Advice for getting through the witching hour

View Mary Hartzell, MEd's video on Advice for getting through the witching hour...
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Advice for getting through the witching hour

I know, that is really a difficult time for parents because they're exhausted, they're at the end of their day, the children are generally exhausted. And so the thing I've found that is the most beneficial is you change venues. That's the time you walk to the park. That's the time that you walk the dog if the dog needs a walk. It' the time where you exchange with a friend where maybe you decide to have tea time and they come over to your house on that day. And so you have some other adult company, that can also help. But it really helps to change venue. I remember there was one time when the witching hour was really strong and I had made a pot of pasta for dinner and my husband walked in and I picked it up (it was in one of those big cast-iron skillets), I said, "We're taking this to the park and have dinner, honey," because I thought I have got to get out of the house. Everybody will be happier. And we went and had, actually we went down to the beach with it, and had just a wonderful time. So if you feel stuck, move and move physically, because that really helps. And children are tired, but a walk on the beach can be really helpful.

View Mary Hartzell, MEd's video on Advice for getting through the witching hour...


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Mary Hartzell, MEd

Author & Parent Educator

Mary Hartzell has over 30 years experience working with children, parents and teachers. She is the director of The First Presbyterian Nursery School, a nationally recognized early childhood program in Santa Monica, California. She is co-author of Parenting from the Inside Out and also has created a series of CDs on Parent/Child Relationships. Her parent education classes and her private consulting practice have benefited hundreds of families.

Mary began her career teaching in the public school system and completed her master’s degree in early childhood education and psychology at the University of California in Los Angeles. She taught in the early childhood unit at the UCLA Lab School and supervised student teachers. 

Mary is the mother of three grown children and has four grandchildren. During the years she was raising her own children she taught in the gifted program of the Los Angeles Unified Schools, primarily in South Central L.A. For the past 20 years Mary has been a workshop presenter at national, state and local conferences of the National Association of the Education of Young Children. She has been a lecturer at UCLA extension and is adjunct faculty at Santa Monica Community College in their early childhood department. She also provides workshops, teacher education and consulting with schools throughout the United States.

Mary has served as president of the North Bay Chapter of the Association for the Education of Young Children, Vice President of the Association of the Child Development Specialists. She was the recipient of the first Pediatric Aids Foundation’s “Hero’s Award” for her work with children and parents.

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