TeenLife Blog

Supporting teen success, one post at a time

Category: For Parents

Posted March 17, 2014, 2:16 p.m. by Elizabeth Suneby | View Comments
Help Your Teen Find a Career

When my daughter Emma was eight years old, she participated in her first gymnastics competition. Her maiden event was her floor routine. Like a pro, she saluted to the judges and waited for her music to come on. But when the music started, she stood there like a deer in the headlights. She had forgotten her entire routine. Elementary School: Olympic Gymnast After an inauspicious start, Emma somehow held it together throughout all the following events—beam, vault, and the uneven bars—but as soon as she got in the car, she broke down in tears, gasping and choking out a question ...

Posted March 16, 2014, 11 a.m. by Vicki Ritterband | View Comments
Medical Marijuana and Teens

Like many parents, Lisa Bonaquist talks with her two teenagers about marijuana. When her 16-year-old argues that compared to alcohol, it’s relatively safe, the Saratoga, New York, mother has a simple retort: “It’s illegal and if you get caught, there are consequences.” At least for now. Legalized Marijuana New York may someday follow in the footsteps of 20 states and the District of Columbia, where marijuana is not quite as illegal as it once was. In these places, physicians may now authorize patients to use medical marijuana for certain purposes, like relieving nausea caused by che- motherapy or treating chronic ...

Posted March 14, 2014, 11 a.m. by Customer Service | View Comments
Careers in Sports

A career as a professional athlete is a dream for many teens. Most of them start playing sports as young as 5 years old and fall in love with their game of choice. When they see big, professional, famous athletes on TV, they most likely aspire to be in their shoes one day.It is often in high school that many teens realize the odds are not in their favor. In fact, according to the NCAA, it is estimated that only 1 in 16,000 high school athletes attains a professional career in sports. That being said, your teenager should not lose ...

Posted March 13, 2014, 11 a.m. by Randi Mazzella | View Comments
Teens and Tattoos

Dani Silverstein was a freshman in high school when she first thought about getting a tattoo. Silverstein says, “I am extremely interested in art. I always found amazement in certain designs and pictures. Tattoos are art, and I am all for having art on my body.” Once seen as somewhat alternative, tattoos have become a more mainstream form of self-expression. Celebrities from David Beckham to Justin Bieber have tattoos all over their bodies. Jodie Michalak, Beauty and Cosmetology Editor for About.com, says, “The popularity and acceptance of body art has certainly influenced the younger generation to hop onboard.” A 2013 ...

Posted March 13, 2014, 9 a.m. by Randi Mazzella | View Comments
Scholarships Can Add Up to Big College Savings

With college costs at an all-time high and continuing to rise, it makes sense for high school students to apply for as many scholarships as possible. “Applying for scholarships may seem like a daunting process to students, especially for those already busy getting applications together for college. But for students willing to put in the time and effort, there are many scholarship dollars available," explains April Bell, director at the College Board. Is Your Student Eligible for a Scholarship? College scholarships can be broadly divided into two categories: Financial need-based and merit-based. Many families assume that to receive a merit-based ...

Posted March 12, 2014, 11 a.m. by Randi Mazzella | View Comments
Young Wrestler Shows Great Sportsmanship

Several weeks ago, I wrote about two incidents of bad sportsmanship making headlines in teen/young adult sports. But last week, a high school wrestler from Minnesota displayed incredible sportsmanship and character. His actions show how sports can bring out the best in teens and teach valuable life lessons. Stewart's Sportsmanship Malik Stewart, a high school sophomore, did not win the state title last week. The old saying, “It’s not whether you win or lose but how you play the game” was illustrated at the 120-pound state title championship in Minnesota. In a valiant effort, Stewart lost the match to sophomore ...

Posted March 10, 2014, 11 a.m. by Customer Service | View Comments
What Makes Alex Newell Unique

One may think Alex Newell’s character on Glee, Wade “Unique” Adams, could overshadow his real-life personality. Unique is a powerful and mesmerizing character—she always looks fabulous, wears heels often, and is not afraid to speak her mind.Her strong, memorable persona could easily define Alex as an actor, and as a person. But with the first sound of Alex’s voice, I knew he was just as special as his character—if not more special. I automatically felt energized, excited, and inspired by his stories and his life. He expects that when someone meets him for the first time, they won’t see him ...

Posted March 9, 2014, 11 a.m. by Elizabeth Suneby | View Comments
ROTC

The Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, better known by the acronym ROTC (often pronounced Rot-see), is a college-based program for training commissioned officers for all branches of the U.S. Military—Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, and Coast Guard. In return for a commitment of military service upon graduation, ROTC funds all or part of college tuition, depending on the type of commission and scholarship contract a student signs, and provides an opportunity for students to develop leadership skills critical for both a military and a civilian career. Don’t let the term “reserve” confuse you. ROTC trains officers for active duty, which ...

Posted March 8, 2014, 2 p.m. by Kristen Licciardi | View Comments
What You Need to Know About 529 Plans

“How will we EVER afford college?” For most parents, this question can cause overwhelming anxiety as their children reach the teen years. Paying for college can feel like an insurmountable task on par with climbing Mt. Everest. Parents are right to worry: Tuition costs and fees at public universities tripled over the past 30 years when adjusted for inflation, according to the College Board’s annual report on college pricing. As higher education costs take a bigger bite out of our paychecks, families are turning to 529 plans to jump-start their college savings. There are now more than 11 million 529 ...

Posted March 8, 2014, 11 a.m. by Debra Bradley Ruder | View Comments
Teen Depression

George was in middle school when something inside him changed. He was bored in school and had few friends. Sleeping was a challenge. He wished he’d never been born because then he wouldn’t feel so awful. Finally, he spoke up to his parents, and together they realized he might be suffering from depression. They got professional help, and after several months of medication and talk therapy, George began to feel like himself again. “Kids with depression think nobody else goes through it,” says George, now in college. “You feel like nobody knows you. Having [professionals] who understood what I was ...

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