The Myth of the “Educational Toy” Your Holiday Survival Guide

by Stephanie Gomez Does this commercial look familiar? A mother sits happily in front of the television with her bright-eyed nine-month old sitting on her lap. The baby is pushing buttons on a colorful lap-pad placed in front of them as he giggles in delight watching his movements effect a picture on the television. The […]

In School and Life – Effort Counts!

In School and Life—Effort Counts! By Meg Luce, LMFT What are the characteristics that help children succeed in school? This is a question on many parents’ minds as this time of year rolls around. Parents want to support and motivate their kids, but often they are not sure how. This can lead to grueling homework […]

Choosing Toys: When Less is Really More

By Lindsay Dunckel, Ph.D. This time of year, parents are inundated with advertisements and catalogs showing toys full of pizzazz—toys that light up, talk, even interact. Micro chips are everywhere, and children today can have a roomful of toys that entertain them, wondrous things that we parents never even dreamed of in our childhood. Imagine […]

Nurturing Thankfulness in Children

By Meg Luce, LMFT Most parents want to give their children the moon. They work hard to provide their kids with a good life, and they don’t want them to feel deprived. Plus, it’s so fun to see children light up with joy when receiving a new toy or gadget. On the other hand,  sometimes […]

Children and Digital Media

Parenting: I Get a Little Help from My Friends

by Lindsay Dunckel, PhD Nobody ever said parenting was easy. Now that I’m 17 years into the journey, I fully understand why. Okay, maybe it was years ago that it dawned on me. Don’t get me wrong – it’s a job I love and sometimes it is filled with joys that no other aspects of […]

More information about Step Up 2014

Step Up to Kindergarten is a FREE program to help get children ready for the big step into school – this year’s program begins on Wednesday, June 25 and runs for three weeks, through Wednesday, July 16. Our classes will be held in classrooms at Bell Hill School Scotten School Ready Springs School Deer Creek […]

Readiness Skills for Starting Kindergarten

Is your child going to be 5 years old by October 2? If so, time for you to register him for Kindergarten! You can find information about kindergarten registration in western Nevada County here and for Truckee here. Children enter Kindergarten with a whole range of skills – no two will be the same. Don’t […]

The Joy of Small Town Living

by Lindsay Dunckel, Ph.D. I grew up in a city and lived in several others before settling in Grass Valley. I wondered what it would be like living in a small town, what challenges it would bring, what different kinds of joys. I’ve been here almost 11 years now, working for First 5 for almost […]

Building Your Child’s Vocabulary

Building Your Child’s Vocabulary   All parents want their child to do well in school. One way to help your child is to help them build their vocabulary. Beginning readers use knowledge about words to help them make sense of what they’re reading. The more words a reader knows, the more they are able to […]