Q. We live just under a mile from my daughter’s elementary school, and last year we drove her to school every day. This year she will be in third grade, and she wants to walk to school with some friends. Do you think that in this day and age this is safe?
“For one thing, it depends on who are these friends, and where do they live,” panelist Erin Stalsitz said. “I’d like to say, ‘Yes, it’s safe,’ but it also depends on the location where the children will be walking, and if there are crossing guards. There are lots of factors to consider.”
Q. We are going camping with our 14- and 16-year-olds at a campsite where there will be other teens. I remember what I did at their ages, and I would like to protect my children from some of the bad decisions I made. I want them to have fun, but I am concerned also. What can I do to protect them?
Q. My 10-year-old is continually being disappointed by her father’s canceling plans with her or just not showing up. We never married and he has not had much of a role in her life. I’ve tried talking to her father, but that hasn’t changed anything. How can I explain his behavior without seeming too critical? And what can I do to make her feel better?
In talking with the daughter, the panelists agreed that it‘s important for the mother to say that she doesn’t know why the father acts the way he does. She just needs to be honest, they said.
Lehigh Valley theater groups really upstaged themselves the summer of 2018 with a total of 20 outstanding productions in three months, more than half of which were lavish musicals.
A relative newcomer completing only its second season, Northampton Community College Summer Theatre combines professional and local talent in its productions. This summer, NCC Summer Theatre produced an incredible five shows in two months, including three very challenging musicals.
Q. The new school year is starting soon and my son will be entering fifth grade. Last year, he started school on a good note, with a lot of self-confidence and good grades. By the end of the year, however, his self-confidence had disappeared, and his grades were down. How can I prepare him for the coming school year?
The panel of experts tried to reassure the mother by saying that the changes she is noticing in her son may be because the transitions between third and fourth grades are difficult, and they get even harder going into fifth grade.
Q. Today I snooped in the bedroom of my 15-year-old daughter and found her diary. I feel horrible about having to do that, but she has not seemed herself lately, and I was concerned. She wrote that she has been cutting herself. How can I help her in lieu of how I found out?
The panelists were unanimous in suggesting that the mother try and find a way to see the daughter’s cuts so she can discuss it without having to admit reading the diary and risking losing the daughter’s trust.
Q. My three-year-old grandson has become very aggressive. He hits and slaps his parents and angrily yells at them. I have told his parents that this is not appropriate behavior, and that they need to stop it. He does not try to hit me. He is an only child who has not been in child-care other than family. He does not try to hit me. What guidance can I give my son and daughter-in-law?
The Tony Award-winning Broadway musical “Dreamgirls” is rarely staged by local community theaters because its musical complexity, casting demands and vocal challenges can easily turn into a director’s nightmare.
It’s not so easy on the performers, either.
That didn’t stop Northampton Community College Summer Theatre Director Bill Mutimer from choosing the Motown-inspired musical as the last show of his impressive summer season where “Dreamgirls” continues through Aug. 5.
“Stronger Than Steel: Forging a Rustbelt Renaissance” is Jeff Parks’ intensely personal perspective on the role that the arts played in the revitalization of Bethlehem when it was struggling in the wake of deindustrialization and the ultimate demise of the once-prosperous Bethlehem Steel. In the preface, Parks asserts that there is “a direct connection between the arts and economic success,” and he spends the next 348 pages making his case.
Bethlehem’s social entrepreneur Jeff Parks once said he never wanted anyone to be able to say there was nothing to do in the Lehigh Valley. As the visionary who spearheaded the creation of Musikfest, Christkindlmarkt, the Banana Factory, the ArtsQuest organization and SteelStacks, Parks has done more than his share to assure a year-round abundance of local music, arts and educational programming. The purpose behind his efforts, however, goes far deeper than just providing someplace to go.