Featured Artist - Nancy Stewart

Nancy Stewart is a national award-winning musician who has been writing and performing for young children and their families for twenty years. This followed a successful fifteen year-long career as lead guitarist and vocalist with a nationally known show band. Featuring original and traditional songs, Nancy’s nine CD’s for children can be heard in schools, homes, and libraries across the country. Her music workshops for teachers, parents, and librarians have been highly praised for their relevant, useful, and easy to use songs and ideas.

Nancy has also shared the stage with Burl Ives, Shirley Jones, Bill Cosby, and Lily Tomlin at concerts and nightclubs across the United States and Canada. As lead guitarist and vocalist she performed with Randy Sparks and the Back Porch Majority beginning in 1971, and recorded several albums in Nashville and Los Angeles, the Disney movie theme “The Apple Dumpling Gang”, and numerous radio and TV commercials.

For more information, visit Nancy’s website at www.Nancymusic.com

- Seattle, WA

Featured Artist - Farida Dowler

Farida Dowler shares folktales and plays guitar to accompany traditional and original songs for preschoolers and kindergarten age children along with their caregivers.

She is available to perform at bookstores, libraries, children’s parties and other venues in the Seattle area. Past performance venues include Island Books, Third Place Books, Pierce County Library System, Seattle Public Library, and the Seattle Children's Museum.

To book a program, please contact her at farida@dowler.com with information on where and when you are having your event as well as group size.

-Seattle, WA

The Attention Seekers

Ask the Expert
Q. How do I know if my child is being disobedient just to get my attention, and what should I do about it?

I think the key to this answer lies in understanding your child's motivation. When my own children were small, one daughter in particular required extra attention. It seemed when I was at my busiest, she would find constant trouble. She might color the walls, pick a fight, or simply follow me around whining. Her misbehavior was simply a ploy to get my attention back on her. I soon realized that I could change her behavior by giving her my undivided attention for a certain period of time before I started the other items on my agenda each day. I began my morning by enjoying whatever activities she enjoyed. We had discussed that once the timer went off, it was Mommy's turn for "work time". This turn-taking would continue through out the day. When any misbehavior occurred, it would result in a "time out" in another room. When her behavior was good, it meant I could complete my work faster and spend more time with her. Eventually, this strategy curbed her misbehavior, because she realized that her poor behavior was not successful in acquiring more time with Mommy. The bottom line here is recognizing the motivation behind your child's actions. Once you determine that motivation, look for positive ways to fulfill that need elsewhere in their daily routine.

If you have a question about parenting or early childhood development, feel free to leave it as a comment here. We'd love to include it as a future "Ask the Expert" post!