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Rubber Mulchís Miriam Sonenschein Offers Helpful and Important Safety Tips Just in Time for Back to School

School Bus

The dog days of summer are upon us and soon sleeping in and lazy summer days will be replaced with rushed mornings and school bells. And when the school bell rings, make sure your kids are prepared and safe. With 4 kids of her own, Miriam Sonenschein of Rubber Mulch can be considered a playground expert and knows firsthand the safety concerns and potential hazards that can occur. Check out Miriamís helpful back to school safety tips below that cover everything from walking to school to handling strangers and safety in school and on the playground. Miriamís helpful tips are available for reprint with proper credit shown below.
Since 1997 Rubber Mulch has manufactured top quality rubber surfacing products for military, commercial and residential markets. Playsafer Rubber Mulch was handpicked by First Lady Michelle Obama for the White House playground due to Rubberecycle's stellar reputation for superior safety, quality and service. Rubber Mulch pioneered the tire recycling industry with the most advanced technology and equipment to process scrap tires.
Back to School Safety Tips
  • If you child will be walking to school, take time to practice walking to school with them prior to the start of school. Always walk on the sidewalk if one is available, when on a street with no sidewalk always walk facing the traffic. If you child will be traveling to school without you, find another child in the neighborhood with whom your student can walk to school or ride on the bus.
  • Take extra precaution in school parking lots and work with your kids not to dart out in front of a parked car and always be aware around them. School parking lots tend to be very hectic in the a.m. and parents are usually in a rush to get to work or drop other kids off at another school.
  • Make sure your children stand at least six feet away (or 3 giant steps back) from the curb when waiting for the bus. If your child needs to cross the street in front of the bus, walk on the side of the road until you are 10 feet ahead of the bus. You should always be able to see the bus driver and the bus driver always should be able to see you.
  • Donít overstuff a backpack, it should weigh no more than 10 to 20 percent of your childís body weight and choose an ergonomically designed one when possible to prevent injuries to your child's back.
  • Remind your kids never to talk to strangers even if they are on the school property. Let them know school employees wear name badges with their photos. Have a "safe word" for approved adults your child may be riding with so they know for sure the person is ok with mom and dad. Just make sure the adult also knows the safe word.
  • Children age 13 years and younger should ride in the rear seat of vehicles. If you must drive more children than can fit in the rear seat. All passengers should wear a seat belt and/or an age and size appropriate car safety seat or booster seat. When carpooling ensure every child is safely buckled in as not all children automatically buckle themselves in without reminders.
  • Talk to your child about bullying before school starts and develop an action plan if they feel they've been bullied. A few signs parents should look out for are--unexplained injuries, lost or damaged clothing, jewelry, electronics, loss of friends, difficulties sleeping, frequent headaches or stomachaches and declining grades.
  • Dress your kids appropriately for the playground--no necklaces, purses, scarves or clothing with drawstrings that can get caught on equipment and pose a strangulation hazard. While on the playground, teach your children that pushing, shoving or crowding while on the playground can be dangerous.
  • Always provide proper clothing and shoes for gym class so your kids arenít trying to run in boots or wearing a dress on gym day. Also check your children's shoes to make sure they fit properly, not to right to pinch their growing toes and not to big to cause tripping.
  • For children who bike to school, teach them the hand signals for biking and have them ride their bike on a bike trail/bike lane/sidewalk or facing oncoming traffic. Bike helmets should be worn at all times, even for short trips. Provide your child with a bike lock so their bike is safe during the school day.
Please contact us if youíd like to reprint the back to school safety tips from Miriam Sonenschein of Rubber Mulch (with proper credit shown below) and a direct link back to: http://everlastrubbermulch.com

What is Happening to our Children?
Beit T'Shuvah to Begin Workshops on Trauma Caused by Parental Pressure
in Privileged Families

"Parents must immediately take a step back," says Harriet Rossetto, founder of the educational institution and residential treatment center, Beit T'Shuvah. "This generation's inclination toward over-parenting is devastating to the child and the parents."

