Page 1

August 2010 *

august 2010 14



25 back to school tips


preparING for the act

* Commentary & Parenting

PUBLISHer’s NOTE: A Personal Perspective on Obesity


DEAR TEACHER: Ready for the Start of a New School Year?


MOMMY MAGIC : Using Economic Situations As Teachable Moments


ask a teen: I Wish That...



NEWS YOU CAN USE: Local News and Highlights


Green savings: Back to Savings


* Around Town

ARTS & ENRICHMENT: Making the Investment in After School Activities


PROFILE: New Vaccination Guidelines



FEATURE: Growing Pains - Are We Feeding Our Children to Obesity?


special needs awareness: The Road to Special Education


exceptional child: Easing Back to School Jitters for Kids with Autism



arts & enrichment guide


Childcare & education directory


open house guide






Fun & Wacky calendar


Ask the Staff:


What was your favorite way to stay active as a child?

new riders

Tennis and playing neighborhood games like kick the can

Hopscotch (when I was younger) and rollerblading

K at i e Pfier











e ip

h e at h e r




Swimming and gymnastics

easing back to school jitters








Riding my bike


Child l a n o i E x ce p t

Riding my bike

jennica za



co mm en tary & paren t in g


Publisher’s Note

A Personal Perspective on Obesity Publisher & President of Sales & Business Development Mary Wynne Cox

Associate Publisher & Editor-in-Chief Lynette Rowland

Art Direction & DESIGN Heather Lipe

director of MARKETING & business development Katie Pfierman

SALES AND Business Development Jennica Zalewski


Public Relations and Advertising Coordinator Erin Tulley

ACCOUNTANT Roxanne Burns

Encouraging a Healthy Relationship with Food and Fitness Obesity is a problem—it has been for generations. Now, it’s front and center while being linked to diabetes, high blood pressure and other degenerative diseases. On a plus, however, our culture is becoming more wellness-oriented and conscious about fitness and high-performance in sports, healthy eating and managing stressors of everyday life. If education is key to weight management, the above criteria for a healthy lifestyle might help your family connect on a deeper level. Working together to find a variety of fruits and veggies (and protein) that everyone likes— along with exercise plans that everyone can participate in— will not only increase everyone’s health factor, but help your family communicate more effectively. The key to successful healthy meals is having a support system and by keeping your family involved in the menu planning, eating at regular intervals to prevent overeating and keeping an open line of communication will help everyone now and in the future. Setting good examples, such as refusing to buy high fat, high sugar snacks and instead keeping a bowl of apples on the kitchen counter or

cut-up celery and carrot sticks in the refrigerator, will prevent everyone from reaching for poor food choices. I know that managing a proper diet and making time for exercise isn’t always easy. On a personal level, I myself have struggled with dieting. Though I think “letting go” is a character flaw in myself, I find that a greater flaw would be not accepting myself as a worthy person. I often write in my list of New Year’s Resolutions that Weight Watchers is the place for me—and it is. I like the fact that the modern plan includes indulging every now and then on pizza—just count the points and plan your day to allot for it. I see some fast food chains trying to help people like me by offering real fruit smoothies and yogurt to satisfy that fast food fix. They offer fruits, salads, cottage cheese, frozen low-fat yogurt—even at drive-thru windows. If the options are readily available, it makes healthy-eating much easier for busy families. Of course, everyone knows that a healthy diet is just one part of the complex plan to stay fit. The Y’s are offering every kind of fitness activity you could ever

be interested in, including water aerobics, Pilates and yoga. Their fitness centers have trainers who will guide you to the right workout stations and encourage you to stick with it. Remember what I said about a support system? The Y offers support, plus all services are available at the Y for a reasonable family or single membership. The caution every parent (or friend) must take in trying to support someone who is making healthy diet choices is to make certain that, in doing so, they help their children to maintain a positive self-image. Some dieters see their weight as so gross that the extremes they will go to lose weight leads them to methods that can be physically harmful— even deadly. Eating disorders are hard to treat because most sufferers see themselves as “fat” and “unworthy.” It’s a mental impression of themselves that those around them are unable to understand. The fact of the matter is that no one is unworthy of being healthy and supporting your children (and family) in their effort to lose weight or remain healthy must absolutely be a positive one. You, as a parent, are the direct line to encouraging a healthy self-image and positive

relationship with food. As always, and setting examples are the only a doctor should be a mentor to way to ensure that your child has a healthy relationship with food and those who are truly obese. exercise. By doing so now, you’re One practice that Weight truly shaping how they will react Watchers has that was always to both in the future as adults. helpful to me was to write down what you eat and how much. We all want what is best for our Some call it the “Bite it-write children. Encouraging them to it” mantra. This habit makes you do their personal best, providing more responsible for the choices mutual cooperation, tenderyou make. Seeing yourself on loving care and participating paper is far more apt to make you ourselves to encourage their understand that “you are what you success will shape their lives in eat.” I know first hand—food has ways beyond measure. Please send always affected my mood changes me your weight loss success stories and given me a boost from one so we can share them with readers activity to the next. But I also next month. Your success can be acknowledge that putting your an inspiration to others. fork down and chewing slowly to enjoy your food is also a good In the meantime, remember to pack healthy fruits, veggies and habit to acquire. proteins in your child’s lunch box, Weight management is a good work together to come up with thing, but the most important new opportunities to fix healthy person to acknowledge it is meals and enjoy a happy dinner the person who needs to lose hour and special time to listen to weight. Loving parents must your children talk about school, encourage healthy eating as often their classes and friends. Having as possible, set a good example your child go to bed nourished and allow the child to come and loved is bound to produce a to their own acceptance of the more productive student now and situation. By reacting negatively, a healthier adult in the future. controlling what only one child eats, not setting a good example or singling them out you will do -Mary Wynne Cox more detriment than good. A positive attitude, communication


ON THE COVER Journie Talley, Age 11 Lucia Talley, Age 4 COVER PHOTOGRAPHY Angela R. Talley

Cincinnati Parent 9435 Waterstone Blvd, Suite 140 Cincinnati, OH 45249 513.444.2015 (ph) 513.444.2099 (fx) Copyright: Cincinnati Parent Magazine is published monthly. Copyright 2008 by Cincinnati Parent and Midwest Parenting Publications, LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited. Distribution of this magazine does not constitute an endorsement of products, commentary or services herein. For information on subscriptions, editorial guidelines, advertising rates and more visit www.




news you can use

Community Montessori School to Open in West Chester At the site of the former Discovery Center on Cincinnati-Dayton Road in Olde West Chester, Community Montessori School will open for the 2010-2011 school year to serve students ages three to six. West Chester native and owner, Jamie Minniear, founded the school as a way to make Montessori education more affordable and accessible to the community.

Local Girl Celebrates Birthday by Giving When Rachel Heis of Anderson Township celebrated her birthday, she decided it would be more fun to give away gifts than get them. Rachel invited her 11 birthday party guests to bring gifts for the Stepping Stones Center day camp for children with disabilities. “I already have a lot of stuff in my room. I don’t need any more,” Rachel said. Her birthday gifts included crayons, markers, bubble blowers, construction paper, glue, scissors, sidewalk chalk, notebooks, and pens and pencils of all colors. Rachel and her mom, Aimee Heis, presented the arts and crafts supplies in a huge birthday box and an overstuffed red tote. The gifts were part of Rachel’s 9 ½ birthday. Her real


birthday is on Dec. 20, so she celebrates her half birthday on June 20 each year. “This is such a great gift for our campers,” said Camp Director Amanda Kay. “These are the things we always need.” The other “always” need is volunteers, but Rachel has to wait a few years for that. Volunteers must be 13. Stepping Stones Center operates Greater Cincinnati’s oldest camp for children with disabilities. The camp serves 168 children daily in the summer. Stepping Stones is a United Way partner agency serving close to 1,000 children and adults annually in year-round and summer programs at two locations: Stepping Stones Given on Given Road in Indian Hill and Stepping Stones Allyn at Camp Allyn in Batavia.

“I opened the school because I have a heart for children, and there’s nothing more fulf illing than seeing a child learn and develop a love for learning,” said Minniear. “Plus, it’s so rewarding to cultivate community among the children and their families.” Minniear is an advocate for children and passionate about the power of Montessori education. She honors the foundational Montessori beliefs and has a heart for teaching parents about the wonderful philosophy of Maria Montessori. Its mission is to provide quality Montessori education in an environment which fosters a child’s love of learning and

respect for self, others, community and the world. Students will learn foundational academics, independence, cooperation, and a responsibility to school, family, themselves and their community at large. “Maria Montessori believed children were born to learn, and at Community Montessori we provide an environment for children to progress intellectually while also learning important social skills,” said Minniear, noting that she has seen her own children develop a strong sense of self and respect for others through Montessori education. “I would love to talk with interested parents about how CMS can provide their children a wonderful place to learn, make friends, build conf idence and develop their academic skills in a supportive, peaceful environment.” Bringing more than a decade of teaching experience, Minniear holds an Elementar y Education degree from the University of Cincinnati and Montessori Certif ication from the Greater Cincinnati Center for Montessori Education. To learn more about Community Montessori School, visit


Co mm en tary & Paren t in g


dear teacher

Ready for the Start of a New School Year? Advice from Teachers to Make Education Easier

Do Combined Classes Truly Work for Most Students? Question: With cut-backs occurring in the amount of dollars spent on education in our state, my third grader is going to be in a combined class with second graders. He was specially selected for this class. It will only have 24 students while the regular third grade will have 30 students. I’m wondering about how well he’ll be able to achieve in this class. - Divided Class

Answer: The research seems to show that children achieve at about the same levels in combined classes as in single grade classes. This may be because the children, like your son, are often selected for these classes because of their ability to work independently, motivate themselves, behave appropriately, and interact agreeably with others. Some benefits to combined classes may include a greater development of social skills, more cooperation between classmates, and enhanced leadership skills for the older students. Younger students can benefit from having older students to model. Parents are often concerned about the amount of individual time their children will receive from the teacher. This is usually the same as in a single grade class as it is based primarily on class size. Furthermore, combined classes are usually smaller. The success of a combined class depends greatly on the ability of individual teachers to handle this type of class. It is obviously more work with two curriculums to be covered.

Parents: Everyone always talks about getting kids ready to go back to school. Now is the time to think about areas that presented continuous problems last year. Consider your answers to these questions:


Was homework a constant battle in your home?

2. Was every morning a picture of total pandemonium in getting the children off to school?

3. Did extracurricular activities cause academic or family problems?

The most successful teachers combine the teaching of as many subjects as possible with extension assignments for the upper grade. At this level, it works especially well with language arts and math. Social studies and science are often taught separately except for common themes. In a well-thought out program involving the careful selection of students and teachers, combined classes can work well. This is not to say the picture is completely rosy. When teachers teach in a back and forth fashion, each level may not receive sufficient instructional time to learn a subject. When children are not selected carefully, the classes may have students with extremely different academic needs and quite disruptive behavior.

4. Were before- or after-school arrangements satisfactory? 5. Was

money for lunch, supplies, and school trips handled satisfactorily for everyone?


Did TV viewing interfere with school work or family life?


Were your children reluctant to talk about what was happening at school?

Decide now before school starts, what problem or problems truly interfered with the overall happiness and functioning of your family life. Be sure to ask your children what areas were trouble spots. Work together to resolve these problems. No matter how prepared children and parents are for the new school year, it is often a stressful time with children anxious about the new transitions that they face. Try to clear your own schedule so it will be easier to help your children at this time. Postpone business trips, volunteer meetings, and extra projects as much as possible. It’s also helpful to freeze a few easy dinners so meal preparation does not add to household tension at this time.

Major School Illnesses Question: What are the main illnesses causing children to miss school? How can they be prevented? – Health Conscious Answer: Large groups of children are breeding grounds for the organisms that cause illnesses. After the first few years of school, children’s immunity improves. Here are the top illnesses that keep kids home from school: Colds – young children have 6 to 10 a year Stomach flu – second most common ailment Ear infection – most common before 5 years of age

Pushing Reading Too Soon Question: Where we live, it has now become the norm that children must know how to read simple stories when they enter kindergarten. Is this expectation a reasonable one? - Questioning Answer: Reading is much like walking and talking. Every child will have his or her own timetable. Of course, early instruction will result in some learning to read. Unfortunately, there are a great number of children who aren’t ready to take this step. Many countries delay reading instruction until children are 7. Expecting all entering kindergartners to read is not reasonable and sets children up for an early failure in school. 8 CINCINNATI PARENT * AUGUST 2010

Pink eye – can be highly contagious Sore throat – only a small number are the result of strep throat The single best way to prevent illnesses is to have children wash their hands frequently. Parents should send questions and comments to Peggy Gisler and Marge Eberts at dearteacher@ or ask them on the columnists’ Web site at

A ro u nd town


arts & enrichment

Making the Investment in After School Activities Local Options Provide a Creative Outlet for Varying Interests

Programs abound for parents looking for extracurricular activities for their child albeit afterschool or evenings. Parents are left to decide which program will best f it their schedule, pocketbook and keep their child interested while they are not in school.

Find a balance before you book According to a national survey of nearly 30,000 households conducted for the Afterschool Alliance and sponsored by the JCPenney Afterschool Fund, the number of children left alone after school has risen to 15.1 million, 800,000 more than were left alone in 2004. In the United States, 8.4 million children now participate in afterschool programs, which have grown in popularity over the last f ive years. Tried and true programming from organizations like the Urban League, Cincinnati Recreation Commission and YMCA are in high demand as they provide on-site

afterschool care or transportation to and from schools to their facility. These programs require monthly tuitions and membership fees that may outweigh the thought of children home alone. These organizations work diligently to seek grants in order to provide before and after school care for the Cincinnati population. The gap between the time schools let out at 2 p.m. or 3 p.m. and the time most full-time employed parents get home at 6 p.m. or 7 p.m. add up to 15 to 25 hours a week. That is a lot of time that can be spent getting exercise, making friends, learning new skills, helping others and staying busy. Most Cincinnati area public schools work independently with organizations they feel best f it their needs for before and after school programming. Contact your area public school to discover what they offer for before and afterschool care.

Programs near you At the Kinder Garden School in West Chester there is a little bit of everything from offering Montessori or traditional preschool programs to summer day camp f ield trips. “Parents love our after school programming. Our before and after school teacher is also our kindergarten and f irst grade teacher. She understands and exceeds fulf illing the content standards issued by Ohio Department of Education,” said Director, Trudi Simpson, who also suggested signing up soon because the off icial kindergarten and preschool school year starts August 23. The offerings at Kumon Math and Reading Center are usually sought out by parents needing help with their children for remedial or enrichment purposes. “Parents soon learn that the benef its of the program extend beyond academics. At Kumon, students gain the skills to be the best person he or she can be. The life skills they learn build character and help them gain the conf idence to solve problems independently,” said Rasheda Williams, regional public relations representative for Kumon. “Kumon is a year around program offering math and reading from preschool through high school. Financial aid is available at some centers and there are not registration deadlines because we are a year-round program. Students usually visit the center twice a week and complete home-based assignments on the other f ive days.” 10 CINCINNATI PARENT * AUGUST 2010

The Cincinnati Recreation Commission offers programs at the Clifton Center that allows students to participate in age-appropriate activities. “The Clifton Afterschool Day Camp offer classes in arts, sports and skill development including special events and guest artist series for ages f ive to 12 years old. Since the program continues until 6:00 p.m., some parents also have memberships and enroll in evening classes offered at the center,” said Bunny Arszman, communications manager with Cincinnati Recreation Commission. “Choices in classes vary from clay hand-building pottery, gardening, f loor hockey and f lag football. The parents and children love the opportunity to choose a specif ic class and enjoy the chance to display artwork at the center or play and compete in local tournaments.” Clifton Afterschool Day Camp keeps registration open until at full capacity, but most neighbors sign up before the end of July, early August.

