Can Video Games Make You Smarter?
Some surprising research on gaming to consider and debate
From The Online Mom
With all the awful press that video games get, a surprising twist has recently shown up in the media: video games might just make you smarter. What's the evidence? Well, there's some tantalizing recently-published research on videogaming and intelligence. Let's take a look...
Stay Safer on Summer Adventures
With summer's warmer weather and sunshine, your family is finding reasons to leave the house that was a cozy retreat all winter. As your family spends more time outside, take some time to remind your kids of ways to stay safer away from home:
- Teach your kids to ask you before leaving home and to stay with a friend whenever they're playing outside or walking anywhere.
- Talk to your children about how to locate help at theme parks, sports stadiums, shopping malls, and other public places. Identify those people who are safe to ask for help, such as law enforcement, security guards, and store clerks with name tags. Make it a point to practice each time you take a trip; quiz your children on the things they should look for.
- Teach your children that if anyone tries to grab them, they should make a scene and make every effort to get away by kicking, screaming, and resisting. Set up role-play situations at home to practice.
- Take a trip to the neighborhood playground. While there, check to make sure all the equipment is well-maintained, and talk to your children about how to play safely.
For resources on a variety of important safety topics, visit PTA.org's "Child Safety Events: How to Get Involved" page. Learn how to take action on the topics most relevant to your family.
PTA Radio discusses 'sexting'
On the latest edition of PTA Radio, be sure to listen to an eye-opening discussion on "sexting," a startling phenomenon popular among adolescents and teens. Also:
- Hear from James Notter, Superintendent of Broward County Public Schools in Florida, as he shares his district's excitement surrounding the upcoming PTA Family Expo.
- Listen to PTA President-Elect Chuck Saylors as he explores male involvement and the PTA MORE Alliance with our director of membership and field operations, Michael Knowles.
Picture PTA Is Back!
Get your cameras ready for the 4th Annual Picture PTA Photo Contest
Picture PTA offers all adults a chance to show off activities and events in their homes, schools, and communities and exercise their creativity. Graduation, end-of-schoolyear events, picnics, and other outdoor fun are just around the corner. Take advantage of these picture-perfect moments to preserve your experiences and try to win gift cards and recognition.
The contest opens May 20 and runs through June 30. Details are available at PTA.org/PicturePTA. Enter for your chance to win a $50 gift card and national acknowledgment online and in PTA publications.
Show Your Support —
Submit an 'I am PTA' Video or Essay
Help PTA show the world what a dynamic, diverse, and inclusive organization you belong to. You can get in on this exciting new project by submitting an "I am PTA" video or essay. Your entry could be used in a video montage shown at the 2009 national convention or in any of PTA's print or online media. Deadline is June 8.
Read more to find out how to participate.
Make a Father's Day Commitment
Join National Center for Fathering in push for male involvement
The National Center for Fathering and its WATCH D.O.G.S. program, a founding member of PTA MORE (Men Organized to Raise Engagement), are asking dads to make a commitment to meet the needs of their children by loving, coaching, and being a good role model. In addition, fathers are asked to encourage children they know without fathers and encourage other dads to make similar commitments.
To join the 2009 Father's Day team, go to PTA.org/MORE and sign up using the National Center for Fathering widget.
- Time To Act, a program from The Partnership for a Drug-Free America, has produced a tool for parents that offers step-by-step, expert advice to help them understand drug and alcohol use. The site offers tools to assist parents in confronting a child, setting boundaries, and seeking outside help. The site is located at http://timetoact.drugfree.org.
- The Children's National Medical Center in Washington DC produces the Emergency Medical Services for Children (ESMC) National Resource Center, a resource for parents or caregivers interested in becoming involved in activities designed to improve the health care children receive in an emergency situation. The resource is at www.childrensnational.org/EMSC/ForFamilies/.
100 Ways to Help Your Child and School Succeed
There are many ways that you can help your child succeed! A few small activities each week will pay huge dividends over the course of the year. Here are a few that you can do this week:
- Coordinate and participate in evening and weekend volunteer activities at school. — Coordine y participe en actividades que se llevan a cabo en la escuela durante la tarde y los fines de semana.
- Attend training and orientation on how to be an effective volunteer. — Brinde asistencia a la capacitación y orientación sobre cómo ser un voluntario eficaz.
PTA In the News