More Information

Author Archive | Fatima Zimichi

Intuition in Children – Powerful Stuff!

pexels-photo-27806In a world of high-tech computers, tablets, cell phones, video games, and apps, how can we teach our children about intuition and to be more in-tune with themselves?

I recently watched a documentary on Netflix called, “InnSaei,” which is the ancient Icelandic word for “intuition.” That documentary changed my entire perception of life, interactions with others, and what we’re teaching future generations.

Their argument is plain and simple: “Modern people are not in touch with their intuition.”

On one hand, I’d like to think they are wrong! On the other, it’s a fair statement considering most children are learning to use technology from a young age and as result we are all disconnecting from reality.

So the question is: How can we help our children connect in a world full of noise, distraction and stress?

There is no single system for it, but here a few things we got from the documentary:

Teach them about themselves

Besides intuition,“InnSaei” also means “to see within” which means to know oneself.

When children know themselves so well, they are also able to be aware of others. Why is this important? Simply because we want to raise children who know themselves well  enough to be able to put themselves in other people’s shoes.

In this violent world, children with more empathy and kindness can make all the difference. The documentary features a British school that teaches children, from a young age, the part of the brain that acts or reacts based on their experiences.

Teaching our children about right and wrong is not enough, decision-making through both narrow mindedness and broad mindedness helps them focus on a particular issue or see the bigger picture when necessary. This school also teaches children about “Brain Breaks,” which is a way to pause when we need to, when upset, stressing, or when we need to be aware of a particular situation in order to make the best decision.

Teaching them to live the moment

Children are photographed since they are born and it does not stop there. We photograph them to celebrate their baptism, first birthday, graduation, first day in school, first performance and the list goes on and on.

Why? The only thing I can think of is to save beautiful memories for the future or to post them on social media. So are we living in the wrong time-frame and for others? What about living in the present and for ourselves?

Mindfulness and living in the moment can make children enjoy the present to the fullness. Imagine them jumping to a pool for the first time and having their parents’ eyes set on them through their own eyes and not a camera.

Children who are aware of their surroundings can enjoy their moment to the fullest, smell odors we might breeze through, be more courteous with others or react better and faster in moments of danger.

Parents, we have the tools in our hands. Let’s be the example and help them disconnect from technology when they have to connect more with their present mind, body and spirit.

Connecting them with Nature

“Nature is the silent witness of intuition,” stated the documentary.

The film emphasizes that we can’t have intuition without nature. Yet children in this generation barely play outside. Hollywood Learning Centers have gone in the opposite direction, taking children outdoors more often, implementing aerobics and other extracurricular activities so they can get to know their bodies.

Our summer and winter camps have lots of trips to parks and other natural-related environments because we want them to engage with nature, find their interests and develop their mental and physical capacities.

So, 3 things to try:

  1. Let’s make an effort to disconnect our children from those bright screens (phones, tablets, TVs) and encourage them to read more books or play outside. At least during the weekends.
  2. Let’s plan more trips to the park, fields or any other fun activities that will help them form a bond with mother nature. Examples: Plant a tree, buy a plant, teach them those outdoor games we used to play in our times (hide-and-seek, rope jumping, tag, monkey in the middle, etc.)
  3. Intuition comes from experience. Let’s teach our children to listen to that little voice inside of them! Practice breathing and quiet exercises.

We have so many options to prepare our children for the future. Do you have questions about Hollywood Learning Center’s Curriculum, Summer Camp or Aftercare program? Contact Hollywood Learning Centers at (954) 922-8558

Continue Reading

Hollywood Learning Centers’ Tips for Parent’s New Year Resolutions

New yenew-yearar, new resolutions! We do this year after year, and the motivation last till’ maybe February, March. I’m no exception! I want to succeed in my business, be the best at everything, have a healthy diet and a bikini body by the summer.