Time for family Even without knowing how many schedules are being juggled or the priority of spiritual growth and community outreach have in your home, f itting in extracurricular activities for your children has to be handled with care and without jeopardizing your family’s mission. Mom and Dad should participate in activities, as well. This keeps the family wellrounded, parents energized for teaching opportunities including f irst-hand time management skills and keeping children humble and respectful of others. When little sister has attended 50 baseball games, her older brother shouldn’t be excused from her ballet gala to watch the latest Phineas and Ferb cartoon. Supporting each other and their interests will foster a team spirit not found on any f ield, pool, studio or diamond. What a f ine line we walk when it comes to exploring the possibilities for our children. When they do not know where their passion lies, we dabble and explore in programs and activities in order to spark an interest and keep them busy. Nikki Keever is a freelance writer, wife and mother of three living in Noblesville, Indiana. She can be reached at CINCINNATIPARENT.COM 11

Afterschool and Club Activities There literally is something for everyone when it comes to hobbies and interests for children. Finding the right match for your schedule and budget is the trick. Lil Kickers gets children interested in soccer and engages them in full body exercise at an early age. Lil’ Kickers is a non-competitive, introductory soccer and movement skills program for boys and girls ages 18 months to nine years. In Lil’ Kickers, they don’t just teach soccer to kids, but also use soccer as a tool to teach kids life lessons. At the Jewish Discovery Center in Mason, children are learning to read Hebrew and Hebrew traditions. “We offer interactive programs providing a joyous experience of Jewish history, traditions and positive deeds that affect positive change in the world around us,” said Rabbi Yosef Kalmanson. “We only take a limited number of students so as soon as the slots are filled we start a wait list.” Lakota Sports Organization (LSO) is a non-profit organization which seeks to serve the lives of the families of the Lakota School District and surrounding areas through youth athletic programs. “Parents must like us because we have been serving the area for over thirty years and this year we have projected to serve 5,000 registrants and over 750 coaches,” said Jason Leyda, LSO president. “Our most popular sports are spring baseball and fall soccer. We also offer softball and flag football. Unfortunately, August is past our fall registration deadline, but mark your calendar for spring registration in December.”


What is too much for your child?

enough time for family activities, as well.

According to the Child Development Institute, it’s common for parents to be a little confused when it comes to deciding how much is too much with reference to afterschool activities.

As social pressure and stress begins to build, beware of the homework demon. Your child will need more time with his studies—balancing schoolwork with other activities is very important.

Kindergarten thru Grade 2: You child’s afterschool life should be simple and carefree. One or two classes per week are enough at the beginning of their interest for the activity. Even now, the child is still too young to worry about winning and losing. After the rigors of a full day at school, he needs a healthy outlet for pent up energy which can include play dates at the park.

Middle School: If you haven’t done so already, steer your child away from TV. Get them engaged in activities that reinforce learning. Academic performance can be improved by encouraging your preteen to join clubs like the Girl/Boy Scouts, language clubs, chess clubs and so on. As a rule, 16 to 20 hours a week of extra activity should be more than enough, but look for signs of burnout.

In recent years, organized sports programs have reached to younger athletes and created ways for them to participate in traditional sports, only five-year-old-friendly. Flag football programs are f lourishing and tee ball, even for three-year-olds, is popular where these sports weren’t introduced until later years.

Gr ade 3 thru Grade 5: Socialization takes center stage. Team sports are a good choice to develop motor skills; painting and drawing are good, too. Let them explore areas of interest, but keep

Arts & Enrichment Guide Cooking

Young Chefs Academy Address: 6649 Western Row, Mason, OH 45040 Phone: 513-770-4267 Email: youngchefsacademy@ www.youngchefsacademy. com/cincinnati A cooking school for kids ages 3-18! Join YCA in the kitchen for loads of cooking fun at summer camps, weekly membership classes, field trips, scout outings, special events and hands-on cooking birthday parties. You supply the Chefs! We supply the rest! Keep on cookin!


Baldwin Music Education Center 3799 Hyde Park Ave/Hyde Park, Cincinnati, OH 45209 Contact: Rachel Kramer Phone: 351-1109 Fax: 351-3934 Email: rachelkramer@ Keyboard-based group music programs for ages 6-months to 4-years. Piano classes ages 5 and up. Specially designed curriculum taught by trained, degreed music educators. Family discounts, convenient location.

Center for the Arts, Wyoming 322 Wyoming Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45215 Phone: 948-1900 FREE EVENTS 9/12, Noon-4!

Miss Amanda’s Music Garden Classes held at 3766 Clifton Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45220 Contact: Amanda O’Bannon Phone: 513-221-SING(7464) Email:

flute, drums, harp, trumpet and steel drums. Also offers nationally acclaimed Music for Young Children, a group keyboard curriculum for ages 5 and up, and Music Pups, a music and movement class for birth to 4. Call for FREE trial class.

Classes in Music, Art & Dance, including private lessons in Violin, Viola, Cello, Bass, Piano, Harp, Guitar, Drums, Voice & Musik Kids programs. Over 40 conservatory trained music teachers with many years of experience! For information visit:

Nurture your playful, tuneful and confident child, while laying the foundation for musical literacy. Centrally located in Clifton and five minutes from the Zoo, this awardwinning local program offers Musikgarten to babies, todders and preschoolers. Open House is Saturday morning, September 11th. Please call to register!

Cincinnati Children’s Choir University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Cincinnati, OH 45221-0236 Contact: Robyn Lana Phone: (513) 556-0338 Email: choir@

Piano Lessons In Your Home 5513-860-3540 cincinnati@

Cincinnati Playhouse In The Park P.O. Box 6537, Cincinnati, OH 45206-0537 Contact: Mark Lutwak Phone: 513-345-2242 Email: mark.lutwak@

Auditions for singers in grades 2 - 12 will be held in July and September. No preparation required. The award winning Cincinnati Children’s Choir is an educationally based choral program that offers children of all backgrounds the opportunity to experience musical excellence in a creative environment.

Piano, Voice and Guitar Lessons in Your Home -Learn to play piano, guitar or receive voice lessons in the comfort of your home. PLYH offers highly qualified teachers, flexible schedules, optional recitals, and a lending library. Serving students ages 4 to adult from Lebanon, Ohio to Northern Kentucky.

West chester academy of music 8374 Princeton Glendale Rd, West Chester, OH 45069 (513)829-2345 Quality private lessons in piano, voice, guitar, violin, cello, clarinet, saxophone,


Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45212 Contact: Pam Bowers Phone: (513)-396-5578 Email: pbowers@ Our program uses a nationally recognized approach that identif ies each person’s learning style allowing us to design a program to f it individual needs. Students use proven techniques, activities, and math manipulatives to increase understanding. In reading, students experience an increase in their comprehension and vocabulary. Grades 2-12.

EXPRESS YOURSELF! Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park offers acting and drama classes for toddlers, children, teens and adults at multiple locations. Call 513/421.3888 for information and registration or visit www.


Drake Planetarium & Science Center Reading & Math Tutoring, Lego Engineering 2020 Sherman


g n w gr s a n p n to


ildre h C r u O ing

? Y T I S E B O

Fe Are We

Startling Statistics Demand Action

Americans are growing heavier and less healthy at alarming rates. Obesity and its effects are quickly gaining on smoking as the number one preventable cause of death in the country. Worse, the problem is not just affecting adults. In the last thirty years, the problem has grown to epidemic proportions for our nation’s children, as well.


No one can deny that childhood obesity in America is a problem that can no longer be ignored. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, results from the 2007-2008 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), using measured heights and weights, indicate that an average of 17% of children and adolescents ages 2-19 years are obese. Worse, health officials are increasingly alarmed because the numbers are on the rise. Among pre-school age children 2-5 years of age, obesity has doubled (from 5 to 10.4%) over the past thirty years and tripled (from 6.5 to 19.6%) among 6-11 year olds. Among adolescents aged 12-19, obesity incidence has nearly quadrupled, increasing from 5 to 18.1% during the same period.

Obesity Defined There is a difference between being overweight and being obese. Body mass index (BMI) is the most common measure used to determine overweight and obesity. BMI is a measure of weight in relation to height that is used to determine weight status. Children (2-19 years of age) may be considered extremely overweight if they have a BMI greater than or equal to the 95th percentile, based on gender and age specif ic charts. If the BMI is equal to or greater than the 85th percentile, the child is considered overweight. Unfortunately, however, being overweight can often lead to obesity. Obese children and adolescents are more likely to become obese as adults. For example, one study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that approximately 80 % of children who were overweight at aged 10–15 years were obese adults by age 25. Another study found that 25% of obese adults were overweight as children.

What Are The Risks? In Ohio, childhood obesity is unquestionably a major problem. A 2009 study ranked Ohio the sixth most obese state in the nation with 28.4% of the population falling into the obese category. Worse, over 30% of Ohio’s children ages 10-17 had a BMI that placed them in the obese category. These children may be facing serious health problems not just later in life, but in their immediate future.

i nc r e a s i n g f r u it a nd vegetable consumption and decreasing consumption of high calorie foods, especially sugar-sweetened beverages. In fact, one recent study conducted by Harvard University found that drinking just one 12-ounce can of sugared soda a day for one year can pack on as much as 15 extra pounds. Because the drinks are so high in calories yet lacking in solid sustenance, they provide a temporar y burst of energ y and feeling of fullness that leaves one dissatisf ied later, often leading to binging when the short-lived energy burst subsides. Frequently dining out is another behavioral factor that can lead to overeating. It’s no secret that restaurants offer proportions that encourage gluttony, piling high the cheaper more fattening ingredients such as pasta and sauces and offering “super-size” and larger portions. People believe they are getting more for their money, but in reality, they are simply over-indulging. Leading a sedentary lifestyle is increasingly becoming a factor in the obesity dilemma. Children spend an inordinate amount of time staring at screens. From video games and television to computers and telephones, kids are logging several hours ever y week developing their hand-eye coordination, but little else. Several studies have found a positive association between the time spent with media, especially viewing television, and increased prevalence of obesity in children. One study in particular revealed that youth ages 8-18 spend an average 7 ½ hours a day on with media. That’s 7 ½ hours that displaces time they could be spending in physical activities.

“Among children today, obesity is causing a broad range of health problems that previously weren’t seen until adulthood,” says Tim Harms of the American Heart Association. “These include high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and elevated blood cholesterol levels. There are also psychological effects. Obese children are more prone to low self-esteem, negative body image and depression. And excess weight at young ages has been linked to higher and earlier death rates in adulthood.”

Are we feeding our kids to obesity? There are many contributing factors to the obesity problem of our children. While it’s true that some children may be genetically predisposed to being overweight, the majority of childhood obesity cases are caused by behavioral and environmental factors.

Behavioral Factors Behavioral factors such as a high-calorie food supply and minimal physical activity can lead to energ y imbalance, thereby leading to obesity. The United States Department of Agriculture recommends CINCINNATIPARENT.COM 15

With childhood obesity reaching an all-time high, making healthy choices [at home] is vital for our future’s health.

—Jenni Kerrigan of the American Dairy Council

Unfortunately, over half of that 7 ½ hours is spent watching television, not only keeping kids sedentary, but exposing them to a barrage of food advertisements that inf luence them to make unhealthy food choices. Each year, billions of dollars are spent on youth-based marketing. In fact, one recent study noted that 85% of children tested actually preferred the taste of products that advertised using popular cartoon characters, regardless of the product.

Environmental Factors Family life shapes the way children view food, health and physical activity, and is mainly instrumental in shaping a child’s lifestyle. Parents are the role models and children usually develop similar eating habits. “Teaching children about being physically active and how to make smart food choices are habits they will carry with them for the rest of their lives,” says Jenni Kerrigan of the American Dairy Council. “With childhood obesity reaching an all-time high, making healthy choices [at home] is vital for our future’s health.” Schools, child care and community environments can also affect a child’s weight. For example, living in an area where healthy food options are not readily available or where it is either not safe or not feasible (no sidewalks, no parks, etc.) to get out and exercise can lead to more sedentary and unhealthy choices. In addition, taunting and ostracizing overweight individuals by peers and other members of the community will naturally lead to more

unhealthy habits. “Children and adolescents are particularly vulnerable to teasing and social isolation during their formative years,” says Dr. Eric Kirkendall of the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. “This can set destructive patterns for the rest of their lives.”

Finding Nutrition Solutions Families do not have to battle the childhood obesity problem alone. Fortunately for parents and children, there are many resources available in Cincinnati as well as on national levels to both combat and prevent this growing epidemic. Do Right! Cincinnati (, a program created by the Center for Closing the Health Gap in Greater Cincinnati, has a mission to “empower communities to improve nutrition and increase physical activity.” The program features three parts: Eat Right!, Move Right! and Do Right! Each section of the program is clearly defined and includes helpful tips, suggestions and resources. Since October 2009, Winton Hills Medical and Health Center, Incorporated (WinMed) has participated in Healthy Kids Ohio: Greater Cincinnati Pilot Learning Collaborative. “Healthy Kids Ohio is a primary care practice improvement collaborative created to assist practitioners in responding effectively to the epidemic of childhood obesity in Ohio,” says CEO of WinMed Marian Crenshaw. WinMed conducts screenings and provides families with information on obesity prevention and a healthy eating plan. “The diet was designed by the nutritionist at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and is provided by Healthy Kids Ohio. Children needing more intense management or who have obesity complications are referred to specialists at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.” Cincinnati Children’s Hospital HealthWorks! is a family-based program for youth ages 5 to 19 who are overweight. HealthWorks! is not a diet program, but rather uses a variety of methods to help overweight children and their families improve their eating habits and become more physically active. Children are evaluated by a physician and counseled by a nutritionist to establish healthy eating patterns and lower caloric intake. Group exercise sessions are offered by age group (5-10 years and 11-19), Monday through Friday evenings. More information on the program is available at or by calling 513-636-4305. The Ohio Action for Healthy Kids team is “dedicated to improving the health and educational performance of Ohio’s children by promoting healthy school environments that offer sound nutrition and adequate opportunities for physical activity.” Over 25 state organizations including education, fitness, nutrition and health experts collaborated to address the role schools should play in responding to Ohio’s child health crisis with three goals in mind: to expand Ohio schools’ participation in the USDA School Breakfast Program, to ensure healthy snacks and foods are available in vending machines and school stores, and to ensure children have access to quality co-curricular physical activity programs, inside and outside the school day. More information is available at On the national level, the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition (www. has a mission to “engage, educate and empower all Americans across the lifespan to adopt a healthy lifestyle that includes regular physical activity and good nutrition.” The Council is made up of 25 volunteer citizens who advise the President through the Secretary of Health and America and promote healthy lifestyles through fitness, sports and nutrition programs and initiatives that engage Americans of all ages. Tips, guidelines and numerous resources are available on the Web site.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers a plethora of resources, research and information for parents and children striving to achieve a healthier lifestyle. Rather than dieting, a balance of nutrition and exercise is recommended, as well as encouraging healthy eating habits by providing plenty of vegetables, fruits, and whole-grain products, limiting sugar and fat intake and serving smaller portions. More information is available at The American Heart Association is very involved in fighting childhood obesity in Ohio and across the U.S. Earlier this year, the AHA announced an aggressive 10-year impact goal to improve the cardiovascular health of all Americans by 20 percent while reducing deaths from cardiovascular disease and stroke by 20 percent. “To accomplish this goal, much of our work will be preventative, including with our youngest generation, helping and encouraging them to develop healthy eating, activity and other lifestyle habits that will help them avoid obesity and the many long-term health risks associated with it,” says AHA Communications Director Tim Harms. The AHA is fighting this battle on many fronts including encouraging kids to get at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise per day, and encouraging healthy eating habits. “We’re also involved at the state and federal level on a variety of legislative issues that affect kids’ health,” says Harms. “For example, this fall Congress will be working on the re-authorization of the Child Nutrition Act, which was originally passed in 1965 and requires reauthorization every five years. The American Heart Association is encouraging Congress to strengthen the law by implementing changes including restricting the junk food sold in cafeterias, snack shops and vending machines by including the Child Nutrition Promotion and School Lunch Protection Act, strengthening local wellness policies that establish the nutrition and physical activity goals of school districts by including the NEW Schools Act and the HELP Schools Act, and increasing funding for the school meal programs to help improve nutrition standards.” Information on these activities and much more is available at Combating youth-based marketing will be a hard-fought battle, but fortunately, many children’s programs and networks are taking up the challenge. Sesame Street, for example has stepped up their health education content in the last couple of years. Even Cookie Monster is learning to eat healthier snacks. In addition, popular children’s networks the Disney Channel and

Nickelodeon are increasing programming that encourages kids to get moving and eat healthy food. In the end, controlling your home environment by not bringing unhealthy foods into the house and spending more time moving rather than sitting idle are key to getting kids to choose a healthier lifestyle. Choose farmer’s markets (find local markets at, or instead of ice cream shops and opt for a family walk over family movie night. In addition, we have to work together as a society including healthcare workers, schools, government, religious organizations and neighborhoods in order to truly impact the childhood obesity epidemic. Rebecca Todd is a freelance writer and author of the book “What’s the Point? -- Looking for Logic in Modern America.”


