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Inside Kids! DON’T LET HISTORY REPEAT: Avoid the mistakes your parents made............................................... 6A PRE-KINDERGARTEN READINESS: Life skills for little ones.................. 8A THE PARENT GAP: Raising teens & toddlers together......................... 10A HEALTH: Asthma needn’t sideline kids from sports.............................17A NEWS NOTES......................... 18A-19A

MARCH 9, 2018

Kids! Cover Contest Winner Emma Siemers

FAMILY: Grandparents play a special part in kids’ lives.............................3A PARENTING: Changing discipline in a changing world............................... 4A



t’s been six years since a Siemers has been on the cover of the Kids! section. Following in her brother Evan’s footsteps is Emma. Evan was 3 when he won in 2012, while Emma will be 11 months old on March 10. The Bedford baby and her big bro get along well. “He loves her,” mom Shannon Siemers said. “He loves spending time with her. And all she does is giggle at him. It’s the greatest feeling.” This was her 9-month-old photo, a monthly tradition the Siemers family carries on. “I just loved her smile,” Mom said. “Every month we take a picture of her and this is one of my favorite ones. She’s on her own in her bedroom having a great time with her toys. And he’s always smiling. She’s a happy baby.” Her favorite toys make her happy, as do all the books on her wellstocked shelf. Her favorite is “The Quiet Book” by Deborah Underwood. She also pretty much likes “anything that makes noise” and “anything she can get her hands on that’s her brother’s,” Shannon said. Emma is learning to crawl, which means she’s “finding ways to scoot around the house the best she can to find out where her brother is.” His reaction? “He loves it,” Mom said.

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The Record-Review P.O. Box 455, Bedford Hills, NY 10507 914-244-0533 PUBLISHER...........................Deborah G. White SECTION EDITOR............................ Todd Sliss ART DIRECTOR...................... Ann Marie Rezen ADVERTISING DESIGN..........Katherine Potter AD SALES ............................... Francesca Lynch Thomas O’Halloran, and Marilyn Petrosa ©2018 THE RECORD, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. REPRODUCTION IN WHOLE OR IN PART IS FORBIDDEN WITHOUT PUBLISHER’S WRITTEN PERMISSION.

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Grandparents play a special part in kids’ lives BY LINDA LEAVITT

ible with the next generation. Still, differences are likely to persist. According to James S. Bates, a professor specializing in grandfather-grandchild relationships, grandfathers tend to focus on preparing for the child’s future by passing on knowledge and skills, nurturing ethics and responsibility and helping young people become financially independent. Grandfathers may enjoy teaching sports and competitive games to their grandchildren. They may be more competitive than grandmothers and engage in teasing and horseplay, Bates notes. As long as Grandpa isn’t rough or mean, his grandkids can benefit from a different kind of socialization. Kids learn that there are different standards of behavior with different people and in different situations. In fact that’s an important part of growing up. Behavior that’s acceptable at home is not tolerated in school; what’s OK to say to a sibling may be rude to say to an aunt.


hy do human females lose the capacity to reproduce as they age? Some anthropologists believe that being freed from childbearing enabled our foremothers to help nurture and care for their grandchildren. According to the “grandmother hypothesis,” this improved the child’s chances of survival, freed the mother to produce more children and helped ensure that genes for longevity would be passed on. University of Utah professor Kristen Hawkes believes that grandmothers also helped people develop social capacities that led to “the evolution of other distinctly human traits, including pair bonding, bigger brains, learning new skills and our tendency for cooperation.” Today’s grandmothers are probably not thinking about evolution as they feed, dress, bathe, teach and play with their grandchildren. They’re just enjoying being with the kids without the pressure, worry and tedium of fulltime responsibility. Just as parents tend to be more relaxed with a second and third child, grandparents’ greater life experience tends to make them more easygoing than they were when they were parents. “Grandparents bring perspective, especially when parents are anxious about potty training, reading or speaking,” said Lynne Clark, longtime Scarsdalian and grandmother of nine. “There is no ideal timetable

for development; each child has her own schedule.” Wendy Samuelson of Hartsdale, grandmother of three, thinks “there’s a lot of stress on kids these days — they feel they have to be perfect. Grandparents just love them for who they are. They don’t see their grandchildren as reflections of themselves.” Lynne Clark’s husband Merrell agrees. Trying to push children “to be like someone else can be harmful,” he said. “Each child is a unique treasure who brings a combination of gifts to his or her world.”

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While grandmothers may be are reliving some of the satisfactions of motherhood, grandfathers have an opportunity for a deeper involvement with their grandchildren than they had time for when their own kids were young. Traditional roles may hold more sway with the current generation of grandfathers simply because of the way they grew up. Most men had less involvement in the dayto-day care of their children than their wives did. Gender roles are likely to be more flex-

That brings us to rules, a common source of friction between parents and grandparents, with grandparents tending more toward permissiveness. Everyone’s having a good time, so why not another bedtime story, another cookie, another game? Letting kids get away with a small variation in routine is one of the things that make the intergenerational relationship special. Unless there’s some definable harm CONTINUED ON PAGE 12A

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MARCH 9, 2018

PARENTING: Changing discipline in a changing world BY MAJA TARATETA


aking away an iPad, cell phone or social media account feels like a common punishment today that didn’t even exist as a strategy a few years ago. But experts are weighing in on whether or not this is the best method of discipline in today’s brave new technological world. First, they say, it is important to examine what discipline is. “The term ‘discipline’ as it relates to children can mean different things to different parents depending on their cultural norms, own upbringing, religious beliefs, beliefs about how children can best learn appropriate behavior, study of parenting resources, etc.,” said Brenda Boatswain, Ph.D., of Godsend Psychological Services in Scarsdale. Boatswain is a local-licensed New York psychologist and certified group psychotherapist, educator, author and speaker trained in evidenced-based mind-body-spirit practices, with more than 20 years of professional experience. “‘Discipline’ is derived from the word ‘disciple,’” added Sue Gerrity, associate professor of psychology at Manhattanville College in Purchase, where she teaches courses in developmental psychology, among other areas. “We are in a 27-year relationship — a very long slog toward adulthood.” Boatswain agrees: “Encouraging good behavior in children starts at conception and continues throughout the child’s life. Parenting is a role and a behavior that starts at conception and involves modeling the good behavior we expect to see in our children. Parenting also takes time; time with children explaining, teaching, supporting and modeling rules and expectations and age-appropriate behaviors, comforting during times of failure and hurt, and celebrating during times of triumph and success.” There are several ways that discipline can happen, said

Boatswain, including: instruction on rules and expectations, control by use of guilt or demeaning the child, physical punishment, arguing and cajoling, punishment by withholding things or activities the child likes, bribes, threats, use of timeout or rewarding appropriate behavior. “This list is by no means exhaustive, but are common practices used by parents,” Boatswain said. “Unfortunately, common practices don’t always equate to effective practices.”

According to Boatswain, current research on parenting suggests that training of appropriate behavior in children, whether preschool or teen, involves instruction on and explanation of age-appropriate rules and expectations in a loving and nurturing home environment. She said research has found that there are three main parenting approaches: authoritative, permissive and uninvolved. CONTINUED ON THE NEXT PAGE

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CONTINUED FROM THE PREVIOUS PAGE The authoritative parent is simultaneously nurturing, responsive, supportive and able to set firm limits for their children. This type of parent listens to their child’s point of view, but doesn’t always accept it if not appropriate, and maintains clear boundaries, limits and expectations. “Children raised with this type of parenting tend to develop the characteristics parents typically hope discipline would achieve — cooperative, content, resilient and achievement-oriented,” Boatswain explained. The permissive parent is warm, but casual and lax. “This type of parent does not set firm limits or monitor their children’s activities or expect appropriately mature behavior of their children,” noted Boatswain. “Children raised with this parenting style tend to develop less adaptive character traits and may be impulsive, rebellious, aimless, aggressive, with low in self-reliance, self-control and achievement.” The uninvolved parent is unresponsive, unavailable and rejecting of their children. “Children raised with this parenting style may have low self-esteem and self-confidence, and may search for a substitute, sometimes inappropriate, parenting figure for the uninvolved parent,” Boatswain said. Noted Gerrity, “All of the structures around child-rearing have changed very fast, and we have no replacements in place… The culture has abandoned adolescents to their own devices. We are hyper worried about younger children, but need to re-orient to teenagers.”


