NETWORK OF PRIVATE PRACTICE OPTOMETRISTS Keeping your eyes healthy and your vision the best it can be is the mission of each and every independent optometrist in the Vision Source network. Member doctors have been recognized as adhering to the highest standards of optometric care by Vision Source, providing each patient with: ArkAdelphiA Dr. Tifton Covington Dr. Marc Carozza Vision Source Arkadelphia 2915 Cypress, Ste. B 870-246-5090

CAmden Dr. Audie Teague Dr. Kristen Thompson Teague Eye Care Center 1421 Country Club Road 870-836-7319

BAtesville Dr. Sam Cooke Sam Cooke, O.D. 2402 Harrison Street 870-793-4681

CAve City Dr. Sam Cooke Sam D. Cooke, O.D. 301 Main Street, Ste. D 870-283-7500

BellA vistA Dr. William Yoos Dr. William Yoos EyeCare and Optical 2692 Bella Vista Way 479-876-2020

Centerton Dr. Skye Petty Dr. Megan Petty Petty & Petty 101 Dawn Drive 479-795-1411

Benton Dr. Russell Simmons Dr. Creighton Simmons Dr. Jennifer Conrad, O.D. Dr. Steele Zierlein, O.D. Simmons Eye Care Clinic The Vision Source 113 West Carpenter 501-778-2363

Corning Dr. Samuel Erwin Erwin Eye Clinic 609 N. Missouri Avenue 870-857-6556

Bentonville Dr. Derrick Pierce Bentonville Eye Care, 800 S.E. Walton Blvd., Ste. 12 479-268-3268

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Fort smith Dr. Adam Schluterman Adam Schulterman, O.D. 9220 Highway 71 S., Ste. 10 479-646-2555

little roCk Dr. Rick Meador Dr. Roger Neal Family Eye Clinic 15424 Arch Street 501-888-7533

north little roCk Dr. Rick Meador Dr. Roger Neal Family Eye Clinic 2524 Crestwood Road 501-758-3050

hope Dr. William Coffee Hope Vision 405 W. 16th 870-777-3443

mAlvern Dr. Thomas Justus Justus Vision Center 1023 South Main 501-332-6262

deQueen Dr. Wallace Liles Dr. Wally Liles III Liles Vision Clinic DeQueen 404 D East Collin Raye Dr. 870-642-6900

hot springs Dr. Dale Burroughs Burroughs Eye Clinic 305 Section Line Road 501-525-2222

mAumelle Dr. Derrick Long Maumelle Eye Care 115 Audubon Drive, Ste. 8 501-803-3937

presCott Dr. Audie Teague Dr. Kristen Thompson Teague Eye Clinic 204 E. Second 870-887-3596

Dr. Annette Webb Webb Eye Care Associates 1540 Airport Road, Ste. C 501-318-2020

FAyetteville Dr. Nick Banks Banks Family Eyecare 2901 E. Zion Road, Ste. 4 479-443-2025

Dr. Russell Simmons C & R Eye Group 4328 Central Avenue, Ste. G 501-525-1348

menA Dr. Wallace Liles Dr. Wally Liles III Liles Vision Clinic in Mena 703 J Highway 71 North 479-394-4215

FordyCe Dr. Harry Denison Harry Denison, O.D. 312 Spring Street 870-352-2167

JonesBoro Dr. Matthew Hoffman Dr. Courtney Hoffman Visionary Eye Care 800 Professional Acres Dr. 870-972-5540

ConwAy Dr. Susan DeBlack DeBlack Eye Care Center 4150 Tyler Street, Ste. 1 501-329-7878 Dr. William Patterson Patterson Eye Care 2505 Donaghey Avenue, Ste. 102 501-450-9900 dermott Dr. Robert Smalling Dermott Vision Source 101 W. Petticord 870-538-3419

montiCello Dr. James Price Dr. Scott Claycomb Specialty Eyecare of South Arkansas Your Vision Source 301 Highway 425 South 870-367-8534

rogers Dr. David Witherspoon Dr. Deanne Witherspoon David and DeAnne Witherspoon Optometry 5212 Village Pkwy., Ste. 6 479-464-9702 seArCy Dr. Finis Bailey Bailey Vision Clinic, Ltd. 2033 East Race Avenue 501-268-1400 springdAle Dr. Philip Brandon Dr. Jill Robertson Dr. Belinda Starkey Brandon Eye Clinic 1600 W. Sunset 479-756-1234

stuttgArt Dr. Stefan Calloway Calloway Eye Care Center 713 S. Main 870-673-8529 vAn Buren Dr. Denise Hill Hill Vision Center, Inc. 2411 Fayetteville Road, Ste. G 479-262-2080 wAldron Dr. Wallace Liles Dr. Wally Liles III Liles Vision Clinic in Waldron 72 West 2nd Street 479-637-5598 wArren Dr. Robert Smalling Dermott and Warren Vision Source! 119 North Main 870-226-6731 wynne Dr. Becca Jackson, O.D. Childers and Jackson Family Eye Care 618 Julia Avenue E 870-238-2020

October 2012 savvy kids

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Amblyopia One of the most common vision disorders among children. Dr. Julie Dolven with James Eye Care (17711 Chenal Parkway, Little Rock; 501-687-0826) shared with us some important information on a vision disorder called Amblyopia, one of the most common vision disorders seen among children. Amblyopia, or “lazy eye,” is the loss or lack of development of vision in an eye that is unrelated to any eye health problem. The brain, for some reason, does not acknowledge the images seen by the amblyopic eye. Reduced vision due to amblyopia is not correctable with lenses alone. “Basically the connection that is formed between the eye and the brain is stronger in one eye than the other,” Dr. Dolven explained. It is estimated that two to four percent of children have amblyopia. Dr. Dolven breaks down amblyopia further below. What causes amblyopia? Amblyopia usually results from a failure to use both eyes together. It can be caused by

the presence of strabismus (crossed-eyes), unequal refractive error (farsightedness or nearsightedness), or a physical obstruction of vision (cataract).If there is a large enough difference in the degree of nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism between the two eyes, or if the eyes are crossed, the brain learns to ignore one image in favor of the other. Normally the images sent by each eye to the brain are identical; when they differ, double vision occurs. To compensate for the double vision, the brain learns to ignore the images of one eye. The amblyopic eye is never blind as amblyopia affects only the central vision. What are the signs/symptoms of amblyopia? Amblyopia usually produces few symptoms. It may be accompanied by crossed-eyes or a large difference in the refractive error between the two eyes. A child may also exhibit noticeable favoring of one eye and may have a tendency to bump into

Meet Tru

Tru, was our early reader and seemed to see just fine, so when the pediatrician said he failed the eye exam, I was shocked. When she recommended that he be seen by an optometrist, it was a no-brainer who to call--Dr. James is married to one of my life-long best friends. (And it’s more than nepotism, he’s also really good at what he does). I made the appointment, took Tru in, and, honestly, expected Brent to say that everything looked great. But he didn’t. Tru’s eyesight was reeeaaaalllyyyy bad. We got a prescription for glasses and thought we were on the right track. When we came back for a couple of follow up visits, we discovered that even while wearing the glasses, his vision wasn’t improving. I don’t mean he wasn’t at 20/20, I mean he was still struggling to see more than the big E on the chart. The glasses weren’t working. Because of this, and because his eyes were showing the early stages of keratoconus (coning of the corneas), Dr. James decided that hard contacts were our best shot at training his eyes and his brain. You need a full year to do that, and the window closes somewhere between the ages of 9 and 10. Tru had just turned 8, so we didn’t have a moment to waste. 32 | savvy kids October 2012

objects on one side. How is amblyopia diagnosed? A comprehensive optometric examination can determine the presence of amblyopia. The earlier it is diagnosed, the greater the chance for a successful treatment. Since amblyopia occurs only in one eye, the good eye takes over and the individual is generally unaware of the condition. That is why it is important to have your child’s vision examined at about six months, at age three and again before he or she enters school. How is amblyopia treated? Corrective lenses, prisms and/or contact lenses are often used to treat amblyopia. Covering or occluding the better eye, either parttime or full-time, may be used to stimulate vision in the amblyopic eye. In addition, a program of vision therapy may be prescribed to help improve vision function.

Written in first person by Rachel Bass

Thankfully(?) life didn’t slow down enough for me to dwell on his eye crisis, but I still found myself fluctuating between relief that we had caught it and sadness that his eyes weren’t okay and fear that they wouldn’t get better. Mostly, though, I felt peace because I knew we were in good hands. In March, Dr. James’ partner, Dr. Dolven, took over our case because she has a great record with contacts and kids. Bless her heart--Tru was afraid of eye drops, so contacts seemed impossible. It took over an hour to get just one contact in, and the screaming and fighting and, well, screaming scarred me and my husband and most of the kind people at James Eye Care that day. Dr. Dolven was amazing, though, and never gave up on Tru or us. We have since adjusted to the contact life. What used to be an hour long in and an hour long out process is now accomplished in under a minute. We hadn’t intended on telling Tru the severity of his eye problems, but explaining it actually helped him understand why we were “torturing” him.

Tru’s vision has steadily improved and we are seeing him read smaller and smaller letters on the chart each time. Contacts will be an everyday part of his life forever, but it’s a small price to pay considering it means he can see.

OptOmetric oPPortUnities

helping you see eye-to-eye With your doctor Visit Us at any of our six locations in central arkansas Benton eyecare clinic 443 Hwy. 5 North 501-778-2020 David B. Glenn, O.D.

Bryant eyecare clinic 2900 Horizon Drive, Ste. 15 501-653-2020 Bryan G. Armstrong, O.D.

Morgan Vision clinic (caBot) 215 West Main Street 501-605-0905 Jessica L. Dinwiddie, O.D.

little rock FaMily eyecare 424 North University Avenue, Ste. 5 501-663-1131 Katie L. Johnson, O.D.

arkansas FaMily eyecare oF searcy 1225 West Beebe Capps Expressway 501-268-5808 Amanda D. Crum, O.D.

sheridan eyecare clinic 201 West Holly Street 870-942-3621 Jamie B. Johnson, O.D.

11225 huron lane, suite 200a • little rock P (501) 225-9944 • F (501) 225-9933 October 2012 savvy kids

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ThE EyE DoCTor

We care about your vision so you can see your future!

Frames, Lenses & Exams For $99 Call Now 501-833-8300 Select frameS and Single viSion lenSeS only

Finding the Right Frames If your child needs glasses, narrowing down the choices in available frames can seem a bit overwhelming. There are literally hundreds of frame styles on the market today. The experts at James Eye Care showed us some of the frames offered for children, and explained what types of frames would fit your child’s lifestyle, modeled by a few of their patients.

ETHan Easy Twist: light weight, flexible metal, ideal for very active children


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34 | savvy kids October 2012

Photos by Patrick Jones

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Your Child Needs A Complete eYe exAm BY Age 5 Most Insurance Companies Cover Eye Exams Make Your Family Appointment Today!

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Savvy Kids!! 80% of Learning is Obtained Through Vision... Make Sure Your Child’s Vision is at It’s Best. Eye problems affect 1 in every 4 school-aged kids. If your child is struggling to read or finding it difficult to remain on task, the cause may be an undetected vision problem. Eye exams for children are critical to rule out problems that can lead to eye strain, poor academic performance and vision loss. Give your child the confidence to be successful, schedule their eye exam today!

