Multitasking Mothers

For Mothers Who Do Everything!

Understanding What You Read

When a parent is trying to figure out if their child is understanding what is being read to them or what they are reading on their own, it can be frustrating.  Every child is different and I have learned this from my own children. My first child understands concepts super fast due to his wild imagination and love of sci-fi.  My second child is a concrete learner and calls himself an engineer of Legos.  My daughter, I am still trying to figure out her interests.  The key is to figure out what they like and what they wouldn’t mind talking about.  Here is what steps are needed to figure out if a book is age appropriate and a good check on reading comprehension levels.

  1. Ask Questions about the story that may seem to be unclear.
  2. If there are any words that may be hard to understand, tell your child to stop and ask you.
  3. At the end of the story ask your child what the main idea of the story is.
  4. Finally, ask them to predict what will happen next.

These steps are similar to what the teacher will be asking your child or activities that will be happening in the classroom. Parents- please feel free to add comments to this topic on what helps you if needed!  I will accept and appreciate any feedback 🙂  Until next time…

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Baby Education

Hello Mothers,

When you are new to motherhood, it is hard to comprehend that a baby at the age of two weeks is also learning.  Remember, everything that you show your child starting at birth, even when they are in your bellies, starts the learning process instantly.  The speed that they are learning is super fast from age birth to three.  Some tips for educating newborns:

  • Let them get familiar with your face and any other family members’ faces that they are around
  • Talk to them while you are changing their diapers or feeding them
  • Read to them
  • Show them some black and white pictures to strengthen their eyes

Here is a link to a free pdf document of these pictures.

Enjoy and rest as much as you can!!



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Establishing Routines

Hi mothers,

Are you finding that you are having a hard time with kids getting back in the flow of the school routine?  It was hard for me too.  Then I remembered, that all summer long, they had a different routine and for kids to learn a new one can be tough.  Here are some tips to reminding the children about their morning and evening routines:

  • Try to create a routine chart with or without pictures.
  • Do a separate one for mornings and evenings.
  • Ask the children what should the routine be and make sure you have their buy in.
  • Keep questioning them when they fall off the routine on what should be happening or what comes next.  Don’t tell them what they need to do.  Ask them, for example (What should you be doing now?  What comes next? What is wrong with the picture?  etc.)  Those types of questions will leave the answers open ended and a lot of thinking on their part.

Remember don’t worry about rewards or threatening with timeouts.  That is just an endless cycle of torture on both the parent and child.  Just give them choices you can live with and make them stick to it with lots of love:)  Also, keep going back to the chart as many times as needed.

Good Luck!

Also, feel free to comment on what works or doesn’t for you and your family.

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Can Parents Multitask?

I keep hearing research about multitasking not being a real option for people, but what is the true definition of multitasking?  Well, multitasking originally comes from the technical world.  In Webopedia it is defined as, the ability to execute more than one task at the same time, a task being a program.

Human multitasking is the apparent performance by an individual of handling more than one task at the same time.  Lately there are many studies that say that multitasking is not possible for people to do tasks without mistakes.  Studies also say that tasks are tough to complete when multitasking is done.

My question is, if parents don’t multitask, how do they ever get anything else done in life? I agree that in reality you cannot focus on two tasks in detail at the same time, but maybe we should redefine multitasking.  If the true definition of multitasking (computer multitasking) is taken under consideration, we can apply that to our lives.  How about if we consider our lives to be multiple programs/processes that run at once?  For example, when I come home from work, here is what I end up doing:

Putting all the things from the day back in place (purse, laptop, lunchbox, shoes)-40%

Telling the children to put their things in the right places and assisting them to get started with homework (backpacks, lunchboxes, etc.)-25%

Put a snack on the table where they also do their homework- 25%

Other distractions (fighting, nagging, crying)-10%


While children are doing their homework monitor them and help them- 30% (depending on the ease of homework)

Fixing dinner- 60% (washing, cutting, cleaning, cooking)

Other distractions (same as above)- 10%

Seems familiar to you?  Do you multitask as a parent?  Heck ya, I do!!  Do my tasks/programs/processes get done?  Homework is done, dinner is fixed, distractions are either ignored, solved by themselves, or taken care of with a hug and kiss.  So, done, done and done! All this is complete in 2 hours.

