...inspire their best!

Mary's e-news e-news #61: Awareness Creates Change!
Awareness starts by being attentive, alert, responsive and responsible for how we purposely, mindfully, positively, and respectfully guide children’s learning and behaviour. e-news #60: A Listening Heart
The greatest gift we can give to a child is a listening heart! e-news #59: Mentoring & Coaching: 1:1 Professional Development
One to One Mentoring is an effective tool to support your centre in providing the highest quality learning experiences for children in the community. Mentoring is a supportive and responsive professional relationship that is intended to increase a teacher’s professional effectiveness in the classroom. e-news #58: Teaching with Passion!
Keeping up the enthusiasm of the new year is always a challenge. We get caught up in all the to-dos and forget to be mindfully present to witness the wonder of learning through the eyes of young children – even as old as 12! e-news #57: Setting the Stage for Success, Part 1
Do I view an outburst from a child as defiant, disrespectful or naughty? Or, do I see it as an emotion exploding in the body and they are still learning how to self regulate? e-news #56: The Big Connect!
Understanding what drives children's emotional outbursts is the first step in supporting children's mental health and building emotional healthy classrooms. e-news #55: Smart Moves!
Brain-based learning and neuro-science proves what teachers have always known: children require lots of movement and enjoy activities that involve the senses. e-news #54: Puzzle Solvers!
I like to think that teaching children is like one big jigsaw puzzle. Every child is unique, has a pattern, is needed to complete the picture. e-news #53: A Mindful Mindset
Being mindful of how we interpret behaviour, respond to behaviour, shape behaviour, will create the environment where children will be more relaxed, more joyful and have higher self esteem and resiliency skills. enews #52: The Essence of Learning: A Child’s Perspective
When parents and teachers take the time to reflect, step back, pause and review from the lens of a child that is when the true essence of learning begins. enews#51: Enhancing Children's Well-Being!
All children (and adults) have difficulty staying in charge of their emotions. However, with “self regulation” techniques we can assist children to learn how to deal with their feelings and enhance their wellbeing. e-news #50: Shared Understanding: How Learning Happens!
One of the best feelings in the whole world is seeing a child smile from the inside-out when you have had a deep, meaningful connection! e-news #49: Being Intentional
Whether you are a parent or teacher: Teaching is ... Thoughtful, Informed, and Deliberate. It is not about saying at a particular part of the day I will intentionally ‘teach' children something. It is about being intentional about what we provide across the whole day. e-News #48: How Does Learning Happen? Powerful Interactions!
INTERACTION: a mutual or reciprocal action or influence It’s about connection, relationships, contact and communication. e-news #47: Engaging Children's Learning!
Understanding how a child learns provides direction to on how to effectively connect children in active, creative and meaningful exploration and is key to activating their capacities and potential! e-news #46: Belonging + Well-Being = Learning!
Every day moments are rich opportunities to encourage a child’s development and build self esteem, thinking and communication skills, social and emotional well-being and the capacity for self regulation. e-news #45: Foundations for Learning
Finally, it seems we have found our true direction in the Early Childhood field. We have an amazing treasure in the two Government of Ontario documents: How Does Learning Happen and Think, Feel and Act. e-news #44: The Spirit of Learning
September’s transition from summer to fall seems to gear us up for a New Year of awaking the vast potential in each and every child! It seems to motivate us to find new ways of opening up a child’s mind and heart to learning. e-news #43: The Influence Factor!
Ever stop to think how influential you are--especially with children? A smile, the way your eyes light up when they come into the room, a “way to go bud” word of encouragement; e-news #42: In Pursuit of Nature!
Research tells us that physical activity makes us feel good – especially children. Physical activity releases endorphins, relaxes the body, opens up brain connections for learning, builds self esteem and positive attitudes! e-news #41: The Power of Perspective!
Perspective-taking is a life lesson... some of us are good at it already, some have been taught well and some of us are still learning it. enews #40: The Learning Brain!
The research and science of Early Childhood are continually confirming that multi-sensory, child-centred, play-based learning create learning capacities. e-news#39: Activating Potential!
In our role as parent or teacher, we all want to help a child maximize his or her potential. And we do just by the simplest acts of engagement according to the latest brain research and early childhood science! e-news#38: A Simple Gift!
