Willa Walker: Helpful or Hype?

img_7459Product Review Sunday

You can start using a Willa Walker when a baby is starting to cruise around the home while holding onto your fingers or furniture, can support their own weight, and can grip the rings on their own. This usually occurs sometime after the baby is 9-months-old.

Start with the baby in a sitting position and hold the Willa Walker so that she can grip the rings. Once she has a firm grip, slowly lift the handle, so that the baby can pull herself up to a standing position.

While standing always hold the Willa Walker such that the CHILD’S ELBOWS ARE BELOW THEIR SHOULDERS. This ensures that you are not stressing their little joints. Never yank up on the WIlla Walker. Never pull up so the child’s feet leave the ground. The child should be SUPPORTING THEIR OWN WEIGHT at all times, just using the Willa Walker to help with balance.

Click here for illustrated instructions and videos to show how to use the Willa Walker.

The Willa Walker is not a toy but a simple tool made from responsibly sourced hardwood and cotton which can make that special milestone of learning to walk even more joyful. Willa Walkers are made from wood, cotton and coconut oil, that’s it.

You can purchase a Willa Walker by clicking any link above.

Cheating Lessons: Learning from Academic Dishonesty by James M Lange

img_7461Weekly Trip to the Library

Cheating Lessons: Learning from Academic Dishonesty is a book about tackling academic dishonesty at its roots. It is written for teachers, but there is good information in it that is helpful for nannies.

The most important information I found in the book for nannies is how to compliment and reward children on their accomplishments. If we compliment kids the wrong way it can turn them into liars, simply by telling them they are smart, rather than praising their hard efforts.

The author explains that we “good job” children into an state of over confidence and an over inflated sense of skill level. This leads to many negative consequences including a tendency to under study.

The ability to judge ones own level of knowledge, skill, or thought process is called meta cognition which allows kids to gauge if they are prepared or or knowledgeable on a topic. Students that are better at meta cognitive skills are better at achieving self efficacy. Self efficacy is a belief in their ability to succeed. Self efficacy is not just confidence that they will succeed or a magical thinking that they are so smart they will succeed. Self efficacy is a belief developed by experience and repeated effort on a skill or task.

Yet, adults continue to believe that if they tell children how talented and wonderful they are by throwing empty platitudes, trophies, and blue ribbons at them that they will perform better and have higher self esteem.

The very kids we want to help with this praise are students with low self esteem. But in fact, children do worse when given empty platitudes. It creates lower self esteem than if we just left them alone.

Imagine what children could do if they were praised for their hard work and diligence? They would have increased autonomy, confidence, and connection.

The best advice I learned in this book for nannies is to compliment children for their efforts, rather than for their accomplishments. Working hard is more important than the final grade they get. Allowing them to succeed and fail at their school work on their own will teach them to be confident, honest, and less likely to lie and cheat.

You can buy your own copy of Cheating Lessons: Learning from Academic Dishonesty by clicking the links above and below:

Cheating Lessons: Learning from Academic Dishonesty

Carrot Soufflé

Cooking for Kids This is an absolutely delicious carrot dish that tastes more like a dessert than a side dish. Soufflés usually are difficult to make but this is a super simple recipe. I know using vegetables as a dessert sounds crazy, but I promise you and the children will be pleasantly surprised by this […]

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Corner Bookmarks

Creative Wednesday I saved some colored envelopes my nanny kid received from birthday cards and thank you cards this year. We recycled them to make some easy corner bookmarks. I found the idea in the book 365 Art and Craft Activities. Let the kids be creative and decorate bookmarks into any animals or creatures they […]

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7 Nanny Daily Log Books

Products Nannies Love Although there are apps nannies and parents can use to communicate with one another daily, I am old-school and still prefer having a paper notebook or journal to record my nanny kids’ daily milestones in. You can make a nanny daily log simply by using a three-ring binder or folder kept in […]

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Hobbies that May Help Your Nanny Career

Your hobbies and interests may actually increase your chance of being hired as a nanny. For example, if you are a talented musician the parents might appreciate your willingness to give the children piano lessons. Here is a list of hobbies and volunteer opportunities that could help you during a nanny interview and that you […]

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Cruising Obstacle Course for Babies

Babies On the Move I am reading Scientific Secrets for Raising Kids Who Thrive by Peter M. Vishton, Professor The College of William and Mary. The professor explains that cruising begins after babies have started crawling and before they are able to walk on their own, (at about 8- to 11-months-old). When they learn to […]

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Clover Necklaces, Bracelets and Tiaras

Creative Wednesdays My Nanny Family’s yard is full of blooming clover. So I taught my nanny kids how to make clover chains. We picked blooming clovers with long stems to make jewelry. One of my nanny kids even made up her own way to make clover chains. Her video instructions are included below. Braid Chain […]

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20 + Amazon Prime Day Products for Nannies

Amazon Prime Day starts on Monday, July 16 at 3 p.m. ET and runs through Tuesday, July 17. If you are not a Amazon Prime member already, you can still shop the sale by signing up for a FREE 30 day trial of Amazon Prime. If you don’t want a future membership just cancel the […]

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Amber Teething Necklaces: Helpful or Hype?

Products Nannies Love Parenting and nanny message boards are filled will discussions about Baltic Amber Teething Necklaces.Baltic amber necklaces are made to wear but not to chew on. Baltic amber necklaces are a homeopathic treatment to help reduce teething pain. The theory is that baltic amber contains a natural analgesic, succinic acid, that can be absorbed […]

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