Could our unrealistic, over-achiever resolutions be the problem? Or perhaps we lose interest and motivation as the months pass by? Regardless of the reasons or excuses why resolutions don’t go as planned, we’re going to do things differently this year. Hollywood Learning Center’s moms and dads please join us.

Define Your Goals & Plan How to Get There

We all have goals and plans in the beginning of the year, yet very few know how to get there. Instead of writing our resolutions alone, how about we write how we’ll get there. Try to do it tonight, write them down in two separate lines. For example:

  • Stress Less (Resolution) – Plan:  Don’t write unrealistic resolutions, don’t bring work issues home, find a hobby to devote 2 hours a week, drink wine for dinner, and take weekends off to spend with the family, get in-touch with nature, and find a book to let your mind run wild.
  • Eat Healthier (Resolution) – Plan: Avoid buying high-sugar juices and replace with water & lemon, incorporate more fruits and vegetables to meals, avoid fast food restaurants on the weekday, etc.

Don’t Do It Alone! Find a Resolution Buddy

I don’t recommend doing this alone. Find a resolutions buddy, your better half, a friend, or a coworker. Exchange each other’s resolutions, make sure you write them down, make a copy, so that they can hold you accountable. Choose your buddy wisely. Someone who’s strict, yet not annoying. Someone who cares to see you fulfilling your wildest dreams. Someone who won’t laugh at your goals. I have chosen my good ol’ college friend, Vanessa Thomas. Only because, she is far away and has an exterior perspectives of things and we are in constant communications. She knows me the best and I trust her the most. Who do you have in mind?

Have Fun With Your Resolutions!

Remember the resolutions are for you and the end goals are feelings, not materials, not impressions, not attempts. Experiences leads us to feelings, emotions, thoughts, memories. At the end of the day, we all want to be happy, excited, loved, wanted, or accepted, etc. Hollywood Learning Centers want our parents to be happy, successful, and well-balanced professionals and parents so our little ones can benefit from it. Our children breath the environment we provide for them and we have only a few years to make or break their future. Hollywood Learning Centers wants to work with you to make our children’s childhood unforgettable. Here is to a successful 2017!

For more information about our programs, call us at (954)922-8558.

Happy new year to you and your family!

Continue Reading

Hollywood Learning Centers Show Preschoolers to be More Giving this Holiday

3 Ways Hollywood Learning Centers Show Preschoolers to be More Giving this HolidayWith the holidays around the corner, toy commercials on Television reminds us it’s that time of the year again. Hollywood Learning Centers believes it’s the season to teach preschoolers about the real meaning of the holidays, family, and gratitude. As our preschoolers write their long gift lists this year, how about we teach them about the importance of giving rather than receiving.

  1. Remind Your Preschoolers How Privileged They Are. . .

It’s understandable that as parents, we want to protect our kids from the cruel realities of this world. Poverty, hunger, orphans, and natural disasters are difficult to explain to a child. Find scenarios to teach your little ones how fortunate they are compared to those experiencing hunger and sickness. As difficult as it might be to point these things out, at times it’s necessary. You can also include prayers before meals and at bed time to thank God for our blessings. Gratitude can make a huge difference in their lives, because where there is gratitude, there is no space for selfishness.

  1. A Preschooler’s Trash Is Another Preschooler’s Treasure

Most of us, children or adults, outgrow things to make room for what the new year brings. However, getting rid of our belongings sound easier said than done. My rule is, if they haven’t use it or wore it for a year, then most likely they won’t again. Make sure they get involved in the picking process. Explain to them that these objects will bring joy to less fortunate kids. There are several charities that make it easy to spread holiday cheer. Goodwill, Toys for Tots, Stuffed Animals for Emergencies are a few organizations that take new toys as well as gently used donations.

  1. It’s Okay to Tell Your Preschooler “No”

Even though you want to get them the entire gift list, try not to get in the habit of buying everything they ask. I have actually sat down to watch TV with my little stepson and saw toy commercial after toy commercial. Honestly, I got just as excited as he did. I even began to make notes of the toys we liked.  These marketers are good! As they grow, it’s important to teach our children to develop critical minds when exposed to the media, just like I did with the toy commercials. Remember, if they have it all then they won’t know what it feels like wanting and not having something.  

