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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz County
Helping Others
March 17, 2011
from the Editor
Project Homeless Connect
Suki's Blog: Face that Book with a Smile
4 Steps for Teaching Your Baby to Write
This Week
Welcome to the Santa Cruz Jazz Festival
Click to view our Business Directory
  from the Editor

(Holidays) StPats_happyandshamrocks.jpgIf you're of Irish heritage, this is your day!  If you're not, go ahead, have a Reuben sandwich and a green drink!  Happy St. Patrick's Day!

In the midst of our busy lives raising a family, going to work and getting children to and from school and classes comes news of far-away disasters.  We want to help and so most of us send a little money through Red Cross.  Closer to home are people who need help also.  While their circumstances may not be so dramatic as those caught in a hurricane, earthquake or tsunami, they often find themselves in a seemingly bottomless pit of desperation. 

We see the homeless and wonder how to help.  We know that handing out dollars does not offer a true "hand up".  We know that when we teach our children skills they thrive with the increased independence.  We know our children appreciate us when we empathize with their frustrations and show them options for change.    Project Homeless Connect applies these same principles.  Initially a San Francisco project, it has gone national.  Project Homeless Connect offers positive, concrete services to those in need, and an opportunity to us to make a difference with a few hours of our time.  This is a great way for teens to experience the joy of giving of themselves.  Read how you can participate below.

Heads up if you have children, love a parade, and would enjoy a children's festival  --everything free!  The first annual Parade and Fun Fair welcomes groups to participate in the parade and organizations to operate a fun/informative/educational booth.  To participate in this fun family-friendly event, call Child and Family Development Programs at 724-3885.

Have a great weekend, Parmalee

  Project Homeless Connect

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Volunteer to be a part of this important event: Tuesday, March 22, 10am-4pm
Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium, 307 Church Street, Santa Cruz

"Project Homeless Connect is a one-day community wide event that provides housing support and quality of life services to our homeless community. It is estimated that Santa Cruz County is home to at least 4,624 homeless individuals. Many of these individuals are homeless for the first time in their life.


Widespread foreclosures, the demands of returning veterans, and the reduction of federal funding for affordable housing are creating constant challenges in a declining economy. While the overall number of homeless in Santa Cruz County is decreasing, the number of families and individuals experiencing homelessness for the first time is increasing. These individuals are unfamiliar with the services the community has to offer and are ashamed of their need. Recognizing the changing demographics of our homeless population, local service providers understood the need for increased outreach and accessibility of services.


In order to provide an integrated system of care Project Homeless Connect focuses on each aspect of homelessness, providing everything from California identification and disability benefits to clean socks and a warm meal. Hundreds of individuals, corporations, nonprofits, and government agencies provide PHC and its clients with services such as dental care, eyeglasses, family support, food, HIV testing, housing, hygiene products, medical care, mental health services, substance abuse treatment, SSI benefits, legal advice, California identification cards, voice mail, employment counseling, job placement, wheelchair repair, veterinary services, and more."

  Suki's Blog: Face that Book with a Smile

(Site Photos) SukiRedHead_138.jpgI just finished reading The Shallows: What the Internet is doing to our brains. It's a much more subtle read than the title might imply. He's not actually saying that my brain has been taken over by Facebook. He's only implying it.

Or something like that. I've been having trouble with my short-term recall these days...

But seriously, I use Facebook for business purposes only. I am completely serious here... sort of: I have been using Facebook to publicize my writing. (Hey, sign up here if you're on Facebook, too!) And I have found it an amazingly friendly tool for getting notifications from groups I want to hear from, such as the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood and Gifted Homeschoolers Forum.

For a long time, I felt very guilt-free when my son would say, "Facebook again?" upon glancing at my screen and I'd say, "I'm working!"

Then the Midlanders got to me. >>>>>>>>>>>>>

  4 Steps for Teaching Your Baby to Write

By Dr. Richard Gentry
Adapted from his new book, "Raising Confident Readers"


(Site Photos) ReadingtoBaby_Dad.jpgLots of parents read aloud to their baby and toddler, but few take the next step: encouraging early writing. Did you know that babies can draw pictures (prewriting) and create narratives at between 2 and 3 years of age? A young child who is stimulated with targeted activities early and often can be writing and illustrating complex stories by age 4 or 5.

Why does this matter? Because studies show that when reading and writing is taught to children starting at birth, their neural pathways develop in different ways. They are more intelligent, have a 32-million-word advantage by kindergarten over children who did not get this exposure, and are less likely to develop learning problems such as dyslexia.


Over 30 years as an early childhood literacy, reading, and writing specialist, I have developed fun and simple activities parents can do with their babies and young children that help them develop writers' brains. They can be summed up in four easy-to-remember words in the acronym READ.


Repetition. Joyful repeated readings of favorite books are a hallmark of early reading and writing success. Long after you are exhausted rereading these favorite books, your baby or toddler will thrill in reading them over and over again. Babies love repetition, which encourages him to mimic the words and babble sounds -- early language responses. Over time, this mimicking behavior turns into higher-order concepts and understandings, and eventually memory "reading." Babies also mimic feelings during book sharing. If you read with feeling, it encourages your baby to have positive associations with reading.

