Are store cards a good way to shop?

It seems that a huge number of retailers now offer their own store cards that work similarly to a credit card but can usually only be used with that one retailer or certain retailers within a group. Very often when we approach the checkout we are asked if we would like to save money by opening a store card. These offers vary from retailer to retailer but often include a percentage off your first shop or next shop, interest free periods and discounts throughout the year.

Before opting in for store cards it is important to check that you will be able to afford the monthly payments and ideally to pay off the balance before the interest hits. If you were going to be putting your shopping on a credit card then it may be worth taking out a store card as long as the interest is not too high. If you were going to be paying cash, then unless you were going to be saving a lot on the money off they were offering, then you may be better to stay away.

If you have good credit you may be able to get store cards to get the discounts that you may be offered but then transfer the balances over on to a longer zero percentage credit card to allow you to pay it off in time.

 

 

The importance of hearing your child read

Many schools go on about how important it is to hear your child read on a regular basis. As parents you may feel that it is unnecessary for your child to read to you every night but research has shown that children that do this have an academic advantage later on in their education. Reading can not only help with reading but can also help with spelling and confidence as well as understanding emotions and problem solving.

When reading a book with your child, take time out to ask them what they think is going to happy or to explain how a particular character is feeling. This will not only help them with their understanding but will break up the book and allow them chance to understand what is happening rather than just reading the words.

You do not have to go out and spend a fortune on children books, many charity shops have books for as little as five or ten pence or you could enrol in your local library to allow your children to pick their own book to read. You could even get your child to read sentences around the home, such as on the side of food containers or on the back of a DVD case.

 

Pre Christmas sales as said to top January sales

Historically the pre Christmas sales always used to start on January, but with companies realising that people tend to spend a lot more of their money in November and January, many of them are opting to start their sales early. This November saw many of the big retailers offering customer huge discounts on their items and tempting people in to early Christmas shopping. This has definitely helped ease the shopping centres in the run up to Christmas and can be great for people looking to spread their shopping out a bit over a matter of a few months.

The issue with buying present that early is you may forget that you have already bought something, find that the prices come down closer to Christmas and you have paid over the odds, or if buying for children, find out that there is a new toy on the market which has suddenly become top of the Christmas list. On the other hand, if you leave you shopping until the last minute then you may struggle to find stock of the item and end up having to either go without or pay over the odds.

 

 

 

Should homework be compulsory?

For many years there has been a discussion as to whether young students should receive homework on a regular basis from school. Some schools introduce homework right from reception age and this carries on throughout their education. Some parents and teachers feel that there is too much responsibility out on children already with exams and therefore homework is not essential or required.

Over the 12 months many schools have chosen to drop homework completely in favour of reading. All teachers will agree that reading is a vital part of a child’s education and often schools feel that it is more important that a child reads than to do homework. Some schools that have taken this approach, instead set a termly topic homework that is optional. It will be a task based around the topic they have been learning about.

If your child is at one of the schools that no longer gives out homework then you should try and get your child to read to you every day if possible. They do not just have to read their reading books though, reading a section out of the paper or directions on the side of a product will all help towards their overall understanding, reading and writing skills.

 

Why is it important for children to read a variety of books?

If your child is at primary school, then you may notice that they are often given a variety of books to read at home. Some books may be fiction, some nonfiction stories and others may be fact or reference books. It is important for your child to have the opportunity to read a wide variety of books to allow them to explore without just being restricted to one type. As a parent, it is easy to get in to the pattern of reading one type of book to your children as it may be the style that you like, but by doing this, you are limiting your child’s reading materials and they may miss out on a genre of type of book that they would enjoy more.

Regardless what they read, it is very important to get your child to read at least a few times a week, if not daily as this will help them in all areas of education and their overall academic ability. If you are struggling to find books at home that are suitable for your child, then why not in role them in the local library so they can swap books more often.