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’cause parenting is a trip!

FILM SCREENING “Screenagers: Next Chapter”

Nov. 19 See p. 19

Rain, Rain, Come and Play! Brilliant backyard adventures for foul-weather fun 33 How to raise kids who stand up for what’s right 16

GIVING GUIDE: NO GIFT RECEIPTS REQUIRED 12 ways to celebrate a meaningful holiday season 27

THE LONG-LASTING BENEFITS OF VOLUNTEERING Sustainable service opps for kids of all ages 41



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Give a memory this season. Unwrap new traditions and make new memories while you explore an all new adventure at the World’s Largest Christmas Light Maze. Get into the spirit of the season, as you glide along the ice skating trail, visit Mr. & Mrs. Claus, feast on festive delights and take in the cheer of live entertainment.










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inside NOVEMBER 2019

,cause parenting is a trip!



On raising an upstander, not a bystander


Big change starts with small actions

12 WELLNESS How a familiar childhood procedure

is helping kids sleep better


6 essential products for parents expecting multiples


10 reasons you should read aloud to big kids, too


Impactful ways for families to give back during the holidays



5 organizations that offer meaningful service opportunities for kids


This businesswoman hopes to redefine the future for women in the workplace



Out + About




How to raise kids who stand up for what’s right



Messy-fun diversions to entertain kids on rainy November days

Advertising Sections 22–23 A  rts + Activities  ift Guide 26–31 G 32–35 O  ut + About

36–42 S chools + Preschools 43–45 N  WAIS 46 B  irthdays • November 2019 • 5


Assembling the building blocks of moral courage


We offer on the University of Washington Seattle campus: Transition School • UW Academy • Saturday Enrichment Summer Programs • Professional Development • RC Online Challenging K-12 students in an intellectual community through early entrance and outreach learning programs. SATURDAY ENRICHMENT Current Grades K-8 The Saturday Enrichment classes provide intellectually ambitious students with challenge, inspiration, and fun, in a collaborative, supportive learning environment. Classes meet for one or two hours per week on Saturdays at the UW Seattle Campus to explore topics not usually covered in the K-8 curriculum.

SUMMER CHALLENGE Current Grades 5-6 Summer Challenge is an academically advanced summer camp for motivated children seeking an intensive, hands-on, fun educational experience. The program runs for three weeks, five days a week from 9:00am – 2:20pm, on the UW Seattle campus. There is also an After-Class program available for an additional charge from 2:20 – 4:30pm. Classes are small, and instructors are all specialists in their field. Application criteria can be found on our website.

SUMMER STRETCH Current Grades 7-10 Summer Stretch offers in-depth, intensive learning experiences as accelerated courses and enrichment courses. Summer Stretch runs 3 days a week (9:00am – 2:30pm) for five weeks beginning June 29 on the UW Seattle campus.Classes are taught by specialists in their field with a high adult:child ratio. There is a substantial homework load; courses are graded and final transcripts are provided. Application criteria can be found on our website.

RC ONLINE Current Grades 9-12 RC Online is a new accelerated learning opportunity, bringing advanced college-prep curriculum to an online platform for high school students. RC Online provides an inspiring, expansive educational experience as a window into what college-level work will be like; to move students rapidly from novice to advanced writers, readers and thinkers via specific skills, practices and tools. These courses provide challenging curriculum without the logistical, economic and other barriers that come between a student and educational opportunity. Additional information can be found on our website. Phone: 206-543-4160 Email: 6 • November 2019 •

s a parent — and now a grandparent! — I easily become preoccupied with thoughts about how we can heal the divisions that afflict our society. By nurturing respect and acceptance, and by fighting hate and intolerance through the power of education, I believe that each of us can help our community become more inclusive, connected and compassionate. My faith in the ability of parents and thought leaders to create a better world for our children is what has guided the mission of ParentMap since its founding in 2003. This past year, we have dedicated consistent, thoughtful coverage around themes of teaching tolerance, in the pages of this magazine and on our website. This month’s feature on Moral Courage (p. 16) examines a key question: At a time when most Americans feel the country’s values are deteriorating, how can we raise kids who show courage when and where it counts? For many, the phrase “moral courage” calls to mind stories of rescuers who helped Jews during World War II. In recent months, we have reported on the efforts of the Holocaust Center for Humanity to advance legislation that will expand Holocaust curricula across our state. The work of the center to teach today’s youth about the dangers of intolerance through its community events, museum exhibits and many education programs is deeply personal to me and my family. My grandparents escaped Poland before the Holocaust, and I carry their legacy of resilience with me. The center shares stories of victims, survivors, rescuers — and of perpetrators — in order to remind us that hate doesn’t happen in a vacuum. We all must find ways both big and small to be the change we wish to see in the world. And for our children, we must continually model and remodel the building blocks of moral courage. It is with great pride that I share the news that I will be honored as this year’s Voices for Humanity Award recipient by the Holocaust Center for Humanity at its annual luncheon on Nov. 6. While this award certainly acknowledges the effort of the ParentMap team to share thought-provoking content about tolerance and character education, the work we do is not possible without the support of our community partners and the inspiration of you, our readers. On behalf of the ParentMap staff, thank you!


November 2019, Vol. 17, No. 11 PUBLISHER/EDITOR Alayne Sulkin



Nicole Persun


Dora Heideman


Gemma Alexander, Daniel Amen, M.D., Bryony Angell, Will Austin, April Chan, Rory Graves, Malia Jacobson, Charlene Jimenez, Elisabeth Kramer, Denise Yearian



Lindsey Carter


Diana Cherry


Maureen Taasin



Ida Wicklund


Jen Dine


A Bainbridge Island Experience

Jessica Collet


Angela Goodwin


Dental health education made interactive and fun!






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See our calendar for an event near you Email us at to schedule your own visit. • November 2019 • 7


News Around Town

Screen-time struggles driving you batty?

Free children’s books for Jewish families

Two great talks of the Town (Hall) for parents

It’s every parent’s battle: monitoring and managing screen time. But what do reasonable limits even look like, anyway? How much is too much? And how can we keep our kids safe? You’ll learn positive strategies for managing media as a family and effective approaches for establishing healthy limits everyone can feel good about from The Screentime Consultant Emily Cherkin in our Nov. 6 ParentEd Talk, Connected Kids: Overcoming the Screen-Time Battle.

PJ Library, a program of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation, sends free expertly curated children’s books to families raising Jewish (and Jew-ish) children across North America. Each month, families receive the best in Jewish kid lit, compelling stories with vibrant illustrations that capture a child’s imagination. PJ Library also offers a wealth of activities, recipes and parenting articles, plus “Have I Got a Story for You,” a new podcast for kids. See book roundup on p. 20 and learn more at

Renowned Yale psychologist Mark Brackett, Ph.D. will provide insights and innovative strategies for developing emotional intelligence in adults and children from his new book “Permission to Feel” (Nov. 5). Caroline Wright, a cancer survivor and author of the children’s book “Lasting Love,” will be joined by a panel of leading experts in the fields of children’s bereavement and cancer to discuss what to say to our kids to comfort them when facing the loss of a loved one (Nov. 9).

Giving Together 2019


each month as we

Established in 1989, the center supports Pacific Northwest teachers in public and private schools to introduce Holocaust studies into their curricula.

promote, support


Please join us

and learn about an extraordinary local organization or program that strives to improve the lives of families.

8 • November 2019 •

To inspire students of all ages to confront bigotry and indifference, promote human dignity, and take action.


Join the center for its Nov. 6 Voices for Humanity Luncheon, celebrating 30 years in the community and honoring Alayne Sulkin and ParentMap with the 2019 Voices for Humanity Award. Learn more at

It’s the law: Nannies have rights! If you are a nanny, housecleaner, home health caregiver, landscaper, or other domestic worker – or if you employ domestic workers in your home – here are a few things you need to know. All domestic workers in Seattle have the right to: • Seattle minimum wage • Uninterrupted meal and rest breaks, or extra pay if you don’t get a break • One day (24 hours) off after working six consecutive days, for workers who live or sleep where they are employed • Keep documents or personal effects • Protection against sexual harassment and discrimination

Learn more about the new law and how to get involved in winning new rights for nannies by visiting

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Learn more at GET and DreamAhead are qualified tuition programs sponsored and distributed by the State of Washington. The Committee on Advanced Tuition Payment and College Savings administers and the Washington Student Achievement Council supports the plans. DreamAhead investment returns are not guaranteed and you could lose money by investing in the plan. If in-state tuition decreases in the future, GET tuition units may lose value. • November 2019 • 9

it starts with you(th)

ParentEd TALKS

Meet Fadumo Roble This Bellevue student believes big change starts with small actions By Patty Lindley

I Connected Kids: Overcoming the Screen-Time Battle A talk by The Screentime Consultant

Emily Cherkin

WEDNESDAY, NOV. 6 The Collective, Seattle They’re addicted. It’s time for change. Learn positive parenting strategies for managing media.

Get your tickets: Sponsored by:

10 • November 2019 •

f you ask 17-year-old Fadumo Roble what she likes to do in her free time, her response will sound like that of your average teen: She loves hanging out with her friends, hiking and being out in nature; she likes dabbling in photography and other digital art forms. But when she beings to talk about what she is doing to make change in her community, you quickly realize that this positive and thoughtful young woman is well above average. You might also wonder: How does she even have any free time? A senior at Bellevue’s Interlake High School, Roble is doing Running Start and has a career aspiration to become a lawyer one day. She says that her interest in politics and social justice issues increased dramatically leading up to the divisive 2016 presidential election, especially when she and her friends started noticing concerning ripple effects in their school’s social dynamics. They decided they wanted to do something about it and founded Movement of Advocacy for Youth (MAY;, a nonprofit dedicated to making sure that youth voices are heard. Roble is also involved in the youth program at her mosque and in the Gates Foundation Discovery Center’s Youth Ambassadors Program (YAP), a servicelearning program that educates, engages and empowers high school students to be changemakers. Along with her YAP peers, Roble had a hand in co-curating and planning “We the Future,” a new interactive exhibition celebrating youth leadership and action that is currently on view at the Discovery Center. This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity and length.

