Posts from: May 2014

Six Ways to Support Your Child’s Social Emotional Growth

As parents, we are constantly second-guessing ourselves about the decisions we make surrounding our children.  Did I handle that tantrum right?  What activities should I sign my child up for?  Am I over-scheduling my child?  How do I best prepare my child for school?  Did I choose the right school?  Is my child growing up to be a good person?  When these things are always on our minds, it is hard to gauge our own self-worth and determine if we are doing a “good” job as a parent.  That is o...

Posted on May 30, 2014 at 8:00 AM by Marjorie Hill

Why I Love Being a South Loop Mom

I grew up on the city’s north side and honestly never imagined I would be living nor raising my two children in the South Loop.  Yet here we are, just south of Roosevelt Road on a tree-lined street that almost feels suburban until I look north and see the Chicago skyline.  And now I can’t imagine any other neighborhood feeling so right for my family.  I’m almost hesitant to share why I love it so much because family life in the South Loop seems to be one of the city’s best kept secrets. 
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Posted on May 28, 2014 at 8:00 AM by Didi Lewis

Elementary School & Beyond

Just because your child(ren) started school, doesn't mean you necessarily have all of the answers. For over 34 years, NPN has been helping Chicago families connect with the resources they need to navigate city parenting, primarily focusing on pregnancy through preschool aged kids. However, we recognize that there are so many more questions and so many more trusted resources that NPN can provide as kids get a little older.

As the parent of a Kindergartener (with my second one only a yea...

Posted on May 23, 2014 at 5:00 AM by Melanie Schlachter

Poison Ivy Prep

Summer is around the corner and our children are finally able to get outside after a brutal winter.  However, they may now be exposed to many different plants that can cause rashes that itch and burn.  

One of the most common plants that children are exposed to is Toxicodendron radicans,  commonly known as poison ivy. We have all heard the saying “leaves of three, let it be!”  Poison ivy is a woody vine with leaves in groups of three (with the center leaf being the longest).  The plant...

Posted on May 22, 2014 at 8:00 AM by Emily Rubenstein

Being a West Loop/Little Italy Mom

After living in the western suburbs my entire life, my husband finally convinced me to make the move to Chicago -- I am so thankful. I love living and raising my family in Chicago. After five years in the West Loop, we moved a few blocks away to Little Italy in 2009 and started our family. Although these neighborhoods are right next door to each other, the community feel is vastly different - each offers so much uniqueness.

What do I love about my neighborhoods?!? Let's start with the...

Posted on May 19, 2014 at 8:00 AM by Carolyn Sabzali

Summertime School Prep

With summer appearing on the horizon, it is easy to put thoughts of school on the back burner.  With lots of new experiences, people and surroundings coming this fall as your child enters a new school, take advantage of this time to prepare yourself and your child for the coming transitions.


Pass by your child’s new school so the building and surroundings become familiar.

If you can, meet the teacher.  Even just using the teacher or school’s name positively helps your child f...

Posted on May 15, 2014 at 9:00 AM by GEMS World Academy Chicago

Keeping Children Engaged During the Summer

Those lazy days of summer are right around the corner. How do parents keep their children mentally engaged and physically active until their return to school in the fall?

How you engage your child and keep her/him motivated will depend on your child’s age. Vital to this process is going with the interests of your child. This requires some parental reflection. Think about your child. What does your child like to do? What excites your child? What does your child want to know more about? ...

Posted on May 14, 2014 at 8:00 AM by Jane Nolan

Perks! Up to $100 off Lincoln Park Theatre Camp

Compass Creative Dramatics Wizard of Oz Summer Theatre Camp, an unforgettable one-week experience for 1st-12th graders, brings together the excitement of mounting a fully-staged musical production (sets! costumes! props!) of The Wizard of Oz with theatre games and activities that stretch kids' creativity and bravery muscles. Two professional actor / educators work alongside the students, leading by example on stage, helping your camper shine. NPN members get $100 off. Scroll below for deta...

Posted on May 13, 2014 at 6:11 AM by Cathlyn Melvin

How to get an honest response from your kids

You walk into the kitchen to find an open bag of cookies on the counter and your child with chocolate on their face. You ask, “Did you eat the cookies?” Of course, the response is, “No.”  And you just wish for an honest answer. How often does this happen, whether in interactions with your child, a co-worker, or the used car dealer? Here are a few strategies to increase the likelihood of getting an honest response.

1. Do not ask a question that you already know the answer to. Lying is a...

Posted on May 09, 2014 at 8:00 AM by Paulette Janus

Five Tips for New Moms

As a doula (Jocelyn) and a lactation consultant and therapist (Peggy), we’ve worked with hundreds of women as they have become new moms.  Here are our top 5 tips for making the shift to motherhood as smooth as possible:

1.     Blaze your own path.  Once you have a baby, it seems everyone has an opinion about parenting.  “Let him cry it out.” “Never let him cry.” “Go back to work.” “Don’t leave your baby.”  Rather than becoming overwhelmed by the often contradictory advice, try instead ...

Posted on May 07, 2014 at 8:00 AM by Jocelyn Alt