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Parent Power Campaigning for Change

<a href="/blogs/felicitymoore/2013/08/28/parent-power-campaigning-for-change">Parent Power Campaigning for Change</a>

It is true: decisions are made by those who show up. But where to show up? I’m a busy mum of three kids, and I work. I’m on the P&C at my children’s school and give as much time as I can, but that’s such a small part of the bigger picture. Where do I show up to make a difference on issues such as junk food advertising to kids? Or food labelling that is easy to understand? Or making sure every kid is immunised? Where do I show up to make the most difference on the issues that matter to me? Read full article

Are Your Children Over-Scheduled?

<a href="/blogs/yvettevignando/2013/08/28/are-your-children-over-scheduled">Are Your Children Over-Scheduled?</a>

Do you feel stressed keeping up with your children's after-school activities? Is there a chance they might be "over-scheduled"? A quick video to make parents consider whether their kids have too many commitments outside school. And there's no connection between a child's 'success' and the number of these activities. Read full article

Drive to Win – When Children Learn Competitive Behaviour

<a href="/articles/drive-to-win-%E2%80%93-when-children-learn-competitive-behaviour">Drive to Win – When Children Learn Competitive Behaviour</a>

Parents have a range of feelings about competitive behaviour in their children. But when and how do children learn about competition and how much of it is learned behaviour? It is often written that“Children are not born with a competitive urge. They learn it.” Children may well learn competitive behaviour from watching others, and be encouraged by adults, but it appears that the ‘will to win’ does not usually develop before the age of four. Read full article

Junk Food Linked to Young Children’s Mental Health Problems

<a href="/articles/junk-food-linked-to-young-children%E2%80%99s-mental-health-problems">Junk Food Linked to Young Children’s Mental Health Problems</a>

Researchers at Deakin University recently published research linking poor diet in pregnant women and in their young children, with children’s higher levels of behavioural and emotional problems. The investigators studied the diets of over 23,000 pregnant women and their children, and concluded after a five year follow-up, that early exposure to what is commonly known as ‘junk food’, increases the risk of poor mental health. Read full article

Conference on Children and the Media: Media, Minds and Neuroscience

<a href="/blogs/yvettevignando/2013/08/20/conference-on-children-and-the-media-media-minds-and-neuroscience">Conference on Children and the Media: Media, Minds and Neuroscience</a>

This conference is a joint venture between the Children and Families Research Centre at Macquarie and the Australian Council on Children and the Media. It focuses on the impact of children’s media environment on their neural development. Read full article

Not Sure About Your Child Using Social Media? This Mum is Okay With It.

<a href="/blogs/lanahirschowitz/2013/08/20/not-sure-about-your-child-using-social-media-this-mum-is-okay-with-">Not Sure About Your Child Using Social Media? This Mum is Okay With It.</a>

One of the favourite memories from my teenage years was coming home at 16 years old to find that my mother had arranged to have my very own phone line installed INTO MY BEDROOM. I can picture my room and the hideous beige/yellow colour of the phone taking up half my desk. (seriously what was it with the colours they used for phones in the 1980’s?), I can feel the huge rush of excitement I felt at my new found freedom and independence and now, as a mother I can almost imagine how thrilled my mother was at my excitement. Read full article

New Research Finds that Children Sleep Less if Media Devices Are In The Bedroom

<a href="/articles/new-research-finds-that-children-sleep-less-if-media-devices-are-in-the-bedroom">New Research Finds that Children Sleep Less if Media Devices Are In The Bedroom</a>

We know from previous research reported on happychild that use of technology devices can negatively impact the sleep of teenagers. This new research from Finland studied an even younger population of school-aged children and concluded that computer use, television viewing, and the presence of media in children’s bedrooms may reduce the amount of time children are sleeping, and delay bedtimes. And they found gender differences–among boys, having a television and a computer in the bedroom predicted poorer sleep habits and irregularity of sleep habits. Read full article

Missing the Moments– Feeling Sentimental As Children Grow Up

<a href="/blogs/benisonoreilly/2013/08/05/missing-the-moments%E2%80%93-feeling-sentimental-as-children-grow-up">Missing the Moments– Feeling Sentimental As Children Grow Up</a>

A couple of months ago I attended a performance of Joanna Murray-Smith’s new play, Fury. At one stage the central female character, Alice, comments that it’s often best we don’t know when it’s the last occasion of anything. I can’t remember her exact words, but I do remember the example she quoted: the last time her (now rebellious) teenage son and only child had shared a bed with his mum and dad in the morning. As parents we know this particular ‘last time’ must come for a whole variety of reasons, but I can’t help looking back on those (now past) years of morning cuddles with a twinge of sadness. Read full article

Social Media for Under-Age Children Can Lead to Unnecessary Social Harm

<a href="/blogs/leoniesmith/2013/08/04/social-media-for-under-age-children-can-lead-to-unnecessary-social-harm">Social Media for Under-Age Children Can Lead to Unnecessary Social Harm</a>

There's a video doing the rounds on Facebook – an educational video teaching children how to protect their personal information online. While I do think parents and kids should watch it, as a cyber safety specialist, I have a few concerns, particularly with the message I was left with–that it's ok for a 10-year- old to be on a social media site like Facebook as long as they do it safely. The problem with this harm minimisation approach is this: Read full article

Teens–Accept the Dad Friend Request and Improve Your Relationship

<a href="/articles/teens%E2%80%93accept-the-dad-friend-request-and-improve-your-relationship">Teens–Accept the Dad Friend Request and Improve Your Relationship</a>

We know that traditional media can be an integral part of family life – watching television together, sharing the paper on a Sunday, having the radio on in the background – but less is known about what happens when families connect using new forms of media, like Facebook and Twitter. Researchers from Brigham Young University in Utah, United States, recently looked at outcomes when adolescents network with their parents on social media. The conclusion? Stronger feelings of connection, leading to more positive outcomes for the adolescent. Read full article