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Talking to Coaches and Teachers

The saying tells us, “It takes a village to raise a child.”

Adults volunteering to work with our kids bring so much; different points of view, valuable skill sets and expertise. With kids in younger grades, it can be helpful to have an initial meeting with the teacher/coach while things are positive: we really are all working toward the same goals.
During that first meeting, it's important to find out the best method of communication (email, texts, phone messages, agenda) as well as the best time for this to happen. It can be really tough for a teacher or coach to have parents wanting to ask questions and share information at drop-off or pick-up; many families + confidentiality rules = communication disaster.
From that point on, communication may not happen frequently, and if everything is working well, that's just fine. Sometimes, though, there is a misunderstanding or a misbehaviour and we end up have having to connect with the teacher or coach when we wish we didn’t have to. For those times, here are some tools to use:
24 Hour Rule

In the heat of the moment, whatever has gone wrong can feel incredibly scary and overwhelming. Take time to breathe and calm down (possibly for 24 hours) so that your communication about the event can be productive. It is important for our child to feel heard and it is important for us, as parents, to realise that a child’s version of the situation is only one version. Some script that can be helpful is,

“We wanted to let you know that Johnny told us ____. We would love to get clear on how you think things happened and how we can help everyone to feel better about the situation.”
Document what was discussed and the resulting tasks. When you do meet with the teacher/coach, make a plan for follow up: when, and how. Keep communication consistent (for example, every Friday until things are running smoothly).
Be respectful of working hours.

If you are emailing a teacher/coach at 10pm, understand that she may not get back to you until the next work day. If you are curious, ask about turnaround time during your meeting, "When can I expect to hear back from you on this?"

In all relationships, communication is the key.

Creating a plan for clear and consistent communication with teachers and coaches sets everyone up for success. In addition, it models the process for our children.
Once they are in the upper elementary grades, kids can begin to take responsibility for communicating with their teachers when they need help: emailing to say that they tried a number of math questions and didn't understand the concept; asking the coach to review a portion of the drill that they didn't understand.
When we encourage our children to do this, through modelling and allowing them to practice, we are teaching them how to advocate for themselves. By the time they are in high school, they will feel capable of getting the help that they need from teachers and coaches.

From Julie Freedman Smith & Gail Bell, Parenting Power


5 Simple Back-To-School Hair Tips To Make Mornings Easier

Back-to-school is just around the corner and so is the hustle of busy mornings and trying to tackle the tangles in your child’s care-free summer hair.

Looking for quick and easy ways to get your kids hair healthy and tidy, while saving time during busy mornings?

We consulted our kid’s hair experts to find the top hair care tips to solve common back-to-school hair challenges and make your morning routine run smoother.


All that fun in the sun, swimming and playing outdoors all summer long can be hard on your child’s hair with extra exposure to dust, sunscreen, and chlorine.

Most parents first reaction is to reach for a deep conditioner to try and repair the damage when the true issue is usually build-up in the hair. Chlorine and sunscreen slowly build up on hair leaving it looking dull and feeling rough to the touch.

A clarifying shampoo is designed to strip away build-up leaving hair soft and shiny, and SO much easier to manage and should be considered the first step to repairing hair. A swimmer’s shampoo, like Beaner’s 1 More Lap works great as a clarifying shampoo.


To keep hair build-up at bay, avoid 2 in 1 shampoo conditioners which only make the problem worse (think washing and waxing your car in one step, it’s not very effective!).

If bath times are a rush, ditch the 2 in 1 product and try a shampoo only, followed by a detangling leave-in conditioner, which will soften hair and speed up the combing process.

Lastly, a fresh haircut to trim off damaged ends will really improve the healthiness of your child’s hair.


If your child’s hair is always getting in the way while playing sports or trying to focus at school, try these quick and easy hairstyle tips:

For girls: Try a headband or headband braid to keep hair off the face and out of the eyes. Braiding can be done the night before to save time in the morning. If braiding is not your thing, you can also try a cloth, no-slip headband, clips or barrettes to keep hair off the face.

For boys: For hair that’s longer in the front, try switching to a shorter haircut style or use a hair gel to style the hair up and away from the forehand. You might be surprised to discover that your child’s ability to focus actually improves!


A great way to streamline your morning routine is to tackle detangling the night before using a leave-in detangler spray like Beaners 2 Knotty, and wide-tooth comb or Wet Brush (total life saver). The detangler spray will not only help with tangles, but also take care of fly-away hairs and static.

For children with longer hair, you may want to braid hair the night before to keep it from getting tangled over night. 

If your child is old enough, teaching them how to brush their own hair may also save you a bit of time in the morning.


Children with longer hair should brush starting at the tips of their hair and work their way up to the root to remove tangles more easily.


Curly hair presents some unique challenges. We suggest using a lightweight conditioner without wax for more defined silky curls without the crazy.

After bath time use a curl definer like Original Sprout Curl Calmer or Joico Spiker Gel, scrunching into damp hair to define those gorgeous curls.


Sweat and outdoor play can cause hair to fall forward into the eyes and cheeks and ruin your child’s hairdo.

