Reading is Cool

A few days ago, Howie shared a site called
Let me set the record straight… I am NOT emotionally prepared for the little giant to be considered “hot”. =)

That being said, I love the fact that his face lights up and he literally dances whenever I mention that we’ll be going to Borders, Prologue, or Kinokuniya. In his book, reading is cool.

Build Your Child’s Reading Skills This Summer!

Looking for ways to get your child to read when school’s not in session? iVillage has partnered with PBS Parents to bring you a free, four-week reading challenge that will help you make reading a fun, easy part of everyday life for your kids.  Sign up today and starting on Monday, July 5, you’ll get daily ideas to help you turn everyday activities with your kids into adventures that build reading skills.

What I really like about the site is that it also includes great reading guides:

Kid’s guide to reading fun
Great books for kids of all ages
10 ways to grow a bookworm

What are you waiting for?  Sign up and get reading!

Michael Jordan on Failure

I really love the message that Michael Jordan is saying in this ad — “I’ve failed over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed.”

One of my biggest challenges as a mom is getting my 6-year old to take mistakes or defeat as a learning experience and not a personal failure.    Teaching him to read bigger words usually ends in tears of frustration and sobbed-out phrases like “I can’t do it.  It’s so hard. ”   Saying “try and try until you succeed” will only get you so far until it become too repetitive and ignored.

I’ve always wondered how other parents nurture their kids.   How do you teach them to be competitive yet sportsmanlike?  How do you teach them that losing is not the end of the world?

Aug 15: Free Parenting Seminar with Queena Lee, Randell Tiongson & Francis Kong


Today’s Issues on Academic Excellence, Values Formation & Education Funding

A parenting seminar that talks about parenting issues on: Academic Excellence, Values Formation & Education Funding.

Date: Saturday, August 15, 2009
Time: 1:00pm – 5:00pm
Location: Eastwood Cinema
City/Town: Quezon City, Philippines


to register, please go to

school talk poster

What is School For?

A month ago,  Seth Godin posted a very interesting question:  What is School For? 

Here is his starter list:

  1. Become an informed citizen
  2. Be able to read for pleasure
  3. Be trained in the rudimentary skills necessary for employment
  4. Do well on standardized tests
  5. Homogenize society, at least a bit
  6. Pasteurize out the dangerous ideas
  7. Give kids something to do while parents work
  8. Teach future citizens how to conform
  9. Teach future consumers how to desire
  10.  Build a social fabric
  11. Create leaders who help us compete on a world stage
  12. Generate future scientists who will advance medicine and technology
  13. Learn for the sake of learning
  14. Help people become interesting and productive
  15. Defang the proletariat
  16. Establish a floor below which a typical person is unlikely to fall
  17. Find and celebrate prodigies, geniuses and the gifted
  18. Make sure kids learn to exercise, eat right and avoid common health problems
  19. Teach future citizens to obey authority
  20. Teach future employees to do the same
  21. Increase appreciation for art and culture
  22. Teach creativity and problem solving
  23. Minimize public spelling mistakes
  24. Increase emotional intelligence
  25. Decrease crime by teaching civics and ethics
  26. Increase understanding of a life well lived
  27. Make sure the sports teams have enough players

It is by no means exhaustive but provides starting points for very interesting conversations amongst parents and educators,  particularly when searching for that “perfect” primary or secondary school.   I personally would hate to place my son in a school whose principles were heavily skewed towards #4-8, at the expense of #2 & 22. 

Related post: Are Schools Educating Our Children Out of Their Creativity?


Motherhood has a very humanizing effect. Everything gets reduced to essentials. ~Meryl Streep

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Midweek Reading & Freebies

 Here are some great articles from here and around the world.



  • Anatomy of a Marriage (BusinessWorld)
  • 10 Secrets To Help Your Children Handle This Financial Crisis (iVillage).  Key takeaway:  Reduce stress as a family.  “Whatever happens,  we’re together.  When all is said and done that really is what matters most.”
  • The Next Meltdown: Credit-Card Debt (BusinessWeek)
  • The New Age of Frugality (BusinessWeek):  “I can’t help the economy…I’ve got to help myself”.


  • Those With a Sense of History May Find It’s Time to Invest (NYTimes).  Key takeaway:  “Investors with a stomach for risk and a long time horizon should consider following Warren Buffet….we will perceive this (time) as being a great value-buying opportunity… the most important securities are being given away”.
  • Wall Street’s Big Bounce: Don’t Start Cheering Yet (Time).  “Wild swings to the upside may feel great, but they’re still wild swings”. 


  • The Next Meltdown: Credit-Card Debt (BusinessWeek)
  • Poor Countries Face A Different Kind of Crisis (Time).  “In many developing countries, the most urgent crisis is not what is happening in financial markets but what has happened in commodity markets.”


  • Live Frugal, Stop Complaining, and Be Happy (RatherBeShopping).
  • Your Happiness Project:  Don’t Follow the Stock Market too closely (TheHappinessProject)
  • Great Tips For Bargain Christmas Gift Giving (from the Gift Therapist)
  • Strategies to Deal with Unhappy Events (TheHappinessProject)
  • Seth Godin asks Is Effort a Myth? (SethGodin)  “While luck may be more appealing than effort, you don’t get to choose luck. Effort, on the other hand, is totally available, all the time.”

and finally…. 


Motherhood has a very humanizing effect. Everything gets reduced to essentials. ~Meryl Streep

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Tikatok: Book Publisher for Kids

We should do all we can to encourage our kids’ imagination and creativity.  What better way to encourage the next Charles Dickens or JKRowling than have their book(s) published?

Tikatok is offering a great service by providing children and their parents with a platform in which they can write and illustrate their own stories,  share them with their loved ones and even print them as real paperback and hardcover books.  

Seeing their labors of love printed and bound just like those at the local bookstore,  in Tikatok’s own words. “reinforce the child’s perception that their contributions are valued by their parents and peers. They help create a sense of pride, and of confidence in one’s writing abilities, and drive the child to continue writing and creating.”

Security and privacy on the site are stringent, as one might expect.  Using Tikatok is free; printed copies of books can be purchased in hardcover or paperback for about USD 20 each (depending on the number of pages per book).

Tikatok.  Imagine a Story.  Create a Book.

Motherhood has a very humanizing effect. Everything gets reduced to essentials. ~Meryl Streep

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