Co mm en tary & Paren t in g


mommy magic

Using Economic Situations As Teachable Moments Teaching the Value of Money and Giving

For a while, “disposable” living was made pretty easy for us moms and many of

carve out some t ime w it h us gave little thought to saying “yes” to all the “affordable” items in the $1 bins your kids to at Target, Wal-Mart or wherever we were doing errands that day. brainstorm and put pen to paper and make a plan video game, cell phone, iPod and so As a mom of three children, I have to admit, one good thing about being on it is easy for a parent to get caught together! Some ideas to help you get in a challenging economic time is up in the “Yes” game. It is, however, stared include: actually saying “No” to my kids and NOT a game, but a reality—the meaning it! Let’s face it, times are reality of teaching our children what 1. Teaching Your Kids tough for majority of people right is important and how to identify it and that Money Does NOT Grow on Trees now, especially if you have kids—not define its place in the family unit. to mention multiple kids. For a while, “disposable” living was made pretty easy for us moms and many of us gave little thought to saying “yes” to all the “affordable” items in the $1 bins at Target, Wal-Mart or wherever we were doing errands that day. After all, it was only a couple of bucks. The problem with that mentality, over time, is twofold. First, saying yes all the time to “stuff ” is not a great learning tool for our children. Secondly, and as important, a few bucks each time adds up. No huge surprise there, but when everybody has the newest and latest


With that, I see our current economic climate as an opportunity for moms to get back, refocus or even define for the first time, their family’s core values. What we as moms will find in this process is that our family doesn’t need or miss all of the material belongings. Instead, by saying “No” to our children will only open discussion for what, as a family, we truly value—each other! If you are looking for ways to redefine your family’s core values, now is the perfect time. Start by sitting down,

it will be a cinch! Consider discovering purchasing stuff and spend that time your own city or state by planning a “doing things” together. For instance, family “StayCation” next vacation. we play more board games as a family now, we have movie nights or bingo 3. Teaching Your nights. We go on family bike rides Kids the Importance or have picnics in our yard. Saying of Giving Back “No” to stuff only gave us license to Teaching Moments: Selecting a Family say “Yes” to slowing down and really enjoying each other as a family. “Cause” To Support

Tips: Discuss and research, as a family, what cause(s) mean something to your Teaching Moments: Instilling Work family. Select one to focus on and support as a family. Plug into the cause Ethic in Kids and its scheduled events that support Tips: Selling Lemonade or Snow your family’s core values (i.e. Annual Cones, Annual Family Garage or Run/Walk, Food Drive, Auction.) Room Sale, Earning an Allowance, We did this very thing last Spring. We etc. decide, as a family, to stop accumulating 2. Teaching Your Kids more “stuff ” and enjoy each other by to Define Core Values having more family experiences. With Teaching Moments: Defining (with that, we had a family garage sale. Each of my kids helped sort through their your kids) Your Family Core Values items and decided what to sell. After Tips: If traveling and sharing new purging 10 years of toys and kids clothes experiences are defined as a family core that had somehow stacked itself up in value through this process, then redefining our “bonus” room, we vowed to stop

Regardless of your kids ages, it is never too early to sit down and communicate as a family. After all, making a family plan, listing your core values and working together to stay on track only keeps a family close and on the same page. Rather than looking at our current economic climate as a stretch, use it as a learning opportunity for your kids and your family. It will only make your family unit stronger, more aware and confident in the long run. Mary Susan Buhner is a Life Coach for Moms and author of “Mommy Magic: Tricks for Staying Sane in the Midst of Insanity” Visit for more information. Become a Fan of Mommy Magic on FaceBook!


for Back to School

Great Ideas to Make the Most of the School Year When I sent my firstborn off to school 10 years ago, I was ill-prepared for the realities of school life. I thought I’d just send him off to school with a tearful goodbye and that was that. I had underestimated how managing my two son’s school lives (managing, not helicopter parenting) would consume such a chunk of my time. Each day, I’d review a list of questions. Is today the day they take in money for lunch for the cafeteria or pack a lunch? What’s the deadline for filling out the paperwork and getting the money for the field trip? What time do I have to pick up my son from the after-school activity. I have to buy WHAT for the science fair? But through the years—and now with both sons in high school—I’ve learned a lot, not only through my own experience, but from other seasoned parents who taught me the key to surviving the school years is to adhere to the adage, “work smarter, not harder.”

Here are some tips I’ve learned 3. over the years that should help you glide through the upcoming school year: 1.

Organized parents are always seen with their organizers. Whether you utilize electronics or paper to organize yourself, maintain an organizer in which you keep all of your appointments and phone numbers with you at all times. Record dates as soon as you’re made aware of them. Very important phone numbers to keep: your child’s school numbers, the bus transportation phone number and the numbers of your child’s friends’ parents who might have to help you in a pinch.

2. Avoid vacations that run up

into the week before school. That’s the week you want to train your children to start waking up early again and getting back into routines. It’s harder for the kids to go back to school if they are on a trip right before school starts.


Avoid the mistake of buying unnecessary school supplies by checking with your child’s school to determine what is needed. Consider saving money by buying school supplies in bulk and splitting the cost with a friend whose child needs the same supplies. There are usually a few items you’ll always need on hand throughout the year (lined paper and pencils), so stock up on them when they are on sale. Cell phones have become a common school supply, though many school districts are limiting their use during the school day. They are useful in keeping in touch on important matters because my sons call or text during lunch to let me know they need something for the following day or that a club meeting has been cancelled. If you’re not keen on buying them their own cell phone, consider a prepaid phone. Make sure you know the phone carrier’s costs—my sons once racked up a few hundred dollars through unnecessary

text messaging Internet access.






Organize everything your child needs to take to school the night before (older children can do this on their own). Pack their lunchbox with non-perishables the night before and add the items that require an ice pack in the morning. Make sure the kids put the ice pack back into the freezer when they get home from school and empty the wrappers and food bits out of the lunchbox to clean it for the next day. Buy extra ice packs for lunch boxes. In a pinch, you can pack a plastic storage bag with ice cubes. Ask your child to brainstorm about what healthy food they’d like to bring to school for lunches. Keep a day’s worth of extra school lunch money stashed in the backpack for those times when your child rushes out the door and forgets his lunch money. Make sure your child’s vaccinations are up to date.

This is often required not only for school, but for participation in sports and Scouting. If you are applying for exemptions at your child’s school, get your paperwork organized in time. NOTE: New guidelines have been updated for 7th12th grade students. Visit http://www.odh.ohio. gov/odhPrograms/idc/ immunize/immindex1. aspx for a complete schedule and requirements for the upcoming year.



If your child’s schooling involves a commute by car or bus, plan to carry snacks and cold water in the car or pack extra in the backpack for bus trips, if permitted. You may want to freeze bottles of water; they’ll thaw out and provide cold refreshments by the end of the day. If you’re the type of parent who likes to give teachers and the bus drivers gifts at holiday time or at the end of the year, consider buying items as you see them and can afford them. Pack them away in the closet until

needed rather than making a mad rush for gifts at the last minute.




Most school districts now have Internet sites that allow you to see your child’s academic progress in real time. I can set my school district’s site up to send me emails every time my sons’ grades dip below a certain level. It’s been an invaluable tool in keeping abreast of their academic performance. Join the PTA or other school groups and prepare to get involved in your child’s school. Nothing will keep you more connected to your child and the school more than volunteering. Get to know your child’s teachers. Take advantages of opportunities, such as open houses, to know what materials your child is using at school for learning. If your child is starting a new school, visit the child’s school with him once before the year begins so he will feel more comfortable on

different work/school shifts and everyone needs to help themselves). The slow cooker also can be used to prepare dinner and cuts down on the end-of-theday frustration of what to do for dinner on those rush days. You can also ensure healthy dinners by making large portions of food and freezing it for later use.

the first day of school or in a new school setting.



If your child is going to school for the first time, plan to have him spend a lot of “down time” after school—perhaps at the playground—to help deal with some of the transition stress he may feel. Line up emergency contacts on your child’s behalf just in case the school has trouble getting in touch with you.


16. Organize car pools whenever 19. possible, especially given the escalating fuel costs that have hit every family budget.


One of the most challenging aspects of the school year is having nutritious, delicious meals ready by the end of the day. If you don’t already have one, invest in a slow cooker. It’s a parent’s best friend in the kitchen. Consider making oatmeal in the slow cooker the night before so your family wakes up to a hot-cooked breakfast in the morning (this is especially helpful if your family is on

Make sure school personnel are aware of any special needs your child may have. Make sure you read at least a half hour each day with your younger child. It’s also fun to read the same books your middle or high school child may be reading.

20. Review

with your child about drugs, alcohol, bullies, peer pressure, guns, strangers and not picking up needles or allowing another child’s blood to get near your child’s cuts. Review sex education with older children.


Try to be sensitive to your child’s feelings around test


Ensure that homework comes before play, TV, computers or video games, but allow for some down time between when your child comes home from school and has to do homework. Set up a quiet place to study and provide reference materials.

times—be aware of how you have felt when you were under pressure at work. Feed your child well and give him plenty of support and opportunities for rest.

22. Get

to know your child’s friends and their families. Open your home to gatherings, such as parties and sleep-overs.

24. Augment

23. Review

your child’s homework with him.

your child’s education with family field trips and home projects. Schools are

cutting back more and more on the extras due to budget

constraints, so you may have to take up the slack with art, music and physical education.

Helping Make Sense of College Testing

25. Celebrate your child’s accomplishments.

Carol Brzozowski is a former editor who has made journalism and freelance writing her passion. She can be contacted at brzozowski.



Many families are overwhelmed by the college admission process, including preparing for the ACT. Most colleges weigh a student’s test scores equally to GPA when reviewing an academic resume, so it’s understandable that preparing for this test can be intimidating. The keys for your child to feeling confident and prepared are as simple as counting to five: 1. Do your best in school. It seems like a basic concept, but when preparing for the ACT, this advice is the foundational step to success. The ACT tests skills learned in school;


in other words, it’s a really big final exam. It is important to work hard in each class, so you do not have to “cram” leading up to the test.

2. Take a practice test and see where you stand. Taking a practice test is like playing a scrimmage game before the season begins. It allows you to get an idea of what to expect and pinpoints skills that need to be strengthened. Some schools have access to these practice tests and can even score them. If your school does not offer this, there are materials at bookstores, as well as several ACT prep courses available in the area. 3. Choose a test date and register. Most students take the ACT for the first time during the spring of their junior year. Always plan the test date with at least one back up date in mind. You never know what might happen the morning of the test: you may wake up not feeling well, end up with a flat tire or sit next to someone who won’t stop tapping his pencil. A backup date can give you peace of mind and reduce some of the anxiety that comes along with the test. More information on test dates and registering for the ACT can be found at

4. Set a goal. Most people tend to work harder and stay more focused when they have specific goals to reach. The same is true with the ACT. When researching colleges and narrowing down options, take a look at the ACT requirements. These will typically be given as the middle percentile range, for example 22-27 (the ACT scores up to 36). Work together and set a realistic goal based on the practice test and the colleges of interest. If you don’t achieve your goal the first time around, look into other options for preparation and see what you can do to reach your highest potential score. 5. Be prepared the day of the test. The way you feel on the day of the test will have a huge impact on the outcome. On the day before the test, make sure to get a good night’s sleep and get up in the morning with plenty of time to have breakfast. Do not try to study the night before or the morning of the test; it’s time to just go and give it your best. Do not forget #2 pencils, a calculator with extra batteries, a watch, and your registration ticket and photo ID. But the most important thing to take into the ACT is confidence. Visualize achieving your goal score and getting accepted into the college of your dreams. A positive attitude can carry you a long way. Andrea Limke is the Center Director for Huntington Learning Center at Harper’s Point. For more information on Huntington Learning Center, or its SAT and ACT prep courses, please contact 513-677-1400.


Childcare & Education Directory Child Care/Preschool Chai Tots Early Childhood Center 7587 Central Parke Blvd., Mason, OH 45040 (513)234-0600 Grades: 6 weeks - 6 years Enrollment: 40

Academic excellence via unique blend of Montessori method and traditional Jewish education. Chai Tots teaches children the culture and traditions of Judaism, while developing their creativity skills and promoting independence. Flexible schedule. Before and Aftercare. the compass school 9370 Waterstone Blvd., Cincinnati, OH 45249 Contact: Laura Carr Phone: 513-683-8833 Email: URL:

Ages 6 weeks-6 years plus after school & summer camp up to age 12. Offering outstanding Reggio-Inspired full and part-time Infant, Toddler, Two’s, and Preschool programs, as well as Kindergarten, After School, and Summer Camp for school-age children. Degreed teachers, extensive parent communication, and welcoming family environment. Setting the standard in early care and education. Call today for your personal tour.

the gardner school of blue ash 9920 Carver Road, Cincinnati, OH 45242 513-985-9444 ages 6 weeks - Pre-K

This award-winning, academically focused preschool has recently opened in the Blue Ash Community. You want the best for your child, and so do we. With our nationallyrecognized curriculum taught by our degreed teaching faculty, we are committed to providing a nurturing environment for learning readiness where your child can prepare for academic achievement and lifelong success. Goddard School 4430 Red Bank Expressway Cincinnati, OH 45227 Phone: 513-271-6311 Ages 6 weeks to 8 years

The Goddard School provides the foundation to encourage your child’s lifelong love of learning. Whether gently holding your infant, encouraging your toddler to share, or providing your preschooler with a variety of enriching activities, caring teachers support your child’s healthy development from 6 weeks to 6 years, and up to 8 years for after-school enrichment. To learn more about The Goddard School® in you neighborhood, call 1-800-GODDARD or visit online at www. Pleasant Ridge Presbyterian Nursery School 5950 Montgomery Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45213 (513)631-0170 Grades: 2 1/2 - 5 years, Parent/Child classes birth to 32 months Enrollment: 65

Professionally qualified teachers provide active, expressive, 24 CINCINNATI PARENT * AUGUST 2010

child-centered learning experiences at this 3-star awardwinning program. Choose 2, 3, 4, or 5 day AM or PM sessions. Excellent ratios, degreed teachers and spacious, sunny, classrooms await your preschooler. Parent and child classes also available for babies and toddlers.

