Geeky Parent Guide

Geeky Parent Guide (125)

The Geeky Parent Guide is a semi-monthly editorial series by Fanbase Press Contributor (and father of two) Travis Lakata that will help parents and other caregivers to safely and positively navigate various avenues of pop culture with their children.

We’ve reached a second year of homeschooling in our household. It’s a geeky parent’s delight, if I’m being honest. It’s a challenging endeavor to find ways to keep my kids engaged during the learning process, especially when they’re experiencing the “end of summertime” blues. It’s not easy for kids to switch gears when they’ve had a couple months off.

I hope my kids will want to watch Star Wars Rebels one day. Obviously, to fully appreciate this amazing series, they will need to watch many more stories within the Star Wars universe to get the full picture of this galaxy far, far away. Star Wars Rebels: Season 4 is masterfully done, heart wrenching, and full proof that messages within stories matter to its audience. It’s why I love storytelling and why I hope my kids will be able to enjoy and take something away from a cast of characters who are more than a rebel crew – they’re family.

When the summer temperatures near the 100 F mark or higher, sometimes, it’s the perfect opportunity to get back to the basics when it comes to family fun. I want to share with you what my family did on a couple of days scattered over the course of a few weeks, and how we let creativity defeat the heat. Our kids love playing outside, but when the temps are that high, we try to avoid sustained play, if any at all.

The Bad Batch has many parental themes that I did not imagine when I initially started watching this season: from looking out for little ones; being a role model; and listening to what children have to say.  These are all vital components of parenthood. If you were to imagine what’s been coined, “The Dad Batch,” it’s safe to say this wonderful animated series is a crossover between Star Wars and Three Men and a Baby (or Three Men and a Little Lady).

I try to provide activities that I know my kids will enjoy, and with a summer that’s already reducing outside time because of extreme heat, I’m trying to find some productive use of that time. Science experiments, STEM activities, or really anything that’s hands-on usually garners a lot of interest from my 7 and 8-year-old kiddos; however, like this past week, things don’t always go as planned. But that’s okay. Parenthood is all about adapting and “reading the room” when it comes to our kids, and sometimes that means letting them make the call.

Family movie time is so much more than one to two hours of sitting in the same room with your kids. When they’re still wanting snuggles like my kids (ages 7 and 8), they love sitting next to or against me or my wife. Not only that, fictional worlds are a wonderful way to connect with our kids, especially when it comes to animated films. We watched Raya and the Last Dragon on Disney+ this week, and it was definitely worth the wait.

When gifted with the opportunity to contribute an entry to the Geeky Parent Guide regarding how I’ve maneuvered the pandemic as a parent, I was both honored and completely terrified.  As a relatively new parent (to twin 6-month-old girls), it is always exciting to be able to share your lived experience with others; however, my Imposter Syndrome of *only* having been a parent for 6 months (and, therefore, unworthy of speaking to the concept of parenting) was weighing on me heavily.  

40 years ago this June, Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark was released in theaters. 40 years have gone by, and it still stands the test of time. As many readers may have watched this film for the first time when they were young, this is a perfect opportunity to discuss some scary elements for young viewers and important characteristics of Indiana Jones that make this film legendary.

Are there any geeky parents out there who homeschooled this past year? Well, I did. For anyone considering homeschooling next year, whether it be for uncertainty on when the vaccine might be available for kids or wanting to try something different, let me share my experience.

Star Wars Rebels continues to excel in its amazing storytelling through Season 3. As a fan of a galaxy far, far away, I’m always looking for different avenues that might be acceptable for my kids to watch (either now or once they’re a little older). The third season of Rebels drives home some valuable lessons that anyone can take away, which continues to expand upon why #StoriesMatter for all ages. Beyond the idea of connecting with characters and seeing oneself in similar situations, Star Wars excels at conveying positive messages and, honestly, really bad “bad guys.”

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