Category: Parenting

Stress-Free Holidays – It’s a Happy Goal!
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Stress-Free Holidays – It’s a Happy Goal!

Dreaming of a stress-free December? So are we! Adults often think the holiday season is stressful but it can be equally as emotionally charged for children. The flurry of activities, changes in routine, forced interactions, uncomfortable “dress-up” clothes, too many sweets or too many new foods, so many tempting toys… This list could be as...

Lawnmower, Helicopter and Hovering Parents – Oh, My!
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Lawnmower, Helicopter and Hovering Parents – Oh, My!

It’s never easy reading definitions of terms like “Helicopter Parent” or “Lawnmower Parent” and realize, “Oh, my gosh – that describes me to a tee!” Once the cartoon lightbulbs clear from above your head during one of a million parenting AHA moments yet to come, it’s important not to beat yourself up. Instead, remind yourself...

Painfully Shy – A Mother’s Story
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Painfully Shy – A Mother’s Story

Twenty years ago when my daughter was in pre-school and kindergarten, her teachers repeatedly told us that her severe shyness was “an issue.” This pattern continued throughout her school years. No teacher, doctor or counselor ever mentioned pediatric occupational therapy, (at which point, I had no idea existed nor would I have known how an...

Parenting Strategies to Help Children Fight Fears and Overcome Anxiety
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Parenting Strategies to Help Children Fight Fears and Overcome Anxiety

One of the key components of therapy provided at Amy Zier and Associates is parent-inclusion. We have always believed that the work we do as pediatric occupational therapists must include the caregiver(s) of the child. Throughout our years working with Chicago families, parent involvement continues to yield excellent results. We are fascinated by the results...

When Failure is a Gift: The Key to Building Resilient Children
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When Failure is a Gift: The Key to Building Resilient Children

No one like to see their children fail. It’s our nature to protect kiddos from unpleasantness, so we’re quick to soften blows and bust out the emotional bubble wrap in order to protect their self-esteem. But what if we have it all wrong? According to a recent article by Mandie Shean, protecting children from failure...

Left, Right or Both? Brain Development Explained
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Left, Right or Both? Brain Development Explained

As occupational therapists and parents, brain development in early childhood fascinates us. Watching children interact with others, their environment, processes and playtime teaches us more than any textbook ever could. Will they grow to be a logical, results-driven adult (left-brained) or will they become a creative, intuitive thinker; one who is more interested in the...

Coping Skills for Stressed Out Gen Z and Gen Alpha Kids
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Coping Skills for Stressed Out Gen Z and Gen Alpha Kids

A recent article in Psychology Today states that Gen Z need coping skills for cultural and historical stressors. Before we go on, how many of you have ever Googled what generation you or your kids fall in? Full admission, we had to before writing this post. There are so many, it’s hard to keep them...

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The Greatest Gift for Kids is Your Presence

An unexpected gift idea for your kids and yourself this holiday season is to find time to do nothing, expectation and judgment free. Security, trust and deep connection is formed when you spend time being unafraid of being your authentic selves. Mindful parenting sometimes requires tuning out the world and allowing your child to be...

Come On Already! Take the Stress Out of Transitions – Big and Small
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Come On Already! Take the Stress Out of Transitions – Big and Small

Parenting, big picture is a difficult job. Yes, it is the most rewarding job you’ll ever have but let’s be honest – there are a lot of moving pieces! Whether you have preschoolers or high-schoolers, times of transition offer big challenges; a new school year, making new friends, the loss of a family member, moving...