It’s a lot easier to give in to this material world we live in than to fight the urge to spoil them with every cent to our name. I dare you to try it. It might make all the difference when raising a generous child.

For more blogs, subscribe to: Hollywood Learning Centers’: Parenting Survival Guide.

Continue Reading

Clean Up! Chores for Preschoolers – Hollywood Learning Center

Chores - Hollywood Learning CentersMy mother, Ms. Fatima, Director of Hollywood Learning Center is the definition of a superwoman. I know, completely bias coming from me, but it’s true. I remember growing up with a successful woman, a spotless house and healthy dinners. However, that didn’t mean we weren’t given chores. I wish!  My family believes in chores and allowances was not the reward, but that’s another story.

Why are chores so important? Well, according to parenting expert: Jim Fay, co-founder of Love and Logic, we all need to feel needed, important and to know that we’re making a contribution, even kids. Not to mention, we can’t wait for children to be adults to teach them responsibilities. By then, it might be too late.

So, Hollywood Learning Center put together a cheat-sheet on some chores’ tips for preschoolers:

Choose Age-Appropriate Chores for Preschoolers

How appropriate a chore is will vary from culture to culture and family to family. In my case, I remember asking my mom for a little broom to “sweep” at the age 5, out of my own boredom. Yet, I don’t see little ones doing that today. Here are some chores Hollywood Learning Centers consider age-appropriate for preschoolers:

  • Putting toys away
  • Making or at least attempting to do their bed
  • Clearing the table after meals
  • Watering the plants
  • Feeding pets, if any.

Lead by Example

Don’t expect children to put their toys away like they do here in their preschool, if mommy and daddy are leaving their clothes out. Be the example they need. You can begin by teaching your children the right way to accomplish the chore, let them see you take on the task and before you know it, they’ll be little experts. The idea is to make these chores their job at home. For example, If mommy cooks, daddy washes the dishes or vice versa, then children can be in charge of clearing the table. At first, reminders will be needed. However, the idea is to have them take on the task on their own. In my house, I leave little sticky notes around with friendly reminders and smiley faces. It works, I promise 🙂

Praise goes further than allowance

Although chores are responsibility, I still believe parents should compliment their children for their work. Praise can go a long way. Tell them things like:

“You did a great job with that bed today!”

“Those flowers are looking beautiful, you’re doing a fantastic job with them!”

“Thank you for putting your toys away so nicely”

As far as rewarding them with allowances, theories vary. We believe it’s important to avoid connecting allowances to chores, at least for preschoolers.

Younger children, like the ones in our Hollywood Learning Center, don’t tend to be motivated by money. If we award them with allowances then you’re giving them the option to choose not to do them. However, if your little ones are motivated by money, then is this a quality we really want them to have? We understand allowances can teach children about hard-work and money management, but preschoolers might not be ready for it just yet.

Clean up, clean up, everybody clean up! For more parenting survival tips, keep checking out our blog.

Continue Reading

3 Holiday Tips for Children of Separated Parents

holiday-for-seperated-parentsWith the holidays around the corner, it’s important for separated parents to discuss what’s the plan this year. The reality is, holidays for these families are never easy, but as long as we make the best of it for the well-being of the little ones.

Hollywood Learning Centers put together 3 tips to guarantee a peaceful and joyful time:

1) It’s Always About the Children!

Children will be children. They want their mommy and daddy together. It’s important for children to see that if things didn’t work out, the benefits of having separated parents is getting the two of best worlds, including holiday celebrations. Communicate what the plans are to be on the same page as far as beliefs, celebrations, traditions, charity projects, gifting, etc. Keep in mind, it’s always about the children, which might suck for parents. As long as our little ones are happy and knowledgeable of the real meaning of the holidays.