What is the mission of your nonprofit? I and four other individuals founded MAY to promote solutions for current social justice issues happening around us, as well as to give a voice to the youth. We believe that everyone is capable of making a change, despite any challenges they might face. Our goal is to take concerns that people around us have and build events dedicated to those topics. Anything on the front burner for the organization right now, in terms of event planning? We’re definitely working on more grant-making, because we want to take on an initiative around voting. A lot of us will be turning 18 or will be 18 by the time of the next presidential election. Although it is probably going to

be a very glamorized, polarized, publicized election, we also want to bring awareness to local elections as well, because those are the ones that are going to affect us the most. What would you say to other young people to encourage them to get involved in making change? I always say start small and work up from there. Attend discussions or workshops about something you care about — those events are really big for making connections. Always focus on where your heart is — if you can take on more, take on more, but never overwork yourself to the point of burnout. How do you think parents can support their kids’ interests in activism? I’m a Black Muslim woman, so I feel like a lot of trials and tribulations that happened to me have come to define me and the things I’ve done and the things I want to do for my community. From my experience, I think my parents have always kept me exposed to the things happening around me. I know a parent’s number one job is to make sure their children are protected, but there’s the good, the bad and the ugly. And, sadly enough, sooner or later we eventually have to see the bad and the ugly. So, just support your child. Support and awareness, I feel, go so long, go so far. Who has inspired you in your life to become involved in your community? I would say my mom has made a huge, huge, huge, huge contribution to what I do today. Whenever she wasn’t working or dealing with her kids, she would contribute her time to the community. I think that was such a major building block for me. My whole family is a group of very hardworking individuals who really care about the people around them and care about the community, care about their family. Growing up, you come across other people, too. My peers who do amazing things — that just motivates me. We are our own support system; we can kind of push each other and bounce ideas off each other. And then there are adults you meet along the way. I guess I just love being supported by amazing men and women who are much older — they can tell that you care and they care, and it’s just an amazing dynamic. Are you reading or studying anything right now that you’re finding particularly interesting? I’m really interested in the law aspects of life, so I’ve been taking political science and criminal justice classes. I plan to study political science and then hopefully become a lawyer, though I’m not sure which area I really want to work in yet. n Sponsored by:

At the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, we believe all lives have equal value. We are impatient optimists working to reduce inequity. Explore interactive exhibits and find ways you can take action at the Gates Foundation Discovery Center, • November 2019 • 11

wellness • Naturopathic primary care • Women’s health • Pediatrics

Can a Surgical Option Treat Sleep Apnea in Kids? How a familiar childhood procedure is helping kids sleep better

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By Malia Jacobson


generation ago, most childhood tonsil-removal surgeries were recommended to treat frequent, painful throat infections. And tonsil-removal surgery, or tonsillectomy, still provides relief from recurrent strep throat, a common childhood ailment. But that’s not what brings most pediatric patients in to consult with Fariha S. Farid, D.O., an ENT physician in practice at The Polyclinic’s Northgate Plaza and Madison clinics. While today’s parents and grandparents may have had enlarged tonsils removed due to frequent strep infections, most modern pediatric tonsil removals are performed to treat obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA. “Thirty years ago, 90 percent of tonsillectomies were done for infection,” says Farid. “Today, just 20 percent are done for infection, and 80 percent are for OSA.” She attributes this shift to multiple factors, including rising rates of pediatric OSA and stricter guidelines from the American Academy of Otolaryngology around performing tonsillectomy.

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How tonsillectomy relieves pediatric OSA Pediatric sleep apnea occurs when a child’s airway is obstructed during sleep, resulting in brief interruptions in breathing. Although OSA is commonly associated with adults — generally males in midlife — the disorder is also common in children. According to studies on the general pediatric population, as many as 5.7 percent of children experience OSA. Most cases of OSA in children are linked to anatomy and genetics; underlying factors include enlarged tonsils, obesity and anatomical or neuromuscular characteristics. Helping children with OSA is important, because untreated OSA is linked to a variety of physical, emotional and behavioral problems, from bed-wetting and sleep terrors to hyperactivity, insomnia and depression. In adults, OSA is linked to mood disorders, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. For children with enlarged tonsils (which are pillowy mounds of lymphatic tissue at the top of the airway), breathing can be blocked when the muscles of the mouth, face and throat relax during sleep. Tonsillectomy removes this tissue. A 2017 analysis of four studies on tonsillectomy patients with a mean age of 8.3 found that tonsillectomy significantly reduced sleep-disordered breathing and improved blood-oxygen levels. Nonsurgical treatments for pediatric OSA include medication, oral appliances and continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy. Noninvasive approaches include myofunctional therapy (MFT), a method of exercising facial muscles to strengthen the mouth and tongue. Tonsillectomy can be combined with other therapies to treat pediatric OSA, says Farid.

What to expect, from diagnosis to recovery Children with persistent sleep difficulties or those who snore may be referred for a sleep study, an overnight test that monitors nighttime breathing to diagnose OSA. After a child is diagnosed with OSA, the family may be referred to an ENT physician for a consultation. If a child is a candidate for tonsillectomy, caregivers may have the option

of choosing between several different surgical techniques to remove the tonsils. Electrocautery tonsillectomy uses high heat to destroy tonsil tissue quickly and with less postoperative bleeding than other methods. Other methods include the harmonic scalpel and a newer procedure called coblation, which involves radiofrequency at a low temperature to gently and precisely remove tissue, which may result in a less painful recovery. No matter which method is used, parents and caregivers can expect to sacrifice some sleep during their child’s recovery. Healing generally takes about two weeks, longer if the tonsils are removed together with the adenoids (the glands located where the nose meets the throat behind the soft palate). But there’s good news: Pediatric tonsillectomy patients tend to heal more quickly and handle postoperative pain better than adult patients, says Farid. “Most pediatric tonsillectomy patients are 15 or younger, and most of my tonsillectomy patients have been under 10,” says Farid. “The younger the patient, the better they tend to handle the surgery and recovery process. Patients 6 and younger usually do great; older children and teenagers may experience more pain or discomfort postoperatively.” Postoperative bleeding is the biggest health concern during recovery; up to 2.2 percent of patients experience bleeding within 24 hours of tonsillectomy, says Farid. Any sign of bleeding (more than a few drops, or a slight pink tinge after a child gargles with ice water) is a medical emergency warranting a visit to the emergency room. Making sure children take pain medication on a strict schedule is another caregiver responsibility. “Kids tend to do well after surgery — it’s the caregivers who are on call constantly. Staying ahead of a child’s pain and dosing medications on time is vital, which might mean waking up in the night to give medication, especially in the first week after surgery,” says Farid. After young patients heal from tonsillectomy, many experience improved sleep and get sick less often, says Farid. And though many parents ask whether tonsil removal will hurt their child’s immune system, there are no studies that show a negative impact on immune function, she notes. “It’s important to have a good conversation with your ENT about what to expect before, during and after tonsillectomy. It’s normal to be worried before your child has surgery,” says Farid. “But after surgery, most parents say their child did great.” ■

Helping sore throats feel better

Dr. Fariha Farid Otolaryngologist

Dr. Farid is an ear, nose and throat specialist with expertise and training in treating children ages 2 and older. Call 206.860.5573 to schedule an appointment. Northgate Plaza | Madison Center

Malia Jacobson is an award-winning journalist and mom of three.

Sponsored by:


For more than 100 years, The Polyclinic has served the Seattle community with a mission to promote the health of its patients with personalized care. Our team of more than 240 doctors and advancedpractice professionals provides care at 12 locations, offering primary care, nearly every medical and surgical specialty, and a comprehensive range of services, including lab, diagnostic imaging, urgent care, and an outpatient surgery center. • November 2019 • 13

all about baby Find Your Village Being a new parent can be really isolating, but baby, we’ve got your back. Sign up for our weekly eNews for the best in ALLI ARNOLD


outings and advice, ’cause parenting is a trip!


From Recent Research to Gaga Gear

Great Gear x 2 (or 3 or …)! 6 essential products for parents expecting multiples By Charlene Jimenez


s a mother of multiples, I know firsthand that parenting twins is hard work, and that it comes with a unique set of experiences, challenges and solutions. It can get tricky very quickly, but the most important thing to do is to be kind to yourself as you find the right path for you and your family. A lot of it comes down to trial and error, but if you can start with a solid base of tips, you’re well on your way. Here are some key products that worked well for my twins — no gimmicky gear, just the basics you won’t want to skimp on. (Psst! Apart from the double stroller, these items are just as handy for parents of singletons.) (For sanity-saving strategies for parenting newborn twins, from sleep inducement to bathing, feeding and dressing solutions, read Jimenez’s full “Parenting Multiples 101” guide at

1. The all-important double stroller with clip-in car seats Hauling infant twins out of the house and then wrangling them in and out of the car can leave you sweating and exhausted. We found car seats that clipped into a 14 • November 2019 •

double stroller and then into bases installed in our cars. We didn’t have to take the babies in and out of seats whenever we went anywhere. Fast. Convenient. Low stress. That’s exactly what parents of multiples need: sweat-free shortcuts that save everyone’s sanity.

2. Stroller handle straps Our double stroller was decked out with handle straps and clips. Instead of us having to shove everything into the bottom of the stroller, these clips allowed us to stay organized while keeping the necessities right within reach: my purse, a water bottle, the diaper bag. With multiples, you’ll feel like you need a moving truck just to leave the house for even a short outing. These straps ensure there’s room for everything. 3. Vented baby bottles and gripe water It took us a few weeks before we discovered vented baby bottles (I like Dr. Brown’s best;, and it took us even longer to learn about the benefits of gripe water. Both help limit gas and prevent major spit-ups after feedings (and even projectile vomiting from babies eating too quickly). We had one baby who would scream like she was in pain while still sleeping. I Googled everything to figure out

ParentEd TA L K S

The Power of Showing Up what was happening. Turns out, she just had gas. The combo of the vented baby bottles and gripe water worked miracles — she never screamed like that again. (Consult with your pediatrician to see if they recommend gripe water for your baby.)

4. Foldable, minimalist high chairs When you are a parent of multiples, baby items are scattered everywhere, and they seem to take over your house. Your once chic living room turns into a dumping (play)ground. And if you live in a smaller space, baby gear can become overwhelming very quickly. One way to help is to use foldable, minimalist high chairs. After feeding our twins, we’d stash their high chairs behind the recliner, out of sight and out of the way — two less things to stumble over.

