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Category Archives: Parenting

Stop Praising

Students turn to cheating because they haven’t developed a strategy for handling failure. The problem is compounded when a parent ignores a child’s failures. Parents often continue to praise the intelligence and insists the kid will do better next time.

Michigan scholar Jennifer Crocker studies this exact scenario and explains that the child may come to believe failure is something so terrible; the family can’t acknowledge its existence. A child deprived of the opportunity to discuss mistakes can’t learn from them.

Cloninger has trained rats and mice in mazes to have persistence by carefully notrewarding them when they get to the finish. “The key is intermittent reinforcement,” says Cloninger. The brain has to learn that frustrating spells can be worked through. “A person who grows up getting too frequent rewards will not have persistence because they’ll quit when the rewards disappear.”

No, praise them differently! Recognize the effort, hard work and process. Let’s say every night your child (12-year-old boy) has math homework and is supposed to read a book aloud. Each takes about fifteen minutes if he concentrates, but he’s easily distracted. You should praise him for concentrating without asking to take a break. If he listens to instructions carefully, praise him for that. After soccer games, praise him for looking to pass, rather than just saying, “You played great.” And if he worked hard to get to the ball, raise the effort he applied.

Bonding With Children

When you have your own chores to do, keep them busy when they are around. Ask them to color pictures in drawing books; give them clay so that they enjoy making stuffs. But to have this upper hand, you initially need to invest your time in teaching them how to do them. Once they get it, they will be engaged and do them on their own and you are free to do your own stuff.

Of course, by age six or seven, it will be high time for them to attend school. So they will need some help with homework. Let them work on their own first based on what they have learnt in school. Then you can correct their concepts if they make a mistake or two.

They also need to have fun outside of home in mother-nature environment. It can be a park to play on swings, see-saws and merry-go-rounds or a nearby pond to feed the ducks. During summer/winter holidays, it is up to you to decide ahead of time with your spouse how you are going to spend these vacations in an exciting way for the benefit of the children especially, within a budget that suits you well. I would say vacationing to a beach in summer or visiting Disneyland would be great for children. If that isn’t possible, just enjoy your time in another friend’s place some distance away and let your children spend some creative time. That family can then come to your place the following summer or winter.

Children grow up fast. So while they are still children, give them the best lessons and teach those in a way that is easy and convenient for them to grasp. You need to bring up children who can make good choices in life. Of course, they will make mistakes and they will learn from them. However, you do have a responsibility to help them face life by age eighteen so that they are well equipped physically and mentally.

When they grow up and you hand over them away in marriage, you will feel like losing some gem pieces of your life but that is life and you will be fine as time will show. However, you will be united occasionally in family get-together parties. You will have grand children and you will have much to celebrate.

My advice to young parents would be: treat your child well, teach them good moral values and discipline and give them a good education and at the same time, also prepare them to face adversities of life boldly and confidently. And they will be fine. On the other hand, you will be happy because you know you have done your very best.

Some Life Skills to Teach Kids

Social Awareness and Manners

Impart social and conversational skills from a young age by letting kids join in on adult gatherings from time to time. Don’t make a habit of always segregating your children from the adults – they can learn a lot about etiquette, social cues and the art of conversation from watching grown-ups. These settings are also a good time to work on basic manners including the consistent use of “please,” “thank you,” “pardon me,” as well as proper dining etiquette.

Respect for Others

Children learn respect from their family and it starts with family members caring for each other’s physical space, thoughts, interests and needs. When kids feel that what’s important to them is held in high regard by others, they will be able to emulate the same respect for their family and peers.

All Things Nature

Instill a lifelong love of the outdoors and of nature by spending plenty of time in the fresh air, in all kinds of weather. Let your kids climb trees at the park, plant seedlings in the garden, feed the birds in your backyard and jump in rain puddles on the street. All ages love summer camping, day hiking and picnics by the lake. When you give your kids a lot of exposure to our beautiful planet, it will make them appreciate it more and want to protect it for future generations.