Speaking of “devices,” technology seems to be the top concern among parents of children of nearly all ages from toddler through teen. “We need to structure kids’ times around phone and internet access and balance it in a way that’s fair,” advised Helen Crohn, a clinical associate professor at the Graduate School of Social Service at Fordham University’s Westchester campus. Her clinical practice focuses on individuals, couples and families, and she recently wrote a book, “Daughters and Their Mothers and Stepmothers,” a study on stepfamilies. “If children are older, you have to negotiate,” Crohn said. “You have to take the child’s voice into account. It’s going to be difficult, but it needs to be limited. It’s important to limit it. It affects social relationships and the ability to relate.” “Today’s parents and children are busier than ever with work, school and extracurricular activities. This busyness may lead to neglect of what’s most important in life-strong family relationships and quality time with those we care about,” said Boatswain. “Even if we make time to be together, we may be too distracted with our technology — cell phone, iPad, smart watch, exercise machine, television, Netflix, Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, you get the picture. Both parents and children need time each week to unplug and be together and talk to one another about their week, things that they have been thinking about, feeling, need help CONTINUED ON PAGE 17A


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Avoid the mistakes your parents made BY MAJA TARATETA


ooks have been written on it. Films have been made about it. Even Reddit is full of comments on it. What are the mistakes your parents made raising you that you don’t want to make? How can you avoid repeating the mistakes your parents made raising you? “We are probably not going to make the same mistakes because we recognize those mistakes,” said Sue Gerrity, associate professor of psychology at Manhattanville College in Purchase, where she teaches courses in developmental psychology, among other areas. Being aware of the mistakes is the first step to avoiding them, said Helen Crohn, a clinical associate professor at the Graduate School of Social Service at Fordham University’s Westchester campus. Her clinical practice focuses on individuals, couples and families. “Awareness is the first thing,” Crohn said. “Being aware of what they did that worked and what didn’t work. Some people feel their parents were great and they want to repeat

what they did. Others say their parents were critical and unforgiving and are looking to avoid this.” Crohn said we all have “a tendency to repeat what our parents did. It is a strong instinct. Your mother is in there somewhere psychologically. All of a sudden, when you’re a parent, you empathize with your mother. But you don’t have to emulate her.” “We inherit things from our parents, including our temperament,” said Dr. Paul Donahue, Ph.D., who has a clinical practice in Scarsdale focused on children, adolescents and parents, among others. He recently wrote the book, “Parenting Without Fear,” which provides a road map for parents toward a more peaceful and satisfying family existence. When anticipating a conflict, Donahue advises parents to “take deep breaths. Run through the scenario. Run through what you do and don’t want to say. You might have to go against your first tendency.” The American Academy of Pediatrics advises parents to avoid “getting caught up in statements like ‘I’m not going to make the same mistakes my parents made.’”

In the American Academy of Pediatrics’ publication “Caring for Your School-Age Child: Ages 5 to 12” they write: “Think back to how you behaved, or misbehaved, as a child, about how your parents dealt with your behavior, and how you felt about their disciplinary techniques. They were not perfect, but neither was anyone else. Do not try to overcompen-

sate for their shortcomings by trying to be perfect yourself.” The publications continues: “All parents and all children make mistakes in their attempts to communicate and deal with one another and in trying to solve problems. Parents need to trust themCONTINUED ON THE NEXT PAGE

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CONTINUED FROM THE PREVIOUS PAGE selves and their instincts. Mothers and fathers tend to have good intuition and knowledge of their own children. They often know more than they think they do, and they should not be afraid of making mistakes. Children are resilient and forgiving and usually learn and grow through their mistakes. Parents tend to be just as resilient and forgiving.” “We have to learn how to apologize and mean it,” agreed Gerrity. “We have to repair things when they have gone wrong. We have to say ‘I’m sorry, and I will try not to do this any more.’” Donahue agrees: “If we lose it, we should apologize and try to make amends. We have a chance to go back to our kids. This is something our parents did not do.” According to the AAP, when most parents set their standards and expectations for parenting, they take into account their recollections of their own youth. AAP advises parents to examine their approach to parenting by looking at it through the prism of their own childhood. One way is for parents to ask themselves several reflective questions. First, “What do you remember about the family you grew up in, particularly your relationships with your mother and father? What do you appreciate most about their way of raising you?” Also, “What did you most enjoy doing with each of your parents?” The answer to this question might give you a clue to


the activities your own child might enjoy doing with you. Next, “What were the greatest difficulties you had with your parents?” This information might help you avoid problem areas with your own children while understanding why you respond to certain parental situations the way you do. For instance, if you felt your parents were too strict, you might become too permissive with your own child; or if you believe your mother and father were too withdrawn and quiet, you might insist upon talking with your child a lot. Lastly, “What do you feel were their greatest shortcomings as parents?” If your own father became abusive when he got angry, for example, you might feel anxious whenever tempers flare in your own household, and you might try to avoid angry confrontations. “The best way is to think about it and talk to your spouse or partner about what is happening, what you want to keep and not keep and to try to modulate that,” Crohn said. Donahue agrees: “A good spouse can be helpful to remind us that our initial reactions are not always best.” Most importantly, parents should keep in mind what sets them off and avoid the triggers. “It’s really important to have fun time and positive time with our kids,” Gerrity said. “Otherwise, we will lose the reasons they listen to his. They listen to us because we matter to them.”

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Pre-Kindergarten Readiness


here’s no doubt preschoolers benefit in many important ways from their first scholastic experience. But for those in the minority who still might doubt that is true, it’s crucial to recognize that the old notion that youngsters who attend preschool are only there to be spending time playing with their friends is just that — an outdated notion. Instead, students who attend preschools are doing important work — after all, they’re getting ready to attend kindergarten and then move on to the rest of their academic career. To help clarify what preschoolers need for success, a number of Westchester preschool directors noted the specific life skills they help their students achieve before the kids move on to the next level. Maria Fitzgerald, director of ThistleWaithe Learning Center in South Salem, said she thinks independence is the most important skill for children to have to be ready for kindergarten. “When [children are] independent in mind and body, it brings forth confidence, courage, liberty to be creative; leads to self-reliance, less anxiety; leads to helping others in need and able to selfadvocate,” Fitzgerald said. “At ThistleWaithe, we encourage our students to be


self-directed with guidance, choose activities on their own, care for others and their environment, and help them to be as independent as possible. To refine and develop independence is a process and takes time, routine and repetition.”

To provide a visual reference, a chart provided by ThistleWaithe is in the shape of the sun, with the words “sense of self” at its center. Around the center are radiating lines with words describing skills that lead to that all-important sense of

self, including “care of self/care of the environment; independent thinker; ability to follow multi-step directions; ability to perform both listener and speaker roles; expanding curiosity/self-educate; ability to self-advocate; good manners; physical activity/endurance; self-regulate; social awareness; and sense of belonging to a larger community.” Nan Blank, director of the Kol Ami Early Childhood Program in White Plains, noted the skills the school fosters and encourages in its programs for 4- and 5-yearolds: “independence, comfortable and confident learners, learning to be part of a community of learners, taking turns, enthusiastic learners, social and emotional skills, and phonemic awareness.” Jane Arcaya, director of Elmwood Day School in White Plains, and a number of the school’s teachers offered their expertise as well. “We believe that children who begin kindergarten well tend to be confident and able to enjoy school and learning,” Arcaya said. “Children who can navigate a new environment successfully adjust quickly. Taking care of themselves and their belongings is a basic necessity. Being able to listen, follow routines, negotiate transitions and be flexible are all important tasks. Making a friend and being a friend, being a member of a community CONTINUED ON THE NEXT PAGE ––––––––----------–––– – – – ....








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CONTINUED FROM THE PREVIOUS PAGE help children to be able to make use of their school environment.” In addition, said Arcaya, being ready for future educational challenges means being a problem solver, a good communicator, working well with others and having curiosity, a growth mindset and a positive sense of self as a learner. “Of course, a child should have the foundations of literacy, math and other more academic areas as well as the fine and gross motor skills to be successful in kindergarten,” she said. Sara Arcaya, school co-director and teacher of 5s/kindergarten, and Debbie Solomon, also teacher of 5s/kindergarten, note that children who can adjust to new situations easily tend to have a more successful start to school. When there are changes in a child’s day, such as a special visitor, unexpected rain or even another class in a play area the students planned to visit, the teachers try to use these changes as an opportunity to help children build self-regulation skills and learn flexibility. In those cases, Elmwood teachers reflect aloud how something happened that wasn’t expected and model thinking about how the group will adjust to the change. Being able to follow routines but be flexible when they change is an important skill to develop. “Sara and Debbie also believe it is important for children to learn to do for themselves what they can,” Jane Arcaya


said. “Taking care of personal belongings, drawing for themselves and using thinking skills to solve a problem are all ways children can develop independence and trust in themselves. We think it’s important to give children the guidance and the space to practice these important habits. When children are encouraged to do more thinking and to reflect on the progress they’ve made, they develop a positive sense of themselves as learners. Having a growth mindset enables children to face educational challenges with excitement, curiosity and interest.” Lori Kornrich, school co-director and 4s teacher, says a big goal of Elmwood’s 4s and 5s program is for children to make a friend and be a friend, to see themselves as a member of the community. “We want them to become good communicators, able to work well with others and negotiate,” Kornrich said. “When children can develop those connections, they are really able to make use of their school experience. These skills can be practiced in so many ways — by passing dice to a friend in a game, asking another child if they’d like the first turn, or working with a friend to develop a building plan or plan for play.” When children are figuring out how to entering into group play, Kornrich said, “We teach them to ‘read the room,’ noticing what’s going on, and to think of a role for themselves. Other ways they learn to enter play are by asking a friend a question or complimenting something the child is working on.”