Dr. Derek S. Long Maumelle Eye Care 115 Audubon Drive Maumelle, AR 501.803.EYES (3937)

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October 2012 savvy kids

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Establishing a Lifetime of Healthy Vision for Infants Information Courtesy of the Arkansas Optometric Association

Cooing, sitting up and crawling are signs that a baby is growing. A baby’s vision has stages of development too, but usually there are no signs to mark the progress. In an effort to encourage infant eye and vision assessments and to ensure they are accessible to everyone, Optometry Cares® - The American Optometric Association Foundation and Vistakon®, Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc. created InfantSEE® a no-cost public health program developed to provide professional eye care for infants nationwide. Through InfantSEE®, optometrists provide a one-time, comprehensive eye and vision assessment to infants between the ages of 6 and 12 months, offering early detection of potential eye and vision problems at no cost regardless of income or access to insurance coverage. Since one in 10 infants in the U.S. have undetected vision problems, ranging from crossed eyes to cancer, the InfantSEE® program’s goals are to: • Identify and treat risk factors that may have adverse effects on eye and vision health. • Reduce the impact of eye and visual conditions that may lead to impairments and/or loss of sight, and may also affect the child’s social, emotional, and cognitive development. • Educate parents about the importance of eye care for their children. Because of the significant role vision plays in overall development, early identification and rapid response will minimize the long term impact of these visual conditions on development.

Saving Lives and Improving Quality of Life through Early Detection A new mom took her 8 month old daughter to the optometrist for her InfantSEE® eye health and vision assessment. She had learned about the program while she was pregnant, and remembered the program when her 36 | savvy kids October 2012

daughter turned seven months. She had no concerns, but simply wanted to make use of the no-cost program. During the assessment, the optometrist detected a white retinal mass, and referred her to a pediatric ophthalmologist where a retinoblastoma (eye cancer) diagnosis was confirmed. Her parents later chose to have their daughter’s eye removed. Five years later this baby is a healthy, cancer-free kindergartner. Another baby’s quality of life was vastly improved by an InfantSEE® assessment. This child’s parents and healthcare team were at a loss as to why the six month old was not achieving developmental milestones as she should. During the InfantSEE® assessment, it was determined that she had a significant prescription status that prevented her from engaging in visual activities at near distances. As a result of the early intervention, this toddler has made significant progress in catching up to the developmental milestones that she was previously missing. Her delays could have been much more profound had the vision problem been caught later on.

How to Find an InfantSEE® Provider The AOA recommends that infants have an InfantSEE® assessment before their first birthday and young children have comprehensive eye exams at age three, before starting school and then every two years thereafter. Parents may find more information and locate a provider in their area by visiting and clicking on the icon “Find a InfantSEE® Doctor” at the top of the page, entering a zip code and adjusting the search radius (1 to 100 miles). Those who do not have access to the internet may call toll-free 888-396-EYES (3937) to obtain a list of providers in their vicinity. InfantSEE, a public health program, managed by Optometry Cares – The AOA Foundation, is designed to ensure that eye and vision care becomes an integral part of infant wellness care to improve a child’s quality of life. Under this program, AOA optometrists provide a comprehensive eye and vision assessments for infants within the first year of life regardless of a family’s income or access to insurance coverage.

Come SEE What You’ve Been Missing!

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Full Service Adult & Pediatric Eye Care Most Medical & Vision Insurances Accepted CALL TODAY!

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October 2012 savvy kids

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Alternative Media Braille and Large Print By Hillary Welch-Kleck

You’ve most likely ran your finger along the series of raised dots adorning the elevator buttons, room numbers and signage in buildings around town. If you aren’t familiar with the Braille for the blind, the dots probably seem to be utter chaos and unorganized, or maybe like a foreign language. But the creator of the Braille code, Louis Braille of France, took three years to perfect the system of tactile letters before he published his first Braille book in 1829. And, he was only fifteen years old at the time! Since then, Braille codes were created for math, music and revised to gain efficiency and speed for readers. Today, many children and adults need an alternative form of print because of their sight level. Braille is used by those who are not able to see print letters because of blindness, as well as people who cannot read large print effectively because the size needed is too large for normal conditions. The American Printing House sets the standard “large print” typeface to be considered 18pt or larger, however those who need 28pt are candidates for Braille. There are several studies researching using large print instead of regular size typeface for all young sighted readers based on the idea that it increases reading comprehension, fluency, legibility and strength in literacy skills. However, alternative media is not limited to visual and tactile formats. Audio versions are becoming very popular now thanks to devices like iPods, tablets and a vast number of WiFi connections for fast digital downloads. Also, many children and adults are auditory learners. For them, audio books and text-to-speech services can be the most effective in obtaining information whether it be a story, news article or recipe. Audio is also used for interacting 38 | savvy kids October 2012

with devices. The most widely accepted accessibility service in technology is Apple’s VoiceOver capabilities. It can be used on any Apple device to hear menus, text and descriptive notes of visual images read aloud for access by visually impaired users. Advancements like this are changing the way blind and visually impaired people access the world, promoting more equal opportunities in education, socialization, entertainment, and employment. There are over 11 million people in the US diagnosed with visual impairments. Take a few moments to find out more about how visually impaired children and adults access visual information others see with their eyes. Here are a few local and online sources that the entire family can use to learn Braille, as well as understand more about living with low vision or blindness. Then, next time you come across that mess of raised dots, you’ll be able to make sense of it all! When the author, Hillary Welch Kleck, has free time she researches teaching techniques and ideas, as well as connection with other families of children with visual impairments, advocating for accessible services, and developing ideas for new technology, toys and other products for blind children. She is the President of Arkansas NAPVI—National Association of Parents of Children with Visual Impairments (, founder of National Audio Description for the Blind Campaign “Perceive the Movie”, including the local “Describe LITTLE ROCK” (Facebook page: Perveice the Movie & html), and owner of Sensory Sun Educational Technologies (www.sensorysun. com and


There are many ways to incorporate alternative media into your child’s life. Below are a few trusted resources. ONLINE: PBS Kids, Arthur - You’ve Got Braille ( American Foundation for the Blind, Braille Bug ( BOOKS: Braille for the Sighted (available on by S. Harold Collins, Jane Schneider and Kathy Kifer All Children Have Different Eyes ( by Edie Glaser, Dr. Maria Burgio, and Doina Paraschiv Seedlings Braille Books for Children ( A non-profit organization that sells high-quality, low-cost Braille books LOCAL: Arkansas NAPVI ( Organization for families of children with visual impairments

Experts believe 80% of a child’s learning is done through the eyes. Call or go online to schedule your child’s comprehensive eye exam today.

Arkansas Regional Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped ( instructions.html) Offers home access services and BARD online audio and braille book downloads 501.687.0826

TOYS: The Knowledge Tree in Little Rock has a wide variety of educational toys for children. Below are a few items that incorporate Braille. Lacing Buttons, 140 piece jar Big buttons with 1 to 5 holes made in bright colors. They include the number in relief and its braille representation. The set is completed with individual activity worksheets and 3.28 ft. long laces. 140 piece jar plus 10 laces. $27.99 Sign Language & Braille Learning Cards Learning sign language is an excellent cross-curricular communication skills for any child! Each of the cards features a letter, an illustration of a hand demonstrating the sign for that letter, and the braille dot pattern. The braille can be raised so that students can feel the letter! Each set includes twenty-six 6” x 9” cards per package. $8.99 Standards-Based Science Investigations, 8-1/2” x 11”, Grade 6 As they read about science, students develop content vocabulary and scientific fluency. By doing science experiments, students see science in action and gain a clearer understanding of scientific principles and properties. When they practice the inquiry process of scientific investigation, students get a peek at how scientists work, how they learn, discover, explain and modify the world around us. That’s the philosophy behind this series of books, reading, doing, and critical thinking. The language is clear, simple, and scientifically correct. The imaginative and effective lessons cover life, earth, and physical sciences. Helpful extras include science inquiry worksheets, an inquiry assessment rubric, and alignment to standards. For Grade 6, sample activities include recognizing biomes, distinguishing nekton and benthos, observing transpiration, reading with Braille, building tectonic plates, making fossil prints, examining rocks, measuring solar system distances, charting the phases of the moon, and working with kinetic energy. $17.99

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f ll has arrived

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October 2012 savvy kids

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One of a Kind:

Aedan By Emily Griffin

Every child is unique in their own way. Five-year-old Aedan Peel, however, is truly a one-of-a-kind. From the moment Aedan was born, his mother Stephanie Watts, knew there was something different about him. “He didn’t like to be held as a baby,” she recalled. Watts said Aedan missed milestones, but not by much. Because of that, doctors said he was just a little behind. She had to really push to get doctors to finally give a diagnosis. “I couldn’t get anyone to listen. It was very frustrating,” Watts said. Aedan was diagnosed with High Functioning Autism, and also an extremely rare chromosome disorder. “As of last year, he was the only one in the United States with a condition called Chromosome 15q 11.2 (233 kb) Microdeletion,” Watts said, adding that the actual name is much longer. Only seven other people in the world have been diagnosed with the disorder. You wouldn’t know that Aedan has autism or an extremely rare chromosome disorder by simply looking at him--he looks and acts like a typical child. He likes playing video games (it’s hard to find a 5-year-old boy who doesn’t like Lego Star Wars--Aedan’s favorite) and playing with dinosaurs. He just seems a little shy when you first meet him. Watts said he still doesn’t like to be touched and has occasional meltdowns. Once they had a diagnosis, Watts was able to get Aedan the help he needed. Aedan is now a student at Ascent in North Little Rock. Ascent Children’s

Health Services ( provides day treatment and outpatient services to children, adolescents, & even adults in certain clinic locations. We provide developmental, mental health, and medical therapies. These therapies consist of Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Speech Therapy, Cognitive Therapy, Mental Health & services to medically fragile children. Watts said Aedan is a much happier child now. He loves school and his therapists. She said the meltdowns have slowed down and that Aedan is advancing in many areas. Even Aedan’s therapists at Ascent said he is advancing quickly. I think the future looks bright for this one-of-a-kind kid.

Aedan and his family are involved with Walk Now for Autism Speaks, to be held on October 6. His team, Aedan’s Angels, are raising funds for the Autism Speaks organization. Walk Now for Autism Speaks is a fun-filled, family friendly event that raises money for autism research.

Aedan’s Angels 42 | savvy kids October 2012

Autism Speaks was founded in February 2005 by Bob and Suzanne Wright, grandparents of a child with autism. Their longtime friend Bernie Marcus donated $25 million to help financially launch the organization. Since then, Autism Speaks has grown into the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization, dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. For more information about Autism Speaks, visit

We Are BIG... For a lot of little reasons. A place where children with learning differences and developmental disabilities can grow and develop in an environment tailored to meet their unique needs.

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If your child has been diagnosed with a development disorder: Autism, Asperger syndrome, PDD, Down syndrome, Apraxia or other language disorders, or sensory integration issues, contact us today for more information or to schedule an evaluation for your child.

There’s a Way To reclaim your life. For more than 25 years, The BridgeWay has reconnected people with their families and communities by helping them overcome their emotional and addictive problems. In addition to being a leader in treating substance abuse, we also offer treatment for depression, anxiety and panic disorders, emotional difficulties, suicidal behavior and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Contact The BridgeWay today to learn how you can reclaim your life or help someone you love.

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Teaching children about special needs By Emily Griffin We’ve all been there. Standing in the checkout line when your four-year-old points and asks (in what seems like the loudest tone possible), “look mommy, his chair has wheels!” Turning beet red, you quickly hush your child and hope no one noticed. Children are naturally inquisitive. By talking with your children you can help them gain an understanding of those with varying special needs. Any child with a disability will tell you, they are just like you--they just have to go about doing certain things a little differently. In honor of Disability Awareness Month, we went to the experts for help. Dr. Deborah Elbaum with suggests the following tips for teaching your child about peers with special needs. Basic ideas to share with your child • No two people are the same -- some differences are just more noticeable. • A disability is only one characteristic of a person. People have many facets: likes and dislikes, strengths and challenges. • Children with disabilities are like all children in that they want friends, respect and to be included. • Children can be born disabled or become disabled from an accident or illness. You can’t “catch” a disability from someone else. • Just because someone has a physical disability (when a part or parts of the body do not work well) does not mean they necessarily have a cognitive (or thinking) disability. • Children with disabilities can do many of the things your child does, but it 44 | savvy kids October 2012

might take them longer. They may need assistance or adaptive equipment to help them. • Try to use clear, respectful language when talking about someone with disabilities. For a younger child, keep explanations simple, such as, “She uses a wheelchair because a part of her body does not work as well as it could.” • Reinforce with your child that name calling -- even if meant as a joke -- is always unacceptable as it hurts people’s feelings. Special needs at school While each child learns differently and at his or her own pace, children with disabilities may need extra school support or accommodations. Many children with special needs attend public schools; others may go to private or other schools. If your child has a classmate with special needs, he or she may notice certain things. • Special teachers may come into the classroom to work one-on-one with the student. • Sometimes students will leave the room for a part of the day for individualized attention. • Accommodations may be present in the classroom. For example, a teacher may wear a microphone so that a student with a hearing impairment can hear better in school. Getting to know children with disabilities Paradoxically, when it comes to approaching someone with a disability, children may be better at it than their parents because they are less inhibited.

