Archive for the ‘Popular culture’ Category

Do we now understand you can’t multitask?

Tuesday, February 28th, 2017

The drama of the 89th Annual Academy Awards was not due to the actors or motion pictures being honored. The drama occurred as a result of a blunder caused by the accounting firm of PriceWaterhouseCooper. Accounting firms are not normally known for drama.

Brian Cullinan, one of the two PriceWaterhouseCoopers partners who handled the Oscar envelopes on Sunday night, was tweeting photos from backstage minutes before he handed Warren Beatty the wrong Best Picture envelope.

Multitasking caused this error. Multitasking simply doesn’t work; it just isn’t possible to do two things at once.

The most incredible part was when the accountant jumps up and says, ‘He (presenter Warren Beatty) took the wrong envelope!’ and goes running onstage.”

He took the wrong envelope? Nope. You gave him the wrong envelope.

Now, imagine all the times children need their parents attention. Parents are so often on their phones, children feel less important than the Snapchat stories parents are creating, text messages they are sending, or Facebook posts. It has become such an epidemic that a nursery school post asking parents to pay attention to their kids went viral.

What the incident at the Academy Awards demonstrated was that sometimes the effect of our inability to multitask is immediate.

What we won’t know for some time is the impact multitasking has on our children. If Cat Stevens’s lyrics hold true as written in Cat’s in the Cradle, then I’m gonna’ be like you dad, you know I’m gonna’ be like you.

Finally, how do we define irony? While mentally composing this blog post, I got on the wrong train.

 

Tina Nocera, Founder

Parental Wisdom®

What are we trying to accomplish?

Sunday, January 31st, 2016

einstein

It happened again. 

The other evening we are at a restaurant.  A family of four enters; the two little boys don’t even glance up from their cell phones as they are being seated. Shortly after orders are placed, the parents join the independent activity on their cell phones.

Yes, times are different but what hasn’t changed is the invaluable connection to the most important people in our lives.  As Einstein fears, are we at the stage where technology is surpassing human interaction?

  • How will our children learn they are part of a family that matters more than anything else?
  • How will they come to know the wonder and craziness of extended family if they don’t listen to the rich family stories?
  • How do parents teach values if children are listening to what is deemed newsworthy by popular culture?

When It Comes to Infant Language Development, Not All Toys Are Created Equal.

Parents – you are the perfect toy!

Of all the changes we would love to make in society but can’t – this one is completely in your control.

Please forgive me if I’m not impressed that your one-year-old knows how to swipe an iPad.  It would be so much better if they know how to turn the page of a book.

Have a great week!

Tina Nocera, Founder

Parental Wisdom®

He was carefully taught

Sunday, September 21st, 2014

If I had one hour to save the world, I would spend the first 55 minutes understanding the problem, and the last five minutes solving it.  

Albert Einstein

BC (before children)

The most important job in the world is also the one we are least prepared for.  It’s thrilling the first time we hear we are about to become parents, and prepare by learning as much as we can before the baby’s arrival.

AC (after children)

Because Kids Don’t Come with Manuals® we quickly understand training is on the job; very much like a reading the recipe as the pot boils over on the stove.

There is little preparation for the on the spot decisions you have to make.  The most comfortable path is to do what you know, what your parents did, because after all you turned out ok.

The national news surrounding the Adrian Peterson event moved him from anointed celebrity to condemned criminal.  Companies such as Nike and Castrol pulled major endorsement deals. The NFL was paralyzed in forming a response.

How parents should parent was a topic on news programs, along with culture, geography, and religion. It’s easy to (pardon the pun) be a Monday morning quarterback and judge the way others parent.

At the same time, there was an interesting article this week in the WSJ about a non-profit program called Parent-Child-Home which got a boost from the Robin Hood Foundation.  Funds sent literacy specialists to visit families of young children in low income areas encouraging them to read to their children and not talk ‘babyese’.

Both situations, although dramatically different, are similar in the sense that parents simply do what they learned from their own parents.

It is important to begin a national conversation on parenting.

  1. Take the time to really understand the problem rather than talking in sound bites
  2. Share research on long term impact, whether it is reading to children or corporal punishment.
    Basically educate, don’t legislate.
  3. Help parents understand they don’t have to do what has always been done, but can make choices how to parent based on their own values.

Perhaps Nike and Castrol can move the money kept back for endorsements, and in its place fund this important dialog.

In parenting, there is more than one right answer.  The advisors at Parental Wisdom® would be happy to start the conversation.

We believe in this so strongly, we patented it.

 

Thoughts?

Tina Nocera, Founder

Parental Wisdom®

Where do babies come from?

Sunday, September 7th, 2014

If you think you know, there are actually several right answers including adoption, surrogate, IVF and others.

There are usually several right answers to questions which is why I am so thrilled about the success of a collaborative work that launched on September 1st and hit #15 on Amazon in the parenting category on September 2nd.