Ms. Rossetto is working with families daily who are negatively impacted by an over-indulgent approach to raising a child. She first made the connection between parenting in affluent families and the failure to launch of their children,15 years ago.  Now with rates of depression, addiction and suicide on the rise, she felt the urgent need to share the knowledge Beit T'Shuvah applies with families, so others have the opportunity to fix these problems before it's too late.

Beit T'Shuvah is announcing the launch of an awareness campaign on "Trauma of Privilege."  This effort will include discussions, workshops, and educational outreach explaining how parents cause this trauma, what they can do to avoid it, and how teenage and adult children can undo the damage. 

The educational institution conducted a study, Drug, Alcohol, and Risky Behavior Report, which proves the rates of depression among affluent teens and young adults correspond to the rates of depression and anxiety suffered by incarcerated juveniles. "These children feel overlooked, believing as long as they appear to do well on the outside in athletics or with top grades, that no one will ever question or care if they're falling apart on the inside," explains Rossetto.

The "Trauma of Privilege" is not referencing the top 1% of society, but rather families privileged enough to have the time and inclination to be over involved in their children's lives. Rossetto explains, they often helicopter to the point of eliminating choices, challenges, and the growth essential to discovering individual passions.  

Beit T'Shuvah educators believe these statistics are often a direct result of misguided parenting:

There's been much talk about these older children who suffer from a failure to launch as a generation of listlessness, age of entitlement, or they're described as narcissistic. Ms. Rossetto views it as a medical condition, a  trauma imposed by those with the very best intentions. "The benefit of viewing this condition through the trauma lens rather than the personality disorder lens is that the latter is static, the former infinitely reparable," explains Rossetto. "The label narcissistic personality brands you for life; trauma views adaptive behavior as a learned way of being that can be unlearned."

Steps to Heal:
  • Adult children need to be free of parental control and to experience the consequences of their choices without being rescued.
  • Parents must separate their happiness from the successes and failures of their children. This means leading a truly independent life void of any expectation or pressure placed on their children.
Trauma of Privilege Awareness Campaign: 
  • Discussion on parental missatunement on August 30th with Julie Lythcott-Haines, the author of the book "How to Raise an Adult," in which Beit T'Shuvah's research and practices are referenced throughout.  
  • Harriet Rossetto will conduct a workshop on October 11th, along with Lisa Miller, author of "The Spiritual Child." 
  • The Beit T'Shuvah team will integrate teachings of Trauma of Privilege in their educational outreach at school sites throughout the Los Angeles area. 
  • Trauma of Privilege education & outreach efforts to be coordinated with national partners in community education.
Doug Rosen, Directors of the Prevention Program at Beit T'Shuvah, says educational outreach is essential in order to raise awareness and to stop the downward spiral of susceptible youth. "The first reaction we get from children and parents is relief," explains Rosen. "It's like the wake up call they didn't know they needed, and then there's the realization that they don't have to keep going like this. Parents don't have to make themselves crazy trying to fix everything, and their children are given the freedom to speak up and admit their struggles." 
"The pressure to get the top grades, be the best athlete, and get into the best schools isn't worth the pain that it builds," says Rossetto. "Parents don't have to be perfect, and neither do children. It's facing and then dealing with challenges that make us healthier and more complete human beings."
Harriet Rossetto was recently honored by the White House administration for her uniquely successful approach to drug and addiction prevention


Harriet Rossetto is the founder and executive vice president of Beit T'Shuvah, a residential treatment center and educational institution in West Los Angeles. Her belief that addiction is a malady of the soul inspired her to create a community that for 30 years has supported the process of recovery through spiritual healing. The Obama administration selected her this summer as an Advocate for Action, a national role model for her unique approach to addiction prevention and called on her to advise on national drug control policy. The Bush administration recognized her work with recovering Jewish addicts as an example of why the government should support faith based efforts. Harriet's been honored with the Alan Kassin award for professional achievement from the Jewish Communal Professionals, the Vision Philanthropy Award, and the Isaiah Award from the Jewish Federation for filling an unmet community need. Rossetto has also authored her own spiritual memoir, "Sacred Housekeeping."

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