Here we are again, the season on preparations. Preparing for the “day”, the season, the get-togethers, family functions, school concerts, finding the right present… e-news#37: Temper Taming, Part 2
As we spoke about last time, self-regulation is a life skill. It is the ability to identify, control, adapt, alter, and manage our behaviours. e-news #36: Temper Taming
Research tells that the ability to self-regulate does not start until a child has the capacity for meta-cognition: thinking about one’s thinking, which begins to emerge around the age of 4 years. e-news #35: Fostering Gifts!
Look to see what holds a child’s attention -- trains, legos, drama, crayons, dance, paint, writing, water, playdough, music, singing, puzzles ... All are potential gifts and talents waiting to be realized! e-news#34: The Art of Encouragement!
I am often asked in our B.E.S.T. Behaviour workshops what the difference between praise and encouragement is and how to use it effectively. e-news#33: B.E.S.T. Version
There is an old Indian proverb that speaks about us having two warring wolves within us. One is negative, mean, hurtful and the other positive, kind, generous. Which one wins depends on the one we feed. e-news#32: Still Learning
It has always been the *children who were still learning* to communicate their needs, dislikes, excitement, disappointments in effective ways that taught me I still had lots to learn about understanding children’'s development and behaviour. e-news#31: Feeling Loved!
Love is in the air! Valentine’s day and Family Day are fast approaching. e-news#30: Words Have Impact
One of my resolutions this year is to really try to capture my thoughts and words; use words that build a child’s strengths, lift up their sense of self and cheer them on when they almost get it right.. e-news#26: Optimistic Child
The Art of Positive Thinking has interested me for decades. How is it that some people see the "positive" side of things and others see the "negative"? e-news#25: Make Every Day Count
We can begin to change the world by being alert to who and what is around us, by being grateful for who is in our life and for all the blessings we have and by being kind to each other. e-news#24: Shaping the Future
I have been so excited about the steady stream of exciting brain research that now supports all that we knew instinctively. e-news#23: Tips for B.E.S.T. Behaviour
As the rest of the school year unfolds, let's keep up the "New Year Spirit" with a few reminders for creating Happy Days with Kids! e-news#22: Inspire their B.E.S.T.
We begin again! With great anticipation we are eager to put our B.E.S.T. foot forward and help children learn, grow and develop! What an awesome job, what an awesome privilege! e-news#21: Summer's Lesson = Slow Down
Slowing down gives us time to catch up with what is important -- relating, noticing, listening, tuning in, being present and in the moment with our children, our families, nature... e-news#20: Follow the Leader
As leaders in our classrooms and homes, we have an awesome privilege to guide our children to become who they were meant to be. e-news#19: Keeping Up the P.A.C.E.!
Children learn very early on in their development how to gain an adult's attention -- positively or negatively. However, they are not aware of what is “positive” or “negative” behaviours. Rather, children are shaped by our responses to their behaviour. e-news#18: Behaviour Guidance: Connect vs Correct, Part 2
Last time, we chatted about understanding the key principles behind behaviour and to remember they are still learning LIFE SKILLS. e-news#17: Behaviour Teacher vs Behaviour Manager, Part 1
In my almost 28 years in the field, I have had the privilege of working with hundreds of children and families and teachers trying to figure out the “behaviour” puzzle. e-news#16: The BEST Present ...
The BEST Present we can give, especially to a child, during the Christmas and Holiday Season is our PRESENCE: our undivided, focused attention. e-news#15: Cultivating Self-Esteem Part II
In our first article on Cultivating Self Esteem, we emphasized our need, as parents and teachers, to create an environment that children’s self esteem can grow in a positive way through our interactions with them. e-news#14: Cultivating Self-Esteem Part I
If we really want children to develop a strong sense of self-esteem, we have to start by creating an environment that is rich with opportunities that germinate trust and positive relationships; sow independence and success. (2 Part Series) e-news#13: Childhood Needs Simplicity, not Complexity
We all need to be around excited, happy, passionate people. Our children are yearning for it, they are asking: "Where is the fun in life and learning?" e-news#12: Child Behaviour is Complex!
It is very difficult to convey in a short eNews article the full breadth of care and compassion we have for the most important role in our lives – “guiding children’s behaviour.” e-news#10: Parenting Matters!
At Childlife … Solutions 4Life with Kids, we know that the parent-child relationship is THE most powerful influence on child behaviour and development. e-news#9: Children's Behaviour is like a Puzzle!
When armed with knowledge and understanding of child behaviour and development, finding the right solution to change behaviour without all the drama is the beginning to BEST behaviour and happier days. e-news #8: Early Advantage = Happy Day Mornings
Giving a child an early advantage to learning begins when we, as parents and teachers, help a child start every day off with peace, confidence and clarity.