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5. NoseFrida Snotsucker When twin babies get colds, parents in the know turn to the NoseFrida Snotsucker ( The whole concept of sucking the snot out of baby’s nose with a contraption — and your mouth — is a little stomachchurning, but it’s effective, much more so than the standard blue bulb syringe the nurse gives you when you leave the hospital. This booger buster really helps clear out the nasal passages so baby can breathe better and be more comfortable. As a side note, don’t forget to put a filter in there to catch the stuff coming out. My husband learned this the hard way once.…

6. Slumberrific sleep sacks We didn’t buy into the whole sleep sack thing until our babies kept waking up when they kicked out of their swaddles. But once we started using sleep sacks, everything changed. The babies stayed warm and comfortable, and I didn’t have to worry about whether or not they’d wriggle out of their swaddles and accidentally suffocate on the blanket. We used those bad boys for as long as we could. It makes me want my own sleep sack. ■ Presented by

Charlene Jimenez is a mother of twin toddlers, an adjunct writing professor for two colleges and a freelance writer. • November 2019 • 15


Moral Courage: Raising Kids Who Stand Up for What’s Right By Malia Jacobson


ere’s an unwelcome fact: Most kids will experience bullying at school, even if they’re not directly involved as a victim or perpetrator. Studies show that 70 percent of students witness bullying at school, and from 35 to 60 percent of students are directly involved. What’s less certain is how those kids will respond to injustice. Will they have the moral courage to stand up for themselves or others? Can they do the right thing without a trusted adult there to coach them? When kids see a bully in action, we hope they’ll do what 11-year-old Henry from Tacoma did. When Henry, then 8, saw a peer mocking a classmate with disabilities and excluding her from a playground game, he told the bully to stop, calling out the actions as unfair and unkind, says his mom, Libby Buelt. Today’s school playgrounds need more of this type of moral courage, says Michele Borba, Ed.D., author of “End Peer Cruelty, Build Empathy: The Proven 6Rs of Bullying Prevention That Create Inclusive, Safe and Caring Schools.” “Today, research shows that peer cruelty is escalating and personal entitlement is going up, while empathy is going down,” she says. “It’s discouraging.” A 2018 Gallup poll found that 77 percent of those surveyed say the country’s moral values are declining, the most negative rating since 2002. At a time when most Americans feel the country’s values are deteriorating, how can we raise kids who show courage when and where it counts? u


Moral Courage continued from page 17

The building blocks of moral courage For many, it’s hard to talk about moral courage without picturing those who helped Jews during World War II. The photos, letters and accounts of those rescuers’ personal experiences create an unforgettable lesson in moral courage at Seattle’s Holocaust Center for Humanity ( Whether kids tour the center or learn in their own classrooms via the center’s free portable Teaching Trunks, education director Ilana Cone Kennedy hopes students learn that small actions — and small people — can make a big difference. “There’s a story of a local Holocaust survivor who says that every day, someone he didn’t know slipped him a sandwich,” says Kennedy. “We hope kids will come away with a sense that their voice matters and that their actions make a difference.” This spring, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee signed a bill into law that “strongly encourages” Holocaust education in the state’s schools, motivated in part by our region’s recent 400 percent spike in hate crimes. Learning about racial bias and genocide is an important part of social justice education for students and teachers alike, research shows. University of California Irvine researcher Kristen Renwick Monroe, Ph.D., studies the traits of those who helped Jews escape during World War II and wrote “The Heart of Altruism: Perceptions of a Common Humanity.” Monroe interviewed WWII rescuers and found they had a different self-image than bystanders (those who saw Jews in danger but did nothing) or Nazi supporters. Monroe found that compared to bystanders and Nazi supporters, rescuers had a more broadly defined sense of identity, viewing themselves as part of a common humanity, rather than a member of an exclusive group. Rescuers also demonstrated a stronger sense of agency, while bystanders tended to have a weak sense of personal control over their lives. In other words, rescuers acted because they believed their actions mattered. Empathy is another cornerstone of moral courage, says Borba. “I am convinced that empathy is the core to goodness.” The ability to identify with another’s perspective, built from babyhood on through one-on-one interactions, closely bonded relationships and even reading, is an essential trait of those who stand up for others. Teaching kids to 18 • November 2019 •

identify and name their emotions can help build empathy and moral courage, too. “When you teach emotional identification, kids learn, ‘He looks sad, I’ll go be a helper,’” says Borba.

What about my kid? It seems clear that when it comes to moral courage, caregivers can’t simply count on chance. “Parents who raise good kids don’t do so by accident,” says Borba. “You have to be intentional about it.” But since moral courage often means doing the right thing when parents and teachers aren’t looking, how can we know if kids are getting it right? Sometimes, kids share their experience of standing up for a peer or for themselves on the playground. But moral courage also shows up in smaller, less obvious ways. Caregivers can look for traits, such as honesty and personal responsibility, and encourage growth in those areas, says Richard Peterson, vice president of education at Kiddie Academy (, a learning-oriented child-care provider with locations throughout the Puget Sound region. Watch kids as they play and interact with classmates, says Peterson. Are they easily influenced by others, or do they stand up to peer pressure? When a child reports wrongdoing — their own or that of others — that child takes responsibility for their own actions and shows honesty; they’re displaying moral courage, he says. Other examples are doing homework or chores without being reminded, or turning in some object you found that doesn’t belong to you, he notes. “Even the simplest action, such as picking up trash instead of stepping over it or leaving it for someone else to deal with, shows moral courage.”

Growing goodness If your child falls a little short on these basic measures of morality, or if you’d simply like to encourage moral growth, there’s good news. New research shows that the traits we associate with moral courage — empathy, self-control and honesty — get stronger with practice and effort. Stanford University psychologist Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., wrote “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success,” about her decades of research on intelligence and effort. Her now-famous research found that children with a growth mindset (the understanding that intelligence can be developed through effort) were more successful than those who believed that intelligence was fixed. These days, she’s applying this concept to the development of moral traits, such as self-control. In one of her recent studies, Dweck found that preschoolers learned to resist temptation and delay gratification after listening to a story that has a character who struggles with waiting, but eventually finds it energizing. If, as Dweck’s research shows, good character can be taught, then anti-bullying

The Brave Bookshelf: Books that build moral courage FOR READERS OF ALL AGES “What Happens Next” by Susan Hughes “Henry the Boy” by Molly Felder “Something Happened in Our Town: A Child’s Story About Racial Injustice” by Marianne Celano, Ph.D., Marietta Collins, Ph.D., and Ann Hazzard, Ph.D. “The Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family” by Ibtihaj Muhammad “Luca’s Bridge/El Puente de Luca” by Mariana llanos


“Martin & Anne, the Kindred Spirits of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Anne Frank” by Nancy Churnin “The Brave Cyclist: The True Story of a Holocaust Hero” by Amalia Hoffman “Brave” by Stacy McAnulty and Joanne Lew-Vriethoff “Emmanuel’s Dream: The True Story of Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah” by Laurie Ann Thompson “I Walk With Vanessa: A Story About a Simple Act of Kindness” by Kerascoët FOR TWEEN AND YOUNG ADULT READERS “Wonder” by R.J. Palacio “Diary of a 5th Grade Outlaw” by Gina Loveless “Take the Mic: Fictional Stories of Everyday Resistance,” edited by Bethany Morrow “We Are Lost and Found” by Helene Dunbar

education programs in schools can help guide growth. But it’s important that anti-bullying education doesn’t focus too narrowly on the role of the bully — a role few kids identify with. Teaching kids about character means helping them understand all the ways people can contribute to or resist injustice, notes Kennedy. “There are different roles we all can play — perpetrator, bystander, upstander — and people can move from one category to the next,” she says. “It’s important to know which role you’re in for each situation, and what you might be able to do differently.” Many effective anti-bullying programs have a strong peer advocacy element — in other words, they teach kids to stand up for other kids — because this approach is proven to work. Research shows that when other kids intervene, most bullying stops within 10 seconds. Like any strategy, though, peer advocacy only works when kids have the skills and knowledge they need to take action. Henry’s courage added fuel to the school’s ongoing dialogue around bullying, inclusion and appropriate playground behavior. His class started a sportsmanship club; another third-grade classroom adopted an inclusive “You can’t say you can’t play” guideline for recess and afterschool games. When it comes to homegrown goodness, talking with your child about your values and modeling those values yourself are hard to beat. “Today’s kids are really facing an uphill challenge in relationship engagement,” says Buelt. “We talk a lot at home about our responsibility to try and make the world a better place. I’m very proud of the person Henry is and continues to become.” ■

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Malia Jacobson is a nationally published health and family journalist. • November 2019 • 19

family media

10 Reasons You Should Read Aloud to Big Kids, Too


very parent knows that it’s good to read to kids when they’re little. It helps babies, toddlers and preschoolers develop spoken language, recognize letters and words, and get ready for kindergarten. But it’s actually beneficial to read to kids even after they can read on their own. Research shows that continued reading aloud after age 5 (and well beyond) improves reading and listening skills, as well as academic performance (and it is also loads of fun!). According to Scholastic’s 2016 Kids & Family Reading Report — a national survey of children ages 6 to 17 and their parents that explores attitudes and behaviors around books and reading — 59 percent of parents read to kids from birth to age 5, but only 38 percent read to their 5- to 8-year-olds, and a scant 17 percent keep reading to kids ages 9–11.

Here are 10 key reasons to keep reading aloud to older kids: 1. It builds vocabulary. Kids who are read to encounter more words — and learn how to recognize and pronounce them — than they would by just being spoken to. And studies show that having a large vocabulary can help kids perform better in school.

2. It improves comprehension. When kids are engaged and invested in the story, they understand it more thoroughly. You can check in as you go to see whether your kid understands what’s going on and ask what they think will happen next, what they think of the characters, and so on.

3. It’s wonderful for bonding. Positive experiences and warm memories of hearing stories from a loved one can inspire a lifelong love of reading. Award-winning novelist T.C. Boyle told a crowd at the 2017 Los Angeles Times Festival of Books that he learned to read not in school but from his mom reading to him — and that when he reads now, he still hears her voice in his head.

4. It provides positive modeling. Kids learn through observation and modeling. Reading aloud lets them hear what language sounds like. You can also model how to analyze a story as you read and how to figure out the meaning of a word using context clues.

5. It improves listening skills. Reading aloud nurtures an appreciation of rich language and helps train kids’ ears for understanding instruction in school. According to educator Jim Trelease, author of “The Read-Aloud Handbook”: “A child’s reading level doesn’t catch up to his listening level until eighth grade.” 20 • November 2019 •

6. It’s a way to discover the classics. Kids may be put off by the challenging language of Shakespeare or the oldfashioned settings of Jane Austen in school, but in a cozy setting at home, you can help the text come alive as you take on different characters’ voices and fill in historical context.