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THE PARENT GAP: raising teens & toddlers together BY MAJA TARATETA


n a typical multi-child scenario, families have several children spaced two or three years apart. I have a friend who has four children, each exactly 18 months apart. This type of planning has become the historic American norm for a family. But more and more, American families are becoming less traditional. This can take on many forms, but one is the age difference between children. In my house, I have two children who are 13 months apart. In my neighbor’s house, her children are 13 years apart. Sometimes, a large age gap can be the result of second marriages. Other times, it is just the choice of the family. When there is a large gap between children, does parenting become more difficult? There can in fact be many benefits to a large age gap, say the experts. Think reduced competitiveness among siblings, and less compacted financial stress associated with big expenses, like braces and college tuition. “There’s some great advantages,” said Sue Gerrity, associate professor of psychology at Manhattanville College in Purchase, where she teaches courses in developmental psychology, among other areas. One she sites is experience. “Parents have learned which battles are important.” Sounds good? Well, there can also be challenges to raising two children separated by a decade plus. For one, depending on the size of the age gap, parents may struggle to accommodate different developmental needs and interests. Stamina and energy can be key, the experts agree. “Parents will need a lot of rest,” advised CONTINUED ON THE NEXT PAGE





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CONTINUED FROM THE PREVIOUS PAGE Dr. Paul Donahue, Ph.D., who has a clinical practice in Scarsdale focused on children, adolescents and parents, among others. He recently wrote the book, “Parenting Without Fear,” which provides a road map for parents toward a more peaceful and satisfying family existence. “Dealing with both age groups [toddlers and teens] can be exhausting. Especially when you’re not 25 years old. Kids are up early, teens are up late.” He continued, “Little kids are physically demanding, older kids are emotionally demanding. One way to be a good parent,” he said, “is to have endurance.” Donahue also pointed out that parents can recognize that there are a lot of similarities between their teens and toddlers. “Little kids, preschoolers in particular, much of what they go through they repeat as teenagers,” he said. “Tantrums and inability to control their parents, we see the same behavior in teens.” He continued, “The goal of those years is pretty similar — to learn how to separate from parents, to be more independent and to survive on their own. These goals are more similar than we might realize.” Another important point to remember is that teens oftentimes regress. “They can need TLC and to be babied as much as any other age,” said Donahue. “They like it when parents bring them a blanket while they watch a movie on the couch, or a hot drink. They still need physical affection. Teenagers,” he said, “can swing


back and forth. But there are similarities.” Many experts list possible upsides and downsides to age gaps of four years plus between siblings. Benefits can include getting more one-on-one time with each child, having more parenting experience and an older child who can help care for the younger one. Challenges can include that parenting skills for the younger set can be rustier and the siblings may not relate well. Some behaviors families have grown accustomed to may have to change with a new little one around. “Put the horror films away,” advised Gerrity. “Don’t watch the news and listen to talk radio with the younger one around.” Experts advise giving kids headphones so they can listen to age-appropriate music and watch age-appropriate videos without exposing the other sibling to inappropriate material or driving the other sibling crazy. Protecting and fostering each child’s development is key. But parents should make sure that all children are included in family time. “Sequestering older children off is a bad idea,” said Gerrity. “You don’t want to convey that what they are doing is toxic.” Despite the challenges of having one child who wants to watch a rated R film and another who wants to watch one rated G, with forethought and a flexible attitude, experts agree that parents can find balance that keeps families together… and happy.


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that’s likely to result from the indulgence, parents should chill and let grandparents have their fun. But grandparents should make sure they know the reason for some of the parental taboos, such as an allergy, frightening association or past trauma. Grandparents are famous for spoiling their grandchildren with gifts. While it’s fun to buy them the occasional toy for no reason, grandparents should respect the parents’ views and not overdo it. (After all, you don’t want to be loved just for the goodies you provide.) They should also beware of favoring one child over another, or expecting young kids to share. Better to get two identical toys, or at least two that are equally wonderful. A game that the kids can play together is a good way of getting around resistance to sharing. Carolyn Donovan lives with six of her eight grandchildren, along with her daughter and son-in-law. The arrangement works, Donovan said, in part because she has her own apartment attached to the house. While she’s always available to the kids, she withdraws to her own place on weekends so they can have time alone with their parents. “I believe the more love children receive, the better,” said Donovan, who refers to herself as the “resident encourager, but not the director or enforcer.” Since they aren’t usually the disciplinarians, grandparents can be trusted confidants for children and help them solve their own problems by talking them through.

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“Grandparents can’t intervene between parents and their children, but children can bring concerns to their grandparents that they might not bring to their parents,” the Clarks observed. Judy Levin, LCSW-R, a senior family therapist with Scarsdale/Edgemont Family Counseling Service, said it’s important for grandparents to remain positive and supportive of their sons and daughters and not to criticize their parenting style. “Parents tend to be insecure about what they’re doing,” she said, and they face many challenges, such as the Internet and social media, that previous generations did not have to contend with. Rather than offering unsolicited advice, “Let the parents choose what support they want from you,” Levin advises grandparents. “Let go of your judgment and ideas of how things should be. If you do that, they will be more open to coming to you for help.” Having a close relationship with a grandparent helps kids see old people as “real people,” wrinkles and all, Donovan said. And grandparents give children a “window into the olden days” — when, for instance, telephones were stationary and could not be carried around with you, much less tell you the weather, play music, compute, take photos and videos, etc. Many teachers assign children to interview their grandparents or other seniors about what life was like when they were young, or their memories of historic events. Members of the older generation can provide a vivid link to the past, including the childhoods of parents, aunts and uncles. CONTINUED ON THE NEXT PAGE


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MARCH 9, 2018

CONTINUED FROM THE PREVIOUS PAGE They also carry on family traditions. “A lot of the books are the same,” said Donovan, who has read “Dr. Doolittle” to every one of her eight grandchildren. Rabbi Jeffrey Brown of Scarsdale Synagogue said Jewish tradition emphasizes intergenerational bonds especially when the Torah is passed from the grandparents to the parents to the bar or bat mitzvah. Religious school students at the temple are bused to the Hebrew Home in Riverdale where they build mentor-mentee relationships with residents there. The experience “extends the value of generational interconnectedness more broadly and has been a transformative experience for the kids,” said Rabbi Brown.

Special times Free from the daily grind of getting kids dressed and out the door for school, appointments and extracurriculars, grandparents have time to dream up activities with their grandchildren that can become special features of their time together. Depending on particular interests and talents, these can include cooking or baking together, playing board or card games, reading or making up stories, excursions, sports, arts and crafts or dramatic play. Merrell Clark likes to play the piano for sing-alongs with his grandchildren and bring them to Christmas celebrations at Hitchcock Church. Lynne Clark packed a suitcase for her grandchildren when each of her three daughters was giving birth for the second and third time. “Grammy’s suitcase” was full of fun things for the siblings to do when their

mom was preoccupied with the newborn. Merrell spends one day a year with each grandchild, one on one. They’ve gone to museums, zoos, concerts and movies. The Clarks have also done special trips with the kids as a couple, taking two grandchildren at a time to long weekends in Washington, D.C., seeing monuments, museums, government buildings and other sights. They’ve also gone on family vacations with all 17 people and held extended family reunions with more distant relations.



Bridging the distance Many grandparents live far away from their grandchildren and have to make a special effort to be a part of their upbringing. Modern devices for keeping in touch across the miles help — communicating by Skype, and for older children, email and text. Kids often freeze when asked to talk on demand to grandparents. “How was school today?” is unlikely to elicit much of a response. More specific questions elicit better answers. If you know the names of the child’s friends you can ask, for example, did you play with Harry today? Try telling a funny story or describing an unusual sight. Parents can help spark conversation by suggesting the child show the grandparents a picture he or she drew or something they built with toys. The Clarks summed up the essence of the grandparent-grandchild relationship and its importance for all three generations: “Our children are a joy, they teach us unconditional love. When they have our grandchildren, the chain of unconditional love gets stronger and wider, passed on from generation to generation.”

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MARCH 9, 2018

The Record-Review 2018



60 SMITH AVE. MOUNT KISCO, NY 10549 (914) 666-7595

31 BEDFORD RD. KATONAH, NY 10536 (914) 232-5903 Mindy Citera, Director

Erika Glick, Director

Philosophy: Bet Torah Nursery School seeks to enhance the total development of each child socially, emotionally, physically and cognitively through a child-centered curriculum with an emphasis on Jewish values. The goal is to provide interactive experiences that stimulate a child’s learning ability, while providing a safe, tender and caring environment that encourages a child to explore. Bet Torah aims to build a partnership between home and school in order to foster the wellbeing of each child. All activities are designed to be developmentally and individually appropriate. Enrollment: 100 children Student-teacher ratio: 2s, 4:1; 3s and 4s, 6:1 Calendar: September-June Hours: 9:15 a.m.-noon, with after-school enrichment until 2:30 p.m. Fees: Vary. From two to five days $3,999-7,860, with discounts for synagogue members. Special programs: Summer camp programs (Camp Keshet and Camp Katan), a toddler separation class (Kitah Katan) and parenting programs.


