Tag: teens

The Mystic Secret of College Tours

Photo via americancollegetours.org
Photo via americancollegetours.org

This past weekend I took my daughter Jane, a high school junior, on the first of what will surely be many campus tours. She is my fifth and last child to go to college, if you include the ex-stepkids, and I realized early Saturday morning that I know something about this process that I didn’t the first several times through.

Baltimore Clayworks Summer Camps


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catch of the day fish (2)

Ceramists know something very important. It’s that clay, any way you slice it, is fun. And while for many adults, thinking of pottery making still recalls the famous scene from the movie Ghost (could be worse, right?), there’s an entire world of history, ecology, and craft that goes into making things out of clay. Baltimore Clayworks has been the local hub for Baltimore ceramics enthusiasts for the past 36 years. Through their Mt. Washington campus and community sites in under-resourced neighborhoods across the region, Baltimore Clayworks has brought the joy of clay to adults and children alike through innumerable classes, workshops, events and exhibitions. This summer, Baltimore Clayworks will be offering ten 1-week long summer camps for kids and teens, each with a different theme. They’re open to kids ages 6-15, and believe us, they’re all awesome.

Teen Lingerie Entrepreneur Delivers Message of Empowerment to Local Girls

Megan and Mary Margaret Grassell
Yellowberry Founder Megan Grassell and her sister Mary Margaret Grassell

Imagine you are eleven years old and your mom is taking you to the mall to purchase your first bra.  As you enter the lingerie section, you are confronted with rack after rack of lacy and racy undergarments befitting the runway of a Victoria Secret Fashion Show. 

It is exactly the scenario that inspired Megan Grassell, the CEO and Founder of Yellowberry who speaks today to inspire local girls, to create a bra that “fits your body, not the one you are supposed to have.”

When Novice Mom Hits the Slopes

Photo courtesy of onthesnow.com.
Photo courtesy of onthesnow.com.

We rode the ski lift in relative silence. While I tried to distract myself by taking in the scenic views of snowcapped mountains and folks of all ages dressed in brightly colored ski attire making their way down the hill, I’m pretty sure my two adolescent children were willing the ski lift to go faster so they could begin their descent down the mountain as quickly as possible. I, on the other hand, white knuckling the protective metal bar before me and hoping to make it down the hill in one piece, would have been satisfied to sit on the ski lift chair for a bit longer. But the ride was soon over, the metal bar raised, and we were deposited at the top of the hill.

“So, guys,” I asked my 12- and 14-year-old, trying to buy a little time and sound as casual as possible. “What’s your strategy for getting down the hill?”

It’s Scientifically Proven: Some Teens are Genetically Wired to Want their Parents Around


teen and parent

On a recent Sunday morning, I was sipping coffee and perusing the newspaper with my husband at the dining room table, blissfully enjoying a rare moment of relaxation, when my son burst through the front door. Glancing at the clock, I noticed it was only 10 a.m. Normally Sunday school lasted until 10:15, after which he walked home, another 10 or 15 minutes.

“Back so soon?” I asked casually.

Checking up on the Kids — and the Parents — at Sleepovers


boys drinking

My kids are still in middle school, but already I’ve begun to take mental notes of their friends who seem most likely to become, uh, shall I say, highly adventurous teenagers. You know, the ones with whom you might not want your kid spending the weekend. But here’s the thing: When it comes to being concerned about the company your teenagers keep, it’s not just their peers you’ve got to worry about.

Sometimes, the parents are the problem.

Consider the scenario in which Molly Shattuck, Baltimore mother-of-three, allegedly invited a 15-year-old boy to spend the evening at her beach house with her same-age son and younger siblings present.

LGBTQ Teens: Going Public in the Private Schools


prom hands

Fitting in. It’s what most teenagers aspire to do. Sure, there are outliers who do things like dye their hair bright colors and pierce multiple body parts to draw attention to themselves. But very few teens want to be too different. And being on the LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, questioning) spectrum definitely qualifies as different. Most recent statistics estimate that just 3.5 percent of adults identify as lesbian, gay, or bisexual; 0.3 percent identify as transgender. As for the under-18 population, statistics on sexual orientation are hard to find. That comes as no surprise, given that many teenagers on the LGBTQ spectrum have yet to come out to themselves, let alone anyone else. But that’s changing.

Dad Desperate to Stop Cyber Bullying of Daughter

Photo courtesy dosomething.org
Photo via dosomething.org

Dear Whit:

I hope you can help us with this problem because we don’t know what to do. My daughter is being bullied by a group of girls who shun her at school and post cruel messages on social media at night. It’s so bad that she doesn’t even want to go to school. As I’m sure you can imagine, this is upsetting to us and ruins school as well as out-of-school activities for our daughter. This whole situation has me angry and confused. How do you think my wife and I should deal with it?

Mad Dad

Dear Mad:

In this brave new world of cyber-space, you will encounter people who are nothing close to brave. You and your daughter probably feel helpless against this Lord of the Flies brand of senseless, gratuitous, and cowardly cruelty. However, you have recourse that could prove effective in stopping the e-bullying and shunning of your daughter, especially because of the cyber component.

How to Talk to Your Kids About Sex


Baltimore-based sex educator Deborah Roffman has a tough but important job:  talking to tweens and teens about sex. Phew, some parents out there might be thinking, Maybe I can get her to come to my kids’ school and I’ll be off the hook! But that’s exactly the wrong move, according to Roffman, because parents should be their kids’ primary (first AND most important) sexuality educators. “Data consistently shows that conversation helps postpone the age of first intercourse and it slows kids down,” Roffman says. “Same with all other risk-taking behavior. Parents matter.” Here are some of her tips for making those conversations more helpful and honest, and less miserably awkward:

  • It’s better to talk than to not talk. Don’t worry about saying the wrong thing, Roffman notes. There’s no perfect approach or correct speech to give; instead, it’s more important to open the doors of communication and talk, talk, talk.