7. It helps with discussing difficult issues. Kids may tune out if you lecture them about what to do and what not to do. But if you read a story that shows characters grappling with serious conflicts and the consequences of their actions — or facing bullying, racism, religious or ethnic bias, or gender discrimination — it’s a way into talking about complex, topical matters.

8. It’s a way to introduce different genres. Reading aloud lets parents introduce kids to different types of books and stories, helping kids learn which kinds they’d like to choose for themselves. Reading a variety of material boosts all kinds of learning. Try poetry, satire, manga and autobiographies.

9. It’s a window into your kids’ interests. Reading books on subjects or in genres kids love (sci-fi, fantasy, mysteries, thrillers, graphic novels, Norse mythology, Minecraft, whatever!) gives you something to share and discuss, while also putting you on a level playing field — rather than you always being the teacher who knows more than they do.

10. It sparks curiosity and a thirst for learning. Nonfiction books make great read-alouds, too. For older kids and teens, try books or articles by journalists covering current or recent events and world issues. And there are lots of popular histories that are so engaging they read like nail-biting fiction. ■ Originally published by Common Sense Media ( and republished with permission.


Bellevue Parks & Community Services Bellevue Youth Theatre 16051 NE 10th Street • Bellevue


5 Books to Read With Your Budding Activist Is your little one always looking for ways to make the world a better place? Do they make sure that everyone in your family recycles, votes and watches the news? Then they’ll love reading one of these stories about bold characters, historical figures and inspiring personalities. “Brave Girl” by Michelle Markel Recommended for ages 7–8 Just because Clara Lemlich is a young immigrant doesn’t mean she’s going to let factory owners treat workers poorly. After all, equality and a fair shot are what America is all about — and no one understands that better than this brave girl.

“Goldie Takes a Stand” by Barbara Krasner Recommended for ages 8 and older Young Goldie was a natural-born leader. Long before she became Golda Meir, the first female prime minister of Israel, she was tackling injustice in her hometown of Milwaukee!

“I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark” by Debbie Levy Recommended for ages 8 and older Disagreeing does not necessarily make you disagreeable. Just ask Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the first Jewish woman on the United States Supreme Court. When she was a young girl, lots of people told her she didn’t have what it took to do the things she wanted to do, but she disagreed — and proved them wrong. Now she shows the whole world that sometimes it’s important to say, “I dissent!” “The Language of Angels” by Richard Michelson Recommended for ages 7–8 Eliezer Ben Yehuda had an idea: He wanted to make Hebrew a spoken language again. But that meant that somebody had to be the first person to grow up speaking it, and that someone was going to be his son, Ben Zion. This is Ben Zion’s story.

“Pearl Moscowitz’s Last Stand” by Arthur Levine Recommended for ages 7–8 Pearl loved her street. She loved the people on her street, and she loved the trees on her street — planted there by her mother years before. So, when the city wants to cut them down, it’s time for Pearl to take a stand.




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Art at the Heart

Books that emphasize the importance of the arts One of my kids lives for art. The other shudders at the thought of art class. But I encourage them both to explore the arts in as many different formats and ways as possible. That’s because research has found connections between arts education, emotional intelligence and academic success — and students who receive arts education are more likely to go to college. Works of fiction offer an entertaining and accessible avenue for bringing kids of all ages to the arts. Prepared with the help of local librarians, the following list features recommended books that hold art at the heart of the story. Picture books for younger children

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“Hey, Wall” by Susan Verde and John Parra Ángel lives in a multicultural neighborhood set against the backdrop of a bleak, bare wall. In this story told in verse, he brings his neighbors together to create a community art project that transforms the wall into something as vibrant as the neighborhood that surrounds it. “Emily’s Blue Period” by Cathleen Daly and Lisa Brown Emily is, like her favorite artist, Picasso, going through a blue period. Her parents have separated, and with Emily having to shuttle between two houses, some complicated feelings arise. At first, a school assignment to make a collage featuring her house only makes things worse. But through the project, Emily learns to combine elements of her two homes into something beautiful. “Drawn Together” by Minh Lê and Dan Santat In this bilingual book, an American boy visits his Thai grandfather. They struggle to communicate until they discover a shared language in art. With the dialogue printed in each character’s respective language, and the illustrations matching their distinctive drawing styles, they connect with one another despite their different languages, generations and cultures. Books for middle schoolers “The First Rule of Punk” by Celia C. Pérez At her previous school, 12-year-old Malú was the only Latina. At her new one, she is the only punk rocker. Although her mother wants her to be a proper young señorita, her father says the first rule of punk is to be true to yourself. “The Seventh Most Important Thing” by Shelley Pearsall Angry over his father’s death, Arthur strikes out at the neighborhood trash picker. He’s headed to juvie for his violent act when his victim suggests an alternative: community service as his assistant. The trash picker is folk artist James Hampton, and through helping Hampton create his art, Arthur learns about redemption. Young adult titles “Everywhere You Want to Be” by Christina June Talented teen Tilly Castillo has been accepted to Georgetown University, and her mother expects her to enroll in the fall. But she’s also been accepted to attend a summer dance program in New York City that could lead to a job in a professional dance company. Will Tilly make her mother happy by taking the safe path? Or will she risk everything to pursue her true passion? “The Poet X” by Elizabeth Acevedo Dominican-American teen Xiomara Batista gets all the wrong kind of attention, and she pours out all of her angst in her poetry notebook. Joining her school’s slam poetry club is as forbidden by her conservative family as fraternizing with the boy in her biology class, but the heroine of this novel in verse is too strong to stay silent. Discover more titles with art at the heart at ― Gemma Alexander

22 • November 2019 •

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Caring for your teeth can be fun!


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See our calendar for events near you 3

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Swansons Reindeer Festival, Nov. 9–Dec. 24 Northwest Chocolate Festival, Nov. 9–10

Hmong New Year celebration, Nov. 9

Connected Kids: Overcoming the Screen-Time Battle, a Talk by Emily Cherkin, Nov. 6 JSSWA WASHINGTON NATIONAL GUARD/FLICKR CC


Auburn Veterans’ Day Parade, Nov. 9

Día de los Muertos Community Festival. Create art in the TAM studio, view community altars and a tapete sand painting, enjoy traditional food, performances and more. 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. FREE. Tacoma Art Museum. Bunka no Hi. Engage with Japanese culture through unique performances, exhibits, children’s activities, food and more. 11 a.m.–4 p.m. FREE. Japanese Cultural & Community Center of Washington, Seattle.

4 Disney on Ice: Mickey’s Search Party. Mickey and friends embark on a treasure hunt in search of Tinker Bell, traveling through fantastic worlds along the way. Oct. 30–Nov. 4; also Nov. 7–10 in Everett. $25 and up; ages 1 and younger free. ShoWare Center, Kent. Free Monday Night Play. Beat the cold and come inside to climb, crawl, slide, and burn off some energy. Mondays, 5–8 p.m. FREE. Ages 10 and younger with families. PlayDate SEA, Seattle.


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Toddler Time at the Aquarium. Engage with your tot in fun, marine-themed activities. Nov. 3–5, 10–12; 9:30 a.m.–noon. Included with admission. Ages 5 and younger with adult. Seattle Aquarium. OmTots Play Gym. Develop large motor skills and agility in the play gym, then join in on a daily song, drum or movement circle. Monday–Friday, 9:30 a.m.–noon. $12. Ages 1–5 with caregiver. OmCulture, Seattle.




Beauty and the Beast. A silly-looking, loudmouthed beast; will Beauty see his inner charms? Find out at StoryBook Theater’s reinterpretation of this classic. $15. Ages 3–10 with families. Hale’s Palladium; additional dates and venues online. The Northwest Chocolate Festival. Chocolate lovers, unite! Tastings, workshops and all things chocolate. Nov. 9–10, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. $10–$25; ages 11 and younger free. Smith Cove Cruise Terminal, Seattle.

Veterans Day Remembrance. Join Tacoma Historical Society and American Legion Post #2 for a community ceremony marking Veterans Day. 11 a.m. FREE. War Memorial Park, Tacoma. Everett Veterans Day Celebration. Come enjoy music performances by veterans, group music-making activities, drum circles and an arts and crafts station for kids. 1–4 p.m. FREE. Snohomish County Music Project, Everett.

Play to Learn. Activities, songs and fun for children and adults to enjoy together. Tuesdays, 10–11:30 a.m. FREE. Ages 6 and younger with adult. Children’s Museum of Tacoma; additional dates and venues online. Preschool Discovery Lab. Start with a story and then explore playful ways to engage with math, scientific thinking and literacy skills. Tuesdays, 2–3 p.m. FREE; preregister. Ages 2–5 with adult. Kent Regional Library, Kent.




Minecraft: The Exhibition. Explore this world premiere exhibit celebrating the 10th anniversary of the iconic game. Open daily. Museum admission or membership plus extra fee. MoPop, Seattle. Junie B. Jones Is Not a Crook. Join this beloved character as she learns lessons in right and wrong. Saturday–Sunday, Nov. 2–24. $10. School-age kids with families. Secondstory Repertory, Redmond.

Story Time on the Farm. Stories take on a whole new life when featured animal characters from the tales come to visit. 10:30–11 a.m. FREE; preregister. Ages 3–6 with adult. Kelsey Creek Farm, Bellevue. Shake, Rattle and Roar. Join a toddler dance party in Zoomazium! Sing, dance and play instruments to animal- and nature-themed music. Daily, 11:30 a.m. Included with admission. Woodland Park Zoo, Seattle.

Kidz Bounce Drop-in Time. Grown-ups get a breather while the little ones get their workout. Tuesday–Thursday, 10 a.m.– 2 p.m.; Thursday, 5–6:30 p.m. $8–$10. Ages 2–10. Kidz Bounce, Preston. Sugar Skull! Come along with Vita and her new friend Sugar Skull to unravel the true meaning of Día de los Muertos. 7:30 p.m. $12–$39. Pantages Theater.




Piper’s Creek Salmon Celebration. Welcome chum and coho salmon back to the creek and mark the occasion with kids’ activities, music and more. 11 a.m.–2 p.m. FREE. Carkeek Park, Seattle. Seattle Festival of Trees Celebration. Enjoy stories and cookies among beautifully decorated trees, plus get a peek at the Teddy Bear Suite. 1–4 p.m. FREE. All ages. Fairmont Olympic Hotel, Seattle.