Parents Ask, Experts Answer: Nurturing Happy, Healthy Children provides multiple answers to questions for parents of children age’s two to six.  A panel of thirty-five experts offers advice on some of the most challenging issues faced by parents:

discipline bullying behavior
sleep caregivers play
family relationships siblings separation
special needs education friendship
technology peer pressure money

The best part about this work is that you get to see all expert answers in one place (all questions have at least three expert responses) so that you, the real expert in knowing your child best, gets to choose which response fits best for your unique child and situation.

This concept is so unique it is protected by US Patents 6193518 and 6482012.

Thank you for supporting this work!

  • Please write a review if you’ve purchased and read the book
  • Share the book information with your family and friends via Facebook, Twitter, or email.

After all, it’s much easier on your relationship to suggest they read the book rather than giving advice!

Have a great week!

Tina Nocera, Founder

Parental Wisdom®

You graduated, now what?

Sunday, June 1st, 2014

“I have found the best way to give advice to your children is to find out what they want and advise them to do it.”

– Harry S. Truman 33rd President

If you are celebrating high school or college graduations this season, it probably feels like you just dropped them off at kindergarten, you blinked, and here you are.

College kids have to be pulled away from their cushy, carefree, totally unrealistic existence to the real world.  Some have secured jobs, many have not, and a very small percentage will be lucky enough to do the work they love.

High school graduates are excited about prom, parties and the pressure being off. They’ll shop for their dorm rooms, connect with their roommates, and in late August kiss their weeping parents goodbye. For these kids, it’s an escape from the endless parade of adults asking three questions since the start of their junior year:

  1.  What colleges will you apply to
  2. What major are you considering
  3. What do you want to do for the rest of your life

With more career choices than ever before, it’s difficult for anyone to figure out, let alone a 16-year-old with limited life experience.  As parents, we want our children to do what they love.

 That is a tall order, which is why I started the Project Imagine!® seminar – to help kids and parents work together to answer the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”

 There are a few good things to call out about this webinar:

  1. Since it is a webinar, you can participate from the comfort of your home
  2. It opens the dialog for an honest discussion about choices
  3. There is no single right answer, so it is not a test. Everything depends on the individual and what is important to them.
  4. The ‘homework’ involves the child asking others about what they see.  This is an eye opening and helpful discussion since the child is pleasantly surprised to hear what others (teachers, family, and friends) see as their strengths; great for their self-esteem.
  5. The best part is that it becomes a new connection between parents and kids as you explore and learn about new careers together.

We tell our kids they can do anything they want to do.  Let’s help them actually get there!

 “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? “ -Marianne Williamson

To learn about the webinar, click here

To register, click here.

 The summer is the best time for this!

 Have a great week!

Tina Nocera, Founder

Parental Wisdom®

Follow me on Twitter

 

 

 

Screen free week is here!

Saturday, May 3rd, 2014

Lost time is never found again. – Benjamin Franklin

I’m so excited!  As I previously wrote in my earlier post, Party like it’s 1914, Screen Free Week begins, and I just planned play tweets for the entire month of May.

As a reminder, Screen Free week starts this

Monday, May 5th and runs through May 11th 

In reading the bubble over the heads of my snarky friends and followers, “How do we read tweets if we’re going cold turkey?” The screen free part is family time; after all you most likely have to work!

I love the timing of this program as most families are currently involved in sports so they won’t even miss the screen time!  This is a great way to saunter into summer and set a pattern to enjoy time with each other and the great outdoors.

My prediction is that after a single week of less screen time and more family time, your stress will significantly drop and fun will dramatically increase.

Here are some guides/info to help:

Thanks to the folks from Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood for putting this together!

Hope you find this helpful at the very least, and life changing at best.

Let’s give our children back a childhood! 

Have a great week!

Tina Nocera, Founder

Parental Wisdom®

Follow me on Twitter  #justplay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Move over childhood obesity; we’ve got bigger problems

Friday, December 30th, 2011

Even though the economy isn’t cooperating with many of their career choices, the parents of young adults are confident they will find their way.

But there are many adult children not quite ready for prime time, and it doesn’t appear they will be any time soon. I use the term ‘adult children’ for those kids that have gotten older, but have not necessarily grown up.

To see if this term applies to your child, see if you recognize any of these traits:

  1. Inadequate social skills; eye contact, shaking hands, or the art of conversation
  2. Poor work ethic – they don’t get it that the first rule of business is showing up
  3. Little desire to use their education or learn anything new unless it is promoted by popular culture
  4. They lack confidence, though ironically have a sense of entitlement
  5. No sense of responsibility or accountability

It would be easy to write about the cause and how to prevent it, but I want to take on the greater challenge of how to fix adult children. 

One of the best ways to teach social skills is to model them.  A good way to do that is making family dinners together a priority without the interference of technology.  

Occasionally invite dinner guests with diverse backgrounds encouraging stimulating conversation. Get subscriptions to newspapers and magazines such as Time or Newsweek and discuss current events. Remember the intention is about building up, not tearing down, so their messy room is not a good dinner topic. 

Does your adult child have a job?  If so, don’t feed their excuses as to why this job isn’t right for them, and don’t bail them out financially.  If they want something, they have to work for it.  That includes car insurance, cell phone bills, gas money, movies, clothes, anything!  Explain there is a difference between finding your passion and paying your bills.  