Good Hygiene

Start early to create good hygiene habits that will stay with your kids forever – from teaching proper hand washing and teeth brushing techniques to tots, to encouraging daily bathing for sweaty teens. Make learning daily habits fun for young kids by singing, using props and giving out reward stickers. Good hygiene sets them up for good health and well-being in later life.

Food Preparation

Get your kids in the kitchen early, helping to select meals, prep food and cook with you. My son learned to prepare snacks with his classmates in preschool and loved it. He’s been comfortable in our kitchen ever since and is not afraid to use a knife, stir a pot or get his hands dirty. Start by showing them how to make simple soups and pastas and work your way up to more complicated dishes.

Smart Shopping and Saving

Show your children the difference between whole foods and processed foods, how to eat in season and how to be savvy shoppers. Talk to them about brand versus non-brand, retail versus wholesale, and how to budget their money. Even young kids can save money in their piggy banks and learn how to bargain at a garage sale. Older children can open a bank account, start saving and help with shopping and errands.

Tips Raise Kids Right Way

1 – Put parenting first:

Once you’re a parent, you have to learn to put your priorities below your children’s, and to make the sacrifice to spending more of your day caring for them than you do caring for yourself.

2 – Don’t aim for perfection:

According to a study, new parents who believe society expects perfection from them are more stressed and less confident in their parenting skills.

3 – Be good to your sons, Mamas:

A warm, attached relationship with mom seems important in preventing behavior problems in sons, even more so than in girls, the research found.

A close relationship with their mothers can help keep boys from acting out.

4 – Eat dinner as a family:

The dinner table is not only a place of sustenance and family business but also a place for the teaching and passing on of our values.

5 – Tend to your mental health:

Research suggests that depressed moms struggle with parenting and even show muted responses to their babies’ cries compared with healthy moms.

According to researches, kids raised by these mothers are more easily stressed out by the preschool years.

6 – Give your child enough play time every day:

“Play time” does not mean having your child sit in front of the TV while you do the dishes.

It means letting your child sit in his room or play area and to actively engage with stimulating toys while you help him explore their possibilities

7 – Be positive:

Parents who express negative emotions toward their infants or handle them roughly are likely to find themselves with aggressive kindergartners.

Behavioral aggression at age 5 is linked to aggression later in life, even toward future romantic partners.

8 – Joking helps:

When parents joke and pretend, it gives young kids the tools to think creatively, make friends and manage stress.

Grateful Families

Grateful families spend quality time together. Children need to be held by a loving family in order to feel nurtured and supported, which in turn, will show them how to love and care for others. By spending quality time together, free of distractions, kids of all ages will bond more deeply with parents while learning empathy at the same time. Without empathy, there can be no gratitude.

Grateful families are generous. When people are fulfilled and thankful for all that they have, they are more giving. Their cup is full and they want to share their wealth of love and gratitude with others. The more often you give, the more often you will want to give again.

Grateful families practice gratitude daily. It’s not always innate, so parents need to teach children by practicing grateful behaviour in everyday interactions. It will become a habit for kids when they see it modelled by their parents. Encourage children to volunteer to help those less fortunate, to appreciate what they have, and to be giving and thoughtful to their friends. Teach them the concept of “pay it forward.”

Grateful families know the value of hard work and discipline. Kids must learn to work for their achievements, whether they’re doing chores around the house, taking care of a pet, or doing a school project. It will be easier to feel thankful for what they have, when they have put their own blood, sweat and tears into it. Parents must resist the urge to give their kids everything – material or physical – and always discipline them with love. Remember, you’re their parent and guardian, not their best friend, so be consistent with discipline to earn their respect.

Eating Out With Kids

Consider their ages and stages. If your kids are school-aged and have been taught table manners, by all means, take them to a nice place. If your kids are still little and learning, please take them to a fast food place or teach them some manners at home! Emily Post has great advice. Kids should be taught to sit quietly and eat or participate in conversation, but not everyone is like me and has dinner around the table just about every night. I think children need opportunities to behave in a restaurant, but start small and slow before taking them someplace they’ll embarrass you or cause a scene.