Montessori Central Montessori Academy 1904 Springdale Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45231 Laura Saylor 513-742-5800 Infancy through Sixth Grade Enrollment: 110

At C.M.A., children (infants through sixth-graders) learn at their pace, building self-esteem while being taught as individuals. Our program is academically rigorous while stressing life skills (i.e. critical-thinking & courteous behavior). The result: motivated & self-disciplined lifelong-learners who are students of life just as much as they are of academics. Country hills montessori 4400 Glen Este Withamsville, Cincinnati, OH 45236 Susan Schreiber, Owner 513-793-2808 Grades: 3 - K

Providing half day programs for 3 to K. Small, individualized classes with low student-teacher ratios, under the guidance of Montessori certified teachers, in an inter-generational enviornment. Multiple Locations in Cincinnati, Harrison and West Chester Ohio and in Ft. Thomas and Erlanger KY.Visit for all location addresses & phone numbers.

The New School Montessori 3 Burton Woods Lane, Cincinnati, OH 45229 (513)281-7999 Grades: 3 year-olds through 6th Grade Enrollment: 150

Founded on Montessori principles in 1970, our wooded playgrounds, home-cooked meals and family-like setting in North Avondale’s Mitchell Mansion provide a stimulating and nurturing environment for learning. We value diversity and create a caring and supportive community. Our graduates excel academically, but more importantly are empowered as citizens of our global community. (Accredited by AMS and ISACS).

Summit Country Day School 2161 Grandin Road, Cincinnati, OH 45208 (513)871-4700 Montessori Age 2 - Grade 12 Enrollment: 1100

The state-of-the-art Lower School is home to the Montessori Program where children ages 2 to 6 receive a world-class academic and enrichment curriculum. Multiple programs include a new Montessori Toddler Program for 2 yr. olds and full and half-day programs for ages 3-6. Before- and aftercare, and holiday care available. The Child’s Place 4936 Old Irwin Simpson Rd, Mason, OH 45040 (513)398-6928 Grades: 9 months – 5 years Enrollment: 150

Montessori Early Childhood Program! Exceptionally low ratios in a nurturing environment! Our 2-acre campus provides bike and cart paths. Separate play areas for toddlers and preschoolers. Spanish and Music classes offered! Fulltime and Part-time available. AMS Affiliate

Garden Montessori School 1318 Nagel Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45255 Contact: Jackie Wofford/Director Phone: 513-474-4933 Email: Website: Grades: pre-school thru Kdg. ages 3-6 years old.

Celebrating over 30 years, memeber of Cincinnati Montessori Society. Certified/degreed Montessori teachers with combined 60 years experience . Montessori program,full day, and Kindergarten. Individualized instruction, small class size, 1:8 teacher/child ratio. Offer Spanish, music, dance, and gym. Large, fenced-in outdoor playground.

Montessori Academy of Cincinnati 8293 Duke Blvd., Mason, OH 45040 (513)398-7773 Grades: 3 years – 8th grade Enrollment: 300

Now in our 23rd year offering Montessori curriculum with an individualized nurturing approach. Experienced, degreed teachers foster a love of learning, promote independence and develop the necessary skills for success. New 7.5-acre campus! State Chartered.AMSAffiliated.Extended Care available on-site.

Non-Public Cincinnati Country Day School 6905 Given Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45243 Phone: (513)979-0220 Grades: Early Childhood (18 months) – 12th grade Enrollment: 800

CCDS is an independent, co-educational school dedicated to educational excellence serving students 18 months through Grade 12. The School is nationally recognized for its innovative, integrated laptop computer program. Extended day and tuition assistance is available.

Covington Latin School 21 E. 11th Street, Covington, KY 41011 Contact: Carl Goodmonson, Director of Admissions Phone: 859.291.7044 Email: URL: Category: Academically Gifted Grades: 8-12 Enrollment: 235

Covington Latin School is a classical, co-educational,

Catholic, accelerated, college preparatory high school. The School’s commitment to acceleration allows advanced fifth, sixth and seventh grade students the opportunity to begin a more challenging and rewarding secondary educational experience. CLS is ranked the #1 Northern Kentucky private school in Cincinnati Magazine.

St. Ursula Villa 3660 Vineyard Place, Cincinnati, OH 45226 (513)871-7218 Preschool – 8th grade Enrollment: 496

Academic excellence in the Ursuline tradition for boys and girls in preschool through 8th grade. Whole-child development, family atmosphere, dedicated faculty, Montessori or Traditional preschool options, small class size, individual attention, outstanding high school preparation

Summit Country Day School 2161 Grandin Road (513)871-4700 Grades: Age 2 - Grade 12 Enrollment: 1100

Founded in 1890, the area’s only independent, Catholic, co-ed, college-prep school serving students age 2 - Grade 12 is recognized as a leader in formalized Character

Education, Credo. A diverse community of students benefit from a rich, classical and challenging curriculum within three contiguous divisions. Extensive athletic and visual arts programs campus-wide.

Virtual/Distance Ohio Virtual Academy

Special Needs Linden Grove School, Specialized Learning for the Whole Child 4122 Myrtle Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45236 (513)984-2215 Special Needs Grades: Kindergarten - 8th grade

We provide a unique environment that focuses on serving children who are on the autism spectrum, have ADD/ ADHD, learning disabilities, and communication disorders. Linden Grove provides a quality school environment to children who aren’t “fitting in” their current school’s program and thus are not learning and developing to their full potential. Working in partnership with families is a vital component in creating an integrated K-8 learning environment that combines academics, social skills and therapies in order to help the whole child achieve academically and socially.

Best performing eSchool in Ohio (866)339-9072 Grades: Kindergarten – 10th grade Enrollment: 3,300 Ohio Virtual Academy helps your K-10 children obtain an excellent public school education, tuition free! Under the guidance of licensed teachers, parents help their children learn at home using K12’s comprehensive curriculum and educational materials.


New Riders Tips for Taking the School Bus

Julia Rudden still remembers the day her daughter fell asleep on the school bus on the way home and was transported back to the bus barn.

The driver was new and had missed her daughter ’s bus stop.


Ever y parent’s nightmare is losing her new rider in the school bus shuff le of the f irst day. We worry kids won’t recognize their bus number, or the driver, or think to look for buddies. They might be too shy to ask for help, or they might fall asleep and miss their stop. In fact, Rudden thinks it’s worth skipping the f irst-day bus riding experience while drivers familiarize themselves with the route. Other parents say it’s best to jump in while everyone is feeling new and befuddled together.

the f irst week of school, she says. “Some schools request parent volunteers to ride the bus with kindergarteners for the f irst week.” Review bus sa fe t y and b e h av i o r expectations with your child. Plan to review rules even if you attend an orientation. Below is a partial list of what to talk about (check with your district or for more guidelines).

Once kids get the hang of things, the bus offers opportunity for growth and independence. It’s also the safest (even safer than air travel) and greenest way to get to school. Here’s why:

· Stay seated while the bus is moving.

School buses are easily visible by their color and size, and their compartment height raises kids above car-impact height. They’re equipped with f lashing lights, a stop sign arm, cross view mirrors and a crossing arm in front that forces kids to cross where the driver can see them. Buses have high, padded seats that protect kids much like an egg carton protects eggs. And then there’s the driver, a trained professional monitoring your child from the bus stop to school and back.

· Keep hands inside the windows.

Children are 13 times safer on school buses than in other travel modes, according to the Transportation Research Board, part of the National Academy of Sciences. In addition, teens are 44 percent more likely to have a fatal accident if driving themselves or riding with another teen. Even if your own teen is a safe driver, there’s no guarantee others are. Why greener? Twenty-six million children, more than half the nation’s school kids, ride the bus to school every day, says the American School Bus Council (ASBC). Riding the bus takes cars off the road, reduces carbon monoxide, and, perhaps most importantly, reduces car congestion at the school during arrival and release times—when our kids are most vulnerable.

Ready to take the bus? Here are a few tips for making the transition smoother for everyone. Attend orientation day. Many schools let children ride in a school bus on orientation day, says Michelle Blair, parent of two. She recommends calling your school to inquire if a bus will be included. If the orientation doesn’t include a practice ride, inquire about volunteering during

· Talk quietly to avoid distracting the driver.

· Report any problems to your bus driver. · When exiting, walk several feet away from the bus so the driver can see you. · Always cross in front of the bus (never behind). · Never retrieve something dropped near the bus unless you alert the driver.

has trouble recognizing numbers. Blair suggests parents teach children to tell their driver they’re lost if they miss their stop, and, for the very young, not to get off unless their parent or designated adult is at the stop to meet them. Most districts won’t allow kindergartners off the bus unless kids’ caregivers are there. Children of any age should never get off at an alternative stop. Befriend your child’s driver. School bus drivers are professionals who care about kids and have a responsibility to see every child delivered safely home (in fact, expect the bus to be late on the f irst day’s return trip, says Clarkson, because drivers are educating the children). They’re just as concerned about bullying as teachers and receive training to deal with behavior issues, according to the ASBC. But do report problems promptly to the driver or to your child’s teacher. Sending a child off on the bus feels daunting to any parent of a new rider. Try to remember your child will learn the routine quickly—in a couple weeks he’ll be an old pro. Joanna Nesbit is a freelance writer. She can be reached at

· Never retrieve something from under the bus. · Be aware of the traffic environment as you exit the bus. Meet parents of riders and get to know the bus stop. Meeting other parents helps you learn about other riders. Consider taking turns monitoring the bus stop and the bus route (check with your district to see if adult accompaniment is required for kindergartners). Prior to the f irst day, show your child the bus stop. “Try to drive in the same line of travel the bus will take if you know it,” says Brad Clarkson, a school bus driver for 7 years. “What landmarks can the child identify that would let her know her stop is next? ”

Troubleshoot the first day. Cla rk son recommends equipping young passengers with index cards including name, address, and phone number in case kids can’t remember their stop or their address. Also write the bus number on the other side of the card, especially if your child


Open House Guide Kinder Garden School Blue Ash 10969 Reed Hartman Hwy, Blue Ash, OH 45242 Phone: 513-791-4300 Website: http://www. Open House Dates: August 5, August 12, August 19, August 26 Thursdays in September October 7, 14, 21, 28 November 4, 11, 18 Together with interaction of child, staff and family, we develop the complete child. In our Kinder Garden, we provide formative encouragement and knowledge with hands-on staff taking a personal interest in family and holistic education decisions for the child. Kinder Garden School is devoted to growing a child’s wish to flourish and learn by cultivating curiosity and problem-solving proficiency in a full supportive, fertile, fun setting. ENLIGHTENMENT IS OUR MISSION.

Kinder Garden School West Chester 5900 West Chester Road, Ste. C, West Chester, OH 45069 Phone: 513-874-3100 Website: http://www. Open House Dates: August 19th from 6pm-7pm


Together with interaction of child, staff and family, we develop the complete child. In our Kinder Garden, we provide formative encouragement and knowledge with hands-on staff taking a personal interest in family and holistic education decisions for the child. Kinder Garden School is devoted to growing a child’s wish to flourish and learn by cultivating curiosity and problem-solving proficiency in a full supportive, fertile, fun setting. ENLIGHTENMENT IS OUR MISSION.

The Summit Country Day School 2161 Grandin Road, Cincinnati (Hyde Park), OH 45208 Phone: 513-871-4700 Website: Open House Dates: PARENT PREVIEW DAYS Montessori PreK-K (ages 2-6) Tues., Oct. 26, 2010, 8:45 a.m. Tues., Nov. 9,2010, 8:45 a.m. Lower School & Middle School (Grades 1-8) Thurs., Nov. 11, 2010, 8:45 a.m. Upper School Open House (Grades 9-12) Thurs., Nov. 18, 2010, 6:30 p.m. Founded in 1890, The Summit is the areas only Catholic, independent, college-preparatory school serving 1100 students from age 2 -Gr.12. A nationally

recognized character-building program, Credo, focuses upon the qualities of respect, responsibility and honesty. Through scholarship, service, creativity, and physical drive, graduates distinguish themselves nationally. Tuition assistance is available to qualifying families from PreK–12; merit-based scholarships are available in Gr. 7-12

Archbishop McNicholas High School 6536 Beechmont Avenue, Cincinnati, Oh 45230 Phone: 513-231-3500 Website: Open House Dates: Sunday, November 7, 2010 from 11 a.m.- 2 p.m.

Bethany School Address: 555 Albion Ave., Glendale, OH 45246 Contact: Teri Mauntel Phone: 513-771-7462 Website: http://www. Open House Dates: Sunday, November 7, 2010 from 2:00pm4:00pm Sunday, February 13, 2011 from 2:00pm-4:00pm

Kennedy Heights Montessori Center 6120 Ridge Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45213 Phone: (513) 631-8135

Website: http:// Open House Dates: Wed. Feb. 2, 2011

Montessori Center Room 2505 Riverside Drive, Cincinnati, OH 45202 Phone: 513-321-3282 Website: http://www. Open House Dates: Sunday, November 7, 2010, 1-3PM

The New School Montessori 3 Burton Woods Lane, Cincinnati, OH 45229 Phone: (513)281-7999 Website: http://www. Open House Dates: Sunday, November 14, 2010 2PM-4PM Sunday, January 30, 2011 2PM-4PM

JOhn XXIII Catholic School 3806 Manchester Road, Middletown, OH 45042 Phone Number: 513-424-1196 Web site: www. Open House Dates: Thursday, February 3rd with a snow date of Thursday, February 10th.


Co mm en tary & Paren t in g


ask a teen

I Wish That...

Teens Reveal What They Really Wish Parents Did—With a Few Surprising Answers Academics are often a huge factor in this. “The constant pressure to get A’s in every class is horrible!” Natalie G. says. “I wish that they could just understand that I’m not going to be perfect in everything. There are going to be some classes that are hard for me.” Parents should not raise their expectations so high that their teen can’t possibly meet them. Expecting a 4.0 GPA, for example, can only damage the relationship between parent and teen.

2. Teens don’t like comparison between

them and their friends. Natalie also relates, “When they compare me to friends, especially in school, it makes me feel really sad.” Parents can avoid hurting their teens by gently encouraging Parents—Do you want to know them to do their own, personal best, without what your teens secretly wish you did and bringing up anyone else’s achievements. didn’t do but are too afraid to tell you? Here are ten things that I discovered while Teens don’t like not having enough interviewing my peers. independence. Many teens want more freedom. “Sometimes I wish they would let Teens don’t like constant pressure to me be a little more independent,” says Julia T. be perfect. “When I do one thing wrong, Parents sometimes fail to notice that their teens it’s like the world is coming to an end,” Matt don’t need their constant intervention in their C. says. Emily R says, “My dad gets upset lives anymore. In high school, teens may have a over the pettiest things.” Many teens feel that large circle of friends and may be dating. Parents their parents are constantly criticizing them. need to lay down good boundaries for social time



and for family time and it can be okay with teens if the two are blended. But if your teen proves herself responsible, too much hovering is a turnoff. Teens often assume that they have a right to independence, but this right should be earned with responsibility.