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Russellville| 45 October 2012 savvy kids


Some adults -- especially those without previous exposure to people with disabilities -- may be more timid. Worried about appearing intrusive or insensitive, they may not know what to say or do.

disabilities will often be happy to facilitate a successful play date or outing. • Extra effort goes a long way. For instance, learning simple signs so that you can better communicate with a child who is deaf (and uses sign language) will be much appreciated.

“The other kids are great,” J.’s mom says, “They are very direct, which is good. They like her and want to interact with her.”

Learning more about disabilities Reading or learning about a disability is a great way to further understand a child’s experiences. It may also help dispel any questions you or your child may have.

However, if your child (or you, for that matter) is unsure about approaching a child with a disability, here are some helpful tips:

Your local library and librarian can be a great resource for finding age-appropriate books and materials.

• Most parents of children with disabilities would prefer that other adults ask them about their child directly, rather than avoiding them. A smile or friendly “Hello!” is an easy icebreaker. • Even if a child doesn’t talk, there are still activities the children can do together, such as play board games or arts and crafts. • If your child wants to have a play date with a child with a disability or invite him or her to a birthday party, encourage it. Call the other parent and say simply, “How can we make this work?” • Share any concerns with the other parent. Parents of children with

• Read picture books with younger children and discuss them afterward. • Chapter books with characters who have special needs are appropriate for older readers. Ask your child about the book when he or she is done -- maybe you’ll be intrigued and read it yourself. • Some audio-visual materials have positive portrayals of children with disabilities. “Sesame Street,” for example, routinely includes children with disabilities in their episodes. • Websites with age-appropriate explanations and activities can be interesting and fun to explore.

Kids With Special Needs Kids Who Might Need Extra Help Isn’t every kid special? We think so, but what do we mean when we say “kids with special needs”? This means any kid who might need extra help because of a medical, emotional, or learning problem. These kids have special needs because they might need medicine, therapy, or extra help in school — stuff other kids don’t typically need or only need once in a while. Maybe you know of kids in your school who need a wheelchair or use braces when they walk. Those kids have special needs. They not only need the equipment that helps them get around, but they might need to have ramps or elevators available. They also might need to get a special bus to school — one that lifts them up into the bus so they don’t have to get up the steps. Kids who have an illness, such as epilepsy, diabetes, or cerebral palsy, would have special needs, too. They might need medicine or other help as they go about their daily activities. Kids with sight problems might need Braille books to read. Kids with hearing or speech problems would have special needs, too. A kid who has hearing trouble might need hearing aids to hear and speech therapy, too, since it can be hard to say words correctly when you can’t hear very well. Kids with learning problems often have special needs. Kids with Down syndrome might go to a regular school and might even be in your class. But they have special needs when it comes to learning, so an aide (someone to help) might come with them to class. You might be able to spot a few kids with special needs, but you probably don’t notice all of them. A kid could have a problem that isn’t noticeable unless you know the person well. For instance, someone could have trouble 46 | savvy kids October 2012

with anxiety (worry), but you wouldn’t know it unless the kid told you about it. Privately, their parents, teachers, and counselors may be working to help them with this problem.

What’s Life Like for a Special Needs Kid? Life can be extra-challenging for a kid with special needs. It might be harder to do normal stuff — like learning to read or, if a person has physical handicaps, just getting around school or the mall. The good news is that parents, doctors, nurses, therapists, teachers, and others can help. The goal is to help kids be as independent as possible. Other kids also can be a big help. How? By being a friend. Kids who use a wheelchair or have lots of health problems want friends just like you do. But meeting people and making friends can be tough. Some kids might tease them or make fun of them. Be sure to tell a teacher if you see someone being bullied or teased. That’s a very lonely feeling. Also try to be helpful if you know someone with special needs. You might carry the person’s books or do something as simple as asking him or her to join you and your friends at lunch. It’s also important not to be “overly helpful” when no help is needed. Why? Because just like you, kids with special needs like to be as independent as they can be. Being friendly to kids with special needs is one of the best ways to be helpful. As you get to know them, they may help you understand what it’s like to be in their shoes. And you’ll be helping fill a very special need, one that everybody has — the need for good friends. © 1995-2012 . The Nemours Foundation/KidsHealth®. Reprinted with permission.


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October 2012 savvy kids

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Caring for Kids With Special Needs

Babysitting: Caring for Kids With Special Needs

Here are some things to know:

Even experienced babysitters may feel a little intimidated at the thought of looking after a child with special needs. Relax! Knowing what to expect gives you the confidence to do a good job, just as it does when you care for any child.

Follow the child’s routine, especially at bedtime or mealtime. Kids with autism prefer structure and can get upset if routines are different from what they’re used to.

Here’s what you need to know about three common conditions:


Autism is a developmental disorder that makes it hard to communicate or interact with other people. Some kids have autism that is mild; others have autism that is severe. Children with autism can have trouble understanding subtle directions and requests. They may become overwhelmed by busy and noisy environments. And, sometimes, they do not enjoy being touched. Because every kid is different, ask the child’s parents what to expect and what kinds of things the child enjoys doing. 48 | savvy kids October 2012

Ask the parents about the child’s favorite toys so you can play with them. Go slowly. One tactic is to sit alongside the child and mimic his play. That might attract his attention and lead him to join you. Special toys can help you encourage the child to cooperate. For example, you might say, “If you brush your teeth, you can play with your toy car.” Don’t be offended if the child decides to play alone or limits interactions with you. This is part of the disorder. Maintain a calm environment. For example, skip a trip to the playground when you know a neighborhood gathering is likely there. Avoid bringing your friends or other people the child may not know into the home.

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SPECIAL NEEDS Go slowly when it comes to physical contact. Find out from the parents how their child reacts to affection. A quick hug or light tickle could set off a child with autism. Know how to deal with difficulties: Ask the parents how to handle it if the child becomes upset or agitated. In general, as long as the child isn’t hurting himself or anyone else, it’s best to roll with the tantrum. Keep the child safe and close to you. If the child starts to settle down, you might bring out a favorite toy and start playing with it to create a distraction. Some children with autism might calm down when cuddling a special stuffed animal. Others might respond well to sitting in a rocking chair with you or swinging on the backyard swing set.

Down Syndrome

Their attention span for activities might be shorter than that of other children, so plan many activities and use them as needed.

Here are somethingsto know: Children with ADHD are often quite creative. They may enjoy drawing pictures or building with blocks.

Active, outdoor games can be fun for children with ADHD. Try hopscotch, swinging, and jumping rope. But skip the playground if it’s close to bedtime. Wind down with quiet time at bedtime. Low-key activities, including watching a movie or sitting in a rocking chair and reading a book, can help all kids calm down for the night. If the child needs to take medication while you’re babysitting, make sure the parents explain the dosage to you. If it’s possible, ask parents if you can watch them giving the medication a couple of times. Find out what time you should be giving the medication (or helping the child take it).

Down syndrome is a condition in which extra genetic material causes delays in the way a child develops, both mentally and physically.

Be specific with your directions. To make sure kids with ADHD have listened and understood you, ask them to repeat the directions back to you.

Like other children with developmental delays, kids with Down syndrome often seem younger than they are. Their skills are often behind those of other kids, but they may enjoy the same types of toys and games. You might need to adapt to play at their level of understanding.

Know how to deal with difficulties: It might help to provide the child with a schedule of what you’ll be doing, especially if your visit is lengthy. Children with ADHD sometimes have trouble switching gears. That means playing a boisterous game of tag right before naptime might not work. If you know some calming strategies and have activities prepared for your visit, you and the child can relax and enjoy yourselves.

Here are somethingsto know:

Find something the child enjoys. Just like other kids, babies with Down syndrome enjoy brightly colored toys and toys that make noise or play music. Toddlers can work on building blocks or play pretend. School-aged children like playing games, crafting, and playing outside. Children with Down syndrome may have lower muscle tone. It might be difficult for them to move quickly and maintain coordination. Nevertheless, kids with Down syndrome can still be strong and physical. Playing outside is a great way to exercise their muscles. Babies with Down syndrome may have weak neck muscles. Make sure you support the baby’s neck extra carefully when holding him or her. Children with Down syndrome sometimes have difficulty picking up small objects. Be patient and let the child try again. Help the child learn how to do new things. For example, if the child has a hard time stacking blocks, find a way to make her successful. You might hold the blocks on the bottom, while she adds more to the top. Keep rules simple. It can be tough for children with Down syndrome to follow directions. Children with Down syndrome might have trouble speaking. Ask the parents how their child expresses herself. For example, does she use pictures or sign language to communicate? Sometimes, all that kids with Down syndrome need is for someone to listen carefully. Know how to deal with difficulties: To keep things consistent for the child, ask the parents about family rules and stick to them.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Children with ADHD often have lots of energy and can get wound up quickly. 50 | savvy kids October 2012

Children with special needs can be very sweet and loving. And it’s great babysitting experience to learn how to care for kids who have different abilities. Seeing the world through a special child’s eyes can change the way you look at life! © 1995-2012 . The Nemours Foundation/KidsHealth®. Reprinted with permission.

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Screen Time By Lynne Hollaway

“Hey, can I play with your phone?” your son asks while you are trying to get settled at home after a busy day. “Not right now,” you reply, trying to be a patient parent and provide your child time to settle down from the day. “AAAGGHHH! THAT’S NOT FAIR, NO ONE EVER LETS ME DO ANYTHING!!!” he screams, as he throws himself on the floor. “OK, but just for 30 minutes” you relent, trying to keep the peace in the home as you think to yourself, “Honestly, it will give me time to start dinner.” Sound familiar? This scenario and many others like it, occur in homes every day regarding screen time. “Just 30 minutes” turns into 2 hours as a parent attempts to gain control of his or her current day and prepare for the next. Screen time can be a saving grace as well as the cause of tension in the home. We are blessed to live in a technologically advanced world. However, that technology can also be a curse. Trying to find the balance between embracing this age of technology yet not letting it consume our time is one of the biggest struggles for families. Screen time is defined as any time spent in front of any kind of screen (i.e. phone, iPad, computer, leap frog games, TV, etc…). Despite the American 52 | savvy kids October 2012

