Family Time: Bridging the communication gap between school and home

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

Tip of the Week

As your kids settle into the school year, you may find that dealing with your child's education can sometimes be a bit unsettling.

"The reality is that teachers have so many students and so many constraints that they simply cannot give an adequate amount of attention to communicating home to the child's parents," says Dr. Mike Papadimitriou, headmaster for the Academy of Science in Conroe, Texas.

"The best way to keep abreast of what's going on at school is to get involved," says Dr. Marv Abrams, an adjunct educational professor for Argosy University, Orange County and an educational professional with 20 years teaching and 14 years administrator experience. "Whether your child is young enough for you to volunteer in the classroom or whether you join the good old PTA, you're gaining access to knowledge that can be very useful for staying in tune with your child's education."

When your child faces trouble, socially or academically, staying neutral is the key. "Parents can lose objectivity when it comes to their children. Nobody is perfect - the goal should be to focus on the problem at hand and correcting the situation, not on identifying blame with either the child or the school," Papadimitriou says.


Family Screening Room

“The Social Network”

Rated: PG-13 (for sexual content, drug and alcohol use and language)

Length: 121 minutes

Synopsis: On a fall night in 2003, Harvard undergrad and computer programming genius Mark Zuckerberg sits down at his computer and heatedly begins working on a new idea. In a fury of blogging and programming, what begins in his dorm room soon becomes a global social network and a revolution in communication. A mere six years and 500 million friends later, Zuckerberg is the youngest billionaire in history ... but for this entrepreneur, success leads to both personal and legal complications.

Violence/scary rating: 2

Sexual-content rating: 4

Profanity rating: 3.5

Drugs/alcohol rating: 4

Family Time rating: 3.5. This is on the upper side of the PG-13 rating, so it’s probably more of an older-teen movie.

(Ratings are judged on a five-point scale, with 5 being “bad for kids” and 1 being “fine for kids.”)

Book Report

The Graveyard Book,” by Neil Gaiman

Ages: 9 and older

Pages: 320

Synopsis: Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy.  He would be completely normal if he didn't live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will come under attack from the man Jack — who has already killed Bod's family. Magical, terrifying and filled with breathtaking adventures, “The Graveyard Book” is sure to enthrall readers of all ages.

Did You Know

Experts at the Johns Hopkins Children's Center in Baltimore say that the flu vaccine shouldn’t be skipped because it has egg product in it.

GateHouse News Service