Mark Smith describes the scene in Alabama after a tornado forced children to seek shelter in a church basement.
CNN Hero Nancy Zuch and her daughter Morgan are giving young cancer patients a sense of normalcy.
Traveling down New York's Fifth Avenue, 4-year-old Joseph Mezzapesa sees his favorite store, Build-A-Bear Workshop, from the back seat of the family's SUV.
It's a brisk winter morning in New York City and a class of bubbly preschoolers have burst into Room 5 of the Brooklyn Heights Montessori School for a period of free play. Amid an explosion of drawing, coloring, and play-dough kneading, Maxine, 3, and Harper, 4, two towheaded girls in pink skirts, are building a tower out of colorful wood blocks. Their structure, however, is top-heavy, and it begins to wobble. The pair stops and scrutinizes their work. Harper dismantles the tower and starts to rebuild. "Let's put it like this," she tells Maxine, using the biggest blocks to create a solid foundation. Up the tower goes again, this time standing firmly on a solid base.
Parenting's a hard job, we admit. But take heart; no matter how much you're struggling, you're probably doing better than these sorry moms and dads making headlines this year. Read through our list, and then congratulate yourself for doing a pretty good job, all things considered.
A 13-year-old Pennsylvania boy is suing a private residential school for discrimination after it refused to admit him because he has HIV, his attorneys said.
Anderson Cooper is "Keeping Them Honest," as a school rejects a child simply because he has HIV.
In the past 30 years we've learned that babies and young children know more and learn more than we would ever have thought possible.
Psychologist Alison Gopnik explores the intelligence-gathering and decision-making babies develop when they play.
Want to know how to build a good parent-teacher relationship? We share teachers' top pet peeves, how to score brownie points with teachers and more.
Talk to any group of 3-year-olds, and you're sure to find one who wants to be a superhero. The capes and the costumes can make them feel as if they have magical powers.
When PBS announced last week that it would be resurrecting "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood" with an animated tiger in the place of Fred Rogers, I was skeptical.
A former Peace Corps volunteer from Connecticut is charged with sexual abuse of several preschool children in South Africa last year.
"Bang ups and hang ups can happen to you," Attorney General Eric Holder read to a group of preschoolers from Dr. Seuss' book "Oh, The Places You'll Go" at the Department of Education's kickoff to its summer reading program on Wednesday.
With a combined income of $225,000 and a nest egg of $330,000, Rick and Amy Mendez, 41 and 43, seem like they are in good financial shape. But a closer look reveals that they're lacking something crucial: emergency savings.
When Zimbabwean-born Brendah Nyakudya started raising funds to open nursery schools in South Africa's impoverished communities six years ago, she didn't expect that one day the project would secure her a spot at the most sought-after gathering of women on the continent.
An African woman gets news that she is one of 75 chosen to meet with First Lady Michelle Obama. Nkepile Mabuse reports.
My son, Jack, asked me The Question one evening while watching "Olivia" on Nick Jr. It was triggered by a scene where Olivia's father helps her look for her superspecial red-and-white tights.
Aljolynn Sperber, a single mom in Los Angeles, says she can no longer afford to visit her family in Sacramento because of the cost of fuel.
Florida police are trying to figure out how a 5-year-old boy came into possession of a loaded handgun that he dropped inside a pre-kindergarten class.
Police may charge the parents of a child who brought a loaded gun to a Florida school. WJXT reports.
Every day where we work, we see our young students struggling with the transition from home to school. They're all wonderful kids, but some can't share easily or listen in a group.
In class, Eric Ostendorf fidgeted in his seat and constantly kicked his knees up for exercise. He'd ask to go to the restroom, where he would do 45 chin-ups using the bar between the stall walls.
Christal Maki disappeared from her daughter's life when Mia was 2 years old.
A fire caused by a lightning strike killed seven people -- including a 4-year-old child -- at a nursery school Christmas party in South Africa, a government minister said Saturday.
A lightning strike killed seven people -- including a 4-year-old child -- at a nursery school Christmas party in South Africa, a government spokeswoman said Saturday.
Toby Amidor remembers well -- but not fondly -- her child's meltdown over a bottle of Yoo-hoo.
Some Head Start programs allegedly enroll people above the income limit while poor families are wait-listed.
Lamont Butler is a single father, unemployed for more than a year and trying to do the best for his daughter, 3-year-old Samaya. The family qualifies for the federal government's free pre-kindergarten program, Head Start, but has been on a waiting list for more than a year.
It's a typical classroom scene: Students working at their desks as the teacher calls out instructions. But, unlike your average teacher, this one is made of plastic and computer circuits.
Big Bird and the Cookie Monster have some new friends, but they're a long way from "Sesame Street."
A private religious school in Texas has denied admission to the daughter of a lesbian couple who wanted to enroll the child in preschool, citing its "clear teaching of the Christian faith" for the refusal.