Swansons Nursery Reindeer Festival. Meet real-live reindeer, check out the train display and snap a photo in the sleigh. Daily, Nov. 9–Dec. 24. FREE. Swansons Nursery, Seattle. Pajamarama! Evening Story Time. Get cozy in your jammies and bring your favorite stuffy to wind down with stories and songs. Mondays, 6:45–7:30 p.m. FREE. Ages 3–6 with adult. Shoreline Library.

Arts and Crafts Extravaganza. Many kids are out of school; time for some crafting fun! 11:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m. FREE; preregister. Ages 12 and younger. Lake City Community Center, Seattle. Gingerbread Village. This year, stroll through a larger-than-life village inspired by #ElfLife. Nov. 23–Jan. 1. FREE; donations appreciated for the JDRF Northwest Chapter. Sheraton Grand Seattle Hotel.

24 • November 2019 • • SNS


Día de los Muertos festivals, Nov. 2–3


Salmon celebrations, Nov. 16 and 24





Family Nature Class: Falling Leaves. Explore seasonal learning stations and get outside for a short hike. Nov. 1–2, 9:30–11:30 a.m. $19 per adult/child pair; preregister. Ages 2–5 with caregiver. Washington Park Arboretum, Seattle. Small Frye: Storytelling in the Galleries. Stories spring to life at this First Friday event with art-making session. 10:30–11:45 a.m. FREE; preregister for art. Ages 3–5 with caregiver. Frye Art Museum, Seattle.

Día de Muertos. Celebrate the art, spirituality and traditions of Mexican culture while remembering departed loved ones. Saturday–Sunday, Nov. 2–3. FREE. Seattle Center. Family Ranger Walk. Join a park ranger for a family stroll through the park looking for signs of wildlife. 10:30–11:30 a.m. FREE. Lewis Creek Park Visitor Center, Bellevue.





Connected Kids: Overcoming the Screen-Time Battle. Managing kids’ use of screens is the modern parenting challenge. Join ParentMap for a talk by The Screentime Consultant, Emily Cherkin. 7 p.m. $20–$25. The Collective, Seattle. Story Club: Read and discuss “Lubna and Pebble,” a story about finding comfort when feeling lost; snacks provided. 4–5 p.m. FREE. Ages 7 and older. White River Valley Museum, Auburn.

Lil’ Diggers Playtime. Kids dig digging in the giant indoor sandbox. Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, 9:30–11 a.m. or 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m. $8; one free adult per child. Ages 5 and younger with adult. Sandbox Sports, Seattle. Story Time at The Wing. Enjoy a story followed by a fun activity. 11 a.m. FREE. Ages 1–5 with adult. Wing Luke Museum, Seattle.

Critter Club: Jiggly Jellies. Enjoy animal stories, hands-on exploration and a real-live surprise. Nov. 7–8, 21–22; 11 a.m.–noon. $14–$15; preregister. Ages 3–5 with adult. Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, Tacoma. The Monkey King. Based on part of a Chinese legend, this tale follows a king with supernatural abilities who faces a challenge. Nov. 8–17. $15. Bellevue Youth Theatre.

Queer Kid Stuff. Lindsay Amer and a stuffy called Teddy share songs and stories about LGBTQ+ heroes. 11 a.m. FREE. Gates Discovery Center, Seattle. Veterans Day Parade. Honor our country’s veterans and active-duty military. 11 a.m. FREE. East Main Street, Auburn. Hmong New Year. Celebrate the unique culture of the Southeast Asian highlands. 11 a.m.–6 p.m. FREE. Seattle Center.





Baby Gym. You and your baby explore with coach guidance at this drop-in group class. Wednesdays, 9–9:30 a.m. FREE. Ages 4–12 months with adult. Advantage Gymnastics Academy, Woodinville. Children’s Story Hour. Explore plants and nature through short stories, crafts and science projects. Second Wednesdays, 11 a.m.–noon. $3 suggested donation. W.W. Seymour Conservatory, Tacoma.

West Seattle Art Walk. Spend the evening strolling through the Junction and enjoying art, music, food and wine for grown-ups. Second Thursdays, 5–9 p.m. FREE. West Seattle Junction. Dance in the Museum. Blend movement with art in a guided modern dance workshop for all ages and abilities. Second Thursdays, 6:30–7:30 p.m. FREE. All ages. Tacoma Art Museum.

Fired Up Fridays. Play with clay and create a masterpiece; adults can join, too. 4–7 p.m. $5–$10 (for clay and firing) in addition to museum admission or membership. All ages. KidsQuest Children’s Museum, Bellevue. The Reptile Man. Bond with cute cold-blooded creatures as the Reptile Man introduces you to some of his friends. 6:30– 7:30 p.m. $5; preregister. Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center, Seattle.

Diwali Family Festival. Celebrate the festival of lights with a special exhibition and performances. Craft your own lantern and shine your light on the joy and creativity of Diwali traditions. 11 a.m.–4 p.m. FREE; RSVP. Seattle Art Museum. Kennedy Creek Salmon Celebration. Come to the creek and celebrate the return of the chum with warm chowder, chili, coffee and hot cocoa. 11 a.m.–2 p.m. $5 suggested donation. Kennedy Creek Salmon Trail, Olympia.





Cooking Chemistry. Experiment and create while learning about the chemistry happening when we cook. 11:15 a.m.– 12:15 p.m. $10–$13. Ages 4–7. Les Grove Gymnasium, Auburn. We the Future. Take inspiration from this exhibit featuring youth activists who are working to build an equitable and inclusive world. Tuesday–Saturday. FREE. Ages 5 and older with families. Gates Discovery Center, Seattle.

Arrested: Escape Fort Nisqually. Race against the clock to solve the mystery in this live-action game. Through Dec. 14. $30. Ages 14 and older. Fort Nisqually Living History Museum, Tacoma. Karshner Kids Club. Explore artifacts and exhibits, play scavenger hunts as Junior Curators. Third Thursdays, 4–7 p.m. FREE. Karshner Museum and Center for Culture & Arts, Puyallup.





Corduroy. The beloved picture book comes to vibrant life on stage in this sweet, dynamic adaptation. Nov. 21–Dec. 29. $15–$35. Seattle Children’s Theatre. The Polar Express Train Ride. Dress in your favorite jammies for a trip to the North Pole and a visit with Santa. Nov. 22–Dec. 31. $27–$75; age 2 and younger free. Mount Rainier Railroad and Logging Museum, Elbe.

Norpoint Turkey Trot. Earn that turkey dinner; try the 5K run, 2-mile run/walk or kids’ trot. 9 a.m. $15–$35. Center at Norpoint, Tacoma. Seattle Turkey Trot. Join your community for a scenic 5K jaunt that finishes at Golden Gardens and benefits the Ballard Food Bank. 9 a.m. $15–$45. Golden Gardens, Seattle.

Lumaze, Lost in Lights: A Fairytale Christmas. Get lost in lights as you celebrate the holidays with food, drinks and activities for all. New to Seattle. Nov. 29–Jan. 4. $15–$20; ages 3 and younger free. Smith Cove Cruise Terminal, Seattle. KidsQuest Gingerbread House Workshop. Sign up early for this fancy family holiday outing to decorate a gingerbread house. Friday–Saturday, Nov. 29–30. $60/ family; preregister. Hyatt Regency Bellevue.

Greet the Season. Celebrate the season with family-friendly activities at locations throughout the park all day. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Events in the park are FREE; admission required to enter MOHAI. Lake Union Park, Seattle. Garden d’Lights. Gape at whimsical shapes of plants, flowers, birds, animals and cascading waterfalls created from over half a million lights. Nov. 30–Dec. 31. $5; ages 10 and younger free; Bellevue Botanical Garden.

Owl Moon Story and a Stroll. Enjoy this heartwarming story and then take a stroll through the Mercer Slough. 11 a.m.–noon. FREE; preregister. Ages 3–5 with adult. Mercer Slough, Bellevue. Enchant. Skate, shop, eat and drink while experiencing the magic and wonder of the world’s largest Christmas lights maze. Nov. 22–Dec. 29. $15–$33; ages 3 and younger free. T-Mobile Park, Seattle.

Julefest. Partake in Scandinavian Christmas traditions with music, tasty treats, a craft marketplace and Santa visit. Saturday– Sunday, Nov. 23–24. $8; ages 13 and under free. Nordic Museum, Seattle. Fantasy Lights Walk. Take in the amazing light displays by foot, the only chance to walk, not drive, through the park. Nov. 23– 24. $4; ages 3 and younger free. Spanaway • November 2019 • 25








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giving guide

Giving Together 12 ways to celebrate a more meaningful holiday season By Denise Yearian


n the midst of all the year-end holiday hullabaloo, children (and parents) can often lose sight of the significance of the giving season. Putting a spin on the “Twelve Days of Christmas” song, the following list offers a dozen ways to connect and create more meaningful family holiday celebrations. No gift receipts required. 1. Grassroots giving. One of the best ways to make your holiday more meaningful is to “adopt” a family in need through a local charity. When you call the charity, ask for a family with children your own kids’ ages. Then, if you normally give your child five gifts, suggest giving them three and let them pick out two for each needy child. (See the Giving Together sidebar, p. 30, for places and ways to give to local families.) 2. Aspiration ornaments. Have each family member take a slip of paper and secretly write down one nonmonetary thing they want to work for, wish for and pray for in the coming year. Then, put it into a decorative envelope or ornament and attach it to the tree. On Christmas morning, family members take turns reading their aspiration and then discuss ways everyone can help each person attain their goal. 3. Go green. Reuse holiday wrapping paper to cover another gift or line a drawer, or let kids doodle on the reverse side. Holiday cards can be recycled, too. Cut them in half and use the blank side to jot down reminder notes, or let your kids cut them up to make new cards for next year. You can also recycle Christmas trees: Take them to state parks for recycling, rather than sending them to the curb for trash pickup. 4. Multicultural merriment. Every year, select one country and research how its citizens celebrate the holiday season. Make mock passports that can be used year after year for your holiday “travels.” Find out what the culture and traditions of the country are like, learn a few words of its language and explore its foods. If you have extended family members from other parts of the country or world, have them share insights and tell stories about their holiday celebrations and memories. 5. Advent virtues. Make an Advent calendar of character traits you want to instill in your family. Pick one virtue each day, discuss what it means and talk or read about someone in history who exemplified it. Then, decide how you and your children can put that virtue into action in your lives. For example, practice kindness by raking an elderly neighbor’s leaves. u • November 2019 • 27



