Document 36951

D-1 FRI Family Opener 10/20 P-J
The Post-Journal
6:43 PM
Page 1
Tips And Tricks
To Make
More Fun
Halloween is a magical time for children: carving and decorating pumpkins,
dressing up in costumes, trick-or-treating
around their
and — best of
all — eating lots
of candy. So
what can parents
do to limit the
amount of candy
consumed by
their children?
RACTICAL Readers of this
column offer
OLUTIONS their creative
(1) After
oohing and
aahing over your
children’s haul
candy, inspect
each piece to
make sure it’s
safe and appropriate for your
child to eat. Tell
them that they
each can pick out 10 to 20 pieces of candy
for themselves, and then you will pay a
nickel for each piece left.
(2) Freeze it, especially the chocolate. It
will last for months.
(3) Transfer the candy to zipper-top
plastic bags and place in the fridge, with
each child’s name labeled on his or her
bag. They can select one item to eat each
(4) Allow the children to keep a reasonable amount of their candy, then leave the
remaining candy in a bag on the kitchen
table overnight for the ‘‘Halloween
Fairy.’’ By morning, the fairy will have
replaced the candy bag with nice presents
for each child.
(5) Put all of the Halloween candy into a
kitchen jar high out of reach. Each day, the
children get to pick one piece of candy for
their lunch bag or after dinner.
Here’s some other great ideas for Halloween.
Dear Abby, D-2
Classified, D4-D8
Since most Halloween pumpkins are
carved by parents — not kids — here’s a
kid-friendly way to do up a pumpkin. Put
the carving knife aside and bring out the
craft box, hopefully with items such as
glue, glitter, paint and brushes, cookie cutters (for impressions), old hats, inexpensive jewelry, letter stencils, markers, cotton balls, feathers, plastic eyes and whatever else you have in the house that would
be appropriate. Tell the children to let their
imagination run wild in creating a pumpkin
face or painting a design. They can even
write scary messages on one or a series of
pumpkins. Parents can drill or cut small
holes in the pumpkins for scary spiders to
crawl out of. The possibilities are endless.
— Agnes M., Springfield, Mass.
My school-age children love to have
their own pumpkin to carve, but cleaning
out the insides of multiple pumpkins was
too challenging for them and me. Therefore, we buy one big pumpkin, and each
child draws and carves a face on one side.
This works for as many as four children.
After all the faces are carved, I stuff the
inside with black tissue paper or cloth and
take each child’s picture with his or her
pumpkin face. It has worked great for us.
— Jacke Dollar, W. Des Moines, Iowa
To make a fun Halloween cheese sandwich, take two slices of white or wheat
bread and one slice of American cheese.
Spread mayonnaise on the bottom slice of
bread, and then lay the cheese on top. Cut
out a jack-o’-lantern face on the other slice
of bread, then place on top of the cheese.
Your child will enjoy eating this jack-o’lantern sandwich. Some variations include
using a Halloween cookie cutter instead of
cutting out a face, using egg salad instead
of cheese, or skipping the mayonnaise and
making a grilled cheese sandwich. — T.L.,
San Diego
My sons love to make a haunted house
in our basement and then invite their
friends for a ‘‘scary’’ time. Everyone
wears a costume, and cardboard cut-out
bats hang from the ceiling. The guests bob
for apples and touch various items in
bowls while they are blindfolded. They
must guess what they are touching. Boys
especially like the feel of peeled grapes
and cooked macaroni — monster eyes and
guts, they say. — Deborah M., Duluth,
Every parent has a favorite parenting tip.
Send yours to [email protected], call
(925) 461-6080 (fax/voice message) or
write to Kid Tips, 888 Seventh Ave., New
York, NY 10019. Tom McMahon is a syndicated columnist, college professor and
author of the books Kid Tips and Teen
Tips. Visit his Web site at
(Always keep safety, age appropriateness and your intimate knowledge of your
own child in mind when considering use of
any tip.)
ç 2006 by Tom McMahon
Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.