Elizabeth Ostrye, Childcare Director Philosophy: The Boys & Girls Club of Northern Westchester’s Childcare Center is an educational and fun preschool, serving the community for over 40 years. The center follows the Creative Curriculum and believes that early childhood should be a time of fun, warmth, security, exploration and discovery. Preschool children are creative and receptive and the staff strives to nurture and encourage these qualities. The purpose is to provide an atmosphere that encourages social, emotional, physical and intellectual growth through developmentally appropriate practices. Program includes snack and lunch, lovingly prepared each day by the team from Mount Kisco favorite Ladle of Love. Enrollment: 44 children Student-teacher ratio: 3s, 6:1; 4s, 7:1 Calendar: September through August, three, four or five days per week Hours: Options from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Fees: Call for information or to schedule a tour. Special programs: Math, literacy, swimming, physical education, music, art, theatre, nutrition and gardening and science Other: Licensed by the NYS Office of Children and Family Services.


Ester Aguzzi, Director Philosophy: Country Kids Schoolhouse offers a rich,

stimulating and fun environment for children. Whether enrolled in preschool, day care or before/after-school care, there are activities for your child that will promote curiosity, foster learning and keep your son or daughter engaged. Nutritious home-cooked meals, multiple learning centers and daily Spanish lessons are part of a wholesome, multicultural atmosphere that encourages inclusiveness, friendship and sharing. The mission is to provide parents with peace of mind about their child’s educational and emotional development by creating a nurturing and loving home environment where learning is fun, hands-on and educational. Enrollment: 12 in 3s and 4s classroom; 12 in 2s and 3s classroom; 6 in 2s classroom Student-teacher ratio: 5:1 Calendar: Full-year program Hours: Full-time and part-time hours available between 7 a.m.-6 p.m. Fees: Available upon request Special programs: Music, art, science, cooking, multicultural studies, Spanish, animal husbandry and summer camp. Other: Licensed by the NYS Office of Children and Family Services and member of NAFCC, Child Care Council of Westchester and NAEYC.

THE EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER at Congregation Shir Shalom of Westchester and Fairfield County 46 PEACEABLE ST. RIDGEFIELD, CT 06877 (203) 438-6589 EXT. 16

Jane Weil Emmer, Director Philosophy: The Early Childhood Center is a warm, inclusive community school in beautiful surroundings. ECC helps each child develop his or her intellectual, emotional, physical and creative self through a nurturing and stimulating environment. The program helps children achieve a love of learning through hands-on play and interaction with children and professional teachers. The curriculum delves into interest areas using language, literacy, science and math materials, creative arts and cooking. The beautiful varied outdoor space offers many opportunities for riding bikes, climb-

ing, running and exploring. Jewish culture is enjoyed while celebrating Shabbat and Jewish holidays through stories, songs, art and foods. Enrollment: 30 children ages 2-5; Practically Pre-School for ages 12 months-2 years with parent or caregiver Student-teacher ratio: 2s, 4:1; 3s and 4s, 6:1 Calendar: September-early June and six-week summer program. Hours: 9:15 a.m.-noon; 2s, two- and three-day programs; 3s and 4s; extended pre-k program available Monday and Wednesday until 2:30 p.m. Special programs: Temple professional staff participates in programs, particularly holiday celebrations. Enrichment specialists include music, nature, yoga and cooking. Science and sport extended day enrichment available. Summer Fun program, a six-week outdoor experience for 2-5-year-olds, runs from June-August, 9:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.


Gail Porter and Jeannine DiBart, Directors Philosophy: Katonah Playcare Early Learning Center is a quality preschool program dedicated to developing the whole child. PELC emphasize social/emotional and cognitive growth through hands-on and developmentally appropriate activities. In a warm and nurturing environment, teachers scaffold to build upon each child’s abilities, with the goal being kindergarten readiness. Enrollment: Call for info Student-teacher ratio: 2s, 6:1; 3s, 7:1; 4s, 9:1 Calendar: September-June. Summer program available for registered children. Hours: Toddlers, 9:15-11:45 a.m., 2s, 9-11:30 a.m.; 3s, 9:15-11:45 a.m.; 4s, 9 a.m.-noon Fees: Two-day, $3,200; three-day, $4,400; four-day, $5,700; five-day, $6,000. Special programs: Music/movement, yoga. Other: Extended day/lunch bunch program offered in the building

Philosophy: A progressive, process-oriented approach to early childhood education, where children are encouraged to do the work of children... play. Daily play-based activities are designed to foster intellectual, creative, social, emotional and physical growth. An integrated, comprehensive approach to early learning offers a healthy balance between child-directed and teacher guided activities. Enrollment: 100 children, 2-5 years old Student-teacher ratio: 8:1 in 4s; 7:1 in 3s; 5:1 in 2s Calendar: September through June; similar to area schools regarding vacations. Hours: 9-11:30 a.m., 12:30-3 p.m. Extended day 9-3, or various flexible options. Fees: Based on schedule. Special programs: Lunch Bunch for 3- and 4-yearold children extends the day by two hours. Special classes include science/nature, art and literature, music and movement, yoga, cooking, sports games and tae kwon do. Before and after-school care for preschoolers and children 5-12. Other: NAEYC accredited and licensed by NYSOCFS.

LANDMARK PRESCHOOL on Bedford Village Green 44 VILLAGE GREEN BEDFORD, NY 10506 (914) 393-2293

Jilly Stevens, Director

at Ridgefield Academy 223 WEST MOUNTAIN RD. RIDGEFIELD, CT 06877 (203) 894-1800

Alison O’Callaghan, Head of Preschool David Suter, Director of Enrollment Philosophy: Landmark’s mission is to provide a balanced program that combines an engaging, ageappropriate introduction to academics with plenty of opportunities to socialize, explore, create and play. Landmark’s goal is to encourage young children to explore, discover and enjoy new challenges. Children are curious, capable and ready to learn at an early age. A balanced program inspires children of all levels by enhancing their social-emotional, intellectual and physical development. Landmark is dedicated to helping each child discover his or her intrinsic talents in a stimulating, nurturing and creative environment. Enrollment: 60 children Student-teacher ratio: 2s, 4:1; 3s and 4s, 6:1 Calendar: September through June, plus summer programs Hours: 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Fees: Vary by program Special programs: French instruction, music, movement, art, drama, science, kitchen lab. Hatch SmartBoard technology in all preschool classrooms. Other: Four campuses: Redding, Ridgefield and Westport, Conn., and Bedford, NY. Accredited by Connecticut Association of Independent Schools (CAIS), National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS).


MARCH 9, 2018




THE LONG RIDGE SCHOOL 478 ERSKINE RD. STAMFORD, CT 06903 (203) 322-7693 Philosophy: Founded in 1938 and celebrating its 80th year, The Long Ridge School is an independent preschool through elementary school serving children 2 years old through grade 5 in North Stamford. The Long Ridge School is a diverse community where children experience the joy of learning in small groups taught by experienced, caring teachers. The curriculum provides challenging, theme-based, hands-on learning experiences. The program includes classes in science, art, music, physical education and Spanish. Children are respected as individuals with innate curiosity and valued for their uniqueness, ideas and talents. Transportation for Stamford and New York residents (within 15 miles). Student-teacher ratio: Beginners (2s), 4:1; Nursery (3s, 4s), 8:1 Calendar: September through June Hours: Beginners, two or three mornings per week. Nursery, five mornings per week. Before and afterschool care options. Fees: Vary according to program Special programs: Classes in Spanish, art, music, physical education and library. Other: Accredited by the Connecticut Association of Independent Schools.

THE MEAD SCHOOL 1095 RIVERBANK RD. STAMFORD, CT 06903 (203) 595-9500

Robyn Santagata, Director Philosophy: The Mead School is a play-based, hands-on, socially interactive learning environment. Classrooms are designed to link both social/emotional competency and early academic learning. The architecture and interior design reflect an openness that encourages exploration and discovery. Spacious classrooms and engaging materials evolve with the children, supporting optimum growth and development every step of the way. Student-teacher ratio: Varies according to program Calendar: September through June with options to extend into July and/or August. Hours: Full day (9 a.m.-3 p.m.) and extended day (6:15 a.m.-6 p.m.) enrollment options. Consult for programs to best fit your needs. Fees: Full- and part-time enrollment options available. Tuition details available upon request. Special programs: In addition to exceptional classroom teachers, students have the opportunity to collaborate with specialists in music, gym, movement, drama and Spanish on a weekly basis. Students also participate actively in organic gardening program.


develop interests and abilities while appreciating and respecting his/her friends. At MKCCC, your child will have a stimulating experience that will prepare him/her for kindergarten. Visit the center and see for yourself why MKCCC is considered an outstanding place for children to learn and grow. Enrollment: Call for information. Student-teacher ratio: Exceeds New York State licensing requirements Calendar: Full-day prekindergarten program operates year-round. Fees: Call for more information. Scholarships available based on financial need. Hours: 7 a.m.-6:30 p.m. (flexible hours may be arranged) Special programs: MKCCC is NAEYC accredited. In addition to exceptional prekindergarten programs, MKCCC cares for children from 3 months-10 years old with infant, toddler and before and after-school programs. The after-school program extends to a full day for the summer months and school vacations and holidays. Innovative programming includes a Feed Me Fresh seed-to-table nutrition curriculum and the award-winning JEWEL program, which encourages intergenerational interactions between children and senior citizens.