7. Teens like it when their parents, rather than criticizing them, show them affection. “I like it when they give me lots of hugs, and the teeniest compliment can have me brimming with joy, even though I won’t show it,” Emily admits. It always helps the parent/teen relationship when a decides to, instead of constantly criticizing 4. Teens don’t like when their parents parent her teen, give him a compliment or a hug. become too involved in their social lives. “My mom, to a certain extent, is very controlling in my social life,” Emily observes. Matt also says 8. Teens like family time. Ray N. says, “I like of his mom, “I hate when she comes over to my it when we all go out to eat, and it’s nice to see my friend’s house to make sure everything’s okay.” parents go out on dates. It’s good to have family While it is important that parents make sure their time.” Even if they complain and whine about teen is safe and following the rules with their missing their favorite T.V. show or an outing with friends, it is also important that parents are not a friend, family time is essential for keeping teens overly demanding and controlling. If friends are connected with the rest of the family. constantly taking a teen away from her family, her parents should set limits on her social time. 9. Teens like it when parents try to divide time equally between siblings. Busy teens enjoy getting one on one time with parents. “My 5. Teens don’t like to be embarrassed. Some ways teens are embarrassed by their younger brothers are often attention hogs and I parents are small and seemingly insignificant. think its nice when my parents intentionally stop “I hate when my mom tries to lick her finger and talk to me,” Megan K. says. and get something off my face,” Matt complains. However, being embarrassed in a ‘small way’ can 10. Teens like it when their parents also potentially subject the teens to ridicule by encourage their dreams. “My parents are big their peers and low self esteem. Remember what supporters of what I’m interested in,” Ellen W. it felt like when you were a teenager. says. “If I’m excited about something, it’s awesome that they are too.” Parents should make an attempt 6. Teens like their parents’ enforcing of to invest in their teen’s interests. Then the teens the rules. “I secretly like it that my parents may be more inclined to invest their time in such discipline me,” Damon A. says. Teens do realize things as piano lessons and athletics. that the way their parents keep them in check, Katie Kortepeter is a 15-yeareven if it seems obnoxious and unnecessary at old. She lives in Indianapolis the time, usually works out for their benefit. and enjoys acting, writing, and tormenting her younger brothers.




profile: vaccines

Parents and Vaccines Unite to Keep Children Healthy New Vaccination Requirements for Ohio Middle and High School Students Parents play an important role in keeping children healthy and ready for school. Making sure your child is up to date on vaccines is one of the most important things you can do to protect them from vaccine-preventable diseases. Did you know that vaccines are not just for babies and young children? Health experts, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, recommend several vaccinations for preteens and teens including the new vaccine requirement for Ohio middle-school students this upcoming school year.

whooping sound often associated with whooping cough is usually heard when the child inhales, although this sign of the disease is not as common in preteens and teenagers as it is in younger children. Nearly 1,100 cases of pertussis were reported in Ohio in 2009 – up from 2008.

Protection against whooping cough starts to wear off about f ive to ten years after completion of the childhood vaccinations, leaving adolescents and adults susceptible to the disease. Preteens and teens with whooping cough may not even be aware they have it, spreading the disease to others at school and at home. A Tdap vaccination can help The Ohio Department of Health has issued a new prevent students from becoming ill and spreading whooping vaccination requirement for 7th graders starting cough to others. in the Fall of 2010. All students entering the 7th grade will be required to receive a booster shot Parents can contact their child’s school nurse with questions of the Tdap vaccine, which helps protect against about the new vaccine requirement. If necessary, parents tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis; or a Td vaccine, should make an appointment to have their student vaccinated which protects against tetanus and diphtheria. now. When at the appointment, parents should ask their Proof of vaccination will need to be presented health care provider about other vaccines recommended for their age group, including any vaccines that were missed or before school entry. not available when they were younger. “Vaccines are a safe Pertussis (also known as whooping cough) is a highly and effective way to help keep your child healthy and ready contagious respiratory illness that starts off like the to start a new school year,” says school nurse Judy Harmon. common cold. As the disease progresses, the child can experience severe coughing f its. The cough can last up to three months or more and may lead to Nichole Bobo, RN, MSN of the National Association of pneumonia, fractured ribs, hospitalization, missed School Nurses. school for students and missed work for adults. The




green savings

Back to Savings

Smart Shopping for Back-to-School If you’re looking to save on back-toschool shopping, you’re in good company. Parents everywhere are feeling the pinch of the economy and four out of five have reduced their school-related spending. The National Retail Federation reports that 56.2% percent of back-to-school shoppers are looking for discounts, 41.7% are ditching brand-names in favor of generics and 40% are using more coupons.

Make it a Family Affair Back-to-school season is a great time to teach kids valuable lessons in budgeting and prioritization. Together, set a budget for supplies and separate needs from wants. If your child is set on a pricey item that isn’t in the budget, have him cover the difference out of his allowance.

Never Stop Shopping Buy the basics on sale year-round and squirrel them away for back-to-school. According to Jonni McCoy, author of Miserly Moms: Living Well on Less in a Tough Economy, Welcome the new school year in frugal shopping over time spreads out the expenditures and fashion with these tips for back-to-school maximizes your purchasing power. saving. “Don’t try to get it all done in one day,” says McCoy. “Not everything is on sale on one day. Every week, check what Start at the Beginning Get organized and get “the list.” Review school items are on sale and get those. Then do the same your child’s list of required supplies and take the next week, and the next.” inventory of what you’ll need. If you don’t have a list, contact your child’s school or Cash in on the Coupon Craze friends with older children. Budget-minded shoppers are couponing like never before. Promotional transaction vendor Inmar reports that coupon Aim to be thorough in your shopping. use is reaching record highs. Consumers redeemed over Forget a few items and you’ll f ind yourself $3.3 billion in coupons in 2009, an increase of 27% over f ighting the masses—and paying full price— 2008. for picked-over supplies at the last minute. Instead, save money and hassle by checking Cents-off coupons can add up to big savings, but you everything off the list before the f irst day. can raise the stakes considerably with a little extra


Parents everywhere are feeling the pinch of the economy and four out of five have reduced their school-related spending. legwork. Major retailers like Target and Rite-Aid offer discounts up to $25 for transferred prescriptions. Find a local store that doubles the value of manufacturer’s coupons at couponing., and you can buy supplies for next to nothing. Shoppers are increasingly turning to the Web to score coupons. Inmar reports that online coupon access is up 92%, and redemption of online deals has increased 360%. Smart offers printable coupons, many with savings of $1 or more.

Surf the Savings Sites like and offer everything from computers to graphing calculators to brand-name backpacks at huge discounts. While you’re at it, why not unload things your kids have outgrown? Last year’s trendy outfit, bike or winter coat can yield cash to put toward this year’s list. Join the Club Register to get exclusive discounts, deluxe coupons, and other perks delivered to your inbox from major retailers including The Gap, Old Navy, and Fred Meyer. Sign up online or in-store. If you don’t want to clog your personal account with marketing email, snag a free email account just for promotional signups. Dollars and Sense You local dollar store is a great place to find basic supplies for less. McCoy recommends shopping for supplies at discount stores and

taking advantage of sales to stretch your dollar even further. Staples and Walmart host well-known sales offering back-to-school supplies for pennies. Mark your calendar for sale days and scoop up the savings.

Swap to Save Score some new-to-your-kids clothing by hosting a swap. Lay down a few ground rules—clothing should be free of stains and rips and no payment or bartering is allowed. People take what they want, and leave what they don’t. Afterward, leftover items can be donated to charity., which recently debuted in the United States, makes online clothes swapping fun and easy. Say Yes to Yard Sales Summer is yard-sale season. Binders, notebooks, pencil cases, scissors, staplers, loose-leaf paper and more are yours for the finding. Bring small bills and change and don’t be afraid to haggle. Carry a reusable bag to tote home your treasures. Bulk Up Your Budget Big-box discounters and warehouse stores sell high-quality office and school supplies in bulk. If you have a large family, the supersized packages of pens, highlighters, binders, tape and folders make sense. You can take advantage of bulk deals even if you don’t have a large family. Gather a group of moms, divide the list and pool the savings.

Grab Some Inspiration Creativity is in. Spice up a plain or hand-me-down binder with a digital photo collage. Protect school books with covers made from gift wrap or newspaper. Refresh last year’s backpack with new buttons and iron-on patches. The possibilities for inspiration—and savings—are endless. Malia Jacobson is a freelance writer and mom of two.


d l i h E xceptional C

The Road to Special Education

Advancements Are in the Hands of Parents and Educators As recently as the 1970s, American children with special needs were often denied a public education or provided woefully inadequate instruction. Fortunately we have gotten our act together.

child’s school and hopefully ends with your child receiving a free appropriate public education.

Today the state of Ohio provides about 275,000 students special education services, according to the Ohio Coalition for the Education of Children with Disabilities. This includes infants through persons age 21 and represents about 15 percent of Ohio’s schoolage population.

Contact your local school district. Whether your child will require special education services or you just suspect that he or she may, contact your local school as early into your child’s academic career as possible. Ask to speak with the person in charge of special education or the principal.

It’s a large number and one that is, without a doubt, growing. The high statistic is due in part to medical and technological advancements, greater public awareness of disorders, high rates of poverty and high-risk pregnancies, among other reasons. Of course, this just speaks to why more kids are diagnosed with varying disabilities. The number itself represents a step forward in education brought on by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, both of which work to ensure an appropriate education for children with special needs throughout the nation.

Do an intervention. Federal law requires students go through an intervention process prior to receiving a full-blown evaluation for special education. Called Response to Intervention, the intent is to catch struggling students early and provide them the instruction they need. Throughout the process, the student’s progress is monitored and measured in order to shape his or her instruction and inform future academic decisions. The process does not replace the need for a comprehensive evaluation.

Though the road to special education has been paved, the road is not always easy. If you suspect your child may be eligible for special education services, there is a def ined process families must go through in order to obtain these services. It begins with contacting your

“The law changed to say we are misidentifying a lot of kids because a lot of kids who struggle with reading or math do so because of poor instruction or the kids have moved a lot or had a substitute all last year,” says Cathy Heizman, director of advocacy services


for Memorial, Inc., a non-prof it organization in Cincinnati that works with kids with academic or behavior problems. Instead of automatically assuming a child has a learning disability, an assigned intervention team will look at the child’s specif ic situation and see if changes in his or her environment or programming will make the difference. After all, not every child who is struggling has a learning disability. Sometimes the child’s circumstances are at fault. “It’s a way to look at how we can help some kids immediately without restructuring things too drastically and not have to put a label of some kind of disability on a kid,” adds Heizman.

What Special Education Teachers Want Parents to Know Understand exactly what is in your child’s Individualized Education Program or IEP. Do not assume the school is correctly implementing your child’s IEP. It is imperative that the IEP team, including you and your child’s special education teacher, be on the same page.

No one knows your child better than you. Schedule an evaluation. If the interventions put in place are not working, then it’s time to get a more comprehensive evaluation to determine the type of learning disability your child may be battling. Under IDEA, your school is required to evaluate any child who may need special education services. The school is also required to obtain parental consent before conducting the initial evaluation.

If there is something you know that sets your child off or works well for your child, please communicate it to the special education teacher. For fears of your child in particular, be sure to convey to the teacher what you’ve done that works well to ease your child’s reaction or anxiety or ask the teacher for his or her ideas on how to deal with the situation. This will allow the teacher to address the unique need instead of always avoiding it.

For various reasons, including a disagreement over the school’s evaluation, some parents obtain an independent educational evaluation.

Provide feedback. “When families do it privately, often it’s because they can get it done quicker or it’s more comprehensive in scope,” says Chris Mayhall, clinical psychologist at The Aff inity Center, a local treatment center for children and adults with ADHD, or other behavioral, learning and mood disorders. Independent educational evaluations may include evaluation of the child’s academic or cognitive skills, neurological functioning, adapted physical education, sensory needs and more. Parents can present the private evaluations to their school district, though they don’t have to accept it. Mayhall says private evaluators will often help the parents communicate the evaluation results to the school, be it via written statements, attending meetings with the parents, etc.

Please let the teacher know if something he or she is doing is working well or not at all.

Know your child’s disability. For instance, the child may be classified as having an emotional disturbance. Know and communicate to the teacher what specifically the child is diagnosed with having.

Know your rights. The law requires that your child get an appropriate education. Learn what this means for your child.

Determine eligibility for special education. Upon completion of the evaluation, a student may be found eligible for special education and related services in one or more of 13 disability categories: cognitive disability, hearing impairment (including deafness), speech or language impairment, visual impairment (including blindness), emotional disturbance, orthopedic impairment, autism spectrum disorder, traumatic brain injury, other health impairment, specif ic learning disability, deaf-blindness or multiple disabilities. Note that special education services are available for children ages 3 to 21. Create an Individualized Education Program. Once your child is deemed eligible for special education services, it is time to create his or her Individualized Education Program (IEP). Essentially an IEP is a written plan that lays out the programs and special services your child requires to be successful at school. The document is updated at least once per year. Parents should know that while they don’t have to drive the IEP process, it is well within their rights to do so. You can call an IEP meeting whenever you want and you can bring whomever you want to the meeting. “You can bring anyone you feel you might need to be productive and to be a partner,” advises Heizman.

Not eligible for special education? You have options. Not every child who goes through this process is considered eligible for special education through an IEP. Those children may, however, qualify for services through a Section 504 plan. Children considered for a Section 504 plan must have a substantial limitation in one major life activity. This plan creates accommodations that a regular classroom teacher must do to accommodate a students. For instance, Mayhall says many kids with ADHD don’t require special education services but can receive essential accommodations under the Section 504 plan. Examples may include receiving extended time for taking tests, testing in a separate room, modif ication in homework, etc.

More resources. Special education law can be confusing. In addition to your local school district, many experts recommend a few websites to families seeking information:, and Carrie Bishop is a freelance writer and mother of two young sons whose daily antics inspire her work and her life. Contact her at freelancewritercarrie@

Be aware of transition services. Once your child turns 14, the IEP team should begin discussing your child’s post-graduation life. If his hope is to go on to college, then the IEP curriculum must be set up in order to achieve this goal. If his intention is to learn a trade and get a job after high school, then the curriculum needs to lead him down that path.

Connect with others in similar circumstances. Get involved in organizations that support and advocate for your child’s disability or join support groups with families who are dealing with the same issues you face. These groups will provide invaluable information and emotional support as your family goes through the special education process. They will also be able to provide general information on issues such as Medicaid or special-needs trusts that your special education teacher may not be able to.

Things take time. Special education is a process. Evaluations, diagnoses, placements, IEPS, paperwork and the rest of it takes time because educators, parents and others involved want to make the right decision for your child. Be patient, but be persistent and involved.

The buck does not necessarily stop with the school’s word. If you disagree with a school decision, such as whether or not your child qualifies for special education services, there is a due process for parents to dispute the findings.

Visit and bookmark It is an invaluable resource for information about special education law, education law and advocacy for children with disabilities.