Academy of Pediatrics recommendations on allowable screen time, children under the age of 8 are spending more and more time in front of some sort of technology. Most all of us have read, heard on the news, or seen on the internet that screen time negatively effects behavioral, emotional, physical, and mental development. It’s our job as child care providers and parents to consider these effects and how we want to approach them with the children in our care. Children vary in their developmental processes and stages. Some children have no difficulty putting down a game to eat or play outside, but some have tendencies to more addictive and obsessive behaviors in regard to screens. They have difficulty becoming “locked in,” and their preoccupation with screens continues even when the power button is turned off. It is important that we, as child care professionals, parents, and adults in the lives of children manage screen time according to how the child responds. Those with an increased inclination to becoming “locked in” need disciplined managed screen time. Some questions to ask yourself are: • Does my child become angry, aggressive, withdrawn, locked into another world, requiring a long time to come back into reality following screen time? If “yes,” screen time has a negative effect on the emotional development of your child and his or

her ability to self-regulate. Therefore, eliminating screens from your home may be needed. • Does your child perseverate on topics related to what he or she watches on screens? Does he or she talk incessantly or script from movies during stressful, uncertain times during the day? If “yes,” it’s important to make sure your child is not watching/playing the same movie, TV show, or game over and over again. Take more control of your child’s movie options by keeping all DVDs out of the child’s site, and only offering a few at a time for the child to choose from. Try to keep weekly options down to 3-4 choices so the child will not be overwhelmed. Also, if you find that your child fixates on or is obsessed with one particular video, only offer that as an option every other week. • Is a screen the only tool in which your child learns? Is it the only time your child will sit still? It’s important to support a child where he or she learns best and use the screen as a great resource for teaching and spending quality time WITH your child. However, if we use the screen only as a way to teach and not challenge in other areas we are doing a disservice to the child and not helping him become more integrated into the world. Using screens as the only communicative device or learning tool actually pulls him or her away from socialization. Balancing challenge and support is key! This can at times be directly related, but

not limited to, a child with a diagnosis (Autism, ADD, non-verbal, etc…). If it is diagnosis related, please work closely with your child’s therapists, teachers, and doctor to determine the child’s best style of learning. • Ask yourself: “Why am I allowing my child to engage with screens?” [TAB]If it’s to get some down time, make sure you have the self-discipline needed to limit the amount of time your child spends in front of a screen. Set a timer as a reminder. [TAB]If it’s because you feel it is helping your child build skills, then interact with your child while he or she engages with the screen. It is important to note that any learning which occurs from computers, TV, etc. builds only static brain development. The only exception is a device that encourages total body participation. Using a screen as an educational tool limits dynamic, whole brain development which comes only with experience-based learning incorporating more than one sensory system at a time. [TAB]If it’s because you do not want to fight the melt down it will cost when you say “No,” then you are letting your child guide you in your parenting/care giving. Take some time to discuss this with the primary adults in his or her life and take the reins back. The first couple of weeks that follow as you set limits on screens will be difficult, but you will be empowered once you work through it with your child. As child care professionals, parents, and adults involved in child development, it is important to constantly ask yourself: “Am I allowing a screen to replace a person in teaching and playing with this child?” All too often, as therapists, teachers, and parents, we rely on a device to teach language, hand-eye coordination, and concepts in place of ourselves. In doing that, we are promoting static brain development over an engaged brain.

Suggested Screen Time Guidelines: • Children under age 2 should have no screen time. • Limit screen time to 1-2 hours a day for children over age 2. • Children with an Autism spectrum diagnosis or ADD/ADHD should be limited to 30 minutes a day of screen time. So, if all information from well-respected organizations and research supports the negative effect screens have on children, why not ban all screens from the home? Just think about how peaceful your life would become -- no more arguments, no more meltdowns, no more incessant talking and scripting about favorite characters, and no more guilt from our own obsession with screens. Well, before you start unplugging every device and taking games off of your computers, you must consider where we are in today’s world and the implications of becoming “screen free.” Technology and electronics are a part of our culture whether we like it or not. The world of devices offers much for children when used in moderation. Simply monitor screen time in your home, take time to consider your child’s individual response to screen time, and make adjustments accordingly. Your child’s development depends upon the opportunities he or she has to engage optimally in the world around them. Lynne Hollaway is an Occupational Therapist, the only certified RDI (Relationship Development Intervention) Consultant in the state of Arkansas, and is now the director of the Little Rock Pediatrics Plus Developmental Preschool.

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Beyond Boundaries “Mane Event” Oct. 6 River Market, Little Rock Save the Date for the Beyond Boundaries “Mane Event!” This year’s event will take place in downtown Little Rock in the River Market. Bob Robbins will emcee the event and guests will enjoy live music, food and drinks, and much more! Beyond Boundaries is a non-profit therapy center that utilizes horses as a therapy tool to increase specific motor, sensory, speech, and behavior/social responses, and the Mane Even is one of the facilities largest annual fundraisers. To be a sponsor, buy tickets or to receive more information, visit




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2012 Arkansas Walk Now for Autism Speaks Oct. 6 Clinton Presidential Center, 1200 President Clinton Dr., Little Rock Join Autism Speaks as we walk to change the future for all who struggle with autism! Walk Now for Autism Speaks is a fun-filled, family friendly event and is our single most powerful force to fund vital research that will lead us to the answers we need. Experience the power of thousands united by a single cause by joining Walk Now for Autism Speaks. Autism is the fastest-growing serious developmental disorder in the U.S. – we need more volunteers to join our fight. Whether this is your first walk or the 10th, take the first step and register today. You will not only raise funds, but you will become a part of a fun and supportive family-focused community. Every 11 minutes, another family receives the devastating news that their child has an autism spectrum disorder. Help us change that! Start fundraising today. Whether you strive to join our new “Grand Club” (walkers that raise $1,000 or more) or sell lemonade to boost your total or create your own unique event, you become a part of the solution! Don’t wait another minute - start a corporate, school or family team today! For more information, visit Gettin’ Down for Down Syndrome Oct. 6, 11 a.m. Sherwood Forest, 1111 W. Maryland Ave., Sherwood The 8th Annual Arkansas Down Syndrome Association Dance will be at Sherwood Forest this year. Registration will begin at 10 a.m. and the dance and activities will begin at 11 a.m. Enjoy music, dancing, activities and fun including a heart-healthy lunch, rockin’ with Elvis, kids ID program, Mommy Magic Clown, games, activities and more! For more information, visit ACCESS Gardens Plant Sales Oct. 5, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Oct. 12, 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Oct. 13, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. 54 | savvy kids October 2012

ACCESS Stella Boyle Smith Campus, 10618 Breckenridge Dr., Little Rock Pansies, mums, rosemary, ivy, various perennials and mixed containers are featured at the ACCESS Fall Plant Sales, now through Saturday, Oct. 13 at the ACCESS Stella Boyle Smith campus (10618 Breckenridge Dr., Little Rock). The sales benefit programs and services for individuals with language and learning disabilities. Shop early for the best selection of high-quality plants to spruce up your home this fall! Featuring Proven Winners® plants. ACCESS Gardens, a horticultural program designed for ACCESS students, helps youths achieve their highest level of independence in activities of daily living, leisure skills, vocational development, social skills and community integration. Students participate in every aspect of the semi-annual sales, from planning what to grow and caring for the plants to pricing and logging inventory and providing customer assistance. For more information, visit www. Ronald’s Night of Dancing Stars Oct. 13 Verizon Arena In a Dancing with the Stars type event, we pair local celebrities with professional dance partners to create a one-of-a-kind evening that you will never forget! Tickets -$45 or a Table of 8 for $300. For more information email Emily at or 501978-3119. Purchase tickets online at Recurring Events: First Baptist Church 105 South Spring St., Searcy We have a special place for individuals with Developmental Disabilities. Every Sunday morning,

we have a special Sunday School class devoted to those with “special needs.” They meet on the First Floor of the Howle Building from 9:30 am to 10:30 am. For more information call 501268-3561 or e-mail fbcsearcy@ Park Hill Baptist Church 201 E. C Ave., North Little Rock Manipulatives, sensory integration, motivators, visual supports and schedules, etc. Are these words foreign to you? Do you understand how they can make Sunday School more enjoyable and meaningful to a child with special needs? We, at Park Hill, have been led to reach these children in ways beyond traditional teaching methods, and minister to families through meeting the needs of their children. Sunday School classes meet from 9:30-10:40 a.m. Extended care for parents during worship service is from 10:55noon For more information call Susan Bumpas at 501-753-3414, or via email at ACTS Jr. Theatre Classes available in Conway and Little Rock Mondays from 4:00-5:00 p.m. for ages 7-17 Register online at

RUFL Football Fellowship Bible Church, Little Rock Tuesday evenings from 5:30-6:30 p.m. for ages 5-18 Register online at I Can! Dance Classes offered in Conway, Sherwood, Little Rock and Hot Springs Various days and times of the week for ages 4-17 Register online at Showstoppers Cheerleading Classes offered in Conway and Little Rock Saturdays throughout the fall (times TBD) for ages 4-18 Register online at My Art Faulkner County Library in Conway Wednesdays from 4:00-4:45 p.m. (3-7 year olds) and 5:00-5:45p.m. (8 and up) I Can! Center, Little Rock Tuesdays 5:45-6:30 p.m. and 5:45-7:30 p.m. Register online at TOP Soccer I Can! Center, Little Rock Tuesdays at 6-6:45 p.m. Register online at

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The Clothesline By Meredith Martin-Moats

My grandmother—short, chubby and silver haired—opened the hall closet and reached into the cloth sack hanging over the door, pulling out handfuls of clothespins and shoving them into the front pockets of her apron. With a laundry basket on her hip, she walked down the steps to the clothesline, hanging out my grandfather’s overalls and her polyester shirts on the line to dry. As she bent down to pick up the clothes and reached up to pin them to the line, her movements were rhythmic and hypnotic. Argyles and stripes, faded pinstripe denim, purple and green plaid flannels, whipped back and forth in the breeze. Her name was Golda Faye Taylor McElroy and this memory of her standing among drying fabrics remains forever vivid. I especially loved those days she washed sheets. Hanging nearly to the ground, I would run underneath them, pretending I was in a fort or castle. As cliché as it may sound now, and as mundane as such tasks must have felt to her then, there was something magical about the pop and whish of sheets in the wind. On those evenings when I spent the night, I’d fall asleep to the smell of the breeze buried deep in the fibers of the bedding.

contemplation, a word literally meaning “thoughtful observation.” Hanging clothes out to dry is a slow process involving the natural world, forcing you to go outside, listen to the birds, the wind in the trees or maybe just the neighbor’s lawn mower. It takes practice to slow down, and it’s not about the kind of practice that makes perfect. Sometimes it means having time to think about the laugher of your children. But let’s be real. Sometimes it just means more time to think about that mountain of unpaid bills. In the end, slowing down is about embracing the imperfect nature of just about everything. I feel it’s important to save resources, but what I love about the clothesline is that it helps me channel my inner grandma, connecting me to a woman who revealed to me the magic in the mundane. I am convinced that when a child sees fabrics blowing in the breeze it is part of their innate being to run under them, laughing.

I don’t want to over-romanticize my grandmother’s life, her tiny house, or her dirty laundry. I’m sure she would have loved to occasionally skip the trip to the clothesline and shove the wet clothes in an electric dryer. In many ways she lived what we might today call a green or zero-waste lifestyle. But it wasn’t because she knew or cared about global warming or the need to conserve energy. She just didn’t have much of a choice.

Green living has become a trend these days, with all kinds of products being “green washed” in an attempt to sell them. Oddly enough so-called green living can even be used as a status symbol, with certain products costing multiples times more than their more packaged, less organic counterpoints. So much of green marketing, it seems to me, misses the point. When we’re being convinced we need more money to live a less wasteful life, something has clearly gone awry. Green living—or as I prefer to somewhat jokingly call it, “Grandma-inspired living”—is generally about frugal decision-making and the practice of slowing down. Such thinking can feel counterintuitive to our fastpaced culture where convenience reigns supreme. What a clothesline lacks in convenience it makes up for in opportunities for 56 | savvy kids October 2012

Photo by Saira Khan

When I was younger I couldn’t articulate how much I loved her clothesline or the smell of the wind-blown sheets. But as I grew older, she passed away, and I gradually became an adult with my own dirty laundry, I began to crave a clothesline of my own. When living in Kentucky, my husband surprised me with one of those fancy clotheslines with pulleys, which ran from our porch to the neighboring fence. When we moved back to Arkansas he helped to build yet another, this one from scrap wood. And while I no longer had the energy to run underneath the bedding, I still loved to watch the endless whipping of the sheets, that constant rhythm of their movement—at turns both peaceful and violent—in the breeze.

