Interaction Weekly
Sep. 18, 2013

There's no Saskaboom on the childcare front
The StarPhoenix
Saskatchewan has one of the highest workforce participation rates in Canada among women with children five years of age and younger, but at the moment our province simply does not have enough childcare spaces to meet the demand of a growing population of working parents. Saskatchewan may be No. 1 or 2 in Canada in job growth, but it has the dubious distinction of being last in Canada when it comes to the number of licensed childcare spaces.More

Daycare in funding fight with Toronto over full-day kindergarten
Toronto Star
Toronto Children's Services is withholding a $75,000 grant for an "infant room" at Children's Circle until the daycare tells parents to send their kids to school-based care. The city expects the daycare to stop escorting kids to and from school by 2015. "After they were awarded the grant, Children's Circle decided it wanted to build the infant room and continue to escort. That was contrary to the criteria," said Children's Services general manager Elaine Baxter-Trahair.More

EPS find grow-op in babysitters' care home
CBC News
A husband and wife have been charged with running a grow-op out of their home, which was also being used as a care home for several young children. A coordinated team of EPS and RCMP officers searched the property in southwest Edmonton last week, finding 17 hydroponic marijuana plants and a small amount of processed marijuana and cannabis.More

Raising kids today a tighter squeeze
Windsor Star
My hat goes off to all hardworking parents, past and present. They raise kids with love, joy, sacrifice and frustration. My parents did. Still, the facts show that families raising young kids today are squeezed for time, income and services to a degree that is more constraining than a generation ago. Surprisingly, the Fraser Institute alleged otherwise recently, claiming "It's never been easier, financially, to raise children in Canada."More

The lessons of full-day kindergarten
Winnipeg Free Press
Thousands of parents, practitioners, experts and policy people contributed to the report, With Our Best Future in Mind, tabled four years ago, laying out how Ontario should move to full-day kindergarten. Even the most optimistic among us could not have anticipated the remarkable results of the McMaster and Queen's universities' research released recently.More

Professors convince elementary schools to go 'back to basics'
National Post
University of Winnipeg math professor Anna Stokke and two of her colleagues knew there was "a huge problem," when they started hearing about Manitoba grade school students not being taught how to do vertical addition, carry or borrow numbers, or knowing their times tables. The group is now seeing the fruit of its efforts this fall, as Manitoba rolls out a "back to basics," revised curriculum for kindergarten to grade eight.More

Catching up with France on day care
The New York Times
Pretty much from the moment I got pregnant, neighbours and friends began urging me to apply for a spot in one of France's state-run day care centres. I'd just smile politely. I figured this was another of those foreign habits — like eating horse meat — that I'd observe from a respectful distance. I couldn't fathom government employees changing my baby's diapers. And I couldn't really fathom day care in general. Didn't it cause attachment issues, or worse? I planned to hire a nanny. More

Attention coaches, parents: Minor hockey is for the children
Toronto Sun
Minor hockey can become a social outing for parents. It is a social outing for children. It should never be about who is going for extra power skating and who is going straight from Mites to the Maple Leafs but about building that kind of environment, building memories for kids and parents and families that they'll have forever. Sometimes, when I stand around the arenas I can't believe the tone of the conversations I hear. Not enough people use the word fun and not enough sell it that way either.More

Creating a successful after school routine for kids
The homework, the activities, the bustling schedule — sometimes school days can feel like utter chaos. With only a few hours to juggle multiple tasks after the last bell rings, it's easy for both parents and kids to feel rushed and stressed. But experts believe creating a positive after school routine can support learning and development. A predictable after school schedule can reduce stress and promote a feeling of stability for your children while encouraging individual responsibility. More

Why September is dangerous for children with asthma
Global News
September can be a hazard for children with asthma, prompting some to call it the 'September spike.' "Every September, a week after the children go back to school there is a spike in hospital admissions related to asthma," explains Dr. Mark Anselmo, the Alberta Children's Hospital Section Chief of Respiratory Medicines. The trend was first identified by McMaster University researchers in the mid 2000s, and is attributed to a combination of triggers.More

Police cracking down on parents who leave children in cars
CBC News
Edmonton police say they are cracking down on parents and guardians who leave their children alone in vehicles. "We've had a rather large increase in calls with regards to children left alone in vehicles," said Sergeant Gary Willits with the Child At Risk Response Team. Willits said EPS currently average about one call per day about a child left alone in a vehicle, up from the four to five calls per week EPS more typically received in the past.More

Do kids need vitamins?
North Shore News
In today's over-scheduled and packaged-food world, some parents provide their children with a daily multivitamin as an "insurance policy" for proper growth, brain development and energy metabolism. But are these chewy, brightly coloured treats needed? A 2012 paper issued by Health Canada states that the diets of most Canadian children provide adequate vitamins and minerals with the exception of calcium and vitamin D. More