So here is my definition of multitasking: focusing on different tasks individually at first, but to have those processes ongoing simultaneously once those tasks have been identified or learned.

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Positive Discipline-If in doubt give some love

Hello  Parents!

I have been following some Positive Discipline sessions and the overall aspect of the course has been to show your kids that you love them. There is a way to be assertive, yet loving. Sometimes as parents, we get wrapped in our lives but forget about the tiny souls that we are raising.  Hug them and remind them that you love them!  Try it when they are grouchy, whiny, sleepy, and at their brattiest moment!  Yes, even when you are frustrated and tired.  It just changes the perspective of both parent and child.

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Summer 2- Educational Worksheets

I have many parents that ask me about what type of suggestions I have for summer education. I like to keep my children busy with physical activities, but do agree to some form of worksheets.

It’s tough to dig through all the free worksheets online to find the right fit for your child. Plus chances are that if you are at home, tutoring services can get pricey.

I personally like workbooks. The ones that have worked for me are Spectrum, Kumon, Evan Moor, and Sylvan.  I usually buy a variety of subjects and tell my children to complete a worksheet per workbook prior to any TV or video games.  This motivates them to get done faster:)  So far this has worked for me and hope it does the same for you!

Tips on choosing the right workbook:

1. Make sure the workbooks are easy to follow.  I find that Kumon workbooks are the best in this category.

2. Make sure the workbooks are not overwhelming and something they have already learned.  Remember, most of us are not teachers.  The purpose of these workbooks is to increase speed and accuracy.

3. Choose a workbook that is age/grade appropriate. Warning: Spectrum seems to be a bit advanced so be aware!

4. Make the workbook sessions quick and a good experience.  Be kind and assertive on the emphasis of doing them.  Rewards and punishments should not be needed.  Just emphasize on the skill and how they are getting stronger and ready for the school year.

5. Make it a routine.  If it is not a routine, they will not expect it.

Please feel free to comment with any questions or concerns!

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Summer Part 1

During the summer, it is tough to keep the children busy and their minds active.  If they are in daycares, usually there are summer programs that are available for them to participate in. However, what about those who are at home?  In my situation the children are at the grandparent’s home and pretty much are sitting in front of the TV.

Granted, that some shows are educational and the children do get exposure to the world through what they watch, but it is not enough.  In today’s social environment, we don’t know our community and neighbors since most people are busy in their own lives and working most of the time.  So it is tough to let the children just roam around in the neighborhood.

So then how do they learn and get to explore. Here are some survival tips:

  • Go outside for nature walks.
  • Do some planting inside the home in pots and then in the garden.
  • Have them do chores around the house that they can manage.  Pulling weeds from the garden, clearing the dishwasher, putting up the toys are just some examples.
  • Teach them a lesson about healthy choices when going grocery shopping.  Introduce them to better snack choices without hydrogenated oils and high fructose.
  • Help them organize the closet and teach them how to sort their stuff.

Good luck and please feel free to comment so that I can edit the blog accordingly.



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Minimizing the Nagging

Can you recall the moment that you realized how you have inherited the same old habits as your parents?  Well, I realized this a while back, but habits are hard to change and nagging tends to be one of them.  The morning routine of did you brush your teeth yet, did you take your vitamins, etc…  gets tiring and overwhelming. I don’t know about you but nagging can be annoying for both the children and me. So I have been on a mission to minimize the nagging.

Here are some tips:

Have clear expectations and a consistent schedule

Morning Routine (what is needed to get out of the house)

  • Getting Dressed, Brushing Teeth, Eating Breakfast, and Grabbing your bags

Afternoon Routine (what is needed to get prepared for the next day)

  • Cleaning out your bags, Getting papers signed, Doing homework, Preparing lunch for the next day

Evening Routine (what is needed to get to bed and preparation for the next day)

  • Brush teeth and bathe, put on pajamas, and set out school clothes.