giving guide






(206)323-4243 @GAGEACADEMY

Giving Together continued from page 27 6. Family photo tree. Decorate your tree with individual photos of family members taken throughout the year. Mount images on construction paper, felt or foam; for each photo, write the date it was taken on the back, attach a ribbon and hang it on the tree. Don’t celebrate Christmas? A photo garland would make a festive decoration for a fireplace mantel or a bookshelf. Keep photos year after year and add more as you go to remind kids of how blessed they have been throughout their childhood. When your children are grown, pass along the collected pictures so they, in turn, can carry on the tradition with their own children. 7. Intergenerational experiences. If grandparents have personal items they want to pass along to their grandchildren, the holidays are an opportune time to do so. Suggest they give something that is special to them, along with the story behind it. It could be one of grandma’s old dolls, a piece of jewelry, a book or even a photograph. If the kids are old enough, they can record a video of the story as an additional, digital memento. 8. Mindful of the military. Have your child write a letter of appreciation to someone in the military or send a care package to an active-duty serviceperson. Visit the Operation Gratitude website ( to learn about more ways to support our troops, veterans, first responders and their families. 9. Warm fuzzies. Families so often forget to share positive and encouraging words with one another. Have your family sit in a circle and pass a fuzzy teddy bear around. As you do, have the person holding the bear say something he appreciates about someone sitting to his right or left. This will set the tone for an uplifting celebration and teach your kids how to express their gratitude for others. 10. Critter Christmas. Decorate the boughs of an outdoor tree with pine cones rolled in peanut butter and birdseed, a popcorn and cranberry garland, and orange and apple slices that have been attached to pipe cleaners or opened paperclips. What a cheery way to attract and take care of neighboring wildlife!

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28 • November 2019 •

11. Family fitness. Incorporate the “Twelve Days” theme into a family fitness routine. Decide on one activity you can do together each day to stay fit — walk around the neighborhood and look at lights, jump rope to a favorite holiday song or play a game of basketball while the pie is baking. 12. Family video newsletter. Let each child take turns being the anchorperson while you record, but make it more than just reading off the news. Take footage of the kids’ bedrooms as your kids show a favorite stuffed animal or in the yard as they perform a newly acquired skill. Attach a fun family video file to your annual holidaygreeting email to friends and family. ■ Denise Yearian is the former editor of two parenting magazines and the mother of three children and six grandchildren.












Explore the best overnight Jewish camping experiences available in Washington State! Jewish summer camp gives your child the opportunity to experience new activities, make lifelong friendships, and gain independence. Generous financial aid is available through the Samis supported Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle Need-Based Camp Scholarship program. First-time campers may be eligible for incentive grants through the Federation One Happy Camper program. Registration is open and filling up quickly!

The Samis Foundation is proud to support Jewish camps in the Seattle area. For more information visit • November 2019 • 29

gift guide

giving guide

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In her children’s book, Ariella Nelson tells the story of her allergy to tree nuts, how she felt about growing up with it, and why getting involved in a clinical study has given her hope for herself and other children with food allergies. Go to Also available on Amazon


Impactful ways for families to give back during the holidays Spread some joy with your kids by remembering and supporting those in our community who are in need. We’ve rounded up local opportunities for families — giving trees, toy drives, food drives and more — to make a difference for other families. DONATE TOYS AND GIFTS


• Adopt a family through the YWCA Adopt-A-Family program ( The YWCA invites families to contribute by purchasing gifts for children and providing a grocery gift card for their parents. Dropoff locations are available in Seattle, Lynnwood and Everett.

• YouthCare ( in Seattle’s Ravenna neighborhood accepts a variety of donations for homeless teens, including leggings, underwear, shoes and sweatshirts. The organization has an urgent need for hygiene items, including shampoo, conditioner and deodorant. You can also host a holiday giving tree or order directly from YouthCare’s Amazon Wish List.

• Throughout the holiday season, Wellspring Family Services ( in the Rainier Valley offers a number of ways to donate to kids in need. Among the options: Give an item from Wellspring’s Giving Together Amazon Wish List, its Ready to Learn Amazon Wish List, or invite family and friends to fill a Kids Helping Kids coin jar. • Local Bartell Drugs stores ( in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties accept new, unwrapped toys for kids ages 14 and younger through its annual Toy ‘N’ Joy Drive. Drop toys off at any area store location through Dec. 15; toys are delivered to low-income kids the week before Christmas by the Salvation Army. • The Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank ( needs donations of toys to stock its Holiday Gift Barn, where families low on resources can shop for free for holiday gifts for their kids. (Shopping takes place Dec. 4–5 this year.)

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• Support Mary’s Place, an organization serving families experiencing homelessness. Mary’s Place offers holiday givingtree tags — families, groups and organizations can order tags, buy needed items and deliver them to donation center locations in SoDo (9 S. Nevada St.) and the Greenwood neighborhood in Seattle (8704 Greenwood Ave. N.) by Dec. 13. Drop-off hours are Monday–Friday, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. • The Forgotten Children’s Fund ( is a local, all-volunteer organization serving families that are generally not aided by other outreach organizations. They accept monetary donations to buy toys, gifts, books and more for kids.

• Host or donate to a Joy Drive for WestSide Baby ( in White Center and Leschi. The organization is always in need of diapers, wipes, car seats and more for families. • Donate clothing to foster kids through Treehouse ( in Rainier Valley. You can also host a drive specific to the holidays to collect gifts for teens, new clothes, toys, shoes and accessories. DONATE FOOD AND PERSONAL CARE ITEMS • Hopelink ( collects food and toys at its five food bank locations in Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Shoreline and Carnation. • AAA of Washington’s annual Soap for Hope drive benefits selected local charities, shelters and food banks with toiletry items donated through its brick-and-mortar stores. Drop off your donations of travel- and full-size toiletry items at any AAA store location in Lynnwood, Seattle, Bellevue, Issaquah, Tukwila, Tacoma, Olympia and elsewhere through Dec. 31. • Queen Anne Helpline ( provides emergency food assistance and especially seeks pop-top cans of protein-rich foods, such as chili, beans and tuna, plus canned vegetables, peanut butter, pasta and sauce, and more. Queen Anne Helpline also accepts personal care items and clothing donations, and has an urgent need for gently used winter coats. Drop off items at the Queen Anne Helpline office (311 W. McGraw St., Seattle) 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m., Monday–Thursday, but call ahead (206-282-1540) to make sure someone is there. — Elisabeth Kramer





Celebrate the milestone moments in the life of your family:







      Share the wonder of our marine environment and give the gift of Seattle Aquarium membership this season! Your friends and family will enjoy one year of unlimited admission, special early morning hours, invitations to exclusive events and more.

An ongoing project of the Washington State Jewish Historical Society. Learn more about our work, including our Washington Jewish Museum: Questions and comments: Offer valid November 1–December 31, 2019. • November 2019 • 31





A B O U T Just Build It! Everything is awesome at 7 super-fun Lego play spots for kids Legos are popular around the world, but the Seattle area seems to nurture a particularly devoted brand of brick fanatic. And our region has brick fun to spare, including a standout annual festival, BrickCon (, which is reputed to be the longest-running fan-based Lego convention around. For stackable fun any day of the year, here are other Lego hot spots. 1. Wunderkind • Nurse an Americano while helping your little ones figure out the intricacies of Duplo train sets. Or head upstairs to keep an eye on your older builders as you catch the latest game on multiple overhead TVs. Wunderkind provides an inviting and enclosed environment in which parents can let their children loose and take a load off themselves. The small snack bar downstairs features an assortment of food and drink options, including various craft beers and wines. Wunderkind also hosts birthday parties. 2. Pacific Science Center’s Tinker Tank • Located at the entrance to Pacific Science Center’s IMAX theater, this handson makerspace allows visitors to try various do-it-yourself activities, including building ball ramps, stacking blocks and crafting the best aerodynamic paper airplane. In the middle of Tinker Tank are two large tables of colorful Lego 4x2 blocks, along with some impressive creations safely ensconced within a display case. This area perfectly illustrates how creative children can be, even when their building materials seem uninspiring. 3. Math ’n’ Stuff • This toy and game store in Seattle’s Maple Leaf neighborhood has been a Lego Gold Standard store since 2013, carrying an assortment of Lego products and supplementing its enticing inventory with free building events, make-and-take events and more. The jam-packed retail space leaves little room for free play, but the store has an annex location nearby for hosting Lego birthday parties. Check the store’s calendar for occasional public Lego events.


4. The Brickhouse • This Olympia favorite sits on the site of the former Noel’s House of Bricks. An unofficial Lego store, it is family-owned and carries an assortment of Lego sets and paraphernalia, both new and old. Longtime fans can find plenty to buy, sell and trade, while younger builders may want to head over to the store’s large bulk block tables to play and experiment before possibly picking up the scooper and purchasing some to take home. The store also hosts birthday parties. 5. Bricks & Wheels • With locations in Factoria and Kent, this well-stocked Lego resource offers sets, minifigures and even full models to buy, sell, trade or simply admire. The bulk fill-a-bag table and build-your-own minifigures table let you play around before finding that perfect piece or set to take home. 6. Official Lego stores • The Puget Sound area is home to three official Lego stores: at Alderwood Mall in Lynnwood; Bellevue Square in Bellevue; and Westfield Southcenter in Tukwila. Shoppers are welcome to play at interactive tables (including one with Duplo blocks for younger builders), make custom minifigures or simply admire the many models adorning the shelves. Check the stores’ respective websites for information on upcoming building events and promotions.


NOV 29–DEC 28 | 206.292.7676 | 700 Union Street, Seattle 32 • November 2019 •

7. Play-Well • Play-Well offers camps and after-school enrichment programs centered around Lego and engineering, with instruction tailored to children ages 3–14. Check the website for after-school programs hosted at local school locations around the Eastside. — April Chan

ages + stages out + about

7 Awesome Backyard Adventures for the Wet Season

Messy-fun diversions to entertain kids on rainy November days



By Rory Graves t’s easy to equate the dreary season that befalls the Pacific Northwest each year with frizzy hair, soggy leaves and too much time spent cooped up indoors with stir-crazy kids. But while parents may look outside and see a muddy yard and dour skies, for a child, a rainy landscape offers a novel way to explore a familiar landscape. Nature in any season provides enlivening experiences — and, correspondingly, kids seem to naturally understand that time spent outside can bring us to our senses. Here are some creative ways to encourage your family to unplug from electronics, get outside and explore their immediate environment this fall.