Beth O’Brien, Head of Early Childhood Program Pamela Safford, Director of Enrollment Management and Financial Aid Philosophy: At Country School 3-, 4- and 5-yearolds are competent, capable and driven by an innate curiosity to make meaning and seek connection. Through hands-on experiences and focused lessons, an intentionally designed program cultivates each child’s expanding knowledge and love of learning. Time is spent in these formative years developing character, acquiring skills, cultivating creativity, encouraging initiative and pursuing passions. NCCS is a co-ed, independent, day school for students in pre-k (ages 3-4) through grade 9. Enrollment: Age 3 through grade 9 Student-teacher ratio: 6:1 Calendar: Early September through mid-June Hours: 8:15 a.m.-noon, Monday-Friday. Also available 8:15 a.m.-2:50 p.m. two days per week. Optional Early Birds, 7:30–8:15 a.m.; optional extended day until 5:30 p.m. Fees: Starting at $23,000. See website. Special programs: Spanish and science instruction begin in pre-k. Other: Located on a 75-acre campus, the school provides transportation to families living throughout Westchester, NY, and Fairfield, Conn., counties. Visit website for upcoming admission events or call the admission team, which looks forward to having an opportunity to meet with you, learn about your child, share more detailed information and answer any questions.


Dawn Meyerski, Executive Director

Karen Midkiff, Director

Philosophy: Since 1971, every child knows he or she

Philosophy: North Salem Nursery School believes young children learn best through enjoyable activities that are developmentally appropriate at various levels of skill. By creating an environment in which mastery may be achieved by each child as he or she becomes ready, NSNS is able to give students confidence in their ability to succeed in school. NSNS is dedicated to the welfare, happiness and success of each child.

is valuable at Mount Kisco Child Care Center (MKCCC). Experienced teachers provide the support and caring that allows this diverse community of children to reach their potential. Children are given the freedom to explore carefully planned environments that maximize learning. Trusting relationships between children and adults are the key to success. Each child feels safe to

The teachers bring a wide variety of expertise to the program, including backgrounds in music, art, special education and reading education. Their devotion to young students and to the community enrich students’ earliest school experience. Parents are also encouraged to contribute their own talents and interests to the curriculum. Enrollment: 12-15/class Student-teacher ratio: 3s, 6:1; 4s, 8:1 Calendar: Monday following Labor Day through second week in June. Holidays follow North Salem School District calendar. Hours: Morning program, 8:45-11:30 a.m.; afternoon program, noon-2:45 p.m. Fees: Two sessions/week, 3s: $2,790/year; three sessions/week, 3s and 4s: $3,546/year; four sessions/week, 4s: $4,302/year; five sessions/week, 4s: $5067/year. Special programs: Yoga Lunch Bunch, orchard field trips, community helpers field trips/visits, Thanksgiving feast, holiday concert, art show, Kids Dig Dirt vegetable garden.

PLAY CARE 210 ORCHARD RIDGE RD. CHAPPAQUA, NY 10514 (914) 238-6206

Xann Palmer, Director Philosophy: Play Care provides a flexible, nurturing program that encourages socialization, cooperation, individual development and a positive self-image. An interdenominational approach provides a cheerful and meaningful learning experience for our children to explore their world in a safe and age appropriate manner. Enrollment: 75 children, 18 months to 5 years old. Class maximum is 10 for 2s and 11 for 3s and 4s. Student-teacher ratio: 2s, 5:1; 3s, 6:1; 4s, 7:1 Calendar: September through June Hours: Monday-Friday, 9:15 a.m.-noon. Extended day program available Tuesday-Thursday until 3:15 p.m. Enrichment classes Monday and Friday until 2:15 p.m. Fees: Vary according to number of sessions attended. Special programs: Music, yoga/creative movement, weekly science experiments, sensory exploration, arts and crafts, story time, large enclosed outdoor play area in addition to a large indoor gym. Other: Early morning drop-off, lunch program (Monday-Friday). After-school enrichment classes such as art, science and cooking. Flexible scheduling options for families. Licensed by NYS Office of Children and Family Services.


Kirstin Zarras, Director Philosophy: The Play School program consists of carefully selected and integrated activities designed to encourage growth in the social, emotional, creative, physical and cognitive development of young children. The objectives are to help children build self-confidence, meet new friends and develop positive feelings about school and the world around them through a developmentally appropriate curriculum at a school where learning and play go hand in hand. Enrollment: 45-65 children ages 2-4 Student-teacher ratio: 2s, 4:1; 3s and 4s, 6:1 Calendar: Early September through early June Hours: Morning 2s, 9:15 a.m.-noon; morning 3s, 8:45-11:30 a.m.; morning 4s, 9-11:45 a.m.; enrichment Monday to Friday, 12:30-2 p.m. for 3s and 4s. Fees: Visit website for tuition schedule. Special programs: Music enrichment, nature programs, yoga, weekly science, karate, sensory exploration classes, beautiful outdoor playground.

POUND RIDGE MONTESSORI SCHOOL 5 HIGH VIEW RD. POUND RIDGE, NY 10576 (914) 763-3125 Email through website

Grainne Bellotti, Director Philosophy: PRMS is an intimate, multi-age preschool founded upon the principles of Montessori philosophy. Through a carefully prepared environment our AMS certified teachers guide students to become independent, self-motivated, confident learners. For more than 45 years, PRMS has welcomed families from Bedford, Katonah, South Salem, North Salem, Bedford Corners, Waccabuc and Pound Ridge, as well as New Canaan and Ridgefield. Enrollment: Two-, three- and five-day programs for students ages 2-5 Student-teacher ratio: 6:1 Calendar: September-June Hours: 9 a.m.-noon Fees: Call for fees. Special programs: Spanish, sign language, art appreciation, dance and movement. Other: Summer camp for ages 3-10. Visit littlefauves. com. Rolling admissions. Call to schedule a tour and for information on admissions and fees.


Colm MacMahon, Head of School Penny Jennings, Lower Campus Division Head Liz Hallock, Director of Admissions Philosophy: Rippowam Cisqua School ignites learning in pre-kindergarten through grade 9 students so they believe in their infinite abilities, lead with the skills to bring their ideas to life, and enter the world knowing their futures are limitless. From the earliest moments of their formal education, young children at RCS are encouraged to be critical thinkers, intellectually curious and confident in their abilities and in themselves. Leveraging an immersive curriculum that specializes in the magic of these wonder years, teachers create challenging, play-based activities and programs that enable students to experience success in developmentally appropriate ways in language arts, math, science, athletics and the arts, as well as their social and emotional behavior. Here, in an individualized, child centered learning environment, students have the freedom to imagine, create and innovate their ideas in preparation for a middle school curriculum that expands on these learnings, cultivates their independence and yields engaged leaders and confident communicators ready to chart their own path. Enrollment: 400, pre-k to grade 9 Student-teacher ratio: 6:1 Calendar: September-June Hours: 8:20 a.m.-noon for junior pre-k; 8:20 a.m.- 2 p.m. for senior pre-k, 8:20 a.m.-3:20 p.m. for kindergarten Fees: Visit website Special programs: Imagination classes and innovation workshops, music lessons, RCS Runners, wellness program, yoga, tennis and golf, innovation workshops, Lego robotics and coding, chess, overnight trips, sports clinics and more. Other: Member of the National Association of Independent Schools through the New York Association of Independent Schools (NYSAIS). CONTINUED ON PAGE 16A



MARCH 9, 2018



Anna O’Rourke, Principal Philosophy: Saint Mary Preschool provides an atmosphere that encourages social, emotional, physical, intellectual and spiritual growth and development of the child as a whole. A nurturing approach enhances the uniqueness of each child, while teaching respect for self and others. Physical development and coordination are achieved through creative play. Intellectual curiosity and growth are encouraged through a wide variety of classroom and playground equipment and stimulating, exciting learning programs in an atmosphere of spiritual joy and wonder. Enrollment: Currently 111 children in 3s, 4s and transitional kindergarten programs. Student-teacher ratio: Approximately 8:1 Calendar: September through June Hours: 3-year-old programs meet two or three days per week; 4-year-olds have the option of three to five days per week; and 5-year-olds come five days a week. Half-day and full-day sessions available for all programs. See website for complete details. Fees: Range from $3,000-$7,000 depending on the program. See website. Special programs: Saint Mary School is a Roman Catholic, co-educational day school for students in preschool through eighth grade. Preschool students have access to all of the facilities and services of the school, including the nurse, computer lab, gymnasium and library, art and music programs.


Pamela Leibman, Director Philosophy: South Salem Nursery School, where children love to learn, believes in a developmental approach to early childhood education. The goal is to foster the social, emotional, physical and intellectual growth of young children by developing the preschooler’s delight in nature, music, art, literature, science, literacy, math, computers and culture, while focusing on their interests and abilities. SSNS is a modern facility with a large, open, sun-filled classroom, and a developmentally appropriate fenced playground for active recreation and creative outdoor play. Student-teacher ratio: 2s, 5:1; 3s, 6:1; 4s, 7:1 Calendar: September-mid June Hours: 9:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m. Fees: Two days, $3,000; three days, $4,000; four days, $4,800; five days, $5,500 Special programs: Cooking, science experiments, author of the month, class trips, music program, yoga, art program and gallery, outside exploration and play on a 4-acre campus.