2) Scheduling and Making the Transition Smooth

Some parents schedule time for one parent to spend the holiday during the day, while the other parent during the night. Others, prefer to alternate holidays every other year.  As long as the children get to be with both parents, the exact day never matters. If we think about it, Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, New Year’s or other holidays always falls under different days. A child’s imagination can run wild! For parents who don’t have court guidelines, it’s important to plan drop off and pick up time, who’s driving, where and every detail to the “T.” And, please mommies and daddies, let’s make the transition smooth, cordial, and respectful. Parents are the two people our children love the most, let’s treat each other as such.

3) Let’s Make the Best of it!

It’s supposed to be the happiest time of year! Disagreements during these times is not an option. Agree the disagree, make sacrifices and remember that keeping the party at peace is better than being right all the time. There are many separated families that have been able to adjust to the reality of the situation. They get together and even gift each other presents. We don’t see them as much, they are not in commercials yet, but I promise they are out there. After, all why can’t we all get along.

For more blogs like these ones, subscribe to our blog: Parenting Survival Guide 

Continue Reading

Hollywood Learning Centers Know The Importance of Teaching Multiculturalism

multicultural-blogHollywood Learning Centers picked the Hispanic Heritage Month to promote not just our hispanic community, but also all those beautiful cultures that makes us unique. We want to celebrate our diversity!

We look at each and everyone of our students’ here at Hollywood Learning Centers and see their ancestors’ diversity.  For that reason, we want to do something to learn about each other. Multicultural education promotes close working relationships among the school, home, and community in order to provide consistent expectations and mutual support. It is important to celebrate the diversity of cultures, ethnic backgrounds, and races of children around the world.

To give you a little background on our beautiful city of Hollywood, FL, where we’re all different. A recent census research suggest that although English is the first language with a 66.94%. Spanish language speaking residents account for 21.62%, French makes up 2.06%, Creole consisted of 1.32%, Italian comprised 1.12%, Romanian are at 0.91%, Hebrew at 0.88%, Portuguese 0.84%, and German as a mother tongue was 0.72% of the population.

Hollywood Learning Centers will like our preschool to promote multicultural awareness with our annual “Multicultural Food Festival” happening this Friday, October 14th.

The geography of our students’ countries, along with their popular cuisine, holidays, festivals, clothing, and language will be discussed and shared in a day full of food and traditional outfits runway.

Let’s teach our children about each other’s cultures by sharing a delicious dish and traditional attires so they understand how our differences make us unique!

introducing

Continue Reading

Is There Such a Thing as a Perfect Parent?

Parenting isn't PerfectFor the parents out there, have you ever stop and said: “Wow, I’m a heck of a parent,” or do you often find yourself questioning your parenting skills?

It seems as if parenting and guilt were cut from the same fabric . . “I should spend more time with my son, I shouldn’t be so rough with my little girl, I wish I can give them more, I didn’t had to yell at them, I totally forgot about soccer practice… and the list goes on…”

The reality is, nothing in this world is perfect and no matter how much you search for it, there is no single guidebook on how to raise kids. Parenting techniques and approaches vary from culture to culture and parent to parent. Each parent has a different journey. I put together a few things I learned from my parent’s parenting techniques:

Positive Parenting

“Yes, you can!,” although it sounds like a political slogan, these were the words of my mother. As cliche as that might sound, parents’ words can make all the difference. Ms. Fatima highlighted my strengths, complemented my talents, and encouraged my projects. As children grow into early childhood, their world will begin to open up. They will begin to explore and ask lots of questions. Their interactions with family and those around them will help to shape their personality. For that reason, is important to be positive. My father, for example, has always told me life is all about perspective. I remember being five the first time he spoke about the glass being half full or half empty. We all know the answer, of course. The optimist parent would say the glass is half full.

