Welcome, Parents and Caregivers!
As a parent myself, I realize the ups and downs of raising children. Having experience as a teacher and parent, I have insight into really useful and practical strategies, like, “time-ins”, expected and unexpected behavior, positive reinforcements, earning privileges, to name a few. I will encourage you to have your children cultivate their happiness along with other important skills like social thinking and emotional intelligence. I believe if we make these areas a priority for ourselves and our children, it will have amazing results at home and at school. I know that many of you have your own success stories as well. I would like you to share those on this blog to help other parents/caregivers. I am really looking forward to creating this resource together so that we may all learn from each other.
First, I would like to explain why I have also included “Caregivers”. This covers any other person giving your child care, from grandparents to mothers’ helpers. Everyone needs to be on the same page and consistent! Everyone agrees to this, doctors, teachers, counselors, psychologists, neuroscientists….I think you get it. 🙂 I recently posted our family rules and caregiver pointers in our home. It is simply a colored piece of construction paper with 4 or 5 important rules and expectations written out for the family. This is helpful for everyone to understand the goals of our family and how caregivers can contribute and stay on the same page. It also enables other children who are visiting our home understand what is expected and to help them to feel more comfortable.
Secondly, Our children are very unique. You will see some strategies that might work for your child, but not necessarily another child. You might also see something you have already tried, but try it again. For example, something that may not work at age 4, might work at age 5.
Lastly, I want to share our unique children’s experiences while protecting their privacy. It begins very innocently when they are babies. As parents or caregivers, we discuss our experiences such as diaper changes, nursing and feeding, the cute, funny things our babies are doing at different stages. Small children don’t understand, but as children become older they may become embarrassed of your sharing their private moments with your friends. In fact, I have read many experts who say to use this as a positive strategy. The advice is to tell another adult something your child has done that you liked, a kind act, or a positive behavior you want to reinforce, all while pretending you don’t think they are listening. You can actually even tell your family pet while your child is eavesdropping……ha ha. This works, of course, with only the little ones. I imagine most parents are aware of this trick for positive encouragement, but I hope that I brought your attention to the fact that kids don’t always want you to share their private information. In this day and age, that is something to teach starting from a young age. Let’s show our children we can blog, Facebook, Twitter, while also being private, respectful, positive and happy! With all that being said, I do want you to share your experiences, but please do it in a way to protect your family’s privacy, as will I.
Family Rules & Pointers (This has now changed to our Family Mission Statement which can be viewed in “Here’s My Mix!”)
Please view the short video clip regarding a simple strategy I have used with my family. This is a good time of year to do this because it is being done at school. When we take an opportunity to make a home to school connection it is very helpful for our children. Rules are discussed, at least in the lower grades, but always expected at school and in the community at all ages. It is a good idea to do the same at home. Rules should be developed together as a family because our children will take ownership of them and want everyone to work towards the common goal of a happy home. ( I have since moved on to using a Family Mission Statement with my family.)
Pointers are helpful to everyone who visits your home. I have found family and friends are interested and like that they are posted for them or their children. It definitely is a conversation starter. 🙂 I will talk more about the ideas on the Caregivers Pointers part of this video.
More about the rules…..
If your children cannot read, pictures work well
Read daily or have your children take turns reading them out loud to the family
The “team” idea works even with an only child because you can explain that the rules are for everyone in the family including mom and dad!
Do you want your child to be a great Social Detective? Please see my post Social Thinking Please encourage your children to use their social smarts!
A Happy Discovery is a must see!
Be sure to check out my Social and Emotional Learning Page for more great information!
Here’s My Mix! (for more positive strategies)