Easing the Back to School Jitters Helping Your Child with Autism Get Back into the Swing of School

Back-to-school butterflies will soon invade the bellies of many a kid. It’s

natural for this time of transition to create anxiety for students. For kids

with autism, however, this transition can stir more than a passing case of the jitters.

“It is a dif f icult transition and obviously each case is different, but our kids usually do need some kind of preparation for making the transition smooth. Our kids tend not to like change and don’t adjust well to new situations and new people and new environments. So, I think it is crucial that a good transition plan is put together,” says Judy Newport, chapter administrator for the Autism Society of Greater Cincinnati. A manda Tipkemper-Sparks, executive director for the Cincinnati Center for Autism, agrees. She says that while every kid is different with some craving the structure of school as others resisting it, “it’s always good to have a plan in place.” There are many things families can do to help ease this transition, not the least of which is plan, plan and plan some more. As Newport says, “It’s better to be proactive than reactive.” Following are a few tips from area experts on how to best plan for a smooth transition.

Connect with your child’s teacher of record. Touch base with your child’s teacher of record within two weeks of school starting. Do not wait for them to contact you the day before. Also, if you did not have a solid IEP transition meeting from the previous school year, plan to do this for the following year. 36 CINCINNATI PARENT * AUGUST 2010

Write a What-You-Need-To-Know-About-My-Child-With-Autism note.

Change routines early. Routines will be changing so it would be a good idea to start practicing before hand. If your child will need to wake up earlier and get around more quickly, then phase in the new routine a couple weeks before the first day of school. The same goes for altered bedtime routines.

More action, less talk for kids who are less verbal. Instead of talking about how everything is going to be fine and fun, demonstrate that message instead. Rely on the consequences of the actions. A child will understand the cause and effect of going to school and having a good time or meeting the teacher and playing a game.

Expect the transition to affect older kids as

Have your child give this typed document to his teachers. Spend time creating this document so teachers, substitutes, recess aids, cafeteria workers, guidance counselors and others have quick information on what your child needs, likes and fears. For instance, does he like to be at the front of the line or is he afraid of fire drills and loud noise? This quick facts document will provide faculty and staff some basic understanding of your child, ways to accommodate him during the transition and to help with the basic flow of the daily schedule.

Run through a typical school day in a short period of time.

A mock day will let him experience what his typical entrance to the school will be, what his homeroom looks like, the route he will take to the lunchroom, and other routine occurrences.

Play on the school’s playground. Tipkemper-Sparks says to go and do something fun at the school so when the child sees the school he won’t see it with a negative connotation. Play on the jungle gym, picnic on the grounds, take a walk around the building. Visit the classroom before the first day of school.

Go into the classroom and do something fun with limited demands. Bring a snack or favorite activity. Keep in mind that this is a very busy time for teachers, but many will take the time to meet your child a few days in advance of the first day of school. Take the opportunity to introduce your child to his teacher. Perhaps he can even help the teacher set up the classroom for a few minutes so he can get acquainted with the room’s layout and find his seat. Be sure to visit any rooms that house special classes like art, music or physical education, even the cafeteria. If your child will be changing classes, walk the new schedule with your child. “All these things that other kids may adjust to in a day or two are really big adjustments for our kids,” says Newport.

Stop by the nurse’s office. Whether or not your child takes medication, it’s a good idea for the nurse in the building to be aware that your child has autism. Take the bus for a spin.

Request a practice round on the bus if your child with autism will be riding it for the first time this fall. If that is not possible, then run the bus route yourself and possibly bring your neighbor kid along if he will be riding the bus too. Also be sure to give the bus driver the same quick facts document on your child that you will be giving the school.

Create a story book. Include pictures of teachers, school rooms or other locations so a child can flip through the book and get familiar with what’s to come. The book can have a simple story line: These are the places you will go and these are the people you will meet. Give this book to your child a couple weeks in advance of the first day of school. For older students who change classrooms throughout the day, be sure to include an easy-to-read daily schedule.

it does with younger children. The older your

child with autism gets, the more support he may need during the transition. Communication with school may become less while expectations of him become higher. Higher functioning kids with autism are susceptible for a challenging transition because peers and teachers can’t always “see” the disorder.

Seek help of a behavior specialist. If you really anticipate or experience significant difficulties, it may be wise to seek the help of a behavior specialist to assist. Private centers across the city are available to come out and meet a child, come up with a transition plan, discuss it with your family, then help you through the process. Create a good lunchtime environment.

Because of the noise, smells and low-structure of school lunchtime it is often a very confusing time for children with autism. Your child may need a quiet place to eat or do better eating in a small group or with a peer buddy.

Know thy combination.

There are many things families can do to help ease this transition, not the least of which is plan, plan and plan some more.

Lockers can be stressful. Your child should get the combination to his locker and practice. Ask the teacher that is closest to the locker if your child can stop by and see him or her if he has a problem opening it.

Review your child’s summer vacation with him. Going over what your child did over summer break will help him better answer the inevitable question - What did you do over summer vacation? - and ease some anxiety. Visit Families with ASD Resource Center.

According to Doug Bletcher of Families with ASD, the center’s library has several books that help parents help their child through transitions such as this. The books are free to check out. Find the center at 5989 Meijer Drive in Milford.

Carrie Bishop is a freelance writer and mother of two young sons whose daily antics inspire her work and her life. Contact her at freelancewritercarrie@gmail. com.

Check out what’s happening in Greater Cincinnati this month for the special needs community... What: 2010 Golf Outing benefiting the Center for Infants and Children with Special Needs at Cincinnati Children’s

What: Beech Acres Parenting Center’s Parent Enrichment Series When: Thurs., Aug. 5, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

When: Mon., Aug.

Where: 6881 Beechmont

Where: Wetherington

Cost: $270 for the series Contact: Call

30, 11 a.m.

Golf and Country Club, West Chester

Cost: $200 for an individual golfer, $800 for a foursome Contact: Britt Nielsen at

Ave., Cincinnati


What: Beech Acres

Parenting Center’s Marriage Education Training

When: Thurs., Aug. 19, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Where: 6881 Beechmont Ave., Cincinnati

Cost: Free to residents

of Clermont County, Bond Hill/Roselaw, Avondale, Forest Park and surrounding communities

Contact: Eric or Angelia White at 513.233.4823

What: Night at the

Museum hosted by the Autism Society of Greater Cincinnati

When: Tues., Aug. 10, 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.

Where: Cincinnati Museum Center at Union Terminal

Cost: $10 per family Contact: Email

What: Dummy Hoy Day sponsored by the Hearing Speech and Deaf Center, Cincinnati Reds

Bloom for Stepping Stones lakeside garden party and auction

When: Mon., Aug.

When: Sat., Aug.

Where: Great American Ball Park

Where: Stepping Stones

9, 7:10 p.m.

Cost: $10 Contact: Visit www. hearingspeechdeaf. com or www.reds. com/dummyhoy

What: Sixth annual

21, at 6:30 p.m.

Center, 5650 Given Road, Indian Hill

Cost: $125 per person Contact: Theresa

Do you know of an upcoming event benefitting Greater Cincinnati’s special needs community? Email Carrie Bishop at freelancewritercarrie@

Ciampone at Theresa.ciampone@





Sunday 01

HAPPY BIRTHDAY SMOKEY Did you know it’s almost Smokey the Bear’s birthday? Come see how he and his message have evolved over the past 66 years. Then we will focus on Ohio’s very own bear, the black bear, as it is expanding its range. Find out why it disappeared from this area, about its fascinating biology and whether or not we will begin to see more in our state. Miami Whitewater Forest/Visitor Center. 2 pm. Miami Whitewater Forest. 9001 Mt. Hope Rd, Harrison OH. (513)521-7275.

HARBOR HUNT Partial picture clues lead you on a hunt throughout the harbor area in search of the item they are from. Clue packets can be picked up at the Visitor Center. Miami Whitewater/ Visitor Center. 1-4 pm. Miami Whitewater Forest. 9001 Mt. Hope Rd, Harrison OH. (513)521-7275.

presents the three steps of emergency readiness, told in the form of a humorous skit. 11 a.m. Walton Branch. 21 S. Main St. (859)342BOOK.

Scheben Branch. 8899 US Highway 42, Florence KY. (859)342BOOK.

Hip Hop

Thursday Art Play: OBEY Mother Nature!

Laura Manning from MJM Studios teaches the latest hip hop dance moves. Please wear comfortable clothes. 6:30 p.m. Florence Branch. 7425 US 42, Florence KY. www. (859)342-BOOK.

Music Camp@BCM Take a musical trip around the world! Hear and learn about different cultures music and make your own instrument! For ages 6-10. August 2-6 9am-12pm. Members $75: Future Members $95. Behringer-Crawford Museum. 1600 Montague Road - Devou Park, Covington KY. (859) 491 4003.

Tuesday 03

Ice Cream Social with Mike Hemmelgarn Your family will enjoy juggler/ventriloquist Mike Hemmelgarn, as well as delicious ice cream from the Trauth Dairy Taste Team. 3 p.m. Erlanger Branch. 401 Kenton Lands Rd, Erlanger KY. (859)962-4002.

iSPACE Night at Florence Freedom See a robot throw out the first pitch and watch kids launch rockets as the Florence Freedom take on the Gateway Grizzlies. Kids can run the bases and get autographs from the entire Freedom team. Join the fun to benefit iSPACE, a regional educational non-profit organization that provides school programs, camps and other fun science & technology activities for tri-state youth. Half the cost of each ticket may be tax deductible. All ticket purchasers will be entered into a drawing for a oneweek Florida getaway at the Resort of Sandestin (must be present to win). Called the best value and family-friendly atmosphere in a recent NKU study, the Florence Freedom offers professional baseball in a comfortable setting. $10. Champion Windows Field. 513-612-5788.

Magic Train Take a ride to our LM&M Junction to visit with Professional Magician Brett Sears! Watch a magic show by Mr. Sears and enjoy one on one magic during the return train ride. Coupon: $2 Off Each Ride Ticket for 2010 LM&M Rides. Use access code: CP610. Must present coupon at time of purchase to receive discount. Not valid on Day Out With Thomas or Dare rides. May not be used with any other discount or offer. Exp: 08/01/2010. 10am; 12:30pm; 3pm. Adults: $18.50; Seniors (62+) & Children (5-16): $15.50; Toddler. LM&M Railroad. 127 S. Mechanic St., Lebanon OH. 513-933-8022

Monday 02

3 to Get Ready The American Red Cross teen drama club 38 CINCINNATI PARENT * AUGUST 2010

Stickers are a fun way to share with your friends. Create your own Shepard Fairey-like stickers inspired by his environmental posters. 1-2pm. Free with CAC Admission. Contemporary Arts Center. 44 E Sixth Street, Cincinnati, OH. www.contemporaryartscenter. o r g / U n M u s e u m / T h u r s d a yA r t P l a y. 513.345.8400.

Craft Camp

lake then head out to enjoy the sunset. End the evening with some light refreshments. Participants must f it properly in provided personal f loatation devices. Recommended for ages eight and up. Children must be accompanied by adult on the water. Winton Woods. 8 pm. $10. Winton Woods. 10245 Winton Rd, Cincinnati OH. www. (513)521-7275.

Wulfe Brothers “Let’s Dance” Move and groove with this popular music sensation: Cha Cha Slide, Solja Boy, Macarena and more. 7 p.m. Boone Co. Main Library. 1786 Burlington Pike,, Burlington KY. (859)342-BOOK.

Saturday 07

90-Minute Nap Solution

Circus Experience: Join the Circus for a night

Bring your child to join the circus for a night at our Studio in Clifton Ohio. He can learn and see some of the skills that we perform on a daily basis like ballooning and juggling. Please RSVP by phone to 513-921-5454. 5:45pm - 7:45pm. Free. Essex Studios. 501 Minnesota Street, Cincinnati Ohio. 513-921-5454.

Craft Camp

Spend three afternoons cooling down in the library while making a variety of crafts. We’ll have snacks and work on a group art project together. Tuesday 3, Wednesday 4 & Thursday 5, 3:00-4:30 p.m. Registration is recommended Sponsored by the Kersten Fund. 3-4:30 p.m. Mariemont Branch. 3810 Pocahontas Ave, Cincinnati OH. www. (513)369-4467.

Friday 06

Night Fishing at VOA Park

Spend three afternoons cooling down in the library while making a variety of crafts. We’ll have snacks and work on a group art project together. Tuesday 3, Wednesday 4 & Thursday 5, 3:00-4:30 p.m. Registration is recommended Sponsored by the Kersten Fund. 3-4:30 p.m. Mariemont Branch. 3810 Pocahontas Ave, Cincinnati OH. www. (513)369-4467.

Night Owls love the dark and so do fish! Come and see for yourself at the Voice of America Park Lake when fishing is open until 1 a.m. the first Friday of the month MaySept. Just because the sun goes down doesn’t mean the fun is over! Motor Vehicle and Metroparks fishing permit required. VOA Park. 7850 VOA Park Drive, West Chester Township OH.

Wednesday 04


There are many different approaches and beliefs about how to help your baby and toddler sleep better. Hear one parent’s success with the “90 Minute Solution.” She’ll share her own sleeping trials and tribulations, explain how and why the philosophy works, the benef its of napping, how to implement it at various ages, and how to use it to solve common sleeping challenges and frustrations. Based on the basic human rest and activity cycle (BRAC), which occurs every hour and a half, babies and toddlers should go back down for a nap a mere 90 minutes after waking up! This Q & A open forum is based on Polly Moore’s work, a sleep researcher with a Ph.D. in Neuroscience. 11:15 am. Cincinnati Family Enrichment Center. 4244 Hamilton Ave., Cincinnati OH. (513)591-CFEC.

Craft Camp

Alice in Wonderland Party

Spend three afternoons cooling down in the library while making a variety of crafts. We’ll have snacks and work on a group art project together. Tuesday 3, Wednesday 4 & Thursday 5, 3:00-4:30 p.m. Registration is recommended. Sponsored by the Kersten Fund. 3-4:30 p.m. Mariemont Branch. 3810 Pocahontas Ave, Cincinnati OH. www. (513)369-4467.

Find the White Rabbit, make Wonderland crafts and play games with the Red Queen. 2 p.m. Durr Branch. 1992 WaltonNicholson Road, Independence KY. www. 859-962-4030.


Thursday 05 Little Einsteins

Climb aboard Rocket for an adventure with Leo, Quincy, June, and Annie. 6:30 p.m.

Enjoy a relaxing canoe outing on early summer evening. Get some pointers on canoeing, learn a little natural history of the

This festival has the best in music, food and fun! Featured performers are Vernon McIntyre’s Appalachian Grass, The Retread Bluegrass Band, The Sloes, Tom & Missy Struthers and Wayne and Emily. Music begins at 1:30 pm. See page 8 for details. Miami Whitewater Forest/ Harbor. 1 - 10 pm. Miami Whitewater


Forest. 9001 Mt. Hope Rd, Harrison OH. (513)521-7275.

Cincinnati Pops Orchestra The Pops will present nine different concert programs at historic Music Hall plus a special one-night-only, non-subscription concert with the legendary composer and conductor John Williams at Riverbend on August 7, 2010 in tribute to his friend, Maestro Kunzel. Riverbend Music Center. 6295 Kellogg Ave., Cincinnati OH. www.riverbend-music. com. (513) 232-6220.