Discipline Consistency

As much as I love Full House and the rest of squeaky clean family shows like Seven Heaven and The Brady Bunch, real families don’t work this way. Not everything is fixed with a hug and not all children listen after being scolded. Every so often you’re bound to break your own rules, especially when they are little and adorable, but discipline consistency is key. Both of my parents have always agreed on what was allowable and forbidden. Simple things as bedtimes, diets, videogame regimen, homework routines, language choices, etc. For example, until this day I can’t seem to say the phrase, “I hate.” It was a bad word in my house. Make sure to be clear and consistent when disciplining your child. Even for separated parents, agreeing on manners, behavior, and discipline styles will avoid confusion for the children. Explain and display the behavior that you expect from them.

Now going back to the question: Is There Such a Thing as a Perfect Parent?

There is no such an alien among us. Who ever says they are a perfect parent is delusional or in denial. Ms. Fatima always says: Parenthood is what you make it, so come as you are, grab your babies and make the journey a special one. The years fly and before you know it, they’ll be taking care of you.

For more information about Hollywood Learning Centers, please call (954) 922-8558 and for more articles like this one, subscribe to our blog!

Continue Reading

The Me! Me! Me! Epidemic Among Children

Hollywood Learning

Drivers cutting in front of you in traffic, people closing the door behind them on your face, millennials stepping on you while chasing Pokemons, teenagers taking selfies on your face, preschoolers pushing classmates to be first in line, toddlers making fits at the grocery store for treats. I mean, I can go on and on, but I’m sure I made my point.

Does it sound familiar? Individualistic, self-centered, self-absorbed, selfie snapchatters, call it what you want, I call it : Me! Me! Me! I even have a theme song for every time I witness this behavior, whether they are young or old, familiar or strangers.

I actually came to terms with this epidemic a few years ago while attending a live speech about “Happiness,” by the Dalai Lamas. He spoke about the difference between community-oriented societies and individualistic cultures. There, I learned that individualism is the belief that one’s personal needs are more important than the needs of a society as a whole. You might think, that sounds like the millennial generations, but research suggest individualistic behaviors began at the turn of the 20th century with the Baby Boomers born after WWII.

It is no secret, we live in an self-centered society. The minute I left the Dalai Lamas’ speech, my friends and I took the train back to our hotel. While on the train, a gentleman sat right next to one my friends, he took his coat off and slapped my friend right on the face when he opened his newspaper. We all laughed and ever since that day, I began detecting this sort of narcissistic behavior.

How do we stop it? How do we raise our children not to grow up to be individualistic, self-centered, self-absorbed, selfie snapchatters narcissist? Well, I’m no expert on the Me-Me-Me syndrome, but one thing is for sure, acknowledging this epidemic is a good start. The man sitting on the train, most likely didn’t noticed my friend, neither did the guy cutting in front of me in traffic, or the woman who closed the door on my face at the bank, but that doesn’t make it “okay.”

We have to teach our children to:

1) Be Aware of Our Surroundings

This includes the people, animals and plants. To be aware of others teaches us to be compassionate, empathetic, welcoming and accepting. All these practices can help them deviate from self-centered and me-me-me tendencies.

2) Serve as an Example

As parents, we can prevent or decrease this behavior in our children by serving as an example. Let’s do the exact opposite of the me-me-me behavior and let’s teach our children how to be giving, kind, and patient. Next time you are driving, let others by  patiently, wait for the person behind you before closing the door, give something away to charity every time you receive a gift. The ideas are countless and the impact measureless.

3) Ignore the Me-Me-Me Siren

Another thing parents can do, or avoid doing, is not always jumping every time the me-me-me siren goes off. Remember, children will go as far as you allow them and as much as we want to spoil them, we have to keep a balance routine for their sake, ours and society’s.

4) Me-Me-Me, Sing it!

You can make a song, a poem, a rhyme or a keyword to use it around your children every time they are displaying this kind of egocentric behavior. They will know what they are doing and either stop or laugh, but acknowledgement is the first step.

If you are curious to see if you or someone around you could have this Me-Me-Me syndrome, click here for a quick test (narcissistic personality inventory (NPI).

