Startup Companies See Montessori As Entrepreneurship Education

A recent article in ChicagoInno looked at two different startup company founders, Jake Nickell, founder of Threadless, and Charles Adler, co-founder of Kickstarter, who are parents of Montessori children, and how they value Montessori as Entrepreneurship Education.

“You have the ability to work by yourself, or you’re going to be working with peers and you’re going to have to be a leader, you’re going to have to be a follower. A lot of entrepreneurial parents say…they appreciate their kids having that kind of experience at school.”

They also enjoy how students in older grades create businesses that have ranged from setting up a washing service for the schools’ linens (they use cloth napkins and placemats), to selling keychains and trinkets they designed and printed on the school’s 3D printer, to selling basil before school. Students create a business plan, manage a bank account, and decide how to spend funds. They gave their staff additional training in these methods, and recently opened a new wing with space devoted to STEM projects (to foster tinkering trial and error) and the performing arts (to inspire confidence).

“People who end up choosing to be entrepreneurs have a lot of curiosity and do things in their own way,” Nickell said. “As a student of Montessori you’re in control of your own education, but there are still guard rails around it all. Teachers are sure you’re doing the work around the room, but you’re doing it at your own pace…My daughter makes her lesson plan for the day.”

Read the entire article here.

Screen time for children

Meet Naima Nahid, a seven year-old. A first grader, she already takes selfies everyday, uploads them on Facebook (she has a Facebook account), gives about a dozen of check-ins in a month and enjoys playing video games on her mother’s tablet. “Without these, life would be boring and unimaginable,” she says.

Many parents, like those of Naima’s, don’t find anything wrong with it, oblivious of the harmful effects of too much screen time, often being hooked on screens themselves.

So for example, if your child is crying and seeking your attention, you are simply handing him your iPad. Steve Jobs, former CEO and figurehead of the company that developed iPad once said when he was asked whether his own children loved Apple’s iPad – “They haven’t used it. We limit how much technology our kids use at home.”

Steve Jobs was of course not the only parent who had to deal with such issues. Shahana Huda, who works in the field of media and communication, has a granddaughter, Nayantara, who is around 3 years old. She also struggles with the issue of limiting screen time. Nayantara, for example, often plays games on her iPad. …Read the entire article here

Nutrition & Health News for Families

Water Safety

Take Steps to Stay Safe Around Water

Follow these safety tips from the Red Cross whenever you are in, on or around water.

Take Steps to Stay Safe Around Water

Make Water Safety Your Priority

  • Swim in designated areas supervised by lifeguards.
  • Always swim with a buddy; do not allow anyone to swim alone. Even at a public pool or a lifeguarded beach, use the buddy system!
  • Ensure that everyone in the family learns to swim well. Enroll in age-appropriate Red Cross water orientation and Learn-to-Swim courses.
  • Never leave a young child unattended near water and do not trust a child’s life to another child; teach children to always ask permission to go near water.
  • Have young children or inexperienced swimmers wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets around water, but do not rely on life jackets alone.
  • Establish rules for your family and enforce them without fail. For example, set limits based on each person’s ability, do not let anyone play around drains and suction fittings, and do not allow swimmers to hyperventilate before swimming under water or have breath-holding contests.
  • Even if you do not plan on swimming, be cautious around natural bodies of water including ocean shoreline, rivers and lakes. Cold temperatures, currents and underwater hazards can make a fall into these bodies of water dangerous.
  • If you go boating, wear a life jacket! Most boating fatalities occur from drowning.
  • Avoid alcohol use. Alcohol impairs judgment, balance and coordination; affects swimming and diving skills; and reduces the body’s ability to stay warm.

Prevent Unsupervised Access to the Water

  • Install and use barriers around your home pool or hot tub. Safety covers and pool alarms should be added as additional layers of protection.
  • Ensure that pool barriers enclose the entire pool area, are at least 4-feet high with gates that are self-closing, self-latching and open outward, and away from the pool. The latch should be high enough to be out of a small child’s reach.
  • If you have an above-ground or inflatable pool, remove access ladders and secure the safety cover whenever the pool is not in use.
  • Remove any structures that provide access to the pool, such as outdoor furniture, climbable trees, decorative walls and playground equipment.
  • Keep toys that are not in use away from the pool and out of sight. Toys can attract young children to the pool.

Maintain Constant Supervision

  • Actively supervise kids whenever around the water—even if lifeguards are present. Do not just drop your kids off at the public pool or leave them at the beach—designate a responsible adult to supervise.
  • Always stay within arm’s reach of young children and avoid distractions when supervising children around water.

Know What to Do in an Emergency

  • If a child is missing, check the water first. Seconds count in preventing death or disability.
  • Know how and when to call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number.
  • If you own a home pool or hot tub, have appropriate equipment, such as reaching or throwing equipment, a cell phone, life jackets and a first aid kit.
  • Enroll in Red Cross home pool safety, water safety, first aid and CPR/AED courses to learn how to prevent and respond to emergencies.



Frozen Yogurt Covered Blueberries

1 (6oz) Container of fresh blueberries
1 (6oz) container nonfat blueberry Greek yogurt. NOTE: I have also used honey, vanilla and strawberry.


  1. Start by washing your blueberries and lining a small baking sheet with parchment or wax paper.
  2. Using a toothpick, dip each blueberry into the Greek yogurt and swirl until the blueberry is nicely coated with yogurt. Place on baking sheet. Continue this until all blueberries are coated.
  3. Place baking sheet into freezer, and let freeze for at least an hour.

After about an hour, your Frozen Yogurt Covered Blueberries can be placed in a zip-lock baggie and stored in the freezer.

Nutrition & Health News for Families

Children are more prone to dehydration than adults

In a study, kids who were given just 1 cup of water before visual and memory tests, scored better and had longer attention spans than kids who didn’t drink water.

Children dehydrate much faster than adults. Always keep water, Gatorade or other fluids on hand while outdoors and traveling.

Children are more prone to dehydration than adults

Symptoms of Dehydration

Weakness & Fatigue
Problems Focusing & Concentrating
Impatience & Irritability
Headaches or Migraines
Brain Fog & Clouded Thinking
Short-Term Memory Loss
Trouble Articulating
Cold Hands & Feet
Anxiety & Depression



Spring Wrap

Hummus (2 Tbsp)
Fat Free Feta Cheese (1 oz)
Roasted Red Peppers (1 oz)
Low Carb Wrap

Directions: Spread hummus on tortilla. Press feta crumbles into hummus and put roasted peppers on top. Roll up and enjoy. Add a slice of turkey or other meat to make it a balanced meal. Delicious!

Bonus: Children love to help put this together!