(May. 17, 2019) - In the past several years, it seems like kids have grown addicted to their phones, tablets, and laptops, all of which emit blue light. They’re constantly texting, streaming shows and movies, and using their phones way past their bedtimes. All of this blue light exposure can be concerning for parents who have heard conflicting information about the potential negative effects of blue light, such as sleep loss and weight gain. Two ophthalmologists share what may or may not be true about blue light—and how you can protect your kids from overexposure.
(May. 17, 2019) - P.S. 25 is home to only 82 students and costs $50,000 per child to operate. Virtually every student comes from a low-income family, according to city data. And yet 70% of P.S. 25 students are proficient in math, and half are proficient in reading–performing above the city average. This is the reason, parents and advocates argued against the city, that closing P.S. 25 would be a mistake. After a yearlong battle, the city decided on May 16 that the little Brooklyn elementary school that could will stay open.
(May. 14, 2019) - With summer around the corner, teenagers are probably looking to firm up plans and solidify volunteering gigs. If your teen wants to give back to his community or try something new with her summer, White Plains Public Library is offering three different volunteering opportunities for teens in grades seven through 12 and nine through 12. Programming includes teaming up with children to help them learn how to read, earning community service hours in the Edge Media Lab, and guiding elementary school-aged children through STEM activities.
(May. 14, 2019) - On May 13, the 22nd season of Arthur, a kids’ favorite, aired on CBS with a deceptively simple plot: Mr. Ratburn, Arthur and his pals’ teacher, was going to get married. The characters couldn’t believe their teacher was getting married–and audiences were thrilled when Mr. Ratburn walked down the aisle with a man. “Mr. Ratburn and the Special Someone” showcases the first same-sex wedding on the show, although the word “gay” is never said and it is never mentioned out loud that Mr. Ratburn’s new husband is a man.
(May. 14, 2019) - For a city with so many kids and so many opportunities for enrichment, New York has a playground crisis. The city is full of “playground deserts,” places similar to food deserts in that living in one means you do not have access to resources such as healthy, fresh food–or a designated place to play. Many NYC neighborhoods lack within-walking-distance monkey bars, swing sets, slides, and more, according to a report from Controller Scott Stringer, and the city’s playground per capita rate places it behind 47 other major cities including Detroit, Chicago, and Boston.
(May. 10, 2019) - One in five New York City children don’t always know where their next meal will come from–a disparity that organizations like City Harvest are trying to end through competitions like “Skip Lunch Fight Hunger,” which will run from May 13 to May 17. The competition will split chefs like Michael Chernow (of the Meatball Shop and Seamore’s), Ed McFarland, Dan Churchill, Christophe Bellanca, Ivy Stark, and more into two groups for three rounds of skipping rope on May 14. City Harvest is the city’s largest food rescue organization and helps feed more than 1.2 million New Yorkers.
(May. 10, 2019) - Warby Parker will reopen in Grand Central on May 13 with kids' glasses, donuts, new features, new artwork, the debut of the brand’s Summer Core Sun collection, giveaways, a virtual try-on glasses app, and more. The new store will be just a few steps from its old location in the terminal. The Solarium, an illuminated nook full of mirrors, is the most talked-about feature of the reopening: it allows guests to try on Warby Parker’s sunglasses in an environment that mimics sunlight without having to go outside. The sunglasses will be on display inside the Solarium for ease of access–but guests can also just head into the space if they need a dose of light!
(May. 09, 2019) - The African black-footed penguin is classified as Endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which might make finding them at zoos and aquariums a little difficult. But the New York Aquarium has just added four more birds to its colony, which now numbers nearly 30 penguins. The newcomers are between a few months and 1.5 years old. They can be found in the aquarium’s Sea Cliffs habitat.
(May. 09, 2019) - The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have been a kid favorite for more than three decades, and die-hard fans can interact with the Turtles in a whole new way this summer at the Paley Center for Media, which will be hosting a 35th anniversary exclusive arrangement from May 18–July 14 in collaboration with Nickelodeon. The exhibit will feature artwork that showcases the Turtles’ comic book history, opportunities to meet and greet voice actors and Turtles themselves, and a visual timeline of the series’ evolution from comic books to the current Nickelodeon show.
(May. 07, 2019) - Ultimate Enrichment Summer Camps is expanding out of the Bronx this summer and into Queens, where camp will be held at P.S. 376 for kids ages 4-14 beginning July 8. Ultimate Enrichment is known for its sports programming in the Bronx but will bring theater and dance to the forefront of the program in Bayside, with a couple of different shows and one performance for parents at the end of the summer. Michael Garcia, Ultimate Enrichment’s owner and director, says that moving to Queens stemmed from success in the Bronx.