As I sat on the White House lawn 20 years ago and watched President George H.W. Bush sign the Americans with Disabilities Act into law, I knew it was a grand day for disabled people. However, I also knew that we still had a long way to go.
President Obama announces sweeping improvements to the ADA on the 20th anniversary of the legislation's passing.
Throw two former preschool teachers, a rock band keyboardist and a singer together and you get the world's most famous pop band for the toddler set: The Wiggles.
The couple, who split in 2006, interact briefly; the boys are treated to Happy Meals
Musical stars will join the network's hottest preschool characters for duets at the "interactive concert"
What's behind a series of violent attacks on young students in China? CNN's Jaime Florcruz reports.
Early in the morning on March 23, Zheng Minsheng walked in front of an elementary school in Fujian province. Wielding a knife, he attacked the students who happened to be around, killing eight and wounding several others.
China's kindergartens and preschools increased security after another violent attack on children and teachers Friday.
Think your children are getting hours of playtime, story readings and stimulating lessons at day care? Maybe they are, but they could also be spending a chunk of their day watching TV or DVDs.
Stars at the NYU Tisch Gala recollect fond memories of 'Sesame Street.'
In the early days of "Sesame Street" -- that is, B.E. (Before Elmo) -- Sesame Street was a pretty grimy place.
You know the drill: You give your child an ultimatum -- "Get dressed or we're staying home!" -- and naturally she says, "Okay, we'll stay home!" Might as well plant a big "L" on your forehead.
CNN's Sara Sidner visits one of New Delhi's top ten nursery schools to find out why competition is so fierce.
There was stone cold silence in the car, as the Kumars drove home.
In the past year, there's been so much talk about job loss, high unemployment rates, lack of jobs and employment declines that it's been hard to focus on anything else.
"Who controls the past controls the future."
Chicken nuggets. Sandwiches. Pizza. Baseball games. Play-Doh. These are some of the basics of childhood that could prove deadly to my 4-year-old son, Teddy.
Put bedtime bugaboos -- and your kids -- to rest with these expert solutions.
Authorities have charged a 20-year-old man with murder and attempted murder in a stabbing rampage at a Belgian nursery school that left two children and a staff member dead and a dozen others wounded.
Two children and an adult are dead and dozens wounded in a Belgian day care stabbing. CNN's Atika Shubert reports.
New Jersey mandates flu vaccine for young children. CNN's Alina Cho reports.
Since the beginning of the year the family clinic at the Children's Hospital of New Jersey has seen an influx of young children coming in for flu shots.
"Daddy puts on your bras sometimes," my then 4-year-old said nonchalantly as I tried on lingerie in a department store dressing room.
Though the U.S. economy has softened this year -- headlines warn of mortgage woes, layoffs and escalating gas prices -- there are still jobs out there... you just have to know where to look.
Did your child walk and talk early? Does she have a brain like a sponge? Scribble magnificently? Love learning? Ask questions that leave you marveling (and scrambling to Google an answer)?
CNN's Dan Rivers reports from Bangkok on Father Joe and the AIDS orphans who will host President Bush.
In Klong Toey, a Bangkok district between a highway and the Chao Phraya River, families of four share motorbikes, street vendors sell residents pouches of food, and doors of homes are open to the outside. A salesman on a bike cart sells broomsticks, while motorcycle taxi drivers, dressed in orange vests, wait at a corner.
What's it really take to parent a preschooler? It's pretty simple, once you realize what kids this age can and can't do (and what sets them off and what keeps them happy!). Here are seven qualities that make it much easier to manage all that, and why they're so crucial when you've got an independent-minded, boundary-testing picky eater on your hands.
1. Be artful. Stock your child's coloring table with used printer paper and empty cereal boxes. He can draw on the unprinted sides of the paper, and the insides of cereal boxes are great for finger painting. Bonus points for turning his artwork into wrapping paper.
Julia has never been especially fearful, so I was caught off guard when just before her fifth birthday she became terrified of being poisoned. She cried after she accidentally swallowed a crayon shaving. Even the beloved cherry-red lipsticks that were her favorite part of dress-up now seemed fraught with danger. "Mommy! By mistake lipstick got on my tongue!" she yelled, running into my room one day. "Am I going to die?"
The boss of a Chinese toy manufacturing company involved in a Mattel recall after its products were found to contain excessive lead levels has hanged himself, Chinese media reported Monday.
From hitting to lying, some of the worst things your child does are actually achievements you can be proud of!
Obama connects on campaign
It's 8 a.m. in the morning and a group of tiny tots are heading towards a simple building on the outskirts of their village near Mombasa.
Toymaker Mattel on Monday posted first-quarter profits, versus expectations for a loss, as strong sales of its pre-school Fisher-Price toys and its Hot Wheels toys for boys offset a 21 percent drop in U.S. sales of Barbie dolls.
A daycare operator -- armed with grenades and a gun -- released more than 30 preschool children and their teachers Wednesday after holding them hostage on a bus for more than eight hours.