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Nobody told me this stuff:

Buttons, Snaps and Buckles By Robert Bell Illustration by Bryan Moats

You see, here’s the thing with baby clothing: Right out of the gate, in the best of all possible scenarios, caring for an infant and managing to not lose your mind is an intensely harrowing and difficult experience. Why make things harder when you don’t have to? Do you follow me? Check this out: we have owned two actual pairs of Big Smith overalls (or “overhauls” as they are known in the vernacular of my Carroll County) that we dressed our baby in when he was like five months old. Each pair has upwards of 144 buttons, snaps and buckles to contend with. I exaggerate, but only slightly. Also, you had to pull them buggers on over the little fella’s head — never a simple proposition — and then hold him down while you buttoned and snapped and buckled all those buttons, snaps and buckles. I mean, sure, he did look cuter than a pug in a purple tux, but man alive it was tough to get those overhauls on and off of him. “Why? Why do these exist?” I would wonder as he and I engaged in our sartorial tusslings? “What sadistic children’s clothing designer thought these were in any way acceptable?” Obviously, a children’s clothing designer who had never actually put clothes on a child.

baby clothing from here on out, is Velcro. That’s right, the mid-century fabric innovation from Swiss genius George De Mestral should be used to fasten everything your baby wears up until at least age 24. For his enduring gift to mankind, I hope that De Mestral died a very wealthy and happy man, and that his heirs are living comfortably, flitting around Europe in leather-appointed luxury vehicles and eating naught but the most succulent of meals and drinking naught but the finest wines available to humanity. Another pretty awesome invention is this stuff called bamboo viscose. It’s basically like an organic version of rayon. It’s soft and stretchy and why isn’t everything made out of it? One of my wife’s cousins gave us a bamboo viscose onesie that has clothed our dude from the age of two months up to the present day (almost one year). It’s so stretchy and amazing, I’m going to go ahead and say that not only should all baby clothing use Velcro, but that it should be made out of bamboo viscose and bamboo viscose only. Heck, I wish I was wearing only clothes made out of bamboo viscose right now, and I’m nearly old enough to be President of the U.S.A. Recently, I was airing my grievances about overly complicated children’s clothing with some co-workers. They were all nodding like, “Yup, been there.” I explained about bamboo viscose and what a great thing it is when my colleague Patrick up and dropped a game-changer.

Even my baby-whisperer wife had problems with the baby Big Smiths, but oh, we still suited him up in those sumguns probably once a week or so.

“Man, there oughtta be some kinda latex dip, where you can grab your kid by the head and just dip him into it, and then it dries and when he needs to be changed, you just peel it off and toss it and start all over.”

It’s not just overhauls, though. I have design-related grievances with other baby clothing components as well. Like those tiny, tiny little snaps that never, ever, ever (ever!) snap on the first try. Zippers are a step up, but an even further improvement, and one that I would like to see implemented on all

After I picked my jaw up off the floor, I told him he needed to get down to the patent office right quick. You never know, we might just have another bamboo viscose on our hands, another miraculous innovation to free us from the tyranny of buttons, snaps, buckles, zippers and even Velcro.

58 | savvy kids October 2012

get your hands on science No bones about it, there is an adventure waiting for you at the Museum of Discovery. Touch a tornado, or pedal a bike to produce power. There are no limits to discovering new things. Get your hands on science this fall at the Museum of Discovery, Arkansas’s premier science center. featured exhibits:

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Pearl and Wagner Four Eyes Written by Kate McMullan Illustrated by R.W. Alley

In this Easy Reader book young children are introduced to getting their first pair of glasses. While at school, Nurse Nice performs an eye test with all the children in Pearl and Wagner’s classroom. Wagner has a bit of trouble reading the chart. Nurse Nice sends a note home with him. Pearl tries to convince Wagner that getting glasses will be really cool but Wagner is far from convinced. When he arrives at school on Monday with his new glasses all of his classmates love his new look. It turns out to be a very special day, because their teacher, Ms. Star, also had to get glasses and the entire class celebrates with a pizza party. The back matter includes Tips for Glasses, for those new to wearing and caring for eye glasses.

Pumpkin Heads Written by Wendell Minor I

had to take this opportunity to share my very favorite fall book with all of you! In celebration of a trip to the pumpkin patch, author and illustrator, Wendell Minor, shows readers some spectacular Pumpkin Heads. Each fall as the air turns crisp many families take a trip to purchase just the right pumpkin to turn into a pumpkin head to welcome people to their homes. Minor’s gorgeous illustrations will give families some interesting ideas for jack o’lanterns to decorate their house and yards. A little known fact about this picture book, the model on the front cover is Mr. Minor’s wife! Pick up a copy of Pumpkin Heads to get your family in the mood for a pumpkin patch trip!


HALLOWEEN CITY BY TAP POCKET FREE Description Welcome to Halloween City. Your favorite Trick-or-Treat time of the year has come again. And now you can have your own Halloweenthemed City! Decorate your city with lots of Amazing Halloween Characters including Witches, Vampires, Pumpkins, Monster Plants, Werewolves, Mummies, Zombies etc. Check out the Spooky Houses and Ghost lairs. It’s a fun way to celebrate the Halloween. Try different cross-breeds of the characters and be amazed to see the results. Collect coins to level up and unlock more items. Take pictures of your city and share it with your friends. Features include hundreds of fun animated characters, Halloween-themed visitors, amazing cross-breed results, easy interactive tutorial, and unlock different characters in each level.

60 | savvy kids October 2012

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Lower School Open House (Three Year Olds-4th) Tuesday, October 9th at 9:00 a.m. Tuesday, October 30th at 9:00 a.m. Middle School/Jr. High Open House (5th-8th grade) Tuesday, October 2nd at 9:00 a.m. Thursday, October 18th at 9:00 a.m. Thursday, November 1st at 9:00 a.m. to Reserve your spot call 501.868.9822 or register on-line at littlero c k c hristian.c om October 2012 savvy kids

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Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theater brings classic children’s books to life By Erica Sweeney

The Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theater is bringing classic stories to life on stage for a season that is sure to delight an audience of all ages. “We work to bring classic children’s books to the stage that hold a special place,” says Sinovia Mayfield, in her third season as the theater’s stage manager. “It’s a special thing to have kids come to the theater and see all the things they imagined come to life. It’s a little bit of magic.” Artistic Director Bradley Anderson says the 2012-2013 season is “a little edgier,” with titles that have been around for a while, but are “less broadly well-known.” “Every season has it’s own flavor,” says Associate Director and Resident Playwright Keith Smith. “We have to find a balance with what’s marketable, what’s educational, and not get too old or too young. We try to do a season with something in it for everyone in the company that’s artistically challenging and fun.” Bringing classics to the stage exposes an “entirely new age group” to these stories, Mayfield says. They are stories that parents or even grandparents may have also enjoyed when they were youngsters, she says. The Children’s Theater began in 62 | savvy kids October 2012

1979 and has provided entertaining and educational experiences to generations of audiences. Parents likely have attended or participated in the theater when they were younger and are now sharing it with their children. There is “a lot of passing on a tradition” in experiencing the theater, Mayfield says. Mayfield knows about this firsthand. She was a “summer theater kid” at the Children’s Theater. “I have lots of memories here,” she says. “It’s special to facilitate that process for other kids.” The theater is the state’s only professional theater company that produces children’s literary works for the stage. This is where Smith comes in as resident playwright. He says he enjoys working with classic literature and exposing kids “to that literary direction.” Smith says he likes to think that kids who have enjoyed seeing “Treasure Island” on stage will go home and read Robert Louis Stevenson. The 2012-2013 season opener, “Madeline and the Gypsies,” runs through Oct. 7. The season continues with “Bunnicula,” a story published by James Howe in 1979, Oct. 26 to Nov. 11; “City Mouse, Country Mouse, Christmas House,” a musical based on Aesop’s fable, Nov. 30 to Dec. 16; “The Three Little

Pigs and Three Billy Goats Gruff,” Jan. 25 to Feb. 10, 2013; “The Princess and the Pea,” March 8-24, 2013; and, Roald Dahl’s “James and the Giant Peach,” April 26 to May 12, 2013. Show times are Fridays at 7 p.m., Saturdays at 3 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. at the Arts Center, 9th and Commerce in Little Rock. Additional show times will be added for “City Mouse, Country Mouse, Christmas House” during the holidays and “The Princess and the Pea” during spring break. Tickets are $12 for children and adults. Part of the Arts Center’s mission is to bring the arts to everyone in the state, Mayfield says. And, the Children’s Theater on Tour does just that by traveling the state and performing at local schools and other locations. This year’s touring productions are “’Twas the Night Before Christmas,” Nov. 5 to Dec. 19; “Arkansas Tale,” which explores the state’s history and folklore, Feb. 4 to March 15, 2013; and, Rudyard Kipling’s “The Just So Stories,” April 1 to May 10, 2013. All productions feature children and adults from all over the state, and public auditions are held regularly throughout the season, Mayfield says. A traveling company of four

actors, often from out of state, is also part of the season’s cast, she says. In addition to performing in shows, local kids can volunteer in other aspects of the theater, like costumes, lighting or anything else that goes on backstage, Mayfield says, adding that all costumes and sets are built at the Arts Center “from the ground up.” Mayfield says student volunteers do not need any experience. Staff work to match up a student’s interests with a volunteer opportunity and teach them everything they need to know, she says. The Children’s Theater also offers a summer theater program. Last year, the Children’s Theater had 29 student volunteers, who put in nearly 5,700 volunteer hours, she says. Volunteers tend to range in age from 6 and up. Often, students who volunteer with the theater find other areas of the arts that interest them, Mayfield says. This “fosters a lifelong arts patron,” she says. “It’s important for kids to experience the arts at an early age because it builds confidence and the idea of working together.” For more information about this season’s productions, to volunteer or to book a touring performance, visit www. or call (501) 372-4000.


Best Party Location

October 2012 savvy kids

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JJ’s Grill Free kid’s meal with the purchase of adult meal for kids 12 and under (all day). Conway: 1010 Main Street CICI’S PIZZA Ages 3 and under eat free at buffet. • Conway: 1250 Old Morrilton Hwy, 764-0600 • Hot Springs: 3321 Central Avenue, 321-2400 • Jacksonville: 120 John Harden Dr, Jacksonville, 241-2224 • North Little Rock: 2815 Lakewood Village Dr, 753-1182


March 10: The10Hope Ball is an annual gala event hosted by 4-7 p.m. Ages and under. the 20th Century to raise funding for the continued • Little Rock: 4300Club S University, 562-5651 operation of the 20th Century Club’s Lodge. The 2012 Ball, themed “Garden of Hope”, will be held in the GOLDEN CORRAL Ages 3 and under eat freeCenter, at buffet. Discounted prices The Statehouse Convention Wally Allen Ballroom. Tuesday. for kids on elegant evening will include both live and silent auctions, Little Rock:dinner, 5001 Warden a• North delicious seated cocktails,Road, and 771-4605 dancing until midnight. For more information call 501-907-1760 or visit LARRY’S PIZZA Ages 4 and under. • Bryant: 4500 Hwy. 5 North, 847-5003 • Conway: 1068 Markham, 329-3131 • Little Rock: 12th & Center St., 372-6004; 12911 Cantrell Rd., 224-8804 San Francisco Bread Co. One FREE Kid’s Meal with the purchase of Adult Meal, after 5 p.m. • Hot Springs: 261 Cornerstone Blvd., 525-7322 ZAXBY’S 5 p.m.-close, dine-in only. • Jacksonville: 209 Marshall Rd., 241-0546 • Maumelle: 104 Carnahan Dr., 851-9777 • Sherwood: 208 Brookswood Rd., 833-9777


American Pie Pizza Kids eat free after 4 p.m. • Little Rock: 10912 Colonel Glenn Rd., 225-1900 • Maumelle: 9709 Maumelle Blvd., 758-8800 • North Little Rock: 4830 N. Hills Blvd., 753-0081 CHICK-FIL-A First and third Monday of each month. • North Little Rock: 3929 McCain Blvd, 945-1818 NYPD Pizza Free Kids entree, for children ages 10 and under, with the purchase of adult entree. Dine-in only, 4-6 p.m. • Little Rock: 6015 Chenonceau Blvd., 868-3911 SHORTY SMALL’S Up to two kids meals free per paying adult. • Conway: 1475 Hogan Ln, 764-0604 • Little Rock: 1110 N. Rodney Parham, 224-3344 • North Little Rock: 4317 Warden Rd, 753-8111 TA MOLLY’S 5-9 p.m. • Bryant: 206 W. Commerce St., 653-2600 64 | savvy kids October 2012

Below is a listing of locations and days in which kids, 12 and under, can eat free with a paid adult (unless otherwise noted).