Rain, rain, come and play According to famous Danish landscape architect Carl Theodor Sorensen, “Children are happiest when playing with junk.” Any parent who has witnessed the hours of play generated by an empty appliance box can attest to this truism. Put junk to great use outside by making a vertical water wall to help kids explore the physics of water. Attach plastic containers, bottles and tubes to a wall or railing to create a course for water to flow through. (You can drill these objects in, secure them with zip ties and chicken wire, or just use string and nails.) Then start experimenting: Add food coloring to see what happens when colors are mixed together. Track the rainfall by measuring the amount of rain in each bottle. u • November 2019 • 33


out + about

Backyard Adventures continued from page 33 Explore how water levels change with the shape of each container. The possibilities are endless. For a fun twist on the water wall, use old gutters or halved PVC pipes to create a gutter course. Prop them over lawn chairs, bricks or rocks; add leaves or small toys and make a race out of it.

Have a hootenanny

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Located in Burlington, WA :: Tel: 360.757.8888 To learn more about the Museum visit: Val alllle ley.c ley com com 34 • November 2019 •

Hang up muffin tins, old pots and their lids to make an outdoor instrument amphitheater. Fill bottles with beans to make a rattle. Collect some sticks or use kitchen utensils to bang on the pans. The sound of raindrops falling onto pots and bottles will complement the kiddie cacophony.

Get muddy! While summer sandboxes can become litter boxes for neighborhood animals as the drizzle rolls in, mud is the perfect rainy-season medium to inspire endless creativity. To make a mud pit, simply fill a plastic storage bin or a plastic, lidded sandbox with pesticide-free topsoil and let the rain do its magic. As mud dries and rehydrates, kids can experiment with an array of textures and explore the laws of physics. Pop the lid back on when the bin is not in use to keep the mud “clean� and free of bugs and other contaminants. If mud is too messy for your liking, rice- or bean-filled sensory bins (tip: use an airtight container) are a more sanitary sandbox substitute for whiling away the rainy months.

Investigate bugs and worms A fun project for your budding entomologist is creating a bug hotel or worm farm. Dead wood is the perfect condo for beetles and their larvae; decaying leaves or hay provide an ideal environment for invertebrates; and centipedes, spiders, wood lice and beetles thrive in loose bark. Worm bins simply require compost, a lidded, ventilated container of some sort, a starter crop of red wiggler worms (found at most pet stores) and a steady supply of kitchen scraps. Seattle Tilth ( offers a free worm bin design on its website. Kids can bury compost in the worm bin as an ongoing task, exploring the different stages of decomposition and worm population.

Gimme shelter! When I was a child, my grandpa built a tree house at his cabin for my brother and me. It was just a small platform, but I still remember the peacefulness and wonder I felt sitting high above the ground in a place made just for me. If you are handy with a hammer, you can make a simple structure from reclaimed materials, such as pallets and scrap wood. An outdoor reading nook can be the




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out + about

Backyard Adventures continued from page 34

What separates a good school from a great school? It’s the school community. Come and see for yourself! Schedule your campus tour today. 206.289.7783 • Shoreline, WA • Preschool – High School

perfect place for a young bookworm to listen to the pitterpatter of the rain while cozying up beneath a favorite blanket. With the added touch of a tarp stapled to the roof to make it watertight, it becomes a perfect outdoor refuge for the rainy season. Another easy option is to break out your camping gear. Pull out the sleeping bags and flashlights and have a mock campout. You’d be hard-pressed to find a Pacific Northwest native who isn’t accustomed to camping in the rain. Break in your whippersnappers while they’re young! Gardeners can create an aesthetically pleasing addition to their garden that also serves as a fort by assembling a willow dome or living tepee structure made from sticks and interwoven branches. Climbing plants grow over the structure, creating a lush space curtained by greenery and flowers. Organic structures like this are easy and affordable to create, requiring only twine, branches and a little patience. They may not keep the rain completely out, but creeping plants do well in rainy climates, so these shelters will be especially lush when the wet season begins in earnest.

Make an impression with rain art Place dots of food coloring or bits of powdered paint onto pieces of paper or paper plates and set them outside. Watch as raindrops splatter these improvised canvases into colorful works of art. Hang to dry.

Look at the birds in the trees Many species of birds thrive during the winter months in the Pacific Northwest — and, as a bonus, they are also easier to spot, because of the bare-limbed winter trees. Put up a feeder outside, keep a bird guidebook at the ready and see who comes to visit. (For a guide to family birdwatching, see For an all-around great resource for rainy-day fun, visit The National Wildlife Federation’s website (, which is packed with ideas on designing your outdoor space to maximize exploration, as well as tips for gardening and nature adventures with kids. The next time you find yourself listening to the drum of raindrops on your rooftop, just think of it as Mother Nature applauding you for all of the outdoor adventures you’ve planned. The murky bathwater at the end of each exploratory day will be well worth the fun. ■ Rory Graves spends her days with her handsome husband, three children, a yard full of chickens and the family’s pet pig, Edwin. 36 • November 2019 •

SCHOOLS + PRESCHOOLS Ace the School Year!


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A lifetime of confidence starts here At KinderCare, we’ll make sure your child has everything they need. Teachers who care. Classrooms where safety is priority number one. A nurturing place to try new things and explore the world. Whoever you are and wherever you’re from, you’re welcome in our circle.

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(425) 861-6274 or • November 2019 • 39

SCHOOLS + PRESCHOOLS STEM Resources for Girls in the Puget Sound Region When my daughters attended coding camp, they were the only girls enrolled. The teachers were welcoming, and the girls were proud of what they learned. But they didn’t make any new friends. When asked if they wanted to continue with coding, neither one said yes. Technically, girls have access to the same science resources as boys, but a girl’s pursuit of STEM can be a lonely road. The percentage of girls interested in technology drops from two-thirds in elementary school to one-third by high school, and the percentage of technology jobs filled by women has decreased from 37 percent in 1995 to 24 percent in 2017. It’s not surprising, but the repercussions are drastic. The gender pay gap will never close while women are deterred from work in high-paying fields, and there is growing evidence that widespread gender bias in research has generated flawed results, with particular implications for women’s health. We can protect girls’ interest in STEM by providing female role models and an encouraging, hands-on community of like-minded future scientists. Fortunately, our area is rich in resources specifically aimed at supporting budding female scientists. Burke Museum’s Girls in Science • Girls in Science connects middle school and high school girls with female scientists to offer real-world experiences in a variety of STEM fields, such as oceanography, neuroscience, paleobotany and spectroscopy. The middle school program meets one Sunday per month through the school year. The high school program is conducted in quarterly sessions. Priority is given to candidates with a strong desire to learn but who have limited access to positive science experiences. Both programs are free, with an application process that is open to all.

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Genome Hackers • Genome Hackers is a high school summer camp run by female graduate students in the University of Washington’s Genome Sciences department. The camp integrates biology and computer science with programming, lab techniques and DNA sequence analysis. Campers present their findings to the Genome Sciences department. Tuition for this unique one-week, half-day camp is only $50, and scholarships are available. Girls in Engineering, Math and Science (GEMS) • GEMS is a free, volunteer-run program for seventh- and eighth-grade girls attending Seattle public schools. The program provides hands-on activities, mentoring, field trips and information about a variety of STEM fields. Sign up online to be notified when applications for the school year open. Amelia’s Aero Club/Women Fly • Amelia’s Aero Club is a Museum of Flight “STEA2M” (science, technology, engineering, aviation, art and mathematics) program for middle school girls. It offers hands-on activities, book clubs, sleepovers, introductions to industry professionals, field trips, competitions and special events at the museum. The museum also hosts Women Fly, an annual day of activities allowing middle school and high school girls to meet and learn from women working in a variety of aviation and STEM careers. Get your name on the waiting list for the upcoming event in March 2020. Girls Who Code • With a bold mission to build the largest pipeline of future female engineers in the United States, Girls Who Code establishes after-school clubs for grades 3–12 around the Puget Sound region and beyond. Club members work in teams on computer science projects to solve real problems. The organization’s Campus program offers two-week specialized summer courses for girls in grades 6–12, and the Summer Immersion Program provides 10th- and 11th-grade girls intensive coding courses and experiences at major tech companies. All three programs are free. — Gemma Alexander

40 • November 2019 •

ages + stages

Good Works

Youth participants bond during a Camp Fire of Central Puget Sound service project

5 organizations that offer meaningful service opportunities for kids By Bryony Angell


ervice — it’s an ethic we, as parents, hope to instill in our kids as they grow up. But how can we cultivate an authentic spirit and habit of giving back in today’s cultural climate, where actions are so often motivated by expected rewards of external validation? Luckily, there is a way to instill the true spirit of service while also giving recognition. Several national organizations with vital local chapters foster youth volunteering over the long term, affording kids a community of peers and mentors, a path to making a meaningful impact in the community — and kudos for their work and dedication. Even better, youth volunteering efforts can help satisfy the service-learning component that many Washington state school districts require of their

students to graduate from high school. But whether or not your child’s school mandates a set number of community service hours for graduation (some requirements range from 40 to 60 hours by completion of 12th grade), school districts in Washington state are required to have a policy in place that supports their students’ participation in community service and provides incentives for it, including the time to volunteer, academic credit or other forms of merit recognition. The best reward? A young person involved in volunteering as a part of his or her routine has a greater chance of maintaining that civic-minded habit into adulthood. u • November 2019 • 41




Deciding where to educate your child means clarifying your values and priorities, and understanding their needs. Jewish day schools in Seattle offer the unique opportunity to blend secular academic excellence and Jewish education in a holistic setting. Day schools prepare students to be academically competitive while exploring the richness and depth of Jewish culture and teachings. Give your child the opportunity to learn from inspiring faculty, immerse themselves in a robust curriculum and learn Jewishly in a communal environment that embraces the whole child and the whole family.

The Samis Foundation is proud to support Jewish day schools in the Seattle area. For more information visit 42 â&#x20AC;˘ November 2019 â&#x20AC;˘


ages + stages

Good Works


continued from page 41

YMCA The YMCA maintains a respected lineup of youth summer camps, but did you know that the organization offers year-round programs to build on that love for camp while instilling leadership skills and values to boot? YMCA Camp Director Joe Andrews explains one such program that he manages, the pathway to becoming a paid staff counselor at Camp Orkila on Orcas Island (,. “I can’t count the number of 16- and 17-year-olds who say they’ve wanted to do this since they were 9!” he says of aspiring camp counselors. “It’s cool to see kids share why they want to positively impact the lives of others.” The program is demanding: Students apply to the counselor intern program as they would a job, then spend two summers training before possibly being hired as a staff member. Programming during the school year keeps the community of interns and counselors-in-training working together on service projects locally and via maintenance projects at the Orkila campsite; participants earn as many as 100 service hours in the process.



