Media

My appearances and expert contributions as a parenting consultant on radio and TV.

The Power of Smells

This interview was really fun and interesting.

The sense of smell is the sense most tied to emotion and memory.
What memory or emotion do these smells evoke for you?

Freshly baked bread
Roses
Popcorn
Bacon
Campfire
Pinecones
Coffee
Gasoline
Horse Manure

On the Matt Townsend Show (BYU Radio) we discuss how smells literally change behavior. Depending on the ambient smells, we can influence employee behavior, public behavior, or behavior in our children to be kinder, more fair and ethical, more charitable, less deviant, and harder working.

Here is the link to the program.

https://www.byuradio.org/episode/c7c6b830-9a4f-45fb-a47b-2db8f35dd5f5/the-matt-townsend-show-the-making-of-donald-trump-how-to-get-stuff-done-power-of-smells?playhead=6786&autoplay=true

World’s Awaiting radio interview

I was interviewed for over an hour on BYU radio’s new program called “World’s Awaiting” about Children’s Books, Reading, and cultivating a Culture of Literacy in our Families. It will be airing this Saturday, September 10 at 11:30am Mountain / 1:30pm Eastern. You can hear it on BYU Radio at SiriusXM Channel 143, on the tunein app, and at http://www.byuradio.org.

You can listen to the audio of the interview on our website at 12:00 noon MST / 2:00pm EST after the show airs at http://www.byuradio.org/show/afc8b335-4272-4bf4-a192-9f850d0fe390/worlds-awaiting.

Bringing the Arts Home

I contributed to the Matt Townsend show on BYU radio about how the arts enrich home life. I give research about how the arts make your child smarts and practical ideas for creativity in the home.

https://www.byuradio.org/episode/99ef58c5-9885-446c-9521-3f52ab57fad5/the-matt-townsend-show-political-social-media-why-diets-make-us-fat-art-and-kids?playhead=6346&autoplay=true

School Success: BYU radio interview

School started today. *Sigh* It’s a bittersweet time.

Bitter:
No more relaxed, sunny days by the pool.
No more PBJ picnics.
No more late night star gazing and movie watching.
No more spontaneous UNO card games.
No more vacation from homework, alarm clocks, carpooling, and science fair projects.
No more shorts, T-shirts, flipflops and bedhead worn every day.

Sweet:
Adult alone time!
One word: schedules!
Mushy brains turn into learning brains again.
Not hearing “Mom. Mom. Mom. Mom” 868 times a day.
As my neighbor sang in a lilted, Christmas-y tone yesterday: “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.”

But the transition from summer to school can seem abrupt at best and often very difficult. It’s like living on planet Earth all summer and then being shipped to Mars. How can we help kids adjust easier and outfit them to thrive in that harsh climate? Here’s the BYU radio program I was interviewed for about preparing kids for school success.
https://www.byuradio.org/episode/bef82490-c5ad-4fa2-8453-0340424735f6/the-matt-townsend-show-public-space-crisis-smartphones-and-adhd-back-to-school?playhead=6518&autoplay=true

6 ways parents can improve their listening skills

This was my first time being interviewed by someone from Utah Valley 360 magazine. It’s always cool when someone calls you up out of the blue, unexpected, and says they want to interview you for their upcoming article.

Well, here it is. And I think Natalie did a nice job with the article. Published on February 29, 2016

If you feel like your kids hardly listen to a word you say, take heart. Children and teens ignoring their parents is a universal problem as old as parenting itself. But before you put all the blame on your offspring, consider whether your listening skills could stand to be improved. Try these six tips for improving your listening ear:

  1. Stop multitasking and pay attention.

Our brain doesn’t have the capacity to fully attend to two things at once, so it’s difficult to listen well when doing another task that requires your attention. Doing the dishes and helping a child with homework? Sure. But scrolling Instagram while listening to your daughter explain her school project? It’s likely you’ll miss important details. “It’s really important that we select moments of the day where we close all those tabs we have open in our brain,” says Julie K. Nelson, an applied parenting instructor at UVU and author of two books on parenting, including “Keep it Real and Grab a Plunger: 25 tips for surviving parenthood” (Cedar Fort, March 2015). “We need to say to our child, ‘Right now, you are my world.’ Half listening will not build trust or confidence in coming to us when they need to talk.”

  1. Take it one kid at a time.

Do your best to listen to one child at a time. If interrupting and talking over each other is a problem at your house, Nelson suggests telling your kids that you are going to listen to all of them but only one at a time. “Put your arm around the child and say, ‘I’m here for you but right now we are going to listen to Stacey first and it will be your turn next,’” she suggests. Give them a physical cue, such as holding their hand or putting a hand on their shoulder, to let them know you see them but give your full attention to the child speaking. If a child whines or demands attention, ignore it as best you can. “When you are finished listening to one child, turn to the other child and say, ‘Thank you for being so respectful. Now it’s your turn.’”