Arkansas Burger Company One free kid’s meal per adult meal. Dine-in only, 5:30-9 p.m. • Little Rock: 7410 Cantrell Road, 663-0600 BEEF O BRADY’S 4 p.m.-close. • Maumelle:115 Audubon Dr., 803-3500

• North Little Rock: 2811 Lakewood Village Dr., 812-5002 LARRY’S PIZZA 4-8 p.m. With purchase of one adult meal, up to two kids get a small one topping pizza, drink, and $1 in tokens. • Cabot: 2798 South Second Street, 843-7992

MOOYAH BURGER One free kid's meal with the purchase of adult meal. • Little Rock: 14810 Cantrell Rd., 868-1091

JIM’S Razorback Pizza Kids 12 and under receive a FREE six inch pizza with the purchase of an adult entree (Dine-in only). • Little Rock: 16101 Cantrell Rd. • Maumelle: 20608 Hwy 365 North • Hot Springs: 4330 Central Ave.

NYPD Pizza Free Kids entree, for children ages 10 and under, with the purchase of adult entree. Dine-in only, 4-6 p.m. • Little Rock: 6015 Chenonceau Blvd., 868-3911

Western Sizzlin Up to 2 children eat Free with the purchase of an adult meal. • Benton: 1916 Congo Rd., 778-9656

DENNY’S RESTAURANT 4-7 p.m. Ages 10 and under. • Little Rock: 310 S. Shackleford Rd., 224-8264 JIM’S Razorback Pizza Kids 12 and under receive a FREE six inch pizza with the purchase of an adult entree (Dine-in only). • Little Rock: 16101 Cantrell Rd. • Maumelle: 20608 Hwy 365 North • Hot Springs: 4330 Central Ave. LONESTAR STEAKHOUSE 4 p.m.-close. • Little Rock:10901 Rodney Parham, 227-8898 PIZZA HUT 5-8 p.m.. Dine in only. • Little Rock: 11410 W. Markham St., 228-7000 Stromboli’s One FREE Kid’s Meal (12 or under) per adult meal purchased at regular price. Kids may choose from the Kid’s Menu or Pizza By-the-Slice with up to two toppings. Dine-in only. Cannot be combined with any other offer. • Conway: 605 Salem Rd., 327-3700 TROPICAL SMOOTHIE CAFE Kids 12 years of age or younger eat free with purchase of a Paradise Combo (dine-in only). • Conway: 705 Club Lane, 764-4800 and 790 Elsinger Blvd, 764-1500 • Jacksonville: 140 John Harden Dr, 241-2233 • Little Rock: 11900 Kanis Rd., 221-6773; 12911 Cantrell Rd., 224-1113 • North Little Rock: 12007 Maumelle Blvd, 851-9555


FAMOUS DAVE’S 4 p.m.-close. • Little Rock: 225 North Shackleford Road, 221-3283 FIREHOUSE SUBS • Bryant: 3108 Horizon St., 653-3700 • Little Rock: 12312 Chenal Pkwy., 228-5553; 10300 Rodney Parham, 225-2001 • Maumelle: 11617 Maumelle Blvd., 753-9898


CAPTAIN D’s • Benton: 1419 Military Rd, 778-7909 • Hot Springs: 1906 Central St., 321-4288 • Jacksonville: 1109 West Main St., 982-3330 • Little Rock: 6301 Colonel Glen Rd., 568-6244 • North Little Rock: 5320 JFK Blvd., 758-5144 Mexico Chiquito One FREE kid's meal per adult entree for kids 12 and under (Dine-in only). • Conway: 1135 Skyline Dr., 205-1985 • Jacksonville: 1524 W. Main St., 982-0533 • Little Rock: 13924 Cantrell, 217-0700; 102 S. Rodney Parham, 224-8600; 4511 Camp Robinson, 771-1604; 11406 W. Markham, 217-0647 MOE’S SOUTHWEST GRILL 4 p.m.-close. One free kids meal with paid adult meal. • Bryant: 7409 Alcoa Rd., 778-3111 • Conway: 625 Salem Rd., 336-6500 • Little Rock: 12312 Chenal Pkwy., 223-3378 • North Little Rock: 4834 North Hills Blvd., 812-5577


BOSTON’S GOURMET PIZZA RESTAURANT • Little Rock: 3201 Bankhead Dr., 235-2000 LUBY’S CAFETERIA • Little Rock: 12501 West Markham, 219-1567


BOSTON’S GOURMET PIZZA RESTAURANT • Little Rock: 3201 Bankhead Dr., 235-2000 DENNY’S RESTAURANT 4-7 p.m. Ages 10 and under. • Little Rock: 310 S. Shackleford Rd., 224-8264 CORKY’S Kid's meals 1/2 off. 4 p.m.-close. • Little Rock: 12005 Westhaven Dr., 954-7427

If you would like to add your Kids Eat Free information to this list, contact us at 501-375-2985.


! e e r f t kids ea s y a d s r thu ions cat

At Dine-In Lo

Best cheese Dip

Pumpkin Dip Submitted by Melissa Love This light and fluffy pumpkin dip will make a great pre-trick-or-treating treat for your kids! It’s tasty with graham crackers and goes nicely with fresh fruit. 1 can of Pumpkin 1 package vanilla pudding mix 1 container of cool whip 1/8 tsp cinnamon 1/8 tsp nutmeg 1 tbsp Splenda (optional) In a medium bowl, mix the can of pumpkin, the pudding mix powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and Splenda. Next, fold in cool whip until combined. Chill and serve with graham crackers, apples, etc.

text o to M e x To G

0 9 0 2 1o Win nce T For A Cha Card t A $25 Gif

13924 Cantrell Rd.

2 cheese dip $


Large or Extra Large

1524 W. Main St.

Little Rock • 501-217-0700

Jacksonville • 501-982-0533

Mex-To-Go • 501-217-0647

Conway • 501-205-1985

11406 W. Markham St.

4511 Camp Robinson Rd.

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North Little Rock • 501-771-1604 October 2012 savvy kids

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littlebites MOOYAH

Kids want burgers but you’re tired of the same old fast food options? How about extra fresh sweet potato fries on the side? On the menu, you will find so many options and combinations, it would be easy to try it a new way every time you visit. Worries about carbs? Have an Iceburger, a delicious MOOyaH Burger made with the special MOOyaH seasoning, but wrapped in lettuce instead of bread. Or have a turkey burger with only 7 grams of fat! The beef is of course 100-percent all-american beef and they use nothing but name brand products. MOOyaH is new to Little Rock and offers a slew of burger combinations to please every member of your crew. The atmosphere is very kid-friendly with a chalkboard wall for drawing and six televisions showing a variety of programs in a large dine-in area. Walk in, grab a menu and a pen, mark it up and give it to the cashier. all is left is to sit and enjoy your meal. The food comes out quickly and bagged individually for each menu filled out. If you ordered fries, your cup is always running over. If you decide on a bun, do you want a whole wheat bun or white? Both have been baked fresh, in-house daily and have a tiny sweet taste to them. The fries 66 | savvy kids October 2012

begin as potatoes and go through a 6-step process before resulting in fresh hot goodness you can actually keep munching on for quite awhile without losing the fresh-from-the-kitchen taste.

MOOyaH is a national chain with 41 stores, three of which are in arkansas, in Conway, West Little Rock and Hot Springs. It was born from the idea that there should be a perfect burger, not too big, not too small and not a burger you can get at any other burger joint.

So, what did we order? Big Moo (two meat patties) with American cheese, bacon, ketchup, barbecue sauce, lettuce, tomato and jalepeños with a side of fries. “as much as I might be tired of a burger, this never gets old.” — Jarrod Gardner Little Moo (one patty) on wheat with American cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, ketchup and mustard. “The fries are so big, we’re just gonna share.” — Sara Gardner

Little Moo with American cheese. “I like cheese, lettuce, chopped onions and ketchup!” — Peyton Hobby

oN the MeNU Burgers • Fries ShakeS


11am-10pm • 7 days a week Little Rock 14810 Cantrell Rd Pinnacle Creek Shopping Center (Behind Walgreens) 501-868-1091 Conway 201 Donaghey avenue, UCa Student Center, Conway Mon-Thurs 10am–8pm, Friday 10am–7pm, Saturday 11am–5pm, Sunday closed Hot Springs 3954 Central ave Dogwood Landing (Behind Starbucks) 501-520-5000

EAT All Aboard Restaurant and Grill is a FUN family restaurant that serves fresh food in a unique way – via the All Aboard train! Whether it is the veggie burger, home-cut fries or strawberry salad, each meal is made to order with the freshest ingredients. Where possible, we use locally and organically grown ingredients. Then we get your food to you fresh – whisked along a complex rail system right to your table. One Free Kids Meal with the purchase of an adult meal. Monday through Friday only. Must present this ad. Offer Expires 10/31/12. One coupon per customer/transaction. Cantrell Rd., Little Rock. 501-975-7401

Colton’s Steak House & Grill is a fullservice restaurant with a fun, casual atmosphere where guests can snack on all the peanuts you can eat. We serve choice hand-cut steaks, ribs, chicken and seafood, as well as salads and burgers. Meals are served with hot homemade yeast rolls and lunch specials are available during the week. We offer a kids menu for children 12 and under. Entrées include a healthy choice of side, roll and a drink. Free Kids Meal: Limit one child 12 or under per adult entrée purchased. Select kids entrées from the kids menu only. For a limited time at Cabot location only. Must present coupon to redeem offer. Expires October 30, 2012. 195 Northport Dr. Cabot. 501-843-1905

NYPD Pizzeria Kids love pizza and NYPD Pizzeria loves kids. Coupon offer: Every Tuesday is “Two for Tuesday” at NYPD Pizza offering a free 14” cheese pizza when any other 14” pizza is purchased when you dine in. Crayons and coloring sheets are distributed and one of the many large TV screens offers something kids like to watch while parents enjoy the game or a movie. Renown for their homemade crust, pizzas are topped with hi quality, premium fresh toppings. Dairy free and gluten free options are available as well as a children’s menu. 6015 Chenonceau Blvd., Little Rock. 501-868-3911

US Pizza We pride ourselves in offering our guests the very best pizza, salads and sandwiches, and we value your patronage. Our oldfashioned stone hearth ovens are one of the reasons our pizzas are worth the wait. From our Salad Supreme to our spicy Trey’s Chloroplast Blast pizza, you won’t find our award winning original creations anywhere else. Little Rock: Heights, Hillcrest, Fair Park, Rodney Parham; North Little Rock: Pike, Fair Park, JFK Maumelle • Sherwood • Conway • Bryant • Fayetteville

HERE! Each month, Savvy Kids will feature some of central Arkansas’ tasty, family-friendly restaurants, including special offers for Savvy Kids readers. If your restaurant would Restaurant name likeCopy to be included, call us at 501-375-2985. Body Promo Copy Address

Dempsey Bakery Halloween will be soon be upon us, and while the thought of holiday candies, cookies, and cakes can be quite frightening (ha, ha!), have no fear—Dempsey is here! We offer a variety of 100% gluten, wheat, soy and nut-free foods, including pizzas, cakes, pies, cupcakes, cookies, and more—all made fresh daily!  Plus, their entire staff is ready to answer your questions about their products or about the benefits of eating gluten-free.  Stop in today!  Dempsey Bakery has your Gluten-Free holidays covered! 323 Cross St., Little Rock. (501) 375-2257 Open Tuesday-Friday from 10am-6pm and 9am-3pm Saturday.

