Reading app – The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins

King Derwin of Didd demands “hats off to the King” when he passes by his citizens. But poor young Bartholomew Cubbins has a problem. Every time he removes his hat, another hat appears atop his head! Come along for the ride, as Bartholomew is whisked off to the royal throne room, summoned to the wise men, brought before the King’s magicians and even shot at by bow and arrow. As the number of hats reaches 200…300…400, what will happen to Bartholomew at hat number 500?

How do you teach a student to learn?

You can teach a student a lesson for a day; but if you can teach him to learn by creating curiosity, he will continue the learning process as long as he lives.

~Clay P. Bedford

Bologna Book Fair Establishes New Prize

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, and for the first time, BolognaFiere and the Italian Publishers Association will award the BOP – the Bologna Prize for the Best Children’s Publishers of the Year.

The award will highlight creative editorial choices and innovations made during the previous year. =>

A Child’s Fear of Needles – Gone in Just a Puff!

Even the most hardened, insensitive person can’t help but feel a growing sense of dread when about to step through the looming, clinical doors of a hospital – especially when painful treatments and an uncertain outcome await on the other side.

Often those treatments include some form of “needlework.”

As adults, we try to draw on our powers of reason and logic to overcome fears of getting hurt by a painful jab. But what about a small child? Or even a young adolescent?

Some children find this situation extremely traumatic and are unable to accept the necessary injection. They may scream and kick to get away – anything to relieve the terror in their hearts.

After seeing again and again, how extremely distressing these painful injections were for her young cancer patients, one assistant nurse in Sweden began to wonder if there might be a better way to approach needle procedures for children.

She felt driven to try to lessen their fear of pain and extreme distress at the very sight of needles!

So, for the last several years, Lena Hedén has done a thorough, scientific study of this question, and tested a possible solution. Her findings are presented in the doctoral thesis: Distressing Symptoms in Children with Cancer in General; During Needle Procedures in Particular published by Uppsala University in the Spring of 2012.

And her research has certainly paid off.

Using a series of controlled studies, she compared the amount of pain and fear children experienced when about to undergo a needle procedure. In total, almost 300 young cancer patients aged 1 to 19 participated in the four studies. Parents and nurses also provided information about how much fear and pain they could see the child was expressing.

The standard way of approaching a needle procedure is to use a topical cream or patch that numbs the skin of the puncture site. When a needle is inserted in a subcutaneous port, oral morphine and midazolam are used to help ease the pain.
In this study, patients were given the standard medicines or a placebo on some occasions. At other times they got to play with soap bubbles or cuddle with a heated pillow.

Dr. Hedén’s findings were rather astounding. There was no difference in how much effect the morphine had, compared to the placebo. According to the patients, oral morphine had almost no effect whatsoever!

However, blowing soap bubbles or having a heated pillow, clearly reduced the children’s fear and distress during the needle procedures. This was especially true for younger children. Wonderfully, the most frightened children showed marked improvement with these distraction interventions.
Remarkable! Soap bubbles helped much more than morphine!

Perhaps we grown-ups should take really close notice here. Are these young, brave cancer warriors teaching us a vital lesson? Or perhaps just driving home an important reminder?

Nurturing our childish side all through life, helps us remember to have some fun now and then – even when times are hard – and… 
… blowing soap bubbles can be powerful medicine at any age!

July, 2012
Lund, Sweden
About the Author: Janet Boynton Runeson is a freelance web copywriter and director of Entrepreneurial Copy. With several advanced degrees in the Humanities, Fine Arts and Economics, she has extensive experience in international marketing and specializes in cultural awareness.

It’s time for a showdown. “The hunters” by John Flanagan

Brotherband 3: The Hunters

John Flanagan

It’s time for a showdown. Pirates vs Skandians. Bring it on, Herons! 

Hal and his brotherband crew are hot on the trail of the pirate Zavac and they have one thing only on their minds: Stopping the bloodthirsty thief before he can do more damage. If Hal is to succeed, he will need to go beyond his brotherband training. He will need to challenge the pirate one-on-one, knowing only one of them will survive. The epic series from “Ranger’s Apprentice” author John Flanagan continues, delivering pulse-pounding adventure and fun.

Read an excerpt and watch the trailer =>

Kids Are Worth It! : Giving Your Child The Gift Of Inner Discipline

by Barbara Coloroso

Filled with practical suggestions for handling the ordinary and extraordinary tribulations of growing up, kids are worth it! helps you help your children grow into responsible, resilient, resourceful adults — not because you tell them to, but because they want to. =>

The fate of empires

“All who have meditated on the art of governing mankind have been convinced that the fate of empires depends on the education of youth.”

— Aristotle


Children and their elders

“Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.”

–Baldwin, James