(May. 03, 2019) - DeCicco & Sons already had seven locations in New York before opening an eighth in Somers on May 3. This location, located at 266 Route 202, will be the largest of all eight locations and offer everything the specialty supermarket chain’s customers have come to love, like fresh seafood delivered daily, homemade baked goods, fresh food stations like a salad bar, hot food bar and antipasti bar, a coffee and juice bar, freshly prepared sushi, and more. The Somers market will ban the use of single-use plastic bags like all other DeCicco & Sons locations–that were the first supermarket chain to do so in the state. Special offers will be available on products throughout the store to celebrate opening day.
(May. 03, 2019) - Hofstra University Summer Camps will be offering an Elite Tennis Camp this summer, where children grades six through ten who are interested in a full day of tennis can participate in two-week sessions from July 1-Aug. 9. A separate intensive training program will be offered for kids grades seven through 12, Aug. 12-16, who want to prepare for the upcoming season with Division I coach Jason Pasion.
(Apr. 30, 2019) - Michael Getlan, the owner of FunFuzion in Westchester, says the indoor amusement park’s new virtual reality game is unlike any other VR game he has experienced. Arizona Sunshine is a free-roam experience that offers two distinct realities to explore and it was added to FunFuzion in April. Unlike older VR games, players don’t need to be connected to a console—bodies and minds can roam freely as they explore a narrative story that revolves around taking down zombies. For Getlan, this increases the appeal of an already incredible experience.
(Apr. 26, 2019) - Between May 15–September 1, teens aged 15-18 can work out at any of Planet Fitness’s 1,700 locations for free as part of the Teen Summer Challenge in an effort to help kids increase their confidence, happiness and positive mental health between school years. Planet Fitness commissioned research that shows that 91% of teens want to stay active during the summer but have trouble finding the confidence to head to the gym–and hope that this free challenge will provide an incentive. In addition to the Summer Challenge, teens can attend free summer classes Monday-Friday with certified fitness trainers.
(Apr. 25, 2019) - Women are taught to expect numerous changes to their bodies during pregnancy; from weight gain to weird cravings to swollen feet, there are just some things we know might happen. However, we don’t talk about the changes that might happen to your body after your baby is born nearly as much, which can lead women to think what they’re experiencing isn’t normal. Since hormonal and emotional changes are common after delivery, it can be difficult to know when what you’re feeling could signify postpartum depression, which can also be frightening.
(Apr. 25, 2019) - In any city, knowing when kids will have off from school is important. In New York, it’s crucial. The NYC Department of Education just released the 2019-2020 school calendar–which many local preschools follow, as well–so you can know when schools will be closed ahead of time and plan vacations, outings, appointments, and more ahead of time.
(Apr. 24, 2019) - This year’s Fleet Week will honor the Navy, Marines and Coast Guard with a weeklong celebration of the sea services beginning May 21. Active ships recently deployed overseas will dock in New York Harbor so the crew can enjoy festivities and the public can meet representatives, learn about the services, tour ships, watch helicopter landings, attend ceremonies and celebrations, and more. The festivities begin with a parade of ships and conclude on May 28. More than 4,500 service men and women will be arriving on the fleet.
(Apr. 24, 2019) - In Susan Platkin’s eyes, self-direction has always been the only acceptable path for her daughter Ruth. Ruth is 32 and has intellectual disabilities and bipolar disorder, and despite her unique challenges now lives in an apartment in East Northport, not far from Platkin, with a roommate and staff—and is loving it. Platkin does not believe this accomplishment would be possible without self-direction or Ruth’s Life Plan, a newer Office for People with Developmental Disabilities service that gives her an active voice in her future. For parents of children with special needs, the future can be frightening instead of exciting—but Life Plans, also called Person-Centered Service Plans, are a way to ensure children with disabilities can tackle adulthood and have access to the same fulfillment as neurotypical children.
(Apr. 23, 2019) - The Adventure Park at the Discovery Museum in Fairfield will be hosting its 2019 Arbor Day Weekend Climber Count Off from April 26-28. For each tree a child or adult climbs, Adventure Park will donate $1 to the Arbor Foundation, which will plant a tree to celebrate the holiday. Adventure Park sums up their initiative with the saying, “You climb a tree, we’ll plant a tree.” Since 2015, The Adventure Park at the Discovery Museum, along with the other Adventure Parks operated by the Outdoor Venture Group, have donated $13,917 to the Arbor Day Foundation–which means 13,912 trees have been planted.
(Apr. 23, 2019) - Between coordinating education, enrichment activities, and future plans, raising a child with special needs can feel like a second job—one that can be rewarding, overwhelming, and expensive. To make matters worse, wading through care options for children requires time parents do not have. However, New York parents have access to a program that could eliminate both expense and anxiety. New York’s Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program allows parents of children with special needs to hire homecare help from within the family if their child receives Medicaid benefits.