Doing something well and feeling confident is a great way to boost self-esteem.  It could be a hobby or volunteer work, which would put them on the giving end for a change.

One of our roles as parents is to have our children contribute first to the household, and then to society. Identify household jobs and hold them accountable to do them.  The vast majority of people would like to live in a clean home.  If your child is the cause of the mess, take several very large, black heavy duty garbage bags, load up and toss.  You should only have to do that once.

Though adult children need to take ownership of their lives, they still might need your help in getting there, no different than if your child was ill.  It’s challenging, but hang in there. 

For those of you with younger children, begin with the end in mind, best illustrated by a wonderful Jesse Jackson quote;

“Your children need your presence more than your presents.”

Have a safe, healthy and Happy New Year!

Tina Nocera, Founder

Parental Wisdom®

Yes, you can be replaced

Sunday, March 13th, 2011

Mother Nature has a very strange way of harming and protecting us at the same time.  The devastating earthquake in Japan stole the headlines from Charlie Sheen.

I fought my instincts to  give Mr. Sheen additional undeserved attention, but the magazine covers on the supermarket checkout line beckoned me to state an opinion.

Interesting that Mr. Sheen felt irreplaceable, which relates to a recent NY Times article by David Brooks on our overwhelming overconfidence.

Healthy self-esteem is a good thing to have, but we can’t all be ‘A’ players, students, workers, dancers, singers, etc. and we all certainly can’t be the winners we believe we are.  The majority of people are average; hence the concept of average.

Cheer for your basketball player, applaud for your dancer, give confidence to your student, but more importantly, encourage them to be better for their sake of their own continuous improvement.

“The cemeteries of the world are full of indispensable men.”

–        Charles de Gaulle

As you know, your families are the only people who find you irreplaceable.

Perfect Example of a Missed Opportunity

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

madd

In a less than courageous move, the South Plainfield NJ Board of Education reversed a decision by school administrators to ban from the graduation ceremony a group of students who came drunk to the prom. Students signed a pledge to arrive at their prom alcohol-free but at least some came “visibly inebriated,” a spokesperson said.

The students’ parents protested the ruling and threatened to take the issue to the state commissioner of education. The board then reversed the decision.

I don’t blame the Board of Education for not having a backbone, though it is obvious. I blame the parents for not having the wisdom teach their children a life lesson so valuable it could actually save their lives.

The question a parent should always ask is, “what is the worst that could happen?” For parents of the students that had the nerve to come to the prom drunk might actually cause them to learn about consequences.

Let’s focus instead on the majority of the students in South Plainfield High who deserve to enjoy this wonderful milestone despite this minority of the student population creating such a distraction.

Kudos to the teachers who are fed up with a system that caves to loud parents who don’t seem to know any better.

This could be urban legend, but the following is supposedly the answering machine message the Pacific Palisades High School (CA) staff voted to record on their school answering machine system. This came about because the school implemented a policy requiring parents to be responsible for their children’s absences and missing homework. The school and teachers are being sued by parents who want their children’s failing grades changed to passing grades even though those children were absent 15 to 30 times during the semester and did not complete enough school work to pass their classes.

“Hello! You have reached the automated answering service of your school. In order to assist you in connecting to the right staff member, please listen to all your options before making a selection:
To lie about why your child is absent, press 1
□ To make excuses for why your child did not do his work, press 2
□ To complain about what we do, press 3
□ To swear at staff members, press 4
□ To ask why you didn’t get information that was already enclosed in your newsletter and several flyers mailed to you, press 5
□ If you want us to raise your child, press 6
□ If you want to reach out and touch, slap, or hit someone, press 7
□ To request another teacher for the third time this year, press 8
□ To complain about bus transportation, press 9
□ To complain about school lunches, press 0
□ If you realize this is the real world and your child must be accountable and responsible for his/her own behavior, class work, and homework, and that it’s not the teachers’ fault for your child’s lack of effort…hang up and have a nice day!”

We have a bill of rights. We need a bill of responsibilities. -Bill Maher

Exerpted from Because Kids Don’t Come with Manuals®:Contemporary Advice for Parents by Tina Nocera

What do you think about this issue?

Are You Not Entertained?

Saturday, June 13th, 2009

gladiator

Standing on the checkout line at the supermarket I can’t help but wonder…what if aliens landed here in search for intelligent life and turned to the media? They would see a civilization poised to watch the ups and downs in scrutizing detail of other people’s lives.

This reminds me of that great scene in Gladiator where Russell Crowe (who looked amazing by the way) turned to the crowd after killing his tenth consecutive opponent and cried out, “Are you not entertained?”

Why are we fascinated with the lives of other people, especially the challenges they go through. I don’t get reality TV, especially why you would let someone else with a camera crew of a dozen people into the privacy of your home and your life? Our words do not match our actions. Ask people what is most important to them and they will immediately reply, “My family!” Ok, so then why would you put them on display? For what purpose?

Sorry folks, but you will never see my family’s reality show, and I won’t be watching theirs. I’m making the choice to focus on living our best life.