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Trying to keep up with your grandkids?

The Tribune is here to help

Created date

July 13th, 2009

When you spend time with your grandkids, do you sometimes feel as if they re speaking a different language? They start talking about music or movies or high-tech gizmos, and suddenly you wonder how you ll ever be able to understand their world, let alone take part in it. Keeping up with the grandkids isn t easy, and that s why the Tribune has put together some help to get you up to speed on what today s youth is into. You ll find boxed guidelines on a lot of different topics throughout these pages and in future issues. Just look for Keepin up with the grandkids, and you re on your way to becoming the coolest grandparent on the planet. All aboard A Christmas Carol Disney train tour touts holiday movie with experiential exhibits Grab your grandkids and jump aboard A Christmas Carol. You read right. Disney s newest publicity stunt is a return to old-time advertising: a multi-car locomotive exhibit providing a pre-holiday glimpse of the 3-D Charles Dickens classic film starring Jim Carrey as Scrooge and all three ghosts. You and your grandkids will experience a digital character gallery, artifacts from London s Charles Dickens Museum, interactive games, and other high-tech film features. And the best news? It s free! The high-tech film doesn t come out in theaters until November 6, but the train tour has been chugging through cities 40 in all since May 22. Find your city below, and make sure to hop aboard. For the latest updates, more tour stops, and detailed information, visit Chicago July 24 26 Union Station Houston Aug. 11 Amtrak Station Dallas Aug. 18 19 Union Station Kansas City, Mo. Aug. 25 Union Station Detroit Sept. 4 6 Henry Ford Museum, Dearborn Boston Sept. 25 27 South Station Baltimore Sept. 30 B&O Railroad Museum Washington, D.C. Oct. 2 4 Union Station Philadelphia Oct. 27 30th Street Station New York Oct. 30 Nov. 1 Grand Central Terminal Nintendo Wii Fit You ve probably heard by now all the rage over the Nintendo Wii video game. And you may have even played a game or two of Wii bowling. But do you know anything about the Wii Fit? According to the NDP Group, Inc., Wii Fit was the second-highest selling game in the world last year, topping 8.3 million. In the U.S., 4.5 million sold at about $90 each. Wii Fit gets players moving on a balance board placed on the floor. Players control the action by moving, standing, or balancing on the movement-sensitive board. More than 40 different activities are available under four main categories: yoga, strength training, aerobics, and balance. It can even track a player s progress by measuring center of balance, body mass index, and body control over time. Wii Fit is a fun way to get some exercise with your grandkids when the weather outside drives you indoors. What s the buzz about texting ? Text message or text (n.) a note sent from one cell phone to another or from the Internet to a cell phone; also called SMS, or short message service. Text (v.) to send a text message from one cell phone to another. e.g., My granddaughter planned to text her parents when she was ready to be picked up from our house. Using the numbered keypad on a cellular phone, anyone can type up to 160 characters to compose messages. Sending this communication to someone else s phone is called texting. Last year, research revealed that people in the U.S. are using their phones for text messaging more than they are for phone calls; the average cell phone subscriber sends or receives 357 text messages each month while placing or receiving 204 phone calls, according to the Nielson Company, a consumer research firm specializing in mobile media.