Loganberry Frozen Yogurt Kids craving Ice Cream? Satisfy their desire with a healthy alternative at Loganberry Frozen Yogurt. Made fresh in Russellville, AR, in a boutique dairy farm, Loganberry Yogurt is cultured, probiotic yogurt with real fruit purees and natural ingredients. Fresh berries and fruit, nuts, and granola are some of the 50+ toppings at Loganberry Frozen Yogurt topping bar. 12 delicious, low fat, low sugar flavors range from Triple Dark Chocolate to Pink Lemonade sorbet. Treat your family to a healthy dessert they can have fun serving themselves. 6015 Chenonceau Blvd., Little Rock. 501-868-8194

Tropical Smoothie Cafe’s menu boasts bold, flavorful food and smoothies with a healthy appeal. Our food and smoothies are made to order with fresh ingredients. Our smoothies are made from superior simple ingredients including real fruit and natural sugar. Our toasted wraps, bistro sandwiches, grilled flatbreads, and gourmet salads are made fresh with high quality meats and cheeses; and topped with fresh produce and flavorful sauces. Combine that with a fun atmosphere and friendly hospitality and you see why people return again and again! Sign up for Club Tropical absolutely free for special offers, freebies & more! Follow us on Twitter @tscarkansas for even more great rewards. Order online at Little Rock • North Little Rock • Maumelle • Conway • Jacksonville

October 2012 savvy kids

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OCTOBER 26th ANNUAL CARTI KIDS GOLF CLASSIC October 1: Join us for a day of fun on the golf course at Maumelle Country Club. The tournament will host a morning shotgun start at 8:30 a.m. followed by lunch and an afternoon shotgun start at 1:30 p.m. Teams and individual players can register online or pay by phone. Each team sponsor comes with additional marketing benefits not listed. Proceeds from the CARTI Kids Golf Classic benefit the CARTI Kids Program which serves Arkansas pediatric cancer patients and survivors. For more information contact the CARTI Foundation at 501-296-3429 or visit 3rd ANNUAL AUTUMN GOLF CLASSIC October 1: This tournament will take place at Shadow Valley Country Club in Rogers, Arkansas. Registration & Lunch at noon. Shotgun Start at 1 p.m. 19th Hole Reception at 5:30 p.m. The 3rd Annual Autumn Golf Classic will benefit Junior Achievement of Arkansas, Inc. For more information contact Chad Kauffman (President) at 501-280-9118 or visit www. STORYTIMES AT LAMAN LIBRARY October 1 thru 31: This event consist of stories and crafts suited for ages 3-5 years old, so come join us Monday thru Wednesday at 10 a.m. each week. For more information call 501- 758-1720 or visit MUSEUM OF DISCOVERY: DESIGN ZONE October 1 thru 31: Design Zone is presented at the Museum of Discovery through the Arkansas Discovery Network, a statewide museum consortium funded by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation, and will be on exhibit through December 2, 2012. Design Zone is a highly interactive, hands-on exhibition where visitors can explore a variety of creative concepts to learn the processes and tools needed to create a successful design. It is organized into three thematic zones, all highlighting the importance of science and mathematical thinking in areas critical to building creativity and innovation art, music, and engineering. Hours: 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Admission: $10 adults, $8 ages 1-12, under 12 months get in FREE. For more information call 501-396-7050 or visit TOSS-UP TUESDAY October 2, 9, 16, and 23: Every Tuesday 68 | savvy kids October 2012

afternoon starting at 4:30 p.m. we will enjoy a different type game. Call 501-918-3057 or visit to find out more.

S M T W T F S 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

BABYTIMES AT LAMAN LIBRARY October 3, 10, 17, 24, and 31: This is a Lapsit program that includes action rhymes, songs, and stories suited for ages 6 months thru 2 years old, so come join us Wednesday at 10 a.m. each week. For more information call 501-758-1720 or visit PUZZLEMANIA AT LAMAN LIBRARY October 3, 10, 17, 24, and 31: This activity is for children of all ages to enjoy puzzles, so come join us Wednesday from 4 p.m. until 6 p.m each week. For more information call 501-758-1720 or visit www. “AMERICAN ODYSSEY” October 5: Under the baton of ASO Associate Conductor Geoffrey Robson, come experience the full 72-piece Arkansas Symphony Orchestra in concert playing American classics at the Robinson Center Music Hall starting at 10 a.m. This concert will explore music from the “Beginnings of America” through the “Growth of Black Culture in America,” to the “Influence of Hispanic Migration to America.” This one-hour educational concert, sponsored by Arkansas Symphony Orchestra Guild and the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau, will provide teachers and students with supplemental materials full of hands-on activities to enhance the live concert experience. This concert is a “not to be missed” opportunity for 4th through 8th grade students. Tickets for school groups are $3 per student. For more information and to reserve tickets, contact Jo Sears-Harkins at 501-425-8964. SPOOKY CINEMA October 4, 11, 18, and 25: Every Thursday afternoon starting at 4:30 p.m. we will enjoy a different “spooky” movie. Call 501-928-3057 or visit to find out more. THE SAFE PLACES 2012 CINDERELLA BALL October 6: An unforgettable evening featuring a fairy godmother, a beautiful horse-drawn Princess Carriage, Cinderella and the Prince, a 14 foot Princess Carriage Backdrop with a professional photographer for pictures, and the grace of young “Princesses” who have

completed the Leadership Program for Young Girls. The event will be held at the Doubletree Hotel (424 W. Markham) in Little Rock from 6 p.m. until 11 p.m. The Cinderella Ball benefits the work of Safe Places, a Little Rock non-profit that provides counseling advocacy, support and education for children and families harmed by violence. Tickets: $125. For more information call 501-351-4673 or visit THE CURESEARCH WALK October 6: Join us as we celebrate and honor children from the Little Rock area who have been affected by children’s cancer. This very special day will include prizes, music, food, and fun activities for the entire family! Please encourage your friends and family to join us as we raise funds to reach the day when every child with cancer is guaranteed a cure! Event place: Murray Park. Event time: 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Register today and support children’s cancer research. For more information contact Rena Moore at 501364-2592 or visit 7TH ANNUAL AMETHYST BALL October 6: The Arkansas Coalition Against Domestic Violence invites Arkansans from around the state to attend the 7th Annual Amethyst Ball at the Peabody Hotel Ballroom from 6:30 p.m. until 10 p.m. Tickets: $100. The theme this year is “Finding a New Direction for Peace”. Former Razorback and current Green Bay Packer D.J. Williams and the Williams family are honorees this year. Tickets can be purchased by calling Angelina Rogers at 501-907-5612. 4th ANNUAL ABH PROJECTS INC. October 6: “BE Smart! BE Safe! BE Responsible” Girl Talk Teen Conference will be held at Pulaski Technical College located at 3000 West Scenic Drive, North Little Rock, for ladies ages 13-17 FREE of charge! To register or for more information visit www.ABHprojests/ GIRL-TALK. html or contact Mrs. Hill at 501-960-2366. 3rd ANNUAL WALK NOW FOR AUTISM SPEAKS October 6: This event will take place at the Clinton Presidential Center starting at 10 a.m. The 2011 walk raised more than $99,000 and had more than 1,700 participants. Kickoff speakers include

Autism Speaks National Walk Director Paul Irwin-Dudek; Keenya Hofmaier, Miss Black Arkansas 2012; and Today’s THV Chief Meteorologist Ed Buckner. For more information contact Dawn Itzkowitz at 501-951-0115. MAIN STREET FOOD TRUCK FESTIVAL 2012 October 6: Mobile food vendors, lots of them, Etsy Little Rock craft artists, a family fun area sponsored by Heifer International, music, beer, gardens, and more. A free event on six blocks of Main Street, presented by Downtown Little Rock Partnership and the Main Street Revitalization Task Force. Last year’s premiere event brought 5,000 people to Main Street. Event time: 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. For more information contact Chellie Castellanos at 501-375-0121. SILENT HUNGER BENEFIT October 6: Silent Hunger Benefit will start at 3 p.m. until 11 p.m. and all proceeds will be distributed to the Arkansas Foodbank and Arkansas Rice Depot to send food home with local school children on the weekends. Hunger is not heard it is felt. Event place: Golf of Castle Valley (8500 Castle Valley Road, Mabelvale). Come join us, tell your friends, neighbors, family, club members and no one under 21 allowed. Let’s show the children we hear what they feel. Cost: $5 per person or 5 food donations. Raffle, live auction, live music, dancing, pool, shuffleboard and food will be available. A bake sale will take place from 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. For more information call 501-562-1814. CLASSICAL MYSTERY TOUR: A TRIBUTE TO THE BEATLES October 6 and 7: Witness an unbelievable tribute band play along with your Arkansas Symphony Orchestra recreating Eleanor Rigby, Here Comes the Sun, All You Need is Love, and other favorite hits. Thanks to the Entergy Kids Ticket sponsorship, all children (K-12th grade) are permitted to attend any Symphony performance on Sundays for FREE with a paying adult. And it won’t break the bank for the adult to attend, either. Individual tickets start at just $14 and a season ticket for new subscribers is less than $7 per performance. Event place: Robinson Center Music Hall. For more information call 501-666-1761 ext. 100 or visit www. FAMILY NIGHT-FUN FAIR AT LAMAN LIBRARY October 9: Families will enjoy fall fair


October 12 thru 21: The Arkansas State Fair Museum would like to feature your special memories from the past. We are in need of Arkansas State Fair photos, awards, show programs, livestock show equipment, creative arts tools, old farm equipment and tools, concert posters and ticket stubs. For more information visit

stories and fair games. Event time: 6:45 p.m. until 7:45 p.m. For more information call 501-758-1720 or visit www. CREATION STATION AT LAMAN LIBRARY October 11 and 25: This activity is for children of all ages to enjoy making special crafts, so come join us the 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month from 4:15 p.m. until 5:15 p.m. For more information call 501-758-1720 or visit TERRIFYING TREATS October 12 and 26: Join us for a fun time in our Halloween Cooking Class starting at 4:30 p.m. where we will create edible horror creations. Call 501-918-3057 or visit to find out more. “SPOOKY” AT LAMAN LIBRARY October 13: Come to the William F. Laman Public Library Children’s Department for the release of “Spooky”, the newest CD from Brian and Terri Kinder! Brian and Terri Kinder will perform songs from the new CD and children will be invited to dress in costume and receive special “fall” treats. The event will take place in the auditorium of the William F. Laman Public Library. Free and open to the public. For more information call 501-758-1720 or visit YOUTH HOME DOVE TREE DECORATING October 13: Youth Home Dove Tree Decorating at Trinity United Methodist