Doreen Bistany, Program Director Philosophy: The St. John’s Early Learning Center is a developmental preschool, which affirms the indi-

viduality of children and provides an emotionally safe environment in which children can learn and socialize. It is the school’s belief that children grow and learn when they are free to observe, explore and actively engage in activities at their own developmental levels and pace. The program provides a warm and nurturing environment in which children can thrive. Each child is treated as an individual, respecting their needs, learning styles and personalities. The rich thematic curriculum addresses the intellectual, emotional, social and physical needs of young children. Acknowledging the importance of play, the day combines free play time, group activities and discussions to allow the children to practice the social readiness skills necessary to begin kindergarten with a positive self-image. SJELC encourages children¹s natural curiosity and foster a healthy respect for themselves, for others and for their surroundings. Enrollment: 40 children ages 2-5 Student-teacher ratio: 2s, 5:1; 3s, 7:1; 4s, 8:1 Calendar: Mid-September through first week in June Hours: 9 a.m.-noon, plus extended day until 2 p.m. Fees: Two-day, $3,200; three-day, $4,400; four-day, $5,500; five-day, $5,900 Special programs: Music, yoga and hands-on science classes included. Nature study, cooking, computers, art discovery, field trips and family social events are all part of the program. Other: St. John’s Early Learning Center is a nonsectarian preschool. Lunch Bunch (noon-1 p.m.) and extended day (until 2 p.m.) programs are offered each day. Six-week summer camp offered.


Prisca Spitz, Director Philosophy: St. Mark’s Preschool believes the educational process should address all areas of learning: social, emotional, spiritual, physical and intellectual. A wide variety of activities are designed to reflect the children’s interests and abilities and to help develop reasoning skills. The school provides a flexible curriculum of age-appropriate activities through which children learn and explore while guided and encouraged by their teachers. Structured activities emphasizing acquisition of basic skills are balanced with child-directed ones, providing many experiences that help nurture self-expression, self-discovery and self-esteem. All teachers have a minimum of Bachelor’s degrees, majority of head teachers have Master’s degrees in Education. Enrollment: 66 children Student-teacher ratio: 5:1 Calendar: September-May. Summer camp in June. Hours/Fees: Young 2s: Tuesday/Thursday, 9:15-11:45 a.m., $3,700. Older 2s: Monday/Wednesday/Friday, 9 a.m.-noon, $5,650. 3s: Monday/Tuesday/Thursday, 9 a.m.-noon, $5,650. Optional Lunch Bunch until 1:55 and optional Wednesday 9 a.m.-noon. 4s: MondayThursday, 9 a.m.-noon, (two extended days Monday/ Wednesday until 1:55p.m.), $8,400. Optional additional extended days Tuesday/Thursday until 1:55pm and optional Friday 9 a.m.-noon. Pre-k 5s: Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-noon (two extended days Monday/Wednesday until 1:55 p.m.), $8,400. Optional additional extended days Tuesday/Thursday until 1:55 p.m. and optional Friday 9 a.m.-noon. Special programs: Music, cooking, science, soccer, karate, library and gardening.


Stephanie Scanlon, Director

Philosophy: St. Matthew’s Preschool provides children with a dynamic and developmentally appropriate curriculum addressing all areas of learning — social, intellectual, spiritual and physical — in a nurturing and supportive environment. The program is focused on hands-on learning, which stimulates curiosity and discovery, and generates enthusiasm. The goal is to ensure that the children develop the skills and self-confidence necessary to prepare them to flourish and thrive in kindergarten and beyond. Daily schedules include circle time, stories, songs or poems, and skillbased activities, as well as plenty of time for playing. Enrollment: 52 children Student-teacher ratio: 2s, 4:1; 3s, 6:1; 4s, 7:1 Calendar: September to mid-June Hours: 9-11:45 a.m. for all classes. 2s program is Monday/Wednesday/Friday or Tuesday/Thursday; 3s program is four or five mornings per week; 4s program is five mornings per week. Bedford Learning Center offers an on-site extended day enrichment program until 2:15 p.m. Fees: 2018-19 morning program: 2s two-day, $4,300; 2s three-day, $6,500, 3s four-day, $7,250; 3s five-day, $8,300; five-day 4s, $8,300. Special programs: St. Matthew’s Preschool has weekly programs for music, yoga and Spanish instruction, as well as a chapel component called God’s Garden. Also cooking, regular nature walks and a threeseason garden. Other: Expansive outdoor play area that includes swings, sandboxes, age-appropriate climbing structures and plenty of space to run around.

ST. PATRICK’S SCHOOL 483 OLD POST RD. BEDFORD, NY 10506 (914) 234-7914,

Sharyn O’Leary, Principal Philosophy: St. Patrick’s School offers a valuesbased Catholic education where academic excellence is enriched by faith. St. Patrick’s is a regional Catholic school serving students in pre-k (3s and 4s) through grade 8 affiliated with the Archdiocese of New York and serving Northeastern Westchester and nearby towns in Connecticut. Established in 1956 by the Sisters of Charity, St. Patrick’s School has a long tradition dedicated to the mission to “teach as Jesus did.” The student-centered learning focuses on the academic, social and spiritual development of the whole child. The curriculum develops global citizens who are lifelong learners, willing to share their faith and talents in service to others. Students’ test scores continually exceed most local public school districts. Graduates are accepted to top high schools, including Regis, Fordham Prep, Iona Prep, Sacred Heart, School of the Holy Child, Kennedy Catholic and many others. Enrollment: Pre-k, 30 children; grades k-8, 150 students Student-teacher ratio: Pre-k, 10:1; grades k-8, 16:1 Calendar: September through June Hours: Pre-k half day, 9 a.m.-noon; pre-k full day, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.; grades k-8, 8:05 a.m.-2:25 pm. Beforeschool care available from 7 a.m. After-school care and activities available until 6 p.m. Fees: Tuition: pre-k half day, $6,600; Pre-k full day, $8,200; one child grades k-8, $7,100. Family grant of multiple children is $1,600 per child. Special programs: In-school programs in art, music (singing and recorder), gym, computers, Spanish. After-school enrichment programs (fee-based) in band/instruments, art, sports (soccer, golf, gymnastics, Karate, tennis, volleyball). Other: Chromebooks in the classroom for all students in grades 1-8; iPads for all kindergarteners. Brand new, state-of-the-art science lab. Sacramental preparation. School lunch program. Bus transportation provided by

most public school districts in New York for students in grades k-8 living within 15 miles. New security system and cameras. Accredited by the AdvancEd Accredited/ NCA accrediting agency.


Maria Fitzgerald, Director Philosophy: A Montessori school for children 18 months to 6 years old with locations in South Salem (full day plus extended hours) and Katonah (half day), ThistleWaithe will educate young children to be strong, well-adjusted personalities who will have the motivation and courage to make individual decisions and to discern intelligently while maintaining respect and mutual understanding of all other individuals. Children will become budding stewards of the environment and learn to protect and ensure the health of our world. From an early age, children will be introduced to the pleasure of self-accomplishment, the motivation of self-learning and they will be encouraged to have a persistent attitude about life and learning. Enrollment: 121 students (26 in the toddler program, 80 in the primary program, 15 in kindergarten) Student-teacher ratio: Toddlers, 5:1; primary, 7:1 Calendar: September to mid-June Hours: Katonah campus, 9 a.m.-noon, plus afterschool enrichment program until 2 p.m. South Salem campus, half days 9 a.m.-noon, and full days 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Wrap-around care available from 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Fees: Call of fees. Special programs: Spanish, music, chess (kindergarten). Summer camp. Busing provided to or from Katonah-Lewisboro schools Other: Affiliate member of American Montessori Society. NYS licensed day care facility.


Roxanne Kaplan, Director Philosophy: World Cup is dedicated to providing students with a valuable early childhood education using a developmental program with a hands-on/ minds-on academic approach. In an age-appropriate, nurturing and supportive environment, World Cup individualizes programs, always putting an emphasis on the child’s interests and strengths while continuously recognizing their academic, creative and social accomplishments. The goal is to develop the foundation which prepares each child for learning opportunities and challenges that await them beyond World Cup. Enrollment: 300 children Student-teacher ratio: 6:1, with floaters in each program for an even better ratio Calendar: School, September-June. Camp, JuneAugust. Hours: Mornings or afternoons, half-day and extended-day programs, full-day programs and private kindergarten available. Fees: Vary with program Special programs: Music, gymnastics, science, Spanish, creative movement, special visitors, parent seminars and much more. Other: Licensed by Department of Social Services. Teachers are CPR and First-Aid certified. Staff MAT trained.