Have them clean up after themselves

Throughout the day children need to clean up after themselves and put items back where they belong.

  • Tip 1: Try to encourage your child that if things are out of place, those items go timeout.  This includes toys, electronic devices, etc.

Other Tips

  • Give the child a time estimate to complete their tasks.  I find that I am in the kitchen most of the time and use the microwave timer for that purpose.
  • Encouragement and Incentives help as well.  It helps when you say after you are done you can do free play.  Other ways to encourage them is through chore incentives. Now some of you are wondering how do you find the time in the day to do all these things.  For me its easy, we remove the biggest time consuming culprit, the TV.  Note: this is only done on school nights.

Good luck!  As a parent, I find that the dynamics constantly change and it gets challenging for us to stay strong.  Remind yourself that you are doing a great job!


Celebrating with Your Children

Remember that little things do count.  It is our job as parents to make a loving and caring environment. On every occasion, we can take the opportunity to create traditions to provide lasting memories. The traditions do not have to be extravagant.  If you are going to create traditions for each occasion, remember to do something that you can handle and continue every year.  These should be family traditions that you enjoy and wouldn’t regret afterward for over-committing yourself. Here are some examples:

  • New Years Day: During lunch or dinner time, you can discuss what you are thankful for and then you can go around and talk about what accomplishments you plan for the year.
  • Valentines Day: Be the first person to give your child a valentines card. You can throw some goodies in as well.  This year I gave my children a notebook, a pen, and a stencil.
  • Easter: Do a little egg hunt.  If your focus on the child is more toward supplemental education, then do an educational hunt with a theme.  Include hints that build upon your child’s critical thinking skills.  The same focus can be given to religious theme.
  • Thanksgiving: With all the craziness of preparing and family members being around, don’t forget to be thankful and teach children about being thankful and giving. Donate some time to a local church for a food drive.  Children will learn from parents and see a living example.

As a parent, we provided so many opportunities to create a loving and memory full of an awesome childhood.  Make each day count and enjoy seeing your family grow!



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The Just Right Book

Choosing a book that is just right is real difficult for parents to find for their children.  There have been countless times when I have seen parents who chose an over complicated book.  In fact, they have a hard time even bringing the child to pay attention and end up either giving up or summarizing the pages.  There isn’t anything wrong with summarizing pages, especially if you or the child is getting tired, but as long as the book wasn’t forced on the child.  Remember, now is the time to make an impression on the child and make reading enjoyable.

Here are some quick tips on how to help your child find the right book.

  • When a child is younger than age 3, they always judge a book by its cover.  They are looking for something colorful, and the illustrations have to be of interest, for example trucks, princesses, etc.  Let them make the choices and try to look for short books with around 5-10 words per page.
  • As the child enters the 3-5 age range, they should be able to handle more words.  They begin to understand simple concepts.   The books should still stay short, but the words on each page can be more like 10-15 words. These books should also start having simple concepts or a short story.
  • After the age of 5, teachers play a bigger role on reading development and the child is learning how to read. Their interests may vary.  They may like to look at a book that is larger than they can read, if it has pictures. Librarians can also direct the children to their appropriate level of reading.  If the child is just starting to read, they would be at the pre-reading, 1 or A level.  If your child is a more advanced reader, they can read more advanced books depending on their reading level.

As your child gets older, you will notice that it is more difficult to choose a book for them.  I have found that if I make a rule that they have to choose 2 books that they are comfortable with and two that are outside of what they normally read.  For example, if they only choose Ninja type books, encourage them to choose a different fiction or non fiction book.

Other than the tips above, it is so important to make reading enjoyable.  Don’t make it a chore or a punishment.  Keep books around the house, the car and let them carry them in their backpacks. Have fun in encouraging your child to be a reader!

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