While rummaging through an old box, my daughter, Claire, came across the stuffed bear I'd had when I was her age, a deeply loved creature named Teddy. "How come Teddy has no fur?" she asked. "Why doesn't she have eyes?" I explained that my cousin's dog had chewed up Teddy when I was a kid. She was aghast.
At home, the phrase "Go watch TV" to kids has replaced "Go outside and play" in many families. At school, the daily hour of recess is dwindling. The combination is contributing to many kids not getting enough exercise, according to some experts.
THREE-YEAR-OLDS DON'T HAVE Disposable income. And when it comes to television, few of them channel-surf. Preschoolers, in other words, are not the audience you'd expect to be the focus of a cable T...
A sharp-looking man carrying an Hermès briefcase emerges from a chauffeured Town Car in the parking lot of a quiet little strip mall in suburban Cabin John, Md.--the kind of place that could be any...
Seeing hordes of parents bringing their preschoolers to "The Incredibles" always amazed me.
The obesity epidemic is reaching down to the playpen: More than 10 percent of U.S. children ages 2 to 5 are overweight, the American Heart Association reported Thursday.
In a deal that would unite the biggest stars of the two-to-five-year-old set, Comcast Corp. (CMCSK) is in advanced negotiations with the Public Broadcasting System, Sesame Street Workshop and HIT Entertainment to develop the first 24- hour network dedicated to preschool kids, people familiar with the matter told The Wall Street Journal.
Dear Armchair Millionaire: My parents were terrible teachers and role models when it came to money. I have my own kids now and don't want to make the same mistakes. What should I be teaching them about money? --C.P.
The movie star and the geeky investment shop? The pairing would never fly on-screen, but California's gubernatorial race has turned up all kinds of oddities. In fact, candidate Arnold Schwarzenegg...
We already have the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Should we add the Private Schools Corrupt Practices Act?
You can hardly venture onto the campaign trail without stumbling over some candidate's education proposal. They're everywhere, like lice on a second-grader's head. But pick the nits of this issue, ...
January's "Why Middle-Class Kids Are Losing Out" prompted several readers to question our story's emphasis on what we as a nation are, or aren't, investing in day care and early childhood education...
Americans like to say that our children are our most valuable asset. Yet children at all income levels are suffering from neglect--not just the children of poverty, as some would like you to think....
Lillian Micko had a vision. It was around five o'clock one evening last spring. She was pulling out of a McDonald's drive-through in her hometown of Mount Laurel, N.J. with her boys Danny, 11, and ...
YOU KNOW THE BULL MARKET IS LONG IN THE hoof when a tightwad like me is attracted to three small growth stocks that each rose 100% or better in 1995. Yet I'm convinced that as long as the bulls don...
GYMBOREE Gymboree is turning child's play into big business. The company, in Burlingame, California, began in 1976 by offering play and exercise classes to young children and their parents. Ten yea...
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While Americans proclaim the social and academic benefits of early-childhood education, the French deliver it: Virtually all children attend preschool, and eight of 10 go to free, government-run in...
Imagine an America where: -- All parents could take time off from their jobs with pay until their children were beyond infancy and enrolled in high-quality day care. -- All children could attend fr...
THE EDUCATION message is getting through. When asked how concerned corporations were about the problems in American public schools, 98% of the companies responding to FORTUNE's fourth annual educat...
IF THE WELL-BEING of its children is the proper measure of the health of a civilization, the United States is in grave danger. Of the 65 million Americans under 18, fully 20% live in poverty, 22% l...
WHEN DETROIT announced a plan to open three all-male, all-black public schools last year, the National Organization for Women and the American Civil Liberties Union rose up and defeated it. In resp...
If you rode the toy stocks' 90% rise last year, give a pat on the back to Barbie and G.I. Joe. Together with other venerable oldsters of playland, they helped push sales of traditional toys in the ...
WHEN IT COMES to early childhood education, the U.S. ranks near the bottom of the class. Nearly every other major industrialized nation -- and even some developing countries -- see the job of educa...
THE SOCIETY/COVER STORY 52 HOW THE AVERAGE AMERICAN GETS BY Middle-class squeeze may be the most potent force shaping American life and the economy over the next decade: Money is tight, jobs insecu...
CORPORATE America's commitment to reading, writing, and arithmetic in 1991 was bigger, broader, and better than ever. Even more encouraging, CEOs of the leading companies believe their considerable...
A former teacher at a Simi Valley private school filed a lawsuit . . . against a preschooler she once taught, saying the boy caused permanent injury when he kicked her in the ankle. Lynne M. Fava a...
AS A FRIEND said of W. C. Fields, anyone who hates children and dogs can't be all bad. These days Uncle Claude might find some like-minded folks over at % Quaker Oats Co. Kids and pooches have not ...
Like most parents, Blake Magee's mother and father want only the best for their 15-month-old son. Since both Jennifer and Donald work, they pay a nanny to take care of Blake (left), and hope to pla...