Special guest Mickey Mamp, from Fredonia, visited Falconer Public Library for story hour Wednesday. Mamp composes and writes children’s music. He hopes his music will promote confidence, promise and positive thinking in children. He feels that music is important in
the education system because it gives children brain power. He agrees that the arts help the children stay focused in their academic studies. Mamp sang four songs during the hour including his big hit, ‘‘Clark The Tree.’’ This song is about a very upbeat and happy tree. The
children were full of smiles as they listened to Mamp sing a song about smiles. The children learned about different instruments and were
given snacks that resembled drums. Mrs. Gail Espinoza, music teacher from Temple Elementary in Kennedy, let the library borrow
instruments for the children to see. At the conclusion of story hour, the children were given whistles to take home. Anyone wishing to
have their child involved in story hour is to contact the Falconer Public Library. To purchase Mamp’s CD, Clark The Tree, contact Fox
Glove Music at 672-4214.
P-J photo by Elisha Whitmore
Reference Librarian Is Available Seven Days A Week
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Loretta Righter saw the question
flash on her computer screen at the
Montgomery County Public
Library: What percentage of eligible
voters voted in the last presidential
Righter, a reference librarian,
messaged back to the unseen library
patron: ‘‘I am going to change your
screen to show you a Web site that
may help.’’
After a short pause, his reply
popped up: ‘‘Those facts will work
Righter was able to help the questioner through Ask Here PA, a new
technology tool that turns reference
librarians into a 24-hour online
Ninety-two libraries across the
state have volunteered staff to field
online reference questions, allowing
Pennsylvania to join scores of other
states, including New Jersey, that
have expanded the reach of the reference library to include a virtual
chat service.
Staff from 28 of the libraries are
already participating. The others are
still being trained, coordinator
Vince Mariner said.
Previously, library patrons came
to the reference desk or asked questions by phone. Some libraries
added an e-mail service, but
response wasn’t fast enough,
experts said.
Ask Here PA, funded with
$125,000 from the state Department of Education, satisfies the
desire, especially among younger
users, to receive a quick response.
The online librarian has about
15 minutes to find the answer to
any question, using Internet Web
sites, databases, and books or periodicals. If more time is needed, the
librarian gets back to the questioner later.
With Righter’s help, a questioner figured out recently that she
could write a term paper on Pennsylvania’s vanishing farmlands
using four Web-based sources. The
question: What percent of Pennsylvania farmlands have disappeared
over the last 10 years?
‘‘The Internet with all the
resources that are on it is a wonderful thing,’’ Righter said. ‘‘But you
need to know your way around.’’
As Righter helped one questioner, other queries were being fielded
by online reference librarians elsewhere.
For example: What is the life
cycle of an elk? How many species
of parrot are there? What is the
deepest point in the ocean? How
many U.S. soldiers have died in Iraq
this year? How do you do a bibliography for Internet sources? Why is
Pluto not a planet? Name the
famous used-book store in Philadelphia that went out of business in the
late 1960s?
So far, traffic on Ask Here PA is
unpredictable. Mark Draper, a Free
Library of Philadelphia manager
who demonstrated the system
recently, took two questions in as
many hours. Other times, he’s
Once Pennsylvania librarians log
off, those from Western states pick
up the slack overnight, Mariner
said. The libraries are linked to
Online Computer Library Center, a
worldwide library cooperative
based in Dublin, Ohio.
During a trial period from July
17 to Sept. 5, when the service was
available noon to 5 p.m., librarians
fielded 962 questions.
Q and A NJ, New Jersey’s online
reference service, started up in
October 2001, covering 50 hours a
week with staff from 18 libraries.
That service answered 451 questions in its first month, but now handles more than 7,000 per month,
said Karen Hyman, executive director of the South Jersey Regional
Library Cooperative.
Patrons like the convenience, the
professional help in finding the
answer, and the fact that a live person is on the other end.
‘‘This public service lets them
stay at their office desks, is open at
2 a.m., and (if at home) doesn’t
require changing to street wear from
pajamas,’’ Hyman e-mailed.
On one recent day, Loretta
Righter heard from a policeman in
search of a study guide and a nursing student seeking online nursing
As far as the question about
turnout in the 2004 election, that
was an easy one, Righter said:
‘‘120 million, or 60 percent of all
eligible voters.
Righter found the answer on Web
sites specializing in voter statistics.