For “spikier” styles, use a cornstarch-based hair gel or balm to stand up to sweat and the outdoor elements.

For longer styles, a leave-in conditioner and hairspray will help tame fly-aways and static to keep hair smooth.

For more kid's hair care tips, ask your Beaners Fun Cuts stylist for more information.

Kids Summer Hair Care Tips


Ah, summer. Glorious carefree days spent outside and playing in the water.

The last thing you want to worry about is tangled, messy hair.

Here are some tips to help make your summer smoother and your children’s hair low maintenance.

Swimmer’s Hair

Chlorine can be really hard on hair, leaving a gritty build-up, damaging ends and drying the hair out.  A few quick preventative steps can help keep your child’s hair healthy and manageable:

Pretreat The Hair

Hair is very porous and will soak up less chlorine if it’s pre-treated with a conditioner prior to swimming like Beaners Fun Cuts 2Knotty detangling conditioner spray. Apply a light layer of conditioner before you leave home, to allow enough time for the conditioner to soak into the hair.

Once you arrive at the pool, make sure your child throughly rinses their hair before entering the pool. By saturating the hair with clean tap water, the hair will retain much less chlorine. 

Cleanse Après Swim

Immediately after swimming, cleanse your child’s hair with shampoo and conditioner. If you frequently swim, use a clarifying shampoo like Beaners Fun Cuts 1MoreLap, swimmers shampoo which strips away build-up from chlorine, sunscreen and more. 

After using a clarifying shampoo, always use a deep conditioner like Beaner’s In 2 Deep to replenish the moisture.


Brushing hair after swimming can be a real challenge. To tame the tangles, use a detangling spray like 2Knotty to smooth out the hair and then use a wide-tooth comb or WetBrush.

Keep It Short

With all the swimming and activity, shorter hair can be easier to manage for the summer. And when it comes to beating the heat and staying cool, the shorter hair, the better!

A trendy “undercut” can remove bulky hair from underneath and help your child stay cool. Clipper art patterns can also be shaved into the undercut to really express your child’s personal style.


Image Credit: Pony Tail Undercut: Instagram @cosmobygabrielle

Tame Those Tresses

Keeping hair away from the face is also a great way to keep your kids cool and their hair looking great.


A headband or hair clip is just the trick to keep the hair out of the way.

Nourish And Protect

Moms are not immune to summer hair issues. If your hair needs a little extra TLC, try Original Sprout’s nutrient-rich Protective Protein Hair Mist.

It’s the ultimate hair repair product, repair damage and split ends. Spritz on your hair during the day as a hair healing aid or use before bed for an overnight moisturizing and repair treatment.

Available at most Beaners Fun Cuts locations. Safe for teens and adults.

Enjoy the rest of your summer!

Summer Screen Time

Do you feel like your child has become a zombie, constantly in front of some device? There’s still time left to get your kids outside this summer and to stop the arguing about screen time.

Why bother? According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, In general, while watching television, your child is probably not doing any of the following:

  • Asking questions
  • Solving problems
  • Being creative
  • Exercising initiative
  • Practicing eye-hand coordination
  • Scanning (useful in reading)
  • Practicing motor skills
  • Thinking critically, logically, and analytically
  • Practicing communication skills
  • Playing interactive games with other children or adults (helpful for developing patience, self-control cooperation, sportsmanship)”

So what do we do about it? Decide on the absolute limits and then involve your kids in working out the details within those limits. Here are some points to consider:

·         Amount of screen time per day (phones, computers, devices, TV, movies)

·         How that time should be used – all at once? 30 minutes at a time?

·         How will they keep track of their screen time (timer, check list?)

·         What are the consequences if they don’t track their time or go over time?

·          Do they need to play outside prior to being on the screen?

·         Are there chores to complete prior to screen time?

Your kids may complain about this process. Expect them to be disappointed. Accept emotions, do not accept disrespect. If they need to cool off before they can be involved in the discussion, allow them as much screen-free time as they need to come back to the table and start the conversation again. When they are ready to take responsibility for their screen use, then the planning can begin.

Be willing to evaluate how the plan is working after a week. Be open to making some changes – maybe their game takes about 45 minutes to play so 30-minute increments don’t really work. Ultimately, decide on limits that you are willing to enforce and enjoy fewer arguments for the rest of the summer.



From Julie Freedman Smith & Gail Bell, Parenting Power



Summer and Siblings – Stop The Fights Before They Happen

Too much togetherness is rarely a good thing, so set your kids up for success with realistic expectations for the summer.

Follow these steps to build a plan that works for your family:

Provide some structure.
Going from scheduled school-time to no schedule can be a real challenge for many children. Without a schedule, they feel no sense of control and will therefore fight for control over anything. As soon as there is some predictability for the day, the need to control everything seems to decrease. It can be as simple as reviewing when meals will happen, along with quiet time, errands that need to be run, etc.

Expect that your kids will need a break from each other.
Rather than waiting for a fight to break up their together-time, help them to plan when they will spend time apart. At the very least, teach them how to ask for it,

“I need some time on my own,” rather than, “I hate you! Get out of my face!”