MARCH 9, 2018


Asthma needn’t sideline kids from sports





xercise is good for everyone and children are no exception, even kids with asthma. There are so many reasons for asthmatic kids to participate in team and individual sports, from the benefits of social interaction to sharing team spirit and camaraderie to improving their health. As the mother of an asthmatic son who played soccer from age 5 into adulthood and ran track as a young teen through college, I can say from personal experience how tremendously my son benefited from sports. Diagnosed with asthma at age 3, as he got older sports only increased his lung capacity so much so that his allergist said he had more lung capacity than children without asthma. According to, anywhere from 30-70 percent of elite athletes have asthma. Soccer superstar David Beckham has asthma; so does six-time Olympic winner Jackie Joyner-Kersee, who never imagined she’d have a career as a runner because of her asthma. Asthma didn’t stop Olympic diver Greg Louganis, and so many other world class athletes. In terms of your own child playing sports, every child’s situation is different but with the right medication(s) there’s no reason he or she should be limited in the sports they want to do. If children require a rescue inhaler they should know how to use it. If a child has a flare-up while practicing or playing, the inhaler should be easily accessible. Dr. Amy Lief, a pediatrician at Scarsdale Medical Group treats patients up to the age of 21. Lief, who said it was difficult to diagnose asthma before the ago of 2, encourages her patients to play sports. She noted there are people who don’t have asthma but have exercise-induced asthma, noting that it’s really broncho constriction, which is the same process that’s going on in asthma. Common triggers for asthma for some children include cold weather, colds and allergies, she said. Before embarking in physical activity, Lief advised parents should first talk to and have ongoing conversations with their child’s doctor. It’s important to see what environmental factors affect a child. Are they more susceptible in the spring, summer or fall? Lief feels that asthmatic kids shouldn’t be limited in playing sports, unless they are having acute illness, at which point the medical experts and family should reassess the situation. For a child who’s not having symptoms, but who knows exercising is a trigger, they may have to take two puffs of the albuterol inhaler before they play. In the cold weather, Lief recommended kids do a warm-up wearing a scarf or mask before playing. “When you’re first breathing the cold air… it’s not perfect but it is helpful,” Lief said. Anyone working with the child, be it a teacher or a coach, should know the severity of the child’s condition. “Someone needs to be noticing that the child is having trouble,” Lief said. Lief recommends kids should see their doctors every six months for an asthma

check and to see if any medication needs changing. If there is a change, she would see them around 4-6 weeks or sooner if there’s a problem. For kids who are using their inhalers a lot and have worsening symptoms, Lief would refer a specialist. Some asthmatic kids also have bad allergies in addition to asthma, but Lief said there’s a way to have them exercise, which she said is the goal. Most of her patients do sports, maybe not organized ones. They could be going to the gym or walking or doing yoga — it doesn’t have to be competitive. Asthmatic kids: living happy, full lives Dr. Peter Richel — better known as “Dr. Pete” — is Chief of Pediatrics at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco. He sees “lots and lots” of asthmatic kids and said it’s quite common. Dr. Pete said asthma usually begins in early childhood. His practice shares their asthmatic patients with the pediatric pulmonologists in the practice. Dr. Pete said there are many different asthma triggers, including upper respiratory infections, changes in the weather, exercise and stress from social interactions in social situations that don’t go well. Any of these can induce bronco spasm ,which translates to a tightening of the smooth muscles of the tiniest branches of the lungs and that leads to an increase in the work of breathing, which leads to shortness of breath. When asthmatics use albuterol or a bronchodilator, the medicine relaxes the muscles that are constricted. Two puffs before vigorous exercise can last four hours and help prevent exercise-induced asthma. Sometimes a player needs to sit for a prolonged period before returning to action. Dr. Pete noted that sometimes there’s audible wheezing but it’s preventable. “It’s wise to confirm it with a pediatric pulmonologist,” and depending on their history perform a pulmonary function test, he said. For kids playing team sports, Dr. Pete said parents should be there and responsible when their children have practice or games, depending on the age of the child. For high school kids, the doctors give them forms for older kids to self-carry their inhalers. “There are good guidelines for that,” Dr. Pete said.

Exercise is key for anybody with or without asthma. “Exercise is nothing but helpful,” he said. “[Asthmatic kids] can live normal, totally happy lives. Asthma should not hold them back.” Better meds, better education Dr. Joel Kahan is a pediatrician affiliated with Allied Physician Group on Long Island, primarily a pediatric practice with sites in New York City and Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties. The group also includes pediatric allergy pulmonologist doctors. The biggest change in asthma is “We [just] have better pharmacology to deal with it,” Kahan said. And what does he advise his asthmatic patients who want to play sports? “I think it’s about education… It’s probably good for kids to improve lung function,” Kahan said. “There’s not contraindication for them not to play sports unless they are in distress. Some kids need medicinal help to help prevent exercised induced broncho spasm.” Often between the ages of 8 and 10 — though not a hard and fast range — some kids will develop exercise-induced asthma. That’s easy to test for using a spirometer so that doctors can get a baseline reading to see if they can get a sense of the situation. The weather affects asthmatics to one degree or another Dr. Kahan said. Some kids are affected by the cold, which can cause bronco spasm; illness like a simple respiratory infection could be a problem; and then there are seasonal allergies which are impactful — in spring when things are blooming, in summer when there’s ragweed, fall when there’s mold. Seasonal allergies can impact the activity in children. “In the short-term, yes,” Kahan said. “It’s not a contraindication. In the long-term we should be able to get it under control using various medication and they should be able to participate.” In terms of asthmatic children needing medication changes to play sports, it depends on how bad the symptoms are. Some kids use rescue inhalers, some use bronchodilators, some take steroids. “If we can find the trigger that causes the episode, we try to eliminate them from the environment,” Kahan said. And are sports beneficial for asthmatic kids? “Absolutely!” he exclaimed.

with, and things that they can celebrate together with joy and gratitude. There is really no substitute for quality time and quality family ties.” Crohn suggests thinking about “structuring” over “discipline.” “Thinking about the behaviors that are acceptable and trying to encourage acceptable behaviors and limit unacceptable behaviors,” she said. “Try to shape behavior from the beginning and consistently… Start as young as you can, talk to your partner about parameters and sticking to it and deciding what you want to shape… The punishment should fit the crime.” “We need to try to work out of the notion that we are walking on a knife edge as parents,” Gerrity said. “We just need to try to stay on the football field. Children are more adaptable than we think. We think our children are incredibly fragile, and we don’t want to make them feel bad. But we need to think about raising kids so that they are human beings we can enjoy as people. We are raising them to be good human beings. The way we do adolescence in America is a cultural phenomenon. We have deep respect for people’s individuality and not being OK with how we encroach on that is what puts us in a bind as parents.” “Young parents lean toward too much permission and too much talking and explaining,” agreed Crohn. “Just making it simple and clearer is better.” According to Dr. Paul Donahue, Ph.D., “Parents can lose their leverage if we give kids too many privileges too early. They feel like entitlements not privileges.” Donahue has a clinical practice in Scarsdale focused on children, adolescents and parents among others. He recently wrote the book, “Parenting Without Fear,” which provides a road map for parents toward a more peaceful and satisfying family existence. When it comes to discipline, “You should do the best that you can in the moment and try to regulate your feelings,” advised Crohn. “You can’t be a stone, but you don’t have to have an outburst. Show your emotions in a way that’s productive and builds empathy.” It’s also critical for parents to model behavior. “If we want them to treat others with respect, we need to treat each other with respect,” said Donahue. “If we say no phones at the table, we can’t be taking out our phones at the table. Teenagers will call us out on hypocrisy.” Positive reinforcement is also always better than negative, experts say. “We want to praise kids for when they are doing well as opposed to being critical when not,” said Donahue. “We get more mileage out of rewarding good behavior than being critical of negative.” His advice? Set limits, clear rules and incentives. “It’s important to be clear and upfront,” he said.



MARCH 9, 2018


Dreaming of summer: SAP at Hoff-Barthelson Music School Hoff-Barthelson Music School’s (HBMS) Summer Arts Program (SAP) provides budding musicians in grades 2-10 multiple opportunities for artistic exploration and friendship. Taught by top-flight faculty, offerings include instrumental classes, chamber music, chorus, large ensembles, visual arts, rock, jazz, musical theatre and frequent performance opportunities. Students at all levels receive instruction in a program individually tailored to their needs and interests. “Unfettered by schoolwork and the scheduling challenges often faced during the school year, SAP students have the latitude to try additional instruments, experiment musically, take lessons every day, and perform each week,” said Joe Piscitelli, the program’s dynamic director. “Consequently, they’re able to make tremendous progress and develop lasting friendships over the program’s five weeks.” Registration for the June 25-July 27 session is currently underway, with early bird

discounts through March 30. Mary Margulis-Ohnuma, mother of three SAP participants, said, “For many years now, our family has planned our summers around the kids attending Hoff-Barthelson’s Summer Arts Program. The program offers opportunities to work with a world-class faculty in a fluid format that catalyzes learning. SAP provides a warm and welcoming environment that is at once familiar from summer to summer and yet also manages to provide new challenges from year to year.” Visit, or contact Lucy Rosenberg at or 723-1169 to learn more about the Scarsdale-based program. HBMS has achieved national recognition as a premier community music school for its unsurpassed leadership in education, performance and community service. With a faculty drawn from the region’s most talented teachers and performers, the school has long been one of Westchester County’s most cherished cultural resources. Whatever a student’s age or level of musical interest, HoffBarthelson’s diverse offerings provide the highest quality musical education, personally tailored to his or her specific passions and goals in a supportive and vibrant community. The Summer Arts Program is made possible, in part, by ArtsWestchester, with support from Westchester County Government and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Mohawk Day Camp has new activities, programs Every summer, Mohawk Day Camp adds new activities and program areas for campers to experience and enjoy. According to camp director Adam Wallach, “At Mohawk Day Camp, we are always striving to provide our campers with new and exciting opportunities to have fun. After all, a little bit of summer is what the whole year is about.” In 2017, Mohawk unveiled the largest capital improvement project in the camp’s 89-year history for the Mohawk Performing Arts Center (MPAC). In 2018, the camp will add eight state-of-the-art program studios: Yum Kitchen, Cool Cooking, Jewelry Arts, Art Studio, Hands on Clay, Pottery, Hobby Shop and Brainstorm. New activities being introduced include hydro blast, mountain biking, golf, pioneering and sports with Coach Steve. Hydro blast offers different ways to cool down: the four-way downpour derby, water blasting cannons and a team-based water balloon launching game. Mountain Biking will be offered as both an activity and elective choice for campers entering grade three and above. They will explore new bike trails, race their friends

and receive bike and safety instruction. Golf will be offered as its own activity for grade one and above in the newly expanded golf driving range. Campers will learn the fundamentals of the sport: grip, stance, posture, alignment, ball position and balance. Pioneering will introduce campers building a fire, constructing a shelter, whittling wood, campfire cooking, survival skills and more. Sports with Coach Steve will be offered for preschoolers through second graders. Coach Steve Stone will bring his enthusiasm and amusing methods of sports instruction while introducing fundamental skills and teamwork.