Mariner, who was watching,
‘‘It’s so nice to get closure,’’ he
CASA’s Role In Promoting The Education Of Foster Children
to provide information about basic education laws
and offer CASA advocates a framework to think
about or be sensitive to when considering educational issues for children in care.’’
National CASA wants to expand how it addresses educational issues for children in care. ‘‘As an
organization we are interested in educational outcomes for children in foster care and would like to
provide more training for our advocates,’’ stated
Tracy Flynn, training director for National CASA.
Flynn said that National CASA is in the process of
developing continuing education training curricula
that addresses education as a critical component of
a child’s life.
The following information is from an article by
Lynette Mullen titled ‘‘Promoting Educational
Opportunities for Children and Youth in Care.’’ It
was published in Summer 2004 in The Connection, a quarterly publication of the National Court
Appointed Special Advocates Association. It was
posted at in August 2004.
Judy dropped out of school when she was 14
and didn’t go back until she entered foster care
three years later. ‘‘My mother has been on welfare
her whole life. I didn’t want that for me or my son.
And I knew if I was going to get a job, I needed a
diploma,’’ she explained.
Judy had not chosen an easy task. When she reentered high school at 17, she was three years
behind. She also had a young son to care for.
Social workers doubted she could do it.
‘‘But my CASA and foster parent supported me.
We went to court more than 13 times in eight
months fighting to let me stay in foster care until I
graduated.’’ Judy promised a February graduation
date and Child Welfare Services agreed to let her
remain a dependent while she attended a continuation high school. At 19, Judy became the first person in her family to earn a high school diploma.
She now works full-time and supports herself and
her son.
Like Judy, many children enter foster care
already behind academically, often with undetected
learning or other disabilities and the physical and
emotional scars of the abuse and neglect that
brought them into foster care.
Falling Through The Cracks Of The Education
Many children lack adult guidance and support
identified as crucial to academic success. Some
have little stability, help or encouragement to
attend or stay in school.
After entering foster care, sadness over separation from family members, concern for parents and
siblings, worries about the future and difficulty
adjusting to a new placement and school often distract children and interfere with their learning.
Molly Herzog, director of Project People,
observed that 35 percent of foster youth have
experienced four or more school changes. Studies
show each school move results in a four- to sixmonth loss of educational progress.
The lingering effects of abuse and neglect often
lead to behavior problems such as aggression and
withdrawal, which can further interfere with the
child’s ability to learn. Many children surveyed in
a study also said that they limited their social interaction with peers to hide their foster status and
avoid the social stigma.
CASA Programs Tackle The Issue
CASA: Advocates for Children of New York
State has partnered with the Permanent Judicial
Commission for Justice for Children to address
educational issues for foster children. CASANYS
also offers training, technical assistance, information and support to member programs in 33 counties across the state.
‘‘Many children in care have special education
concerns,’’ noted CASANYS Deputy Director
Anne Kuppinger, a conclusion supported by a
recent study revealing that children in foster care
receive special education services at three to five
times the national rate for all children. ‘‘We want
Post-Secondary Education Is Possible
Many organizations support foster youth who
pursue post-secondary education. Orphan Foundation for America helps make dreams of higher education a reality for many foster youth.
Former foster youth Zack Kidwell started using
drugs and alcohol when he was 12 years old and
dropped out of school in the eighth-grade. He
eventually obtained his GED and was encouraged
by his ‘‘surrogate mom’’ to consider college. With
financial aid and help from scholarships specifically for former foster youth from the OFA, Kidwell
is now attending the University of Kansas.
In an e-mail to OFA, Kidwell wrote, ‘‘More
good news! Since I am a first generation college
student, I will be getting a free tutor for my history
class. And I finally found a free place to print my
papers and I found out about grants for summer
school, so it looks like I will not have to pay
$1,400 to stay in school. Life is Good!’’
With help and support from advocates, service
providers and support organizations, more foster
youth may share Kidwell’s good fortune.
The Court Appointed Special Advocates of
Chautauqua County, Inc. is partially funded by The
New York State Unified Court System/Office of
Court Administration, United Way of Southern
Chautauqua County, an Interest on Lawyers
Account grant and private donations, which are
always gratefully accepted.