Consider your purpose. Why are you planning to go to a restaurant? Is there some family event or are you just trying to avoid cooking dinner? Family gatherings can be fun, but make sure kids are included in the invite. (Here’s where a flexible caregiver can help!) If you just don’t want to cook, think frozen food, or at least choose a restaurant that is family-oriented, which leads to my second piece of advice.

Consider your options. So you’re going out. Where to take the family? Choose family – friendly as opposed to fancy when you’re taking the kids. Most chain restaurants are very family friendly, as are many locally-owned places. Please think about your fellow-diners when choosing where to take your children. If your kids will need toys and videos to occupy them while they wait, stay away from upscale places! If my husband and I are having a date night at a fancy place, we definitely don’t want to be interrupted by your cuties or have to listen to the latest kids’ movie either.

Every Child Should Hear

I AM PROUD OF YOU

As parents and caring adults, applaud the efforts of the child, not the fact that they may have achieved or not achieved. Children crave your support and blessings, and most of their behavior is towards gaining your love, approval and acceptance. I always tell my children, “Remember it is about the participating and not the winning that matters. The very fact that you are participating in the event is good enough for me”. When they tell you how they have fared, tell them how proud you are of them. Don’t compare their efforts with those of other children.

By constantly praising their efforts, children develop a healthy attitude towards their self esteem. Make them aware that will always hold the pole position as far as you are concerned, no matter what. I know it can be difficult sometimes but keep on encouraging them, and one day they will surprise you with what they have achieved and can achieve in life.

I AM SORRY

Have you ever told your child that you are sorry? Do it when you have made a mistake and see how they tell you that it is OK and that it wasn’t your fault.

To them you are perfect and when you admit that you are wrong you are showing them that you are human and you too do make mistakes. But most importantly you are teaching them that you have the courage to accept your mistake and face up to your imperfections. Accepting your own imperfections requires honesty and by apologizing to them you are helping them to learn that it is alright to be imperfect.

They learn to take ownership of their mistakes. Kids learn a lot from what we say, what we do and most importantly who we are.

I FORGIVE YOU

There is no point in teaching children to own up to their mistakes if we don’t forgive them. By saying “I forgive you” kids learn that it is alright to admit to mistakes.

No one is perfect. As parents, carers and guardians we all say things we don’t mean or do things that we shouldn’t. We waste time, break promises, forget important things and mess up. We don’t fully meet up to the expectation placed on us, including our own. Children are no different. Like us, they are humans too.

No one likes to be reminded of their mistakes and as a parent or guardian you have to find the right balance between having the children face up to the consequences of their mistakes and remember that they have feelings. It is up to you to instill in them that they are loveable despite their weaknesses and imperfections. Forgive them, don’t condemn them.

“Mock your children as they struggle and they will learn never to share their struggles with you”

I AM LISTENING TO YOU

Always listen to what your children are saying. It may be a lot of rubbish or seem unimportant to you but for them it may be the most important thing they have done for the day. How will you know your child if you never listen to what they have to say? You might even learn a thing or two from them. I do.

Your interest in what they have to say will ensure your child that you are interested in them. You will get an insight into their personality and who they are on the inside. Always reflect back to them what they have said to you as this is their confirmation that you have been listening to them. If necessary you can then guide, advice, praise and encourage them accordingly.

As they become teenagers, it becomes even more difficult to get through to them. If you have always been on a good communication level, you will be able to influence them and help them in making their own decisions about situations.

Always listen earnestly to what your children have to say, no matter what. If you don’t listen to their little stuff when they are small, they will not tell you about the big stuff when they grow up because to them all of it has been big stuff.

THIS IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY

We all learn from our mistakes. Likewise children also learn from their mistakes. Let them take responsibility for their decisions, wise or not and let them learn from them. This not only shows your trust in them to do what is right but also you are teaching them to lead their own lives.

Don’t solve their problems for them, but give them your support; let them take responsibility and guide them through. They will quickly learn what actions have positive results and which ones have a negative one.

