Category Archives: Child obesity

Protecting Our Children from Corporate Marketing

I think this must be MY pumpkin!

How do you make your buying decisions?

Many factors probably go into the final decision about which car to purchase, what brand of spaghetti to grab from the store shelf, how many rolls of toilet paper to keep on hand in the closet.  You might do research online when it comes to purchasing a car.  You might ask a friend who has a reputation as a great cook which spaghetti she uses.  You might figure out how much you will save if you buy the twenty-four roll pack as opposed to the four-roll pack.

One of the most influential factors in determining what we buy is corporate marketing.

Companies spend TRILLIONS of dollars to convince us to buy their products.

And, ever since the 1950’s, corporations have been marketing to children.  However, their efforts have exploded in the last decade and I believe our children are at risk because of it.

  • Corporate marketing is ONLY concerned with the bottom line…SELL MORE AT GREATER PROFITS AT ANY COST!  Our children are bombarded with commercials on TV, radio, magazines and the internet for biggie-sized food and fast-food meals with toys.  Companies donate computer equipment to schools and infiltrate the classrooms with their branding messages.  Juvenile diabetes, obesity and many attention deficit and hyperactive disorders in children are rising at a staggering rate.  Life expectancy of today’s children will be lower than that of their parents, even though our medical technology is at its highest level ever.  Is there a correlation between corporate marketing and these problems?
  • Corporate marketing is strongly GENDER DISCRIMINATING.  If you watch commercials geared for young children, you will notice that boys are supposed to be strong, tough and ready to fight while girls are portrayed as pretty and sexy.  Years ago there were many measures taken in the schools to educate teachers so they would respond to boys and girls on a fair and equal basis, encouraging girls to sign up for math and science classes and requiring boys to take home economics.  Obviously, the companies that are looking to sell their products have other ideas in mind and they have reverted to the old ways.
  • Corporate marketing is attempting to turn our young children into life-long super-consumers who are shallow and are only concerned about themselves and getting the things they want.  Most parents don’t realize the effect that all this branding and marketing has on young children.

Do you agree that this is a problem?

Do you feel parents need to protect their children from corporate marketing?

And if you do, what can we do? 

  • Perhaps we can turn off the TV.  That would be a start, but not the entire answer because the messages are on the internet, in the schools, in magazines…everywhere.  If you are looking for ideas of what to do with your young children after the TV has been turned off, there are 100’s of fun-filled, educational, self-esteem building activities in Show Me How!  This award-winning resource is available as a print book with lots of lined spaces for recording your child’s highlights or on Amazon’s Kindle.
  • Perhaps we also need to say “no” when our children come to ask for a particular toy or food if we feel it is not good for them.
  • Perhaps we can be good role models when it comes to not buying excess stuff or things that are not healthy for us. 
  • Perhaps we can encourage our children to reach out, helping and giving to others.  If you are looking for ideas along those lines, you can check out www.kidsareheroes.org, an organization devoted to spotlighting and supporting children who help others.

Please share your thoughts.

Increase Your Wealth As You Improve Your Health

I saw a similar headline in an article in a recent Money Magazine.

It’s really commonsense, if you think about it.

What are some ways we could increase our wealth and improve our health?

1.    If you are a smoker, giving up cigarettes will improve your health…and you will also save money by not having to buy them. Because you will avoid many of the serious health issues that smokers often have to deal with, you will save on doctor visits and medications.

2.    Are you someone who drives everywhere…even to places that may only be a short distance away?  Walking or biking instead of driving would save money on gas as well as wear and tear on the car which would extend the life of the car.  The exercise gained from walking or biking would improve your core strength and over-all health…and that in turn would result in less money spent on pain medications and doctor visits for back pain.

3.    Do you eat out often or bring home prepared fast-food on a regular basis?  Most fast-food is really unhealthy and eating out can be very expensive.  Try to set aside a few hours a week to prepare home-cooked meals that you can freeze or refrigerate for healthful, easy-to-heat dinners.  You will save a lot of money and you will be eating much more nutritious foods.

4.    Portion control is an important step in maintaining a healthy weight…we are encouraged by the media to super-size and biggie-size our meals and that’s one of the reasons obesity is such a rampant problem. Before you pour a bowl of cereal, for example, look at the serving size on the box.  Usually it is ½ to 1 cup…but many cereal bowls hold 2 cups or more.  Buy a set of measuring cups and use them to make sure you are putting one serving in your bowl, not two or three.  The box of cereal will last a lot longer (saving you money) and you and your family will not be adding double and triple the number of calories when you eat cereal for breakfast…thereby maintaining a healthier weight.

What ways do you have of increasing your wealth while improving your health?  Do share!

It’s almost time for Jingle Bells and Holiday Wreaths!  If you are looking for some healthy child-friendly recipes, please check out my book.  Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking gives you 100 easy cooking activities (and 100 simple craft projects) that would be fun for the whole family.  The holidays will be here before you know it…this award-winning book makes a wonderful gift for any parent, grandparent, preschool teacher, daycare provider or any children ages 2-7.  If you want a gift that keeps on giving long after the wrapping and ribbon have been tossed away, just buy a copy…you won’t be disappointed.  There is a money-back guarantee…and it’s on special now for 50% off the cover price!

Starting School Jitters Be Gone!

COLORADO SPRINGS PARENTS/GRANDPARENTS/TEACHERS OF PRESCHOOLERS

SAVE THE DATE

STARTING SCHOOL JITTERS BE GONE!

THE SHOW-ME-HOW STORY-TIME PROGRAM

Saturday, August 6th

THERE WILL BE TWO IDENTICAL PRESENTATIONS

11:30am to 12noon and 12:30pm to 1pm

Family Christian Bookstore: 7560 N. Academy, Colorado Springs, CO

  • Bring your young children and listen to a story
  • Help your child make a simple craft project
  • Get a free flyer: 5 simple steps to a smoother school year
  • Enter to win free preschool craft supplies

 

Local author, Vivian Kirkfield, is a former kindergarten and Head Start teacher and mom of three. Her award-winning parenting book, Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking, is a wonderful resource of story suggestions and educational fun-filled activities for preschoolers – a true shortcut for busy parents and teachers.

For more information: 237-3111 or vivian@positiveparentalparticipation.com

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