Tag: Children and Childhood

The Era of Fast-Food Toys Begins to Melt Away

In the climactic scene of “Toy Story 3,” Woody, Buzz Lightyear and the rest of the crew narrowly escape death when a remote-controlled claw lifts them from an incinerator just before flames engulf them. Now Burger King is set to enact an alternative ending — collecting, sorting and chopping up hundreds of thousands of tiny […]

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The Kids Who Love ‘Frozen’ and the Parents Who Love Them

What’s the most accurate way to describe kids’ relationship to “Frozen”? Adoration is insufficient, and obsession is downright weak. It’s more like a cathexis, an acutely intense energy focused on a singular entity. But ask any parent of school-aged children what they think about “Let It Go,” the anthem from the 2013 movie, and you […]

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The Mister Rogers No One Saw

Up at the castle, in front of the cameras, the puppets were eagerly preparing for a festival. Dwarfed beneath high rows of stage lights, in front of painted trees, they bopped happily along the pretend stone wall. But there was a buzz kill: King Friday XIII, the mighty ruler in his bright purple cape, decreed […]

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A 9-Year-Old Is About to Get a University Degree. He Has #Giganticplans.

LONDON — He doesn’t play chess or any musical instruments. But he loves Fortnite and Minecraft and watches Netflix. Soon, Laurent Simons, 9, of Belgium will become one of the youngest people in the world to graduate from a university. For this, his teachers and others have called him a genius. He simply says, “I’m […]

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Our Schools Can’t Solve the Problems of Our Rigid Workweek

The average American parent has a strange schedule. The 9-to-5 work schedule hails from the early 20th century, when labor reformers sought to institute fairer labor conditions. The school schedule for children dates to the 1960s, when rural and urban school districts settled into a rhythm of six and a half-hour school days, five days […]

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Climate Change Poses Threats to Children’s Health Worldwide

The health effects of climate change will be unevenly distributed and children will be among those especially harmed, according to a new report from the medical journal The Lancet. The report compared human health consequences under two scenarios: one in which the world meets the commitments laid out in the Paris Agreement and reins in […]

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When Your Tween Wants to Conform to the VSCO Girl Trend

“Can I use my saved allowance to buy a Pura Vida bracelet?” my 12-year-old daughter asked this past August. I didn’t think twice about saying yes. It was $12. But then I learned that these colorful bracelets — made by artisans in Costa Rica — are part of the larger “VSCO girl” trend, an “effortless, […]

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Getting a Handle on Self-Harm

The sensations surged up from somewhere inside, like poison through a syringe: a mix of sadness, anxiety, and shame that would overwhelm anyone, especially a teenager. “I had this Popsicle stick and carved it into sharp point and scratched myself,” Joan, a high school student in New York City said recently; she asked that her […]

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Early Motherhood Has Always Been Miserable

There are two diametrically opposed concepts of motherhood that dominate conversation in America today. There’s the Instagram influencer’s vision of the ideal mother with perfectly groomed, smiling children set against a backdrop of high-end appliances. And there’s the gritty real talk of comedians and writers like Ali Wong, who described her early days of motherhood […]

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3 Students Charged With Plotting Attack on Their Middle School

Three middle school students in western New York plotted a lethal attack on their school that was thwarted after an online threat by one student led law enforcement authorities to open an investigation, officials said on Friday. The students, whose names were not released because of their ages, were charged on Thursday with second-degree conspiracy […]

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Don’t Let Trump Make You Numb to What’s Unacceptable

The problem with being a frog in a beaker is that you may not notice the water temperature rising to a boil. Humans, too. In New Delhi, people get used to air that is filthy. In Syria, to checkpoints. In Angola, to corruption. In China, to propaganda. And in America, we risk becoming numbed to […]

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In Flint, Mich., Lead Crisis Moves From Homes to Schools

ImageNakiya Wakes and her son, Jaylon, in Flint, Mich.Credit…Brittany Greeson for The New York Times FLINT, Mich. — Nakiya Wakes could not understand how her wiry, toothy-grinned 6-year-old had gone from hyperactive one school year to what teachers described as hysterical the next. Then, in 2015, the state of Michigan delivered a diagnosis of sorts: […]

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‘Blue’s Clues’ Returns, and Silence Is Still the Star

TORONTO — Two decades ago, “Blue’s Clues” stormed children’s television with something colorless, low-tech and ordinary: silence. Last winter, on the Toronto set of “Blue’s Clues & You!” — a reboot premiering Nov. 11 on Nickelodeon — silence was still the star, even though the host was new and (relatively) loud. Joshua Dela Cruz, 30, […]

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Girls as Young as 12 Were Strip-Searched in Australia

A police official said, “I’ve got young children, and if I thought that the police felt that they were at risk of doing something wrong, I’d want them strip-searched.” The Splendor in the Grass music festival in Byron Bay, Australia, in July.Credit…Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images Nov. 6, 2019, 3:19 a.m. ET SYDNEY, Australia — Girls as […]

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Screen Use Tied to Children’s Brain Development

A new study using sophisticated brain scans found an association between screen use and the development of young children’s brains, especially in areas related to language development, reinforcing the messages about minimizing screen time for preschoolers. Let’s start with full disclosure: I know some of the authors of the research, which was published Monday in […]

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Adoption Groups Could Turn Away L.G.B.T. Families Under Proposed Rule

A proposed rule by the Trump administration would allow foster care and adoption agencies to deny their services to L.G.B.T. families on faith-based grounds. The proposal would have “enormous” effects and touch the lives of a large number of people, Denise Brogan-Kator, chief policy officer at Family Equality, an advocacy organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual […]

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She Was Daddy’s Little Girl. At 3, She Watched Him Shot Dead.

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — It was a daddy-daughter moment. It turned into a reminder of the lasting trauma of the intensifying conflict in Afghanistan. Amanullah Watandost, 42, a government employee, was behind the wheel of his Toyota Corolla on Thursday afternoon. His 3-year-old daughter, Madina, wearing a dress with a pink bottom and two pink bows, […]

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Owe Lunch Money? Don’t Plan on Going to Prom

A suburban New Jersey school system has wrestled for months with a problem common in other districts: an accumulating pile of student lunch debt. The policy in Cherry Hill already limited students who owed more than $20 to a tuna sandwich meal. Over the summer, the school board considered amending that policy and denying lunch […]

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Anxious and Cooped Up, 1.5 Million Kashmiri Children Are Still Out of School

KAPRAN, Kashmir — Every day, Aliya Khan, a fifth-grader in Kashmir, steps out of her house and walks down a dirt lane lined by tall maple trees to check on what’s happening at her school. And every day, a few minutes later, she walks back to her house with her head hanging down, totally dejected. […]

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Why Children (and Pregnant Women) May Want to Eat More Fish

Does fish make children smarter? There is some evidence that it might. In two reviews of data from 44 studies, researchers have concluded that eating seafood during pregnancy and childhood is associated with improved performance on tests of mental skills. The analyses, published in the journal PLEFA, included 29 studies with 102,944 mother-child pairs, and […]

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