If you need to hear the me-me-me song, ask Ms. Fatima to sing it to you. I have sang it to her on a few occasions when necessary. For more blogs like this one, subscribe to Hollywood Learning’s blog!

Continue Reading

What Can We Teach Our Children While Making a Lemonade this Summer!

Lemonade Post

Lemonade has always been a classic summer drink. I mean, who can really say “no” to this cool and refreshing flavor? Yet, today’s article is not just about making a lemonade, but more on what else can we teach our children when preparing a yummy lemonade.

Budgeting yours Expenses

Any great projects begins with putting all the pieces together. After planning how many people will drink the lemonade (family, friends, party attendees), take a few minutes to make a budget. Encourage your children to brainstorm the supplies needed (lemonade, ice, sugar) and go over the recipe to see how much each of these items they will need. Help them narrow down an approximate cost. Provide the approximate total and take them to the grocery store. Teach them how to compare prices and how to buy the supplies based on their budget, just how we do it in real life.

Putting the Pieces Together

After having all the ingredients, get right to it. For this lemonade, you can use Hollywood Learning Center’s recipe:

  • 10 Cups of Water
  • 10 to 12 Lemons
  • 3 Cups of Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoon of Organic Honey (Our secret ingredient)
  • 2 Trays of Ice Cubes

Since recipes usually focus on certain servings, use this time to go over portions and fractions when doubling or dividing the recipe to fulfill your family’s needs. For instance, our recipe is for a large group of 10 children. If you family consist of 5 members, help your children figure out how much of the ingredients they would need.

The Importance of Safety

Teaching our children about safety from young creates well-aware adults. Starting with the lemons, make sure they remove the seeds to avoid anyone from swallowing them and growing lemons on their tummies. Also, depending on their age, teach them to use a knife carefully.

As far as water goes, some lemonades are prepared with cold water and others are prepared on the stove in order to dissolve the sugar. When using the stove, make sure to teach your children that they won’t use one until they are 18. Okay, I might be exaggerating, but you know what I mean. Another safety tip you can throw in there is the importance of watching our sugar intake. Diabetes is one of the most common diseases in school-aged children.

Last, but not least, let’s not forget the one of the most important lesson, have fun and sharing is caring! You have all summer to enjoy and indulge the many teachings that can come from a simple lemonade project.

If you like the post, subscribe to our blog: Parent Survival Guide.

Continue Reading

What Are Your Kids Doing this Summer?

Hollywood Learning Center Summer Camp:  June 13 - August 19 For more information please call (954) 922-8558

Hollywood Learning Center Summer Camp: June 13 – August 19 For more information please call (954) 922-8558

Summer is almost here! For over 30 years, Hollywood Learning Center, a ministry of First Presbyterian Church, has provided kids with a fun and enriching summer camp program to enjoy.  What are your kids doing this summer? Do you know what is in their summer bucket list?

Hollywood Learning Center put together a list full of our summer camp activities, including arts and crafts, pool time with swim instruction, music, yoga, games, sports, field trips, and more! How many of these are in your kids’ bucket list?

Here are a few of our field trips:

  • Bluefoot Pirate Ship
  • Butterfly World
  • Castaway Island Water Park
  • Davie Rodeo/Pro Rodeo Presentation
  • Flamingo Gardens
  • Flowers’ Bakery Nature’s Own 
  • Gumbo Limbo Nature Center 
  • Miami Seaquarium
  • Museum of Discovery and Science
  • Young at Art Children’s Museum

Most summer camps begin registering students as early as February, so if you have not yet selected a summer camp program for your kids, don’t worry. Hollywood Learning Center is still accepting summer camp registrations. Who’s more excited about summer?

HOLLYWOOD LEARNING CENTER SUMMER CAMP DATES: June 13 – August 19    

For more information about Hollywood Learning Center’s Summer Camp, please call (954) 922-8558

Continue Reading