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  • Joining up the dots...

    It’s a great week for children’s authors. On Tuesday, we had Roald Dahl Day, celebrating 100 years since the birth of the author of classics like Charlie and The Chocolate Factory and The BFG. On Friday it’s the birthday of Julia Donaldson who wrote The Gruffalo - which is my favourite business book. I love the story of the little mouse outwitting the huge, scary Gruffalo – it reminds me that it’s not always the biggest or the loudest that gets ahead.

    And now I’ve discovered an American author and illustrator called Peter Reynolds whose book The Dot is behind today’s International Dot Day. The Dot tells the story of a young girl who believes she can’t draw. Her teacher dares her to make her mark so in frustration she puts a dot on the page – and it’s that simple start that sets her off on a wonderful creative journey.

    the-dot

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  • Bonding over bed time

    I was recently chatting to a friend about our childhoods, and she said she loved growing up sharing a room with her sister. They had bunk beds and at night she’d hang her arm down from the top bunk so they could touch fingers while they talked to each other. It was such a sweet story, and they’d obviously formed a real closeness during those early years – a closeness she says they still share today.

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  • Do you get school-run stress?

    Ready.... steady... let’s get the kids to school! Hmmm – if only it was that simple! Getting the kids up and ready for school can feel like a race that you’re never going to win. And when the clock is ticking and every minute counts, the stress can really start to mount.

    As a parent, I know this scenario only too well. You get a grumpy child who isn’t happy having to get out of bed. They can’t find their gym kit. The letter from school they were supposed to give you has gone AWOL. And of course when you’re in a hurry to get things sorted, everything takes even longer. The result? A pretty stressed-out, bad-tempered family!

    According to a 2014 survey, parents experience a 30% increase in their stress levels when they wake up with the school run looming in front of them. That stress level spikes at 8.15am and doesn’t return to normal until around 2.30pm. So those manic mornings are bad news for parents – and obviously not a great way for the kids to start their day either.

    4-FMN

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