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Keeping kids’ minds sharp over winter break

Keeping kids’ minds sharp over winter break

By Megan Nellen, Lower School Principal at The Walker School

1. Community Service: Use the break to plan community service ideas for the coming year. Kids can write flyers and notes asking neighbors to save and donate any holiday décor they plan on tossing out to be used next year for a family without a tree or decorations. Children of all ages can help make and deliver sandwiches for a homeless mission or shelter or make cards and pictures for a local nursing home.

2. Reuse, Recycle, Entertain: Collect leftover boxes, ribbons and paper and have your kids use them to build a robot or make a game. Each year at The Walker School second graders use cardboard to make arcade games.

Personal Safety Tips

Personal Safety Tips

By Greg Norred, CEO, Norred & Associates

Over the course of your life, the chances of being the victim of a crime are at least one in three, higher if you live in a large city, and higher still if you’re a woman. The criminal’s objective is to maximize gain and minimize risk, and he’ll usually pick the easiest target with the most to offer. Given these odds, it pays to take precautions by following some basic safety rules:

Volunteers needed for Dare to Hope Halloween events

Volunteers needed for Dare to Hope Halloween events

(WXIA) -- Dare to Hope, a non-profit organization that helps children with rare and complex medical conditions, will hold several Trunk or Treat parties in north Georgia this weekend.

Volunteers are needed to hand out candy and other goodies at the events, which will serve special needs children in the respective communities.

All Trunk or Treats will take place Saturday, Oct. 18 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.; volunteers are asked to arrive no later than 15 minutes before the start of their shifts.

Cherokee County
Hearts and Hands Therapy Services (424 Creekstone Ridge, Woodstock)
Learn more and sign up

Habersham County
Habersham Central High School (2059 Old Highway 197 South, Mt. Airy)
Learn more and sign up

PROBE College Fair coming to Henry County

PROBE College Fair coming to Henry County

LOCUST GROVE, Ga. -- The popular PROBE College Fair will stop in Henry County later this month, giving high school students an opportunity to speak directly to representatives from their favorite colleges and universities.

The fair will be Monday, Sept. 29 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Locust Grove High School.

A number of schools in several states, including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Ohio, Tennessee and the Carolinas, will be represented. See a complete list of participating colleges.

Learn more and register to attend the fair at gaprobe.org.

Locust Grove High School is located at 3275 South Ola Road.

Thousands enroll in Ga. Pre-K Program

Thousands enroll in Ga. Pre-K Program

(WXIA) -- More than 80,000 Georgia children are enrolled in the state's Pre-K Program for the 2014-15 school year.

Pre-K is open to all 4 year olds, regardless of household income. Assistant commissioner Susan Adams said that it is the first school experience for many children.

"For this reason, we take our roles very seriously, and we work really hard to provide Georgia's children with positive and meaningful experiences," Adams said in a release.

In Pre-K, students study language, literacy and math while making new friends and building foundations for lifelong learning. The Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning recommends parents visit their children's classrooms in advance to familiarize them with their new surroundings, and dress them in comfortable clothes and shoes every day. If students have a tendency to feel lonely, parents can send them to school with family photos to cheer them up, and blankets or stuffed animals to snuggle at naptime.

Piccadilly giving free meals to kids who read

Piccadilly giving free meals to kids who read

(WXIA) -- Piccadilly Cafeteria is encouraging children to read over the summer.

The restaurant chain's Back to Books program provides participants with free kids meals for completing reading logs of 10 books. Logs are available at all locations.

Piccadilly is also collecting $1 donations for Reading is Fundamental, the nation's largest children's literacy program. Customers who give will have their names displayed on a wall of their local restaurant.

Visit piccadilly.com for more information and to find your nearest location.

Kroger raises $232K for Children's Miracle Network

Kroger raises $232K for Children's Miracle Network

(WXIA) -- Kroger customers in metro Atlanta recently showed that they are a charitable bunch.

During the final two weeks in May, shoppers raised $232,000 for the Children's Miracle Network through the Miracle Balloons promotion.

For only $1, a customer could purchase a paper balloon to hang in a local Kroger. All proceeds from the fundraiser went directly to Children's Miracle Network hospitals and health networks, such as Children's Hospital of Georgia in Augusta and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

"Kroger customers consistently show their care for our communities by constantly going above and beyond with their charitable donations," Glynn Jenkins, spokesperson for Kroger's Atlanta division, said in a release. "Through their support of the Miracle Balloons program, we can continue to make a difference in the lives of children."