Help them to figure out sharing.
If there is one toy/technology device/basketball hoop – how do they use it together? Kids (4 and up) are great at coming up with solutions to these kind of problems so ask them to help figure it out. 

Some solutions:
  • Odd days Jack chooses the game, Even days Mary chooses the game
  • Taking turns
  • Scheduling individual time on the device/toy

Set clear boundaries about what can and cannot be done along with when and for how long. Provide limits and consequences ahead of time so that things feel fair.
  • Technology time
  • Time when they need to be outside
  • Time when you can play with them vs. Independent play time
  • Run with scissors
  • Use permanent markers (you get the picture)

From Julie Freedman Smith & Gail Bell, Parenting Power

Bedtime Routines For a Better Night’s Sleep

Our partners at Parenting Power have created some great tips on creating a bedtime routine that works for your family in their article “Easier Bedtimes #RealTime”.

Julie Freedman Smith from Parenting Power says “All routines are important because they help parents and kids feel confident about what’s coming next. It can happen consistently and faster, with less negotiation.

Kids love routines because they feel powerful when they know what is going to happen next.
Once we have a routine, we can ask our kids, “What do we do next?” That means parents can sound less bossy and kids can feel like they are capable.”

It’s no secret, kids love and crave routines and in the area of sleep, routines are really important.

Have you ever noticed that when you don’t follow the usual bedtime routine, your child has trouble falling to sleep? A pre-bed routine is considered good sleep hygiene and aids in relaxation and signaling our brain to start creating sleep hormones, so it’s essential for a great sleep.

The benefits of a good sleep don’t stop there. Getting enough sleep can improve your family’s well being and overall health.
Even a 6-week old baby has the ability to identify pre-nap and bedtime routines when done regularly, so start using routines sooner than later.

And if it results in a better sleep for baby (and parents), why not get started sooner than later!

How Routines Relax

Having a bedtime routine helps children know what to expect, which leads to them feeling safe, relaxed and cared for.

This relaxation effect helps trigger their body’s natural sleep hormones, which makes going to sleep a lot easier.

Consistency Is Key

Julie and Gail from Parenting Power also encourage consistency. “Whatever the routine, consistency is the key. This is where, as parents, we have to be sure to allow plenty of time for clean-up and the routine itself, in order to get the children into bed a decent hour. No child wants to be yanked away from an activity, told to hurry up and then thrown into bed and told to “go to sleep”.”

Bedtime Routine Ideas

Here’s a list of possible steps to include in your bedtime routine:

Bath time

A relaxing bath (or sponge bath) is a nice way to wind down in the evening.  Beaners 1 Easy Step tear-less shampoo and body wash is gentle enough to use daily and safe for babies too. If cradle cap is an issue, you’ll want to try Beaners Renu 1 cradle cap shampoo. Watch Mommy Connection’s facebook live about Beaner’s Renu 1 cradle cap shampoo here.


Who doesn’t love a relaxing massage before bed? Original Sprout’s Scrumptious Baby Cream (available at Beaners) is a natural baby lotion that smells so good and has none of those nasty chemicals in it. You can watch Mommy Connection’s review of Original Sprout’s Scrumptious Baby Cream here.


Next it’s time to put on comfy pajamas. If you have a baby, speak to them throughout the routine and explain what you are doing.

Story Time!

One of our favourite things is cuddling up with a good bedtime book. The physical closeness and auditory stimulation are good for mind and body.

Feeding Time

If you have a baby that isn’t weaned, it’s time for the usual pre-bedtime feeding.

Take Care Of Those Teeth

Let’s not forgot to take care of those teeth. Did you know that children with consistent bedtime routines tend to have better dental health?

Hair Brushing

If your child has long or curly hair, you may want to take this time to do some detangling with Beaners 2 Knotty leave –in conditioner. Gently brush out the tangles with a wide-tooth comb or detangling brush, like the Macaron by Milk + Sass or a Wet Brush®.


A quick lullaby will help signal that it’s just about time to sleep! One of your child’s favourite parts of the bedtime routine will be hearing you sing them a lullaby.

More Cuddles!

It doesn’t hurt to rock your swaddled baby for a while or lay down in your child’s bed for a quick cuddle as one last “good night”.

Background Noise

Your baby might enjoy some white noise, which mimics the sound of being in the womb. A simple electric fan can be used. Older children might enjoy listening to music as they fall asleep.

Don’t Forget Yourself

If all goes well, next it’s time to take care of you! Remember to have a bedtime routine for yourself to help you have a deeper, more restful sleep.

Sometimes self-care just means a little pampering.  It can be as simple as treating yourself with a luxurious beauty product, like Original Sprout’s Tahitian Hair Oil for a deep condition or their Protein Mist, which strengthens your hair. 

Whether your bedtime routine includes reading a book or having a bath or even just making sure you brush your teeth and wash your face, try to create a bedtime ritual that helps get you ready for a good night’s rest.

For more bedtime routine tips, check out Parenting Power’s “Easier Bedtimes #RealTimehere.