(Site Photos) ReadingtoBaby_Mom.jpgEnthusiasm. Many experts agree that talking to your child and having frequent read-alouds, surrounded by talk about books during book sharing, are the most important brain-stimulation activities in parenting. You are activating her social, hearing, emotional, and linguistic systems all at once. The other E's in this step are Enticement, Exploration, Engagement, and Explosion. By enticing your child with fun reading activities, exploring new books, and engaging her in the process, her vocabulary, knowledge, and love of learning will explode. From birth to age 6 is when your baby's brain has the greatest ability to establish language proficiency.


Attention. When you read or write with your child, you are constantly making decisions about how to direct his attention. Since reading and writing are complex, at various times you must focus his attention to the many different aspects of language, reading, writing, or spelling. You are switching off between attention to sounds, meaning, rhythm or musicality of (Site Photos) BabyWriting.jpglanguage, expression, feelings, letter naming, and letter formation, to name a few. The key is to do a variety of targeted reading and writing activities with your child that are appropriate and fun for his phase of development.

Drawing. Your child might be ready to scribble on paper long before you think she's able. Early scribbling is the precursor to early writing. With early marking and scribbling, she is showing an internal desire to communicate, joy in expressing ideas, and the urge to make meaning. Experts agree that drawing almost always opens the gate to early literacy. There are lots of fun and easy activities you can do with your toddler or preschooler to help her be an early writer.
* * *

J. Richard Gentry PhD is the author of Raising Confident Readers: How to Teach Your Child to Read and Write -- from Baby to Age 7 (Da Capo / Perseus, jrichardgentry.com), which is chock-full of reading and writing development tips and activities you can do with your baby and young child. Dr. Gentry is a nationally acclaimed expert on childhood literacy, reading, and spelling development, with more than 30 years of experience working with beginning readers. A former university professor and elementary school teacher, he is currently an educational consultant in Florida.

  This Week

Event CalendarBelow is only a partial list of upcoming events and activities so be sure to click on our EVENT CALENDAR so you do not miss anything >>

Use the PARENT PLANNER to click on events and resources you are interested in and click PRINT MY PLANNER to print or email your list.

Class/Camp Calendar | Movie Showtimes

 

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School

Corner

 

 

 

Kirby 9-12 Open House 3/22

 

Aptos Academy Pre-8 Evening Open House 3/23

 

Santa Cruz Montessori Pre-8 Parent-Child Co-educational Collaboration 3/4-4/15

 

Waldorf K-8, Parenting Boys and Girls 3/25-26

 

Waldorf School 1-6 Waldorf Alive! A Walk Through the Grades 3/29

 

Pacific Coast Charter School K-12 Open House 3/29

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Art Supplies

 

Office Supplies

 

Art Classes

 

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Hearts of Artichoke & Fresh Spinach Lasagna with Demi-Baugette

 

A tasty vegetarian delight! Feta cheese combines well in this lasagna with fresh spinach and tender artichoke hearts with a topping of mozzarella cheese.

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YUM! ORDER HERE

Free Delivery to your kitchen!

429.1390

 

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(Event Calendar Logos) Seymour_MarchMembership.jpgMarch 1 - April 3

 

March Membership Madness!

 

Seymour Center

 

Members special...
20% off all items
in the Ocean Discovery Shop

 

books, games, toys, household items, jewelry, and so much more that will capture the imagination of ocean lovers of all ages

 

NEW members, you'll receive a 25% off coupon for one special item* in the shop.

 

Don't miss this great opportunity to join now.

 

It's our way of saying THANK YOU to our most valuable friends and supporters-our MEMBERS!

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 Welcome to the Santa Cruz Jazz Festival

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Founded in 1984, the SCJF is an annual event that brings middle schools, high schools and college bands from throughout the western United States to the seaside vacation paradise of Santa Cruz County, California for a long weekend of sun, surf & jazz.

Hosting 66 big bands, 22 jazz combos and 16 vocal jazz ensembles for two days and two nights of top-notch clinics and musical performances on 6 stages, the SCJF maintains a hometown feel while serving up professional level jazz to fans from throughout the central coast of California.


We are excited to showcase on the Friday Night Concert our local woodwind virtuoso, Paul Contos as one of our guest artists this year. Paul has played all over the world and with some of the big names in today's music. Besides being a great musician he is also a fine jazz educator. You can check more information on him in the Guest Artist link. He has worked with the Monterey Youth Jazz band for the last decade. The other featured artist on the Friday Night Concert is Vertical Voices. It will be a show not to be missed.

The festival is proud to present two evening concerts after the conclusion of daytime events and both are open to festival participants as well as the general public. A festival button is required for admission to all events.

7 PM Friday Concert, Mar. 18 will feature GUEST ARTISTS Vertical Voices and Saxophonist, Paul Contos with the Cabrillo Jazz Band.

7 PM Saturday Concert, Mar. 19 COMMAND PERFORMANCE will feature the best groups from daytime events in an encore performance.

More information

Helping Our Children Help Others
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