Long Ridge Camp for ages 3-14 Celebrating its 57th season, the Long Ridge Camp (LRC), directed by Geoff Herm and Myrna Alswanger, continues to provide summer fun to generations of children ages 3-14. Set on 15 acres in Connecticut’s beautiful countryside, located minutes from the Merritt Parkway, children experience a traditional day camp setting with three outdoor heated pools, ballfields, game courts, playgrounds, nature trails, group rooms and a fabulous air-conditioned arts and athletic center. The camp offers a well-rounded variety of activities such as expert swimming instruction, archery, baseball, basketball, gaga, cookouts, music, dance, drama, soccer, volleyball, miniature golf, arts and CONTINUED ON THE NEXT PAGE

Linda Arpino, RDN, CDN, FAND Registered & Certified Dietitian/Nutritionist Serving Children, Teens and Families for 35 Years

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One-to-one consultation in office. Learn about Environmental Nutrition including Genetically Modified Foods & Health Optimization. We accept most insurance. Visit 14 Rye Ridge Plaza, Suite 230 Rye Brook, NY

21 Craig Court. Stamford, CT



1/4 mile from Pound Ridge, NY

Volunteer for Storybook Hour 2nd–4th graders at Hamilton Elementary School, Mt. Vernon, love Storybook Hour! Would you like to make their day and read to them this school year?


Westchester Jewish Community Services

For details, contact Rebecca Sigman at 914.761.0600 x222 or Strengthening Lives. Shaping Futures.


MARCH 9, 2018


dren’s School has been doing these things and much more in the name of growing young hearts and minds. The work TCS does ensures students not only thrive and flourish, but also begin to develop a lifelong love of learning. All because of a place called school. Not just any school. The Children’s School. Learn more at or call (203) 329-8815 to schedule a visit.

CONTINUED FROM THE PREVIOUS PAGE crafts, nature, low ropes and ziplines, special events and so much more. Individual achievement is encouraged and taught by a staff of experienced and highly trained counselors and specialists. LRC provides expert coaching and instruction in the activities the campers participate in. The camp prides itself on maintaining great camper-to-staff ratios. LRC’s goal is to ensure that each child has a happy and healthy summer, striving to create an environment where each child makes friends and has a truly special summer experience. Campers will learn life skills of leadership and sportsmanship and will develop more self-confidence and resiliency. The preschool camp for ages 3-4 is available for both half- and full-day campers. The program is designed as a superior very first camp experience with counselors chosen for their expertise with preschoolers. The swimming program utilizes special shallow-depth pools designed especially for the youngest campers. Transportation is provided in Westchester County to Bedford, Pound Ridge, Katonah, Lewisboro, Waccabuc, South Salem, Cross River, Goldens Bridge and surrounding towns, as well as Fairfield County. There is a supervised program for parents who need flexibility to drop off as early as 8:15 a.m. and pick up as late as 5:30 p.m. at no additional charge. The camp will run June 25-Aug. 17 with four-, five-, six-, seven- and eighth-week options available. Visit or call (203) 322-0253 to schedule a personal tour.

A young child’s first experience of school should be a magical one, an immersion in a learning environment that has deeply committed teachers, stimulating materials and a sense of purpose. Superb early education nurtures children’s natural curiosity and eagerness to learn, and helps them become thoughtful and compassionate human beings. Maureen Murphy, head of school, sums up the elements that make The Children’s School (TCS) in Stamford, Conn., such a special place to learn and grow: “If you provide children with a broad education in the arts, literacy, math, science and the history of their community, all while allowing them to move and play freely, they will thrive. If you honor and stoke children’s natural curiosity — the engine of achievement — they will flourish. If you encourage children to be creative, to express themselves in song, on paper, at an easel, they will love the place called school.” For more than a half-century, The Chil-

This summer, Camp Hillard will be celebrating its 90th summer of family-owned and operated success. Founded in 1929 by Morris and Hannah Libman, the tradition has been carried on by the Libman family at Westchester’s first day camp. Its tradition of excellence spans four generations of singlefamily ownership. Festivities will include games, fun and traditions from the past nine decades, including visits from former campers and staff. For 90 years, the Libman family has been providing children with active, safe and memorable summers. Impeccably maintained and constantly improved, Camp Hillard offers a complete program that uniquely combines spirit, tradition and fun with first class modern facilities. Located on 20 beautiful acres in the Edgemont section of Greenburgh. Campers learn skills while having fun in a safe, active and well-supervised environment. The program is a balance of outstanding swimming and sports instruction combined with high quality creative and performing arts programs and exciting special events. Visit or email directors Jon and Jim Libman at

Ridgefield Academy is excited to announce its restructured summer programs, featuring a broader array of offerings for all ages. Programs are open to all members of the public, begin on June 18 and will run for six weeks. Patriot Camp is designed for children entering kindergarten through fifth grade. This year, the program will be split with three weeks operating as a traditional day camp, including activities such as swimming, sports, cooking, science, technology and games. The other three weeks will be themed weeks, including trip week, science week and art week. Campers are also able to sign up for weeks that appeal most to them or the full six weeks. For middle school students in grades 5-8, RA offers Explorer Programs which will include a broader variety of topics from which to choose this year. Two workshops will be offered per day, one during the morning and one in the afternoon. Children have the choice of staying for half day or full day depending on the workshops that are of interest to them. RA will provide something for every child’s imagination. A

• Arts & Crafts • Archery • Soccer • Basketball


Season Boys And Girls Ages 3-14

NEW FRIENDSHIPS AND ADVENTURES 3 outdoor pools, Nature trails, Air-conditioned facility, 15 country-like acres.

• Early morning & late afternoon Extended Day options at no extra charge • 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 weeks • Best camper/staff ratio • State Certified CAMP IS FOR 203-322-0253 Great Kids,Terrific Staff, Exceptional Value!

• Street Hockey • Tee-ball • Tennis • Volleyball • Ropes Course • Music

• Field Games • Dance • Drama • Nature

Gaga • Kickball • Newcomb • Softball • Baseball • Swimming

N PORTATIOd S N A R T E Bedfor , h, to WE PROVID y t n u o C na ster In WestcheVista, Cross River, Kabtooro, is e, Pound RidgBridge, Waccabuc, Lew isco, K t Goldens South Salem, Moun nd Armonk, aqua, Pleasantville a Chapp unty too! o C ld ie f ir a F

90 years of Camp Hillard

Summer at Ridgefield Academy

Joyfully growing hearts, minds at The Children’s School

• Instructional Swim •

choice of workshops, such as soccer with the New York Red Bulls soccer program, musical theater, coding, movie making, lacrosse, cooking, robotics, 3D design and printing are just a few of the many offerings available for this age group. Contact Donna Kauth at (203)294-1800, ext. 106, or dkauth@ridgefieldacademy. org. Visit summer-programs for more.


•Boys and girls ages 3-4 •Half or full day programs •Experienced pre-school staff •Dedicated pre-school pool •Best camper: staff ratio



MARCH 9, 2018


has the potential to be a defining moment Our Pre-K through Grade 9 academic program is deliberately designed to bring out the unique personal strengths of every child. Our students progress naturally and confidently from day to day and year to year — prepared, grounded, joyful and emboldened. Because what a child experiences, understands and feels today shapes what he or she will become.


Parent Talk: The Foundational Years


Early Childhood Discovery Fair


Early Childhood Close-Up

at Pound Ridge Library

at New Canaan Country School

at New Canaan Country School

Parents of toddlers and preschoolers are invited to learn how to prepare for Kindergarten and beyond

Toddlers, preschoolers and their parents are invited for a morning of hands-on exploration & fun

Parents are invited to see a day in the life of our Early Childhood program

For more information or to register: 635 Frogtown Rd, New Canaan, CT • (203) 972-0771 • • A co-ed, independent day school for students in Pre-K (ages 3 & 4) through Grade 9.

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Record-Review Kids! 030918  

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