Woodinville Montessori School BOTHELL & WOODINVILLE Authentic Montessori for Toddler-High School College prep, holistic, global & enriched

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Accredited Member School

Camp Fire Another camp-based program with yearround activities for kids is Camp Fire. Camp Fire’s highest honor for high school students, the WoHeLo Award (“WoHeLo” stands for Work, Health and Love, the core values of the organization since its founding in 1910), is bestowed on young participants who, over the course of two years, complete an intensive and highly individualized project that develops leadership, service and advocacy skills. “A teen will choose an issue or cause over a onetime thing,” explains Rebecca Bobko, director of community programs Campers mug for the camera for Camp Fire of Central Puget Sound at Camp Sealth ( Most youths who are pursuing a WoHeLo Award have grown up in Camp Fire, and have observed older kids undertaking the process. “The kids have been involved in service work before, but are now in the driver’s seat and get to choose what to advocate,” says Bobko. “The advocacy part must include teaching, speaking out, leading and serving.” A youth might organize and promote an activity at their school or give back to Camp Fire through planning an event, such as a You & Me Camp at Camp Fire’s Camp Sealth on Vashon Island. “It’s not an easy award to earn,” says Bobko. “We’ve had kids start and not finish.” But clearly, the journey of service is its own ultimate reward.

Girl Scouts of America Girls involved in Girl Scouts can begin earning merit badges for service as early as kindergarten. In fourth grade, participants can begin work to achieve the

Growing confident, curious, courageous learners since 1958 Epiphany School is an independent, non-parochial elementary school in Seattle serving students in Pre-K through 5th Grade.

Parent tours offered now through winter. Join us November 21st for our Open House! • November 2019 • 43


Does your child love school? University Co-op kids do!

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Open House – December 7, 1:00 p.m. Kindergarten through 5th Contact us for a school tour:

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VISIT DAY: December 4

A Coeducational Independent Day School in Tacoma Preschool - Grade 12 // Bus Service // (253) 620-8373

The Power of Childhood At The Valley School , we ignite children’s natural passion for learning. Our students develop an academic foundation and become joyful learners through playful work, purposeful play, and the practice of community. Pre-K through 5th Grade

Inspiring creative, confident students from Age 3 through Grade 8

Come to an Open House! Sat., November 2, 2019

Sat., January 11, 2020

Age 3-Grade 8

Age 3-Grade 3

10 AM-12 PM, Classrooms

10 AM-12 PM, Classrooms

Learn about our program and get the answers to your questions! Unable to attend? Schedule a tour through our website. 2701 Bel-Red RD Bellevue, WA 98008

To learn more about our school and sign up for a tour, go to

OPEN HOUSE December 10 6:30 p.m.

318 30th Ave E. | Seattle, WA 98112 206.328.4475 • November 2019 • 45

ages + stages

Ben Normann, photographed near the tiny house he built

Good Works continued from page 43 shelter a homeless member of our community, Ben Normann, 16, of Troop 166, built a tiny house for installation in the Tiny Cabins Safe Harbor Interbay Village; the structure, which was constructed with the help of 32 volunteers and funded with nearly $3,000 in donations, was completed this past January. Finn Pettit, 17, of Troop 100, built a 50-foot boardwalk segment as part of a trail improvement project in Discovery Park. Both scouts worked with adult mentors and local agencies to steward their projects. They raised money, procured material donations and organized volunteers. And how has this service changed their lives? “I hope to build another tiny house between my senior year and college,” says Normann.

organization’s highest honors, the Bronze, Silver and Gold awards, which are organized by age group as girls progress through school and are then awarded to a troop as a whole. “The troop chooses a problem to solve, they research a solution and then spread the word,” says Stefanie Ellis, director of marketing and communications for Girls Scouts of Western Washington ( “And the solution needs to be sustainable.” One Silver-award-winning troop from Bothell shares its story. “Some of our classmates worry about food,” says Amelie, 14, of Troop 44043. “The problem to solve was access to healthy, organic food.” The troop (which also includes members Chloe, Katie and Julie) researched options and ideas for a portable, effective and affordable self-build greenhouse design, one small enough for apartment dwellers to use on a porch or near a Girl Scout Troop 44043 debuts its window. greenhouse design Using proceeds from selling Girl Scout Cookies and a grant from the Society of Women Engineers (, the girls were able to create prototypes, construct a final sample greenhouse, design and print how-to flyers, and conduct a final workshop for residents of an apartment complex.

National Wildlife Federation

Boy Scouts of America (Scouts BSA) The Boy Scouts of America (which now welcomes girls, too) is a long-standing service-based organization for kids. Like Girl Scouts, Scouts BSA participants earn merit badges through service, the highest merit being the Eagle Scout badge, an award that is the result of many hours of service, not just a single project. The experiences of two Seattle-area youths provide good examples of how scouts identify an area of need and work to find a way to provide a long-term solution. To





Celebrate your child’s next birthday party at

For tweens and younger kids looking to start a Gardens attract sustainable service project, the National Wildlife all kinds of wildlife — even Federation (NWF; offers a nationally children! recognized NWF Wildlife Habitat certificate through its Kids Garden for Wildlife program. “Certificates are their jam!” says Courtney Sullivan, senior manager for the organization’s western regional education programs. Children as young as toddlers can initiate (with help from a parent, caregiver or teacher) the planting and maintenance of a small habitat garden to attract wildlife to an urban setting. Not only does a certified space join the national registry of such critical corridors of urban habitat, but the child earns a plaque to display and credit for service hours, either through their school or NWF. ■ Bryony Angell loves nature, art and mid-century architecture, and can find a way to connect all three to parenting.






with Kong Academy!

We make your kid’s birthday active, fun and memorable with our Parkour or LAPRing birthday events. For kids of all ages! • 425.623.0034 Factoria Mall, Bellevue • Alderwood Mall, Lynnwood

Walk-ins always welcome for open play! 46 • November 2019 •

Saturdays for 90mins anytime between 11am–4pm. birthday-parties


parent day jobs

Meet Amy Nelson, Founder and CEO of The Riveter

This visionary local businesswoman hopes to redefine the future for women in the workplace By Patty Lindley • Photograph by Will Austin


former corporate litigator, Amy Nelson has achieved an enviable career hat trick, merging her professional experience in law and politics with a personal preoccupation with the advancement of women’s economic power to form an inclusion- and female-forward startup. On a practical level, The Riveter ( provides unique coworking spaces in seven cities (so far) — Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles, Austin, Dallas, Denver and Minneapolis — to support the professional development of female entrepreneurs. But the company is also working toward a more revolutionary objective: to accelerate the political advancement of women, building toward equity, diversity and community

support for all in the workforce. Fundamental to Nelson’s bold mission is the necessity of reframing motherhood as an asset in the professional world, not a liability. She herself is a mother of four, and notes that women — and mothers — wield enormous power in elections. That is why Nelson is committed to leveraging The Riveter platform to convene brave conversations, and to provide networking opportunities, resources and tools that will lead to meaningful action and change stemming from the 2020 election. We caught up with this dynamic mother and leader to learn more about The Riveter and its We Decide 2020 campaign.

What inspired you to leave corporate litigation to start The Riveter? I was a lawyer for a decade, and, for me, my perspective really started to change when I became pregnant with my first baby. I felt like the world perceived me pretty differently immediately, and that gave me pause and also made me start to question how the workforce was for working mothers. The thing that stunned me the most was when I learned that almost half of women with college degrees still “off-ramp” after they have kids. I did not believe that that was the state of the world everyone wants. So, I started looking for a community of women who have started companies or pivoted to where a degree of happiness brought them closer to their career as a mommy. I had amazing conversations, went out all over the place, but I just couldn’t find a place where I, or other people, could come and talk to the women who’ve done it before. That’s where the idea for The Riveter came from. Beyond providing “inclusion-focused, female-forward” coworking spaces, what distinguishes The Riveter’s services? Coworking is only one of our amenities, but there are various other services for working women — programming experiences, meeting spaces, member benefits and, of course, work space. But I think the thing that is really different is that we have various levels of ambition to talk about and make change for working women across the spectrum, across the country. Very quickly, in two years, we’ve gone from ideas and [founding] locations to being an organization of 80 employees. It’s been a wild ride! And in that same time, you had another baby! I had two babies! I have four daughters. My oldest just turned 5. So, [they are] ages 5, 3, 2 and 3 months. It is very hard, but for me, the cause of trying to change the dynamic for working women is

so important. We’ve built our lives to make it work. … But I have to admit that it’s chaos. It sometimes seems the hardest lesson of parenting is learning to get comfortable with chaos. I completely agree. You have to acknowledge that nothing’s ever going to be perfect at home or at work and just be okay with it. Then also, what I’ve realized is that life is lived in seasons. I am in a hard season, but I’ve built it this way. I’m willing to do what it takes right now. My life will not look like this forever. Talk about The Riveter 2020: We Decide initiative. There are so many issues that are important to working women that need to change, particularly the gender wage gap, which is terrible for everyone, but particularly terrible for women of color. So, we thought, what better time than a presidential campaign season to talk to candidates who are pro-women about how they think they can make a scenario better for working women and their families? We’ve already hosted something like nine candidates, [including] Cory Booker, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Andrew Yang, Pete Buttigieg, Jay Inslee … What has surprised or encouraged you most along the way? Progress for working women is being made — it’s not nothing, but it’s not nearly enough. Sometimes we feel like no one’s listening. So, I guess, I’ve been surprised by how excited and thoughtful the candidates have been, and how ready they are to address this issue. What unique skills do women — mothers specifically — bring to the workplace and leadership roles? The first would be the ability to multitask in a way that no one else can. I also think we see purpose in our work because it’s really clear, when you have a child, what matters, and so, for me at least, motherhood led me to see a much greater purpose in my work. I feel like I’m out doing good and making money. Whereas, as an attorney, I never felt that way. ■ • November 2019 • 47

Profile for ParentMap

November 2019  

November 2019  

Profile for parentmap