Kids have Favorite Time

When the atmosphere of the family becomes unsound, it is better create quality time to each of our kid. Our children crave for attention. The reason that we need to give them our undivided attention is for them to feel secure. Whatever happens, we should see to it that we are always there for them.

As parents, we can ease our kids’ fears, worries and hurts. When we give them our full attention, they feel safe to open up and share with us their worst fears and pains.

As parents we should show our selfless love to our children especially when they are still very young. They demand more of our time, energy and patience. But we also need to set boundaries. We need to learn how to say no when things get out of hand. We might feel drained. Failing to resolve the unmet needs of our kids might lead to resentment.

We need to be spontaneous in building bonds with our kids. Once our kids feel that we neglect them, it is difficult to repair the emotional gap that we created. When we give our kids our undivided attention, we should focus our minds to them not elsewhere. Kids are very sensitive. They can easily sense our uneasiness.

It’s also a lot easier to spend quality time with our kids when we are all doing together something we enjoy.

As a single mom, I see to it that I can spend quality time with my kids despite my tight schedule. Raising kids alone is not an easy task.

During my vacant time, I see to it that we can really bond. Our quality time usually involves internet surfing and playing online games, biking, dancing and going to gymnasium together. Sometimes, we watch cartoon shows together. Even if I do not like to watch these types of shows, but for the sake of my kids, I learn to enjoy the show because they love it.

Not all the times we give to our kids are quality times. But no matter how little the time we spend with our kids, the bottom line is the quality and not the quantity.

Children Safe When Driving

When going from point “A” to point “B” with a child in a car the law requires that the minor 14 or under be in the back seat. Infant and toddlers, as per the law should be in a child’s car seat or a booster seat respectively. The infant’s car seat should be position where the back faces the passenger front seat, resulting in the infant facing the back seat cushion. Children six years or older use the booster seat and are secured by the car’s back seat belt. The restraint of the child in the car seat or the back seat has specifics layout to minimize injury should there be an accident.

Parents, when they follow these guidelines, drive around confident in the knowledge that their children are secured so that when an accident occurred the harm to them might be none or minimal. Parents who are not secure in this knowledge often reach out to community centers and designated stations to help them properly install the car seat. With the establishment of social media parents can also get information on the best way to buckle up their children via You Tube, Pinterest and yes even Twitter.

With so many resources available to families there are some parents who choice not to buckle up their children. Several times a year there are broadcasts on the importance of securing children when they are passengers in any vehicle. There are various videos on YouTube that show, with the use of dummies, what happens to children when the appropriate precautions are not in place. These simulated videos are very alarming. When you see the dummies fly from the back of the car to the front, or when the dummies in front of the car slams against the dashboard you cannot help but wonder why some parents do not buckle up their children.

Consequences Poor Parenting

The worse case scenario would involve an unwanted child coming into this world in the absence of love and affection. This is a child who will not only fail to thrive, but might die a premature death during Childhood.

Poor parenting might include a measure of love and affection, but will too often fail to leave the child feeling that those needs are being adequately satisfied. Parental neglect and/or authoritarian parenting practices (invariably including spanking as a punishment) are the major causes of parents failing to meet the emotional needs of their children to feel loved and accepted.

Show me a child who has been failed in having their emotional needs adequately satisfied, and I’ll show you a child who is prone to missing out on a healthy process of emotional growth and development. The negative consequences are myriad and can range from sociopathy/psychopathy to inadequate empathy, to anger issues, to low self-esteem, to clinical depression, to criminal behavior, to homelessness, or, simply, to a miserable existence.

The degree of long-term harm caused by poor parenting is dependent on the degree of unsatisfied emotional need the child has suffered.

I’ve worked with kids who felt their parent/s could not have really loved them based on the way they were treated, but experienced rich nurturing from other sources, such as relatives, or nannies. These were the kids who made the best candidates to overcome the poor parenting they had suffered.

True enough, many of us have overcome poor parenting to the extent that we can get by in the world, or even live a happy life. But, sadly, there are many others of us who are never provided the opportunity to overcome the harm suffered.