  1. Listen on their level.

Adults appreciate eye contact during an conversation, and kids are no different. Nelson suggest talking to kids at their level for the most effective communication. “If we do want to get a child to listen to us, it’s so important there is not an imbalance of power. At your full stature, children don’t listen to you when they are looking at your navel.” Younger kids appreciate when you get down on one knee to hear and see what they are saying. For teens, try sitting on a couch to chat.

  1. Go on sabbatical from offering your opinion.

If it’s a challenge to keep your mouth shut when you should be listening to your child or teen, try this challenge: For one week, resist the urge to offer your opinion unless expressly asked for it. Listening with the intent to simply listen, instead of listening with the intent to reply, Nelson says. “When we do listen to someone we should be very careful that we don’t try to finish their sentence for them or come up with a rebuttal or response,” Nelson says. If they do ask for an opinion, let them know you’ll think about it rather than jumping in with your expert advice.

  1. Practice active listening.

If you need to clarify what someone is saying, repeat what you heard back to them. Try, “What I’m hearing you saying is this; is that correct?” Let the speaker validate whether or not you got it right. Then continue listening without judgment or fixing. Most of the time, people just want to be heard.

  1. Quit topping the story.

If your child is complaining about their struggles at school, it can be tempting to hijack the conversation with stories of your childhood success or examples of what other siblings have done. They don’t really need to hear about everything you did when you were a kid, Nelson says — even if you’re commiserating —  they just want to you listen to them. So stop topping their stories and simply offer yourself as a resource. “Tell them, ‘I’m sure you’ll come up with a great solution to that.’ Empower them … let them come up with solutions on their own. They need to know you’re not the higher power in their life that always sweeps in and solves things,” she says.

For a link to the origional article in Utah Valley 360 magazine: http://utahvalley360.com/2016/02/29/6-ways-parents-can-improve-their-listening-skills/

Gut flora, kid health, and boogers

This turned out to be a really lively (and a little gross) interview on the Matt Townsend show. It aired on Jan 26th. http://www.byuradio.org/episode/6e14c90d-9421-4a88-9420-9cb8a1e095e8?playhead=6693&autoplay=true

Here are some new vocabulary words you’ll learn by listening:

Gut Flora

Microorganism

Microbiome

Microflora

Probiotics

Ecosystem

And this is a quiz that you’ll know the answers to once it’s over (P.S. Matt gets them all correct!)

How many feet of intestinal tubing do we have?

a. 10 feet

b. 18 feet

c. 25 feet

c. 30 feet

We have this many microorganisms in our gut.

a. 150 billion

b. 75 trillion

c. 100 trillion

What is the ratio of microorganism to human cells?

a. 10-1

b. 20-1

c. 50-1

What percentage of serotonin is found in the gut?

a. 25%

b. 45%

c. 70%

d. 80%

 

“Read it again, Mom!”

I’ve been a professional educator for over 25 years, teaching Kindergarten, preschool, and students in the Education department at UVU. I’ve taught these delightful students how to foster reading and writing with children birth through 6. Here is some of my cumulative knowledge and experience in a KSL online news article.

http://www.ksl.com/?sid=37200737&nid=1009&title=read-it-again-mom-enhancing-the-parent-child-reading-experience&s_cid=queue-1

4 New Year’s Resolutions This Mom Can Keep

Parenting is hard. Keeping New Year’s resolutions is also hard and it’s one more thing to make me feel guilty about what I’m not doing. Resolutions about parenting usually involve not yelling so much at the kids or packing healthy school lunches rather than junk food. By January 14th, I’m losing my temper and sending the kiddos off to school with chips and cookies.

Rather than losing those 10 elusive pounds, here are five resolutions I can keep. It was published in For Every Mom on Wednesday, December 30, 2015

http://www.foreverymom.com/5-new-years-resolutions-moms-can-actually-keep/#.VoVzAWptp04.facebook

Better Relationships in 2016

I was interviewed for a Wall Street Journal article called “Look Ahead: 4 steps to better relationships in the new year” in the Tuesday, December 29, 2015 edition.

Here’s a link to the online version:

http://www.wsj.com/articles/look-ahead-four-steps-to-better-relationships-in-the-new-year-1451324689

How To Avoid the “Gimmies” at Christmas

Have you ever heard these words after a child opens a thoughtfully-given present: “Is that all?” It’s time to raise children who are less selfish and less disgruntled with the gifts they receive. How can you raise generous, gracious children who think more of others than themselves? Tis the season to start and here’s an article to get you going.

This article was featured in For Every Mom. The byline was:

These 5 ways to avoid the “gimmes” with your kids this Christmas are spot-on sage advice.

http://www.foreverymom.com/5-ways-to-avoid-the-gimmies-at-your-house-this-christmas/