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Routines help manage time, and they build character and confidence in children and young adults. Daily routines help your child understand the importance of time management. Children function best when routines are consistent, but not too regimented and rigid. Here are some ways to introduce some routines into every part of the day.

Morning Routines
Mornings have a tendency to be hectic and frantic if not well organized. We have all been there - one hundred things to do, with an ever-shrinking window of time in which to do them. During the weekdays, children should wake up at a predetermined time. This time should allow for all the things that need to be done before heading off to school, such as getting dressed, eating breakfast, packing lunches and gathering school supplies.

After School

When children get home from school and their other extracurricular activities, this is the perfect time to relax, have a snack and perhaps squeeze in some play-time before homework and dinnertime. After-school time should be structured in a way that gives children some time to decompress and get some fun in before hitting the books. Your child has been hard at work at school all day and could use some freedom. The amount of homework your child has should determine the length of time he or she has for relaxing. If your child is in Kumon, make sure to include Kumon assignments in the evening schedule. After your child has had a chance to unwind, study time should be scheduled for the same period each night.

Dinnertime
It is widely understood that dinner should be held at the same time each night. Children who eat evening meals with the family regularly show improvement in many areas. Dinner conversation improves vocabulary and social skills in young children and gives the whole family a chance to share the news of the day. The act of coming together as a family each night also fosters a healthy respect for the family unit that your children will carry on for years to come.

Bedtime
Getting ready for the next day before bed can help calm the occasional panic-filled mornings. Setting out outfits to wear and packing up school supplies the night before can help shave valuable minutes off the morning rush. If possible, deciding on what to pack for lunch the next day will also help manageability.

Consistent routines will increase performance in school, ease anxiety and set limits and boundaries for children and young teens. A little planning will go a long way. Building successful routines will help create a foundation for success every day.

 
 
Today's Tuesday Tip explains the importance of Math and What Do Mathematicians Do?

A mathematician, like a painter or poet, is a maker of patterns. If his patterns are more permanent than theirs, it is because they are made with ideas.
--- G. K. Hardy (from A Mathematician's Apology, London 1941)

What Do Mathematicians Do?
Mathematicians are often asked by friends, family, colleagues in other fields, and strangers: "What do mathematicians do?" Mathematicians make it possible to send secure emails and buy things online. Mathematicians are essential to analyze data and design accurate models in fields as diverse as biology and finance. Because of the prevalence of the computer at work and at play, mathematicians will continue to touch everyone in modern society.

Many people are familiar with mathematicians in academia, but mathematicians also work in many other fields, including:
  • Astronomy and space exploration
  • Climate study
  • Medicine
  • National security
  • Robotics
  • Animated films
A career in Mathematics can be fun as well as rewarding. The American Mathematical Society explains which jobs require a college math degree, how to choose a university, and how to find financial aid. The American Mathematical Society also includes links to career information from other mathematical professional organizations.
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In today's Tuesday Tip we have linked to a great article that provides some Tips to Help Children Develop Strong Reading Habits. Reading is an important skill that needs to be developed in children.  The more children read, the better they become at reading. It's as simple as that. The more enjoyable the things they read are, the more they'll stick with them and develop the reading skills that they'll need to reach their true potential. The more young children are read to, the greater their interest in mastering reading. Reading out loud exposes children to proper grammar and phrasing. It enhances the development of their spoken language skills, their ability to express themselves verbally.

Reading, by way of books, magazines or websites, exposes children to new vocabulary. Even when they don't understand every new word, they absorb something from the context that may deepen their understanding of it the next time the word is encountered. When parents read aloud to children, the children also hear correct pronunciation as they see the words on the page, even if they can't yet read the words on their own. The list below are five great reasons why reading is important!

  1. Reading help children develop vital language skills
  2. Reading can open up new worlds and enrich children's lives.
  3. Reading can enhance children's social skills.
  4. Reading can improve hand-eye coordination.
  5. Reading can provide children with plenty of good, clean fun!

There are so many ways in which reading continues to be both a vital skill for children to master, and an important source of knowledge and pleasure that can last a lifetime. Nurture it in your children. Make the most of all the resources that are available and waiting for you: printed books, online books, magazines and the internet. Encourage follow-up activities involving creative writing skills and the arts, as well, so that your children can reflect upon or expand on what they've absorbed and, at the same time, develop their own creativity. As you help your childrens appreciate the magic of reading, you'll find that there's a whole wonderful world full of children's literature out there that YOU can enjoy too.

 
 
_November is a time for reflection and giving thanks. As the holidays approach, we continue our series of helpful articles for parents with a special emphasis on gratitude. Visit our Facebook page to benefit from our weekly parenting column, share your stories and to join the ongoing conversation.

Here are the articles you can look forward to reading on our blog and on Facebook in November:

·         The Art of the Thank-You Note--The handwritten letter is a dying art form. As we encourage our Facebook fans to show gratitude in the month of November, this article will be a guide to writing good letters and thank-you notes. We will outline what makes a good letter and give parents tips on how to teach their children to write and appreciate letters.

·         Rituals of Gratitude--Rituals, such as holiday traditions or weekly outings, provide a foundation for family identity. This article will provide tips for making gratitude and reflection a fun and meaningful family habit.

·         How to Thank a Teacher--There are more ways to thank teachers along with entering them in the Kumon Thank a Teacher Contest. In this article, we’ll offer up ways that parents can support their children’s teachers at various stages: elementary, middle and high school. We will interview teachers and include their tips in the article.

·         Tips from the Study Smart Sweepstakes--This article gathers together the best study tips from the Study Smart Sweepstakes to help keep parents inspired as homework increases and the hectic schedule of the holidays approaches.

Also, thank you to all who entered the “Smart Study Tips” contest. Your study tips have inspired the entire Kumon community.

We also hope to see your participation in the conversations on Facebook and Twitter throughout the month.