Church (1101 North Mississippi, Little Rock) is in need of volunteers to help decorate small artificial Christmas trees to be used for our annual Christmas for Kids program. Volunteers of all ages are invited to help with this free event from 12 p.m. until 4 p.m. For more information contact Larry Betz at 501-821-5500 ext. 209. PAWS ON THE PAVEMENT October 13: This is a CARE’s Annual 5K Run/Walk event. It will take place at Wildwood Park for the Arts (20919 Denny Road, Little Rock). Event includes the following: 5K Run/Walk, 1-Mile ‘Paws on the Path’ Family & Pets Fun Run/Walk, Pet-friendly Vendors, and lots of activities for kids and pets. For more information visit DUCK DUCK GOOSE NORTH SALE October 18 thru 20: You don’t want to miss the DDG Children’s Consignment Event at the Little Rock Expo Center in Jacksonville. DDG presents a family consignment sale featuring lightly used children’s items at Bargain Prices! Arkansas moms who love bargains will delight in this family, treasure hunter’s dreamland as they find children’s clothing, baby equipment, furniture, toys, and even women’s clothing. Just in time for the cooler weather, it’s your one-stop shopping extravaganza for everything your child needs for the fall and winter seasons at unbelievable savings. Shop & save big bucks at the DDG’s October 20th’s “half-price sale day” on many items. Admission is FREE. Visit www. COSTUME CRUNCH October 20: Costume Crunch time ALL DAY. Last minute costumes to be created. Call 501-918-3057 or visit for more information. 13th ANNUAL GOLF CLASSIC October 22: This event will take place at the Chenal Country Club and will benefit Junior Achievement of Arkansas, Inc. Noon will be registration and lunch. 1p.m. will be shotgun start. 5:30 p.m. will be a 19th Hole Reception. For more information visit CALS PUMPKIN CRAVING October 27: Come join in on the fun of craving your own pumpkin starting at 2 p.m. Call 501-918-3057 or visit www. for more information. MUD RUN 2012 October 27: Here’s the Down & Dirty. Created for those who think a little differently about this runnin’ stuff. The Mud Run is definitely NOT your average 5K. The Mud Run is for the adventuresome spirit and is a family friendly race. Participants run, walk, skip, and even cavort through our 5Kish (please refer to the helpful hints section of the website for the clarification of “ish”) course, which winds through a scenic Little Rock Park. The event take place at Two Rivers Park from 9 a.m. until 10:30 a.m. Participants must overcome an “obstacle” or two along the way. Then finish with a spectacular frolic (but in most cases romp) through our world-


renowned 300 foot mud pit, which is filled with that amazing Arkansas mud. The point is not to finish fast but to finish with style. Visit for more information. ARKANSAS BAPTIST KINDERGARTEN PREVIEW October 29: We’ll be showcasing our K3, K4, & K5 programs starting at 6 p.m. at our Elementary Campus (62 Pleasant Valley Drive). “Students are encouraged to attend. Complimentary childcare available for siblings. Reserve your spot by October 26th, by calling 501-227-7077 ext. 355. All attendees get their new student application fee waived! Visit www. to find out more. BOYS & GIRLS CLUB PUMPKIN PATCH PLUNGE October 29: Dive into fall with the Jacksonville Boys & Girls Club. Children ages 5 to 12 are invited to the Community Center Pool to take the plunge for a chance to win toys, Splash Zone passes and more from 6 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. (date, time, and location subject to change). Admission to the fundraiser is $5. Register by calling 501-982-4171. BOO BASH October 30: Come shake a leg and wiggle your arms at our Boo Bash starting at 5:30 p.m. For more information call 501-918-3057 or visit

HIGH SCHOOL HOMECOMING GAME DATES: Bryant High School Beebe High School Cabot High School Searcy High School Joe T. Robinson Parkview High Oak Grove High Jacksonville High Conway High NLR High

October 1 October 5 October 5 October 5 October 5 October 11 October 12 October 13 October 19 October 19

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Rollin’ on the River Photos by Rachael Kimble


The annual Rollin’ on the River event was held recently at the Clinton Library. The event is a 5K run and a 2K family fun walk to benefit Easter Seals Arkansas and its numerous programs. Easter Seals provides services, training, screening, technical assistance and referral services to children and adults with disabilities across Arkansas. More than 1,000 people registered to participate in Rollin’ on the River raising over $100,000 for Easter Seals Arkansas.

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5 3

Ramsey’s Racers Butler Extreme Green Team (Peace, Love & Butler) 3. Haven’s Heros 4. Addison’s Crusaders 5. Charlie 6. 2K Family Walk & Bike Ride 7. Hannah Herring, Rachel Silaski, Anna Sandor 8. Photo Booth Fun 9. Carnival Games 10. Conley’s Angels 1. 2.









Teddy Bear Picnic 1

Photos by Rachael Kimble

Children were invited to bring their favorite Teddy Bear to the William F. Laman Library for a Teddy Bear Picnic. Guests enjoyed story time with their plush friends, as well as refreshments, crafts, face painting, playing in a bear cave, and acting out Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Children also had the opportunity to get a health screening for their bears with Mariyn, The Bear Doc. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Teddy Bear Picnic Guests Presley Phelan Deylan & Deyja Sarah Willard Faith Antoinette Tooms Thomas and Mariyn, the Bear Doc 7. Savannah & Bradley Pilkington 8. Aaron & Kailyn 9. Godilocks & the Three Bears: Thomas, Lamont, Gabrelle & Savannah 10. Chloe, Contantice, Thomas, Sarah & Liana 11. Becca & Miss Sarah 70 | savvy kids october 2012






7 11


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A r k A ns A s A r t s Ce n t e r Chil dr e n ’s t he At r e s e e i t o n s ta g e !

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Pay Wha t you Ca BLUE CROSSWORD Frida n y ,n

(Test your art smarts) tickets

ACROSS 1 Arabian Nights hero Baba 4 Wonderland’s Cheshire 5 Ark., Ala. and Atl. symphony orchestras (abbr.) 8 REP Artistic Director Robert 12 Baby Bear to Papa Bear 13 Dames at _______ 14 Do what Brutus did to Caesar 16 Amazing Technicolor Dream ______ 17 ____ Pinafore AdApted by Jon Klein 19 Stage design result from the booK by22 Lion King lyricist Rice 25 Hamlet portrayer Laurence deborAh And JAmes howe 26 Questioning utterance lyrics by Jon Klein 28 ___ Boheme 29 AAC Director Plummer music by chris Jeffries 31 Muppet sow’s French pronoun NYC musical On ____ ______ illustrAtion by dAvid 32 hohn 34 “… lady who lived in __ _____” 35 Babes in ____ Land

tickets: $12 PerformanCe timeS fri 7 Pm | Sat 3 Pm | Sun 2 Pm

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DOWN Play divisions A note to follow sol The Seven Year _____ What Oberon made of Bottom Martha in “… Virginia Woolf” Cat ___ __ Hot Tin Roof Wartime entertainment group Cause of princess sleep deprivation State Fair star Boone Scrooge interjections The players “I gotta be ___” Tim McGraw’s “Not __ ________ Too Soon”

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ov 2 , must be 7 pm purchase d at the aa tickets go C Box of on sale at 10 fice. Limit 6 tic am kets per family. Se november 2. ating is lim ite d. 9 8 10 11 2



13 15





19 20

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31 33

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21 _________ Call (resounding audience approval) 22 Oil can man of Oz 23 Shakespeare’s Henry ___, Part I 24 “O sole ____ …” 27 Response to a comedy 28 Camelot composers Lerner & _ _e_ _ 30 … Over the Cuckoo’s _____ 31 REP Artistic Associate Brad 33 Poetic form of although

presented by

9th & Commerce

Pumpkin Patch Plunge

FunDraiSer For The BoyS & GirlS CluB Monday, october 29th | 6-8:30 pm | $5 admission

Children ages 5 to 12 are invited to the Community Center pool to take the plunge for a chance to win toys, Splash Zone passes and more.

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Cruz Conrad turns two!


Photos by Jessica Johnson


Cruz Conrad celebrated his 2nd birthday with friends and family at his home. They bounced and played as they went bananas during Cruz’s monkey-themed birthday bash. Guests also munched on cake, cupcakes, cotton candy and popcorn! They also got their pictures taken with monkeys, Mattie and Tito! Knight’s Bakery in Cabot created the cake and cupcakes, and popcorn and bounce houses were provided by All Day Bounce and Play in Little Rock. The cotton candy was provided by Flossie’s in Hot Springs.




Cotton Candy by Flossie’s is Hot Springs Cake & Cupcakes by Knight’s Bakery in Cabot 3. Cruz Conrad 4. Jacie Hartman with Mattie the Monkey 5. Grant & Drew Greenway with Mattie 6. Pierce Rued, Pam Welch & Mattie 7. Keene Jones 8. Bounce House fun! 9. Olivia D’Angelo 10. “Wildman” Steve Wilson & Mattie 11. THV Evening Anchors, Dawn Scott, Matt Turner & Liz Massey with their kids. 1. 2.


6 7 8




Lexi Rowe turns four! 2

Photos by Rachael Kimble

Lexi Rowe celebrated her 4th birthday with her friends at Build-A-Bear Workshop in the Park Plaza Mall in Little Rock. Lexi and her guests started the party by picking an animal to build. Each child promised to love and care for their animals, and then filled them, cleaned them and played a few games. Next, Lexi and her friends gathered for a teddy bear picnic in the mall food court where they ate birthday cake and opened presents. Lexi’s cake was created by Community Bakery. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.




Lexi Rowe Lexi & Party Guests Cake by Community Bakery Josh, Maddie & Lexi Rowe Jett Scanlon & Lexi Rowe Building Bears Jack Bauer Audrey Rose Elaina Flakoll Lincoln Miller Lilly Bauer



72 | savvy kids october 2012






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Will Eaton turns one! Photos Submitted




William “Will” Eaton celebrated his 1st birthday with his friends and family during a cowboy themed party at his home. The kids enjoyed dressing up in their cowboy attire (cowboy hats and scarves) and taking pictures with the fake mustaches, and chomping on lasso ropes (Twizzlers). They also enjoyed playing on the stick horses and helping Will open and break in his birthday presents. Will especially enjoyed his smash cake by The Blue Cake Co. The party was designed by The Kendle Group.




1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.

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Sydney Faulkner turns one!



Photos by Jeremy Holstead

Sydney Faulkner celebrated her 1st birthday with friends and family at her home. Sydney’s family asked guests not to bring gifts. Instead, they held a Dimestore Diamonds jewelry show and proceeds from the sales went to Mamie’s Poppy Plates. Mamie’s Poppy Plates is a non-profit whose mission is to provide tangible mementos to families who suffer stillbirth or infant death. Sydney’s smash cake was created by Zara Wilkerson, and the party was planned by Amanda Sutherlin 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Sydney Faulkner Cake by Zara Wilkerson Party Decorations Refreshments Sydney with her Great Grandmother Eve Sydney & Carter

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Catholic High School Dedicates Field Photos by Nelson Chenault During the annual pre-season football pep rally at Catholic High School for Boys in Little Rock, students, faculty, alumni and friends took part in a dedication ceremony of the school’s new athletic field. The field was dedicated to Roy Davis, an individual the school says, “truly embodies the spirit of our school and honors their unparallel commitment to our athletic program. The pep rally also offered guests family-friendly activities, a cookout, and the chance to participate in Kick For Cash drawing. Monsignor Lawrence Frederick, CHS rector, offered a blessing of the field, and a ribboncutting followed.

Celebrate My Drive! Photos by Nick Hillemann A celebration event was hosted recently in North Little Rock for teens that are just learning to drive and those just getting their license. Hosted by State Farm agents Eric Andrews, Eric Hodson and James Kiddy, the event included a tailgate party and giveaways. The Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office provided interactive driving with “drunk goggles” and a driving course, a sobriety check point set up and a finger printing station. Various informational materials and parent-teen contracts were on hand for families. Community partners included the North Little Rock Mayor’s Youth Council, Mother’s Against Drunk Driving, and more.

76 | savvy kids october 2012


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Glow-in-the-Dark Slime Courtesy of Domestic Charm,

Your kids will love making glow-in-the-dark slime this Halloween! All it take to make this gooey concoction are and a few ingredients a little time. The directions are below, and you can find step-by-step instructions with pictures at Ingredients: 1 - 4oz bottle of clear or blue gel Elmer’s glue 1 cup of warm water 2-3 tablespoons of glow-in-the-dark paint Green Neon Food Coloring 2 teaspoons of Borax 1/3 cup of warm water Directions: First mix together the Elmer’s glue and the 1 cup of warm water. Stir in the paint and food coloring. In a separate small bowl mix together the 1/3 cup warm water and 2 teaspoons of borax. Stir until the borax is dissolved. Now add about 2 tablespoons of the borax solution to the glue solution. You WILL NOT use all of the borax solution. Stir continuously while adding the solution. The more borax solution you add the stiffer the slime will be. So if you want the slim to be more runny, then add less borax solution. You can add more green food coloring while stirring these solutions together to get your desired color of slime! It should start sticking together and you’ve got green glow-in-the-dark slime! This recipe can make 2 small half jar of slime or you could package a smaller amount of slime into favor baggies. You can find the Slime labels on the blog. TIPS: You can find glow-in-dark-paint at craft stores in the paint isles, and borax can be found at most grocery stores along side the laundry detergents. Also make sure to check the paint that you buy to see that it is safe to use for the project. This slime would not be suitable for small children who might put some in their mouth.

78 | savvy kids October 2012

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Savvy Kids October 2012  

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