Salamander Search Under logs, over creek rocks, between woods and through streams - anywhere we can find these gentle amphibians, we’ll be looking! Join us at the parking lot. Wear sturdy shoes. Call 861-3435 for information. 10 am - noon. free. McFarland Woods. 513861-3435.

the harvest at its freshest. Stop by the gardens from 10 to 11 a.m. to enjoy the tasty sampling of that morning’s harvest. Student chefs from the Art Institute of Ohio-Cincinnati will wow you with their creations. If you want to help harvest for food pantry donations, come as early as 6:30 a.m. when we begin our day. For more information on Granny Garden School’s tastings and other events, visit the website,, call: 324-2873 or email: 10-11 a.m. Granny’s Garden School. 550 Loveland Madeira Rd, Loveland OH. www.grannysgardenschool. com. (513)324-2873.

Monday 09

Make a Splash with Ronald McDonald Ronald and his buddy Stoogie, the Bookworm, dive into a world of magical books and waterful fun. 6:30 p.m. Walton Branch. 21 S. Main St. www. (859)342-BOOK.

Marbleized Paper Art BUTTERFLY WEEKEND Come to the Sharon Centre for a fun afternoon all about butterflies. From 1 pm until 4 pm, check out our butterfly display and make a craft. At 2 pm, test your reflexes as we try to snag butterflies in the field. Wear sunscreen. 1 pm - 4 pm. Sharon Woods. 11450 Lebanon Rd. (513)521-7275. www.

Create your own marbleizing design, method of decorating paper that dates back to eighth century Japan. 6 p.m. Mary Ann Mongan Branch. 502 Scott Blvd, Covington KY. (859)962-4071.

Tuesday 10

Buzzin Back to School We will read books about fun school experiences, make a craft and enjoy a snack. 1:30 p.m. Erlanger Branch. 401 Kenton Lands Rd, Erlanger KY. www. (859)9624002.

Family Craft Night Back to School Fun: Get ready for school by personalizing your school supplies. Tuesday 10, 6:30 p.m., Ages 5-12 Sponsored by the Kersten Fund. 6:30 p.m. Mt. Healthy Branch. 7608 Hamilton Ave, Cincinnati OH. (513)369-4469.

Make Your Own iPod Carrying Case


Drop by the harbor to learn about some of the animals that you might see in Winton Woods. Ongoing activities will take place from 1 pm to 3:30 pm and live animals visit at 1 pm, 2 pm and 3 pm. Winton Woods/Harbor. 1 pm to 3:30 pm. Winton Woods. 10245 Winton Rd, Cincinnati OH. www. (513)521-7275.

Taste the Harvest at Granny’s Garden School’s Granny is on a mission to turn children and their families on to eating their vegetables. The gardens at Granny’s Garden School appeal to all five senses, and now you’re invited to experience the taste of

Make a cool new case for your iPod. Many styles or options from which to choose! All materials will be provided. 6 p.m. Erlanger Branch. 401 Kenton Lands Rd, Erlanger KY. (859)962-4002.

Tween/Teen Tie Dye Extravaganza! Bring a shirt, socks or backpack and put a little free spirit in your summer! Dye provided. Ages 8-18. Registration required. 4 pm. Carrico/Fort Thomas Branch. 1000 Highland Ave., Fort Thomas KY. 859-572-5033.

Wednesday 11

Explorers’ Club - Ancient Greece Be a Greek God or Goddess! Create a tabloid and compete in the mini-Olympics. 1 p.m. Boone Co.

Main Library. 1786 Burlington Pike,, Burlington KY. (859)342-BOOK.




Kick back and relax, enjoy a few teen films and pizza. 2 p.m. Mary Ann Mongan Branch. 502 Scott Blvd, Covington KY. (859)962-4071.

Stop by the Sharon Centre and see some of the animals that call it home. From cute to creepy, this program is sure to soothe even the savage beast. Sharon Woods/Sharon Centre. 2 pm. Sharon Woods. 11450 Lebanon Rd. www.greatparks. org. (513)521-7275.

Get Ready for School with a Spa Night

Baby Food: Made At Home, Made Simple

Film Fest

Learn many tips to take care of our hair and skin, make a product to take home and leave with other simple recipes to make at home. 7 p.m. Erlanger Branch. 401 Kenton Lands Rd, Erlanger KY. www. (859)962-4002.

Thursday 12

Fabulous Fabric Flowers Even if you think you can’t sew, these fabric flowers are super-duper easy. 6 p.m. Durr Branch. 1992 Walton-Nicholson Road, Independence KY. www. 859-962-4030.

ROCK AND FOSSIL SWAP & LEARN Add to your collection, learn something and make new friends. Bring rocks and fossils for this second annual event. All ages are invited to join in the swapping. Guidelines will be shared the day of the event. Winton Woods/Winton Center. 1 - 3 pm. Winton Woods. 10245 Winton Rd, Cincinnati OH. (513)521-7275.

The Book Beat C’mon, what’s the big deal? It’s not ALL about the Pigeon. It’s all about Mo—Willems that is. 1 p.m. Boone Co. Main Library. 1786 Burlington Pike, Burlington KY. (859)342-BOOK.

Thursday Art Play: Print Making with Strange Objects Did you know that you can make art with fruits and vegetables? Join us and learn how to make your own prints and frame them by recycling newspaper. 1-2pm. Free with CAC Admission. Contemporary Arts Center. 44 E Sixth Street, Cincinnati Oh. UnMuseum/ThursdayArtPlay. 513.345.8400.

Friday 13

Big/Little Bonanza Kids of all ages, celebrate the end of summer reading with some terrific teens! Cool craft stations and games staffed by members of the library Teen Advisory Group. 1 p.m. Boone Co. Main Library. 1786 Burlington Pike,, Burlington KY. www.bcpl. org. (859)342-BOOK.

Mr. Cowpie’s Animal Show Join this guitar playing sing along cow for songs, jokes, and even a few surprises. Musical fun for kids and their grown-ups. [no registration]. 11 a.m. Florence Branch. 7425 US 42, Florence KY. www. (859)342-BOOK.

Baby food can be easily prepared at home with a variety of fresh, healthy ingredients for a fraction of the cost of store-bought alternatives. Making your own baby food gives you the distinct advantage of controlling every ingredient that goes into your baby’s sensitive tummy. Our two Mommy Chefs will share their personal experiences, helpful suggestion, tips, and resources, as well as tried-and-eaten recipes that you can prepare and package with love for your baby in your own kitchen. 11:15 am. Cincinnati Family Enrichment Center. 4244 Hamilton Ave., Cincinnati OH. (513)591-CFEC.

From Hive to Honey Bear Have you ever wondered how beekeepers get the honey out of the hive? Visit the bees and hear about “robbing” a hive. Learn how the honey crop is uncapped, extracted and bottled for sale. For more information, call 542-2909. 1:00 - 2:00 pm. free. LaBoiteaux Woods. 5400 Lanius Lane, Cincinnati Ohio. 513-542-2909.

Invasive Species Roundup A weed is simply a plant that isn’t wanted in its present location, but these particular “weeds” can do a lot of harm in our Northside woodland! Join us on a short hike to learn how to identify some of these invaders, and then help us make a dent in their population. Big piles get fabulous prizes! Meet at East end of Bruce Avenue. For more information, call 231-8678. 10 a.m. - noon. free. Parker’s Woods. 4400 Haight Avenue, Cincinnati Ohio. www.incinnatiparks. com. 513-231-8678.Jennifer’s

Jazzy Jumpin’ Sing-a-long

Jennifer Ellis’ kids music is high energy and interactive— great for children of all ages. She has been drawing crowds from Atlanta to New York City, Palm Beach, Los Angeles and Cincinnati for over 10 years. Jennifer’s music show is a dance and sing-a-long concert packed with familiar songs from today’s music such as Laurie Berkner, nursery rhyme favorites, and even originals. 2:30PM. FREE with admission. Duke Energy Children’s Museum. 1301 Western Avenue, Cincinnati OH. www. 1.800.733.2077.





Second Saturday at Mount Washington ArtWorks Join us for an exhibit and free class at our beautiful art studio the Second Saturday of every month. Make an art project, enjoy refreshments, and view an art class in session. All free. All ages welcome. 11:00 -3:00. Free. Mount Washington ArtWorks. 6450 Sherman, Anderson Township OH. 513 232-3738.

Train Ride with Clifford

Cincinnati OH. (513)369-4440.

Tuesday 17

Buckeye Search & Rescue Dogs Learn more about & meet an actual Search & Rescue Dog with Gloria Napier! Buckeye Search & Rescue is an all-volunteer organization of highly trained scenting dogs and their dedicated handlers. Check them out in advance at www.buckeyesardogs. org Tuesday 17, 6:30 p.m., All ages. 6:30 p.m. Mariemont Branch. 3810 Pocahontas Ave, Cincinnati OH. (513)369-4467.

Kid’s Cooking Come to the library and make a yummy healthy snack. Tuesday 17, 3:00-4:00 p.m., Ages 5-12. 3 p.m. Avondale Branch. 3566 Reading Rd, Cincinnati OH. (513)369-4440. Take a train ride to see Clifford the Big Red Dog and Emily Elizabeth! Bring kids, grandparents, or a friend, but don’t forget your camera because this event is filled with fun. Coupon: $2 Off Each Ride Ticket for 2010 LM&M Rides. Use access code: CP810. Must present coupon at time of purchase to receive discount. Not valid on Day Out With Thomas or Dare rides. May not be used with any other discount or offer. Exp: 08/28/2010. 10am; 12:15pm; 2:30pm; 4:45pm. Adults: $18.50; Seniors (62+) & Children (5-16): $15.50; Toddler. LM&M Railroad. 127 S. Mechanic St., Lebanon OH. 513-933-8022.

Sunday 15

BUTTERFLY SUNDAE HIKE Enjoy this program on butterflies! There will be a puppet show, short hike, and afterwards, an ice cream sundae! Woodland Mound/ Seasongood Nature Center. 2 pm. Woodland Mound. 8250 Old Kellogg Rd. (513)521-7275.

Planet Snoopy Kids’ Fun Runs Join us for the 2nd annual Run Kings Island on Sunday, August 15, 2010. Bring the kids to participate in either the Half Mile or the 50 Yard Dash. Both races, for kids ages 10 and under, start and finish at the Eiffel Tower. Amenities included with registration are kids cotton t-shirt, finisher medal, water bottle and Kings Island park admission ticket (valid through 9/6/10). The 50 Yard Dash begins at 9:00 a.m. and the Half Mile begins at 9:10 a.m. Pre-registration is $35 and race day is $40. Proceeds benefits CancerFree Kids and Crayons to Computers. 9:00 a.m. and 9:10 a.m. $35/$45. Kings Island. Kings Island Drive, Kings Island OH. www. 513-474-1399.

Train Ride with Clifford Take a train ride to see Clifford the Big Red Dog and Emily Elizabeth! Bring kids, grandparents, or a friend, but don’t forget your camera because this event is filled with fun. Coupon: $2 Off Each Ride Ticket for 2010 LM&M Rides. Use access code: CP810. Must present coupon at time of purchase to receive discount. Not valid on Day Out With Thomas or Dare rides. May not be used with any other discount or offer. Exp: 08/28/2010. 10am; 12:15pm; 2:30pm; 4:45pm. Adults: $18.50; Seniors (62+) & Children (5-16): $15.50; Toddler. LM&M Railroad. 127 S. Mechanic St., Lebanon OH. 513-933-8022.

Monday 16

Kid’s Video Game Day Come to the library and play your favorite video games. Monday 16, 2:00-3:00 p.m., Ages 5-12. 2 - 3 pm. Avondale Branch. 3566 Reading Rd, 40 CINCINNATI PARENT * AUGUST 2010

Teens Cook: Salsa Make your own salsa and try different varieties. 6 p.m. Durr Branch. 1992 Walton-Nicholson Road, Independence KY. 859962-4030.

Wednesday 18 The Wizard of Oz

Come celebrate The Wizard of Oz, which premiered today in 1939. Wednesday 18, 4:00-5:30 p.m., Ages 6-12 Sponsored by the Friends of the Public Library. 4 p.m. Bond Hill Branch. 1740 Langdon Farm Rd, Bond Hill OH. (513)369-4445.

WALK CLUB: PREHISTORIC SHARON WOODS Join the naturalist for a morning hike on the Gorge and Parcours trails. As we hike, hear about some of the animals that called Sharon Woods home in the distant past. Sharon Woods/Sharon Centre. 8:30 am. Sharon Woods. 11450 Lebanon Rd. (513)5217275.

Arabian Nights Planetarium Show Come join us at the Wolff Planetarium in the Trailside Nature Center for an introduction to the constellations and some of the legends connected to them. Programs are open to adults and children ages 5 and older accompanied by an adult. Reservations required. Seating is limited. 7:00 - 8:00 pm. $3.00 per person. Trailside Nature Center. 3251 Brookline, Cincinnati Ohio. 513-751-3679.

FULL MOON BIKE Enjoy a late evening bicycle ride by the light of a nearly full moon and then have some refreshments by a fire. You may choose to ride the 7.8 mile loop once or twice. Recommended for ages 10 and up. Helmets are suggested. Miami Whitewater Forest ($5.00, 8/18). 8 pm. $5. Miami Whitewater Forest. 9001 Mt. Hope Rd, Harrison OH. www. (513)521-7275.

Saturday 21

9th Annual Summer Arts & Crafts Fair The Covedale Center for the Performing Arts, located at 4990 Glenway Avenue in Western Hills will present The Covedale Performing and Fine Arts Fair! A free-to-the-public event, to be held Saturday, August 21, 2010,10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Musical artists of various styles will provide the atmosphere, while artists and crafts persons will display/sell their wares throughout the lobby, theatre auditorium on stage and outdoors. 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Covedale Center for the Performing Arts. 4990 Glenway Ave., Cincinnati OH. www. cincin nat i la nd ma rkproduct (513)241-6550.

Amazing Arthropods Find out why these animals are the most successful creatures on earth. We will get a closer look at their remarkable adaptations for finding food, building shelters, communicating, and attracting mates. Meet at the shelter. For more information, call 751-3679. 9:30 - 11:00 am. free. Kennedy Heights Parks. 6039 Kennedy Avenue, Cincinnati Ohio. Cincinnatiparks. com. 513-751-3679.

Thursday 19

Recipe Exchange & Potluck Bring a covered dish, your secret recipe and a hearty appetite to the Library! Adults. Registration required. 7 pm. Carrico/Fort Thomas Branch. 1000 Highland Ave., Fort Thomas KY. 859-5725033.

Friday 20

After-Hours Game Night Go head-to-head against your friends in Wii games, board games, Playstation games and much more! All games must be rated T or E. Pizza and drinks provided. Ages 11-18. Registration required. 7 pm. Carrico/Fort Thomas Branch. 1000 Highland Ave., Fort Thomas KY. 859-572-5033.

Winston, the Puppy Tale Dog Find out how Puppy Tales started and what training a dog should have in order to join this program. 3 p.m. Durr Branch. 1992 Walton-Nicholson Road, Independence KY. 859962-4030.

ICE, ICE BABY It might be hot outside, but the park is a perfect place to cool down with this program all about glaciers. Join the naturalist on Saturday or Sunday for fun ice age themed activities and a hike on the Gorge trail to see how glaciers shaped Sharon Woods. Sharon Woods/Sharon Centre. 2 pm. Sharon Woods. 11450 Lebanon Rd. (513)5217275.

Monday 23 Fruitalicious

A smorgasbord of books and fruit - create a kabob, dip on the side. Sign-up begins August 8th. 10:30 a.m. Lents Branch. 3215 Cougar Path, Hebron KY. (859)342-BOOK.

Tuesday 24

Back to School Scavenger Hunt Try to find the school supplies hidden around the library. Tuesday 24, 3:00-4:00 p.m., Ages 5-12. 3 p.m. Avondale Branch. 3566 Reading Rd, Cincinnati OH. (513)369-4440.


Gas Engine, Tractor & Blacksmith Show

Back to School Party Join us for a back to school celebration! Snacks and drinks provided. Ages 12-19. No registration required. 3:30 pm. Newport Branch. 901 E. Sixth St., Newport KY. org. (859)572-5035.

Trail, with a short side trip to a prairie habitat in search of wildflowers. Flower identification tips and folklore will be shared. Miami Whitewater Forest/Visitor Center. 9 am. Miami Whitewater Forest. 9001 Mt. Hope Rd, Harrison OH. www. (513)521-7275.


the power engines of yester year, and watch a t r a c t o r parade twice a day. Enjoy blacksmithing demonstrations as you tour the village. $5.00 for adults, $3.00 for children. www. (513) 563-9484.

Live Music at the Levee Neon Swing X-perience, Saturday, August 21, 6-10 p.m. Neon Swing X-perience creates innovative and unique danceable music rooted in the classic big bands of the 1930s and 1940s with influences from Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Johnny Cash, Kenny Rogers and more. 6-10 p.m. Newport on the Levee. 1 Levee Way # 1113, Newport KY. www. (859) 291-0550

Sunday 22 LATE SUMMER BLOOMERS Hike around the inner loop of the Shaker Trace

Need to get out with a little one? Join us for a walk by the lake with strollers or wagons in tow. We’ll stop along the trail a few times to look at wildlife on the shores of the lake. Sharon Woods/Harbor. 10 am. Sharon Woods. 11450 Lebanon Rd. www. (513)521-7275.

Tie-Dye T-shirts Join us and make tie-dye t-shirts! Library provides t-shirt and dye. Ages 11-18. Registration required. 6 pm. Cold Spring Branch. 3920 Alexandria Pike, Cold Spring KY. (859)781-6166.

Impresa Quarterfest Quarter fests are a fun night out event hosted by the Impresa Business Network. The events are a great opportunity for our customers to get great product collections. At the quarter fest, you will find 60 - 100 different product collection that you could purchase for as little as a Quarter! Bring a bag of quarters and place your bid on the collections you are interested in, and when your number is called, you win! There are more opportunities to win door prizes and raffles throughout the night. Proceeds will be donated to our local charity. Doors open at 6:30pm, Quarterfest to start at 7:00. $1.00. Edgewood Senior Center. 550 Freedom Park Drive. 859-818-0803.


Wednesday 25 Afternoon Activity play board games. Wednesday 25, 4:00-5:00 p.m., Ages 6-12 Sponsored by the Friends of the Public Library. 4 p.m. Bond Hill Branch. 1740 Langdon Farm Rd, Bond Hill OH. www. (513)369-4445.

The Wiggles Wiggly Circus 6:30 pm. $77, $53, $32 and $22. Bank of Kentucky Center. 500 Nunn Drive, Highland Heights KY. www.bankof 859-4422652.

Thursday 26

Gourmet Pet Treats Join local columnist Marsie Newbold to learn new recipes for homemade pet treats! Adults. Registration required. 7 pm. Newport Branch. 901 E. Sixth St., Newport KY. www. (859)572-5035.

Little Builders Welcome to our Duplo open house where little hands construct big fun. [no registration]. 10:30-12:30. Boone Co. Main Library. 1786 Burlington Pike,, Burlington KY. (859)342-BOOK

Friday 27

Hunger Games Party Join in the celebration of the third book in Suzanne Collins’ triology “Hunger Games.” Food, fun and prizes at this after hours event. Permission slips required. 7 p.m. Mary Ann Mongan Branch. 502 Scott Blvd, Covington KY. www.kentonlibrary. org. (859)962-4071.

CAMPFIRE FUN You are welcome to bring your campfire dinners and roasting sticks to cook on the coals that will be ready one hour before the program. The program with live animals and other campfire fun will begin at 7 pm. Farbach-Werner Nature Preserve/ Ellenwood Nature Barn. 7 pm. Farbach-Werner Nature Preserve. 3445 Poole Rd, Cincinnati OH. (513)521-7275.

Saturday 28

Fancy Nancy Tea Party Ooh la la! Join us for delectable treats and fabulous fun at a Tea Party. 1 p.m. Mary Ann Mongan Branch. 502 Scott Blvd, Covington KY. www. (859)962-4071.

FANTASTIC FOSSILS Take a peek at the past as we explore fossils. We will practice our fossils skills inside before we head outdoors to see what can be found in the park. Sharon Woods/Sharon Centre. 2 pm. Sharon Woods. 11450 Lebanon Rd. (513)521-7275.

Farmer’s Fair Farmers’ Fair celebrates and supports local food culture and sustainable living. A street fair, farmers’ market and fundraiser, the event builds relationships from farm to table. Ed Begley, Jr. and Berlin Reed, The Ethical Butcher will are keynote speakers. 10 am to 10 pm. FREE. Roebling Entertainment District. at the corner of Court Street and Park Place, Covington KY.

Live Music at the Levee The Comforts, Saturday, August 28, 6-10 p.m. The Comforts are a high-energy pop rock band from Cincinnati, Ohio, who appeal to audiences of all ages



with their tale-telling songs. 6-10 p.m. Newport on the Levee. 1 Levee Way # 1113, Newport KY. (859) 291-0550.

Taste the Harvest at Granny’s Garden School’s Granny is on a mission to turn children and their families on to eating their vegetables. The gardens at Granny’s Garden School appeal to all five senses, and now you’re invited to experience the taste of the harvest at its freshest. Stop by the gardens from 10 to 11 a.m. to enjoy the tasty sampling of that morning’s harvest. Student chefs from the Art Institute of Ohio-Cincinnati will wow you with their creations. If you want to help harvest for food pantry donations, come as early as 6:30 a.m. when we begin our day. For more information on Granny Garden School’s tastings and other events, visit the website,, call: 324-2873 or email: 10-11 a.m. Granny’s Garden School. 550 Loveland Madeira Rd, Loveland OH. www. (513)3242873.

Third Annual Pet Fair With the Kenton County Animal Shelter Join us at the Kenton County Animal Shelter to find your new best friend. 10-1 p.m. Durr Branch. 1992 Walton-Nicholson Road, Independence KY. www. 859-962-4030.

Tween Lock-In Get locked in the library and play after hours. Join us for games, scavenger hunts and pizza. Sign-up begins 8/14. 6:00-9:30 p.m. Scheben Branch. 8899 US Highway 42, Florence KY. (859)342-BOOK.

Sunday 29

Ice Cream Social Chill out with friends and make ice-cream sundaes. Sign-up begins 8/15. 2 p.m. Scheben Branch. 8899 US Highway 42, Florence KY. (859)342-BOOK.

WACKY WEATHER Participate in some fun experiments to show how our wacky weather works. Miami Whitewater Forest/Visitor Center. 11 am. Miami Whitewater Forest. 9001 Mt. Hope Rd, Harrison OH. www. (513)521-7275.

Monday 30 Get Crafty

The sky’s the limit with your imagination and our materials. 6:30 p.m. Boone Co. Main Library. 1786 Burlington Pike, Burlington KY. (859)342-BOOK.

Tuesday 31 BFF

Grab a friend, make slap bracelets and have a photo shoot! Use props to make it your own. Sign-up begins 8/17. 6:30 p.m. Lents Branch. 3215 Cougar Path, Hebron KY. www.bcpl. org. (859)342-BOOK.

National Trail Mix Day Celebrate with a snack and activities. Tuesday 31, 4:00-5:00 p.m. Sponsored by the Friends of the Public Library. 4 p.m. Bond Hill Branch. 1740 Langdon Farm Rd, Bond Hill OH. (513)369-4445. CINCINNATIPARENT.COM 41



calendar Club Aqua Occurring Each Tuesday Beginning Tuesday, July 20, 2010 Through Tuesday, August 10, 2010. Club Aqua, The Beach’s teens-only outdoor dance club, is returning for its eighth season. The party will take place at the Pearl and features a live interactive DJ and music. (Must be 13-19 years of age). 9-midnight. $10 at the gate; $8 online. The Beach Waterpark. 2590 Waterpark Drive, Mason OH. 513-398-SWIM.

Dive-In Movies presented by Blue Grass Quality Meats Occurring Each Saturday Beginning Saturday, July 17, 2010 Through Saturday, August 14, 2010. Dive into great family f licks on Saturday nights at The Beach. Pull up a lounge chair or f loat on an innertube in Kahuna Beach, the largest wavepool in Ohio. Visit www.thebeachwaterpark. com for a full movie line-up. 9 p.m. midnight. Free with admission: $15.50 admission after 3:30 p.m. at the gat. The Beach Waterpark. 2590 Waterpark Drive, Mason OH. www.thebeachwaterpark. com. 513-398-SWIM.

Stay at home dads weekly playgroup Ongoing Each Friday. This is a private group for at-home dads in Cincinnati. Sign up and register at to gain access to the announcements and regular updates. The weekly playgroup meets at various parks and attractions around Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky.

Success Strategies for Student with ADHD Occurring Mon-Fri Beginning Monday, August 30, 2010 Through Monday, June 06, 2011. High School and College students with ADHD, Learning Disabilities and other Hidden Disabilities will learn and apply scientif ically proven meta-cognitive strategies to improve their academic performance. Small group meetings are held weekly. Meeting times and locations may vary based on group needs. Cost is $25 per 90-minute meeting. For information or to pre-register call 513-947-8387 or visit 513-947-8387.

Enrichment Center. 4244 Hamilton Ave., Cincinnati OH. www. (513)591-CFEC.

The PeaWee Patch organic gardening fun Occurring Each Tuesday Beginning Tuesday, August 03, 2010 Through Tuesday, August 31, 2010. Whether it’s wiggling their toes in the dirt, looking under leaves, or digging up worms, the garden cultivates a sense of wonder in children! As they care for their garden they develop nurturing skills and grow to have a sense of respect and care for all living creatures, even the ones that live under rocks! Each of our themed gardening classes opens with music, a story, and a craft, then we’ll spend the remainder of our time out in the PeaWee Patch (weather permitting). Watch your child’s love for nature blossom. 9:45 & 10:45 am. $90/9-class package or $13/class. Cincinnati Family Enrichment Center. 4244 Hamilton Ave., Cincinnati OH. (513)591-CFEC.

TummyTime! - essential for newborn health! Occurring Each Thursday Beginning Thursday, August 05, 2010 Through Thursday, August 26, 2010. Teach your baby to love “tummy time”! Babies need to develop core (tummy) strength to lift their heads, roll over, focus their eyes, crawl, and even to form speech. During these facilitated open-play sessions you’ll discover creative ways to stimulate your infant’s senses, learn simple play activities to promote motor development, as well as practice infant massage and ref lexology techniques which promote brain development, lessen colic symptoms, enhance sleep patterns, and promote infant bonding and attachment. 9:45 & 11:15 am. $80/8-class package or $13/class. Cincinnati Family Enrichment Center. 4244 Hamilton Ave., Cincinnati OH. (513)591-CFEC.

Whale of a Tale interactive story time Ongoing Every Tue, Thu & Sat Beginning Saturday, August 21, 2010. Instill the love of reading within your child from infancy upward by participating in our multi-sensory story time. Weekly themes incorporate story telling, singing, and a simple take-home craft, if desired. Come with your “listening ears” on. 10:30 am. Cincinnati Family Enrichment Center. 4244 Hamilton Ave., Cincinnati OH. (513)591-CFEC.

NEED EVEN MORE GREAT IDEAS???? Sign up for our FREE weekly e-newsletter at www.cincinnatiparent. com and you’ll receive the week’s top events delivered right to your inbox!

Surf Rockin’ Concert Series Occurring Each Friday Beginning Friday, July 23, 2010 Through Friday, August 13, 2010. The Beach’s Surf Rockin’ concert series is a nostalgic review of the 1960s-era surf style music that originated in the U.S. Live bands bring the music of Dick Dale and the Beach Boys back on the Kokomo Kove Stage. 3 p.m. — 6 p.m. Free with admission: $27.99 at the gate; $22.00 online in advanc. The Beach Waterpark. 2590 Waterpark Drive, Mason OH. www. 513-398-SWIM.




The Amazing Portable Circus Performs at Newport on the Levee Ongoing Annually each July 14. We will be providing a strolling entertainer to perform on the boardwalk for people at the Levee. 1:00pm - 4:00pm. Free. AMC Newport on the Levee20. One Levee Way, Suite 4100, Newport Ky. www.amazingportablecircus. com. 513-921-5454.

Your Listing Here! Contact Erin at

Stroller Club socialize while you exercise! Occurring Each Monday Beginning Monday, August 02, 2010 Through Monday, August 30, 2010. Tired of exercising alone? Can’t even get motivated to exercise at all? Join the CFEC Stroller Club! Whether you’re a walker or a runner we’d be excited to have you join us at various parks around the c o m m u n i t y. 11:15 am. Cincin nat i Fa m i ly


Next Birthday, have a

Music Pups® Party!

Singing, Dancing, Instruments, Bubbles, Parachutes, More! West Chester Academy of Music


Fun! Ages 1 to 5!

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fun & wacky calendar


august 2010



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Celebration Idea: Try your hand at poetry writing! Research different types of poems (acrostic, haiku, limerick, etc.) and create your own


National Dog Day!

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Kiss and ma k e Up Day

Poet's Day

National Radio Day

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the first photograph of earth from the moon was taken.



Waffle Day

On this day in 1966,







Celebration Idea: Try to do something with your opposite hand today: write, throw a ball, eat, brush your teeth...

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Toasted Marshmallow Day

Middle Children´s Day!


Celebration Idea: We can't think of a better way to celebrate than by making some fresh squeezed lemonade!!!

Nationa l Th rif t Sh o p Da y

Cupca ke D ay

International Left-Handers Day


Dream Day

Celebration Idea: This holiday celebrates the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Junior's "I have a dream" speech. Talk about your dreams together as a family.

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Celebration Idea: Make an amusement park by cutting pictures out of magazines. Line up chairs and pretend you're riding a roller coaster.


Be an Angel Day

S'M ores Play in Day! the sand


Roller Coaster Day!


Nationa l M u s t a rd Da y

Wiggle Your Toes Day


National Relaxation Day. Ahh...

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the U.S. Dollar was created.



Celebration Idea: If it's okay with mom, incorporate chocolate chips into every meal today! Chocolate chip pancakes, anyone???



On this day in 1786,




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Celebration Idea: Make gifts for your family members. Draw a picture of your family. Make a family crest. Have a family party!


Saturday 6

m s t r o n g !!

Family Day!

Chocolate Chip Day

5 r t h day N


National Ice Cream SANDWICH Watermelon Day! Day!







Wednesday Thursday








LIKE this calendar? Let us know! E-mail with your suggestions and comments! Celebration Idea: Make (or buy) some trail mix and go on a hike!

Sources:,, &


Cincinnati Parent // August 2010  

Cincinnati Parent is Greater Cincinnati's Leading Parenting Publication! In this issue: New Riders, Growing Pains, 25 Back to School Tips, E...