child development, Child's Education, family time, health

The Importance of a Regular Routine to your Child

via The Importance of a Regular Routine to your Child

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Regular schedules provide the day with a structure that orders a young child’s world. Although predictability can be tiresome for adults, children thrive on repetition and routine. Schedules begin from the first days of life. Babies, especially, need regular sleep and meal programs and even routines leading up to those activities.

As they gets older, when a child knows what is going to happen and who is going to be there, it allows them to think and feel more independently,  and feel more safe and secure. A disrupted routine can set a child off and cause them to feel insecure and irritable.

Dinnertime is a great place to start setting a routine.  Sitting together at the dinner table gives children the opportunity to share their day and talk about their feelings.  This is also a great time to include some responsibility in your child’s routine, such as helping to set or clear the table.

And regardless of how exhausted you or your children may be, don’t be tempted to skip winding down from the day.  This is part of a nighttime ritual and allows both child and parent to decompress after a busy day. It also helps bedtime go more smoothly.  This is usually the time of day when parent and child can spend some quality time together, so fight the urge to start the laundry or do the dishes until after the child has gone to bed.  If this isn’t possible, consider trading off these duties with your spouse each night to ensure your child has quality time with each parent on a regular basis. Take the time to find out what wind-down strategy works best for your child.  Some children are actually energized instead of relaxed by a warm bath, so if that’s the case with your child, bath time should be saved for a different time of day. Whatever routine you settle on, make it quiet, relaxing, and tranquil for everyone.

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And though routines are essential, there should be some room to be flexible as well.  You might be out late at night on a family outing, have unexpected company show up that may result in a skipped meal or nap in the car while running errands in the evening.  In these instances, it’s important for you to keep your cool. If you express frustration or anger about disrupting the routine, your child will as well. Prepare children for such unexpected events and show them that though it can happen from time to time, the routine will return the next day.


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THE SACRED “O” – OBEDIENCE AMONG YOUNG CHILDREN

How is your parenting so far? Can you easily let your child pick up the toys that are scattered on the floor? Or are you having difficulty in terms of teaching her the concept and practice of obedience?

We all know that parenting is a challenge. If you think that the most difficult stage is when your child is still a newborn baby, then you could be underestimating the gravity by which your naughty toddler or your extremely curious child can pull your own energy down to the lowest.

To make parenting a lot easier, we need to develop the character of our children. After all, their character will also be a big factor in determining their future success.

Here are helpful tips to teach obedience to your young children:

1. Model Obedience

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The best way by which your children can learn obedience or any other values in life is through observation. It is almost impossible to teach your children something that you cannot do yourself.

So how do you model obedience? Are you supposed to obey your children like they are your bosses? Definitely not!

Modeling obedience can be done by following the laws of the land such as traffic regulations. It can also be seen when you strictly follow your house rules such as no television watching at certain hours of the day, no wearing of shoes on the carpet, and no junk food. Whatever it is that you want your children to do, you must also be willing to show them the act.

2. Get on a Talk

If you want your children to brush their teeth, you cannot simply order them to do so. You need to explain the importance of brushing their teeth.

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Get on a talk. Make sure that they fully understand the need to do a certain activity. Explaining things to them will make them voluntarily do something without questioning the purpose behind their obedience.

3. Be Firm & Consistent

Children draw on patterns. Their behavior usually develops according to the patterns that they observe at home, in their neighborhood, or in their preschool.

You will need to be consistent in your rules so as to develop predictability among your children. You cannot restrict them from shouting at you when you allow them to talk horrendously with other people.

You also need to be firm with your decisions. Once you have proclaimed that junk food must not be eaten during meal times, then do not be swayed by their tantrums, sad faces, or constant pleas. Sudden change s in your decisions can give them the impression that it is okay not to obey because you will change your mind anyway.

4. Offer Consequences

TP09_StepsToddler11Consequences in obedience training are not only about giving punishments but also about offering rewards. It is important to plan your punishments and rewards. You cannot be random about these in order to make sure that your emotions won’t get in the way of proper discipline.

Rewards can be in many forms. It can be as simple as outdoor play, a cone of ice cream, or an hour of swimming. On the other hand, consequences can also come in various forms such as limited playtime or keeping away of their favorite toys. Just make sure that the punishment isn’t harsh or detrimental to their development.

5. Examine Yourself

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Look at yourself as a parent. Are you imposing standards that are almost impossible for the age of your children? Do you get annoyed by their normal behavior and misbehaviors? As a parent, you need to have a heart and mind that are full of understanding, patience, and love in order to help your children grow to their fullest. Have some room for mistakes. Be gentle with your kids because it is through lovely and positive discipline that you can help them embrace obedience as part of their character.

 


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Is Your Toddler Ready for Responsibilities?

When is your child ready to take on any responsibility? When is she old enough to have a particular task?

Responsibility is a good virtue to pass onto our children. It is something that they could learn not just in theory but also in practice. We cannot always just speak with them about do’s and don’ts without letting them do what they are supposed to do and avoid what they should not be doing.

But why should you teach them responsibility?

1. Responsibility is a virtue.

As a virtue, responsibility will give your child a foundation for dealing with other people and her environment. It will allow her to understand that the world does not revolve around her but that she must contribute something to make the world, or even just your house, a better place.

2. Responsibility secures their future.

If you are deeply concerned about the career path of your child in the future, then better instill responsibility early on. Although responsibility in itself won’t directly offer a response to what your child should be taking as a college course or what job to pursue, it will give her a definite advantage to secure a bright and wonderful future.

Once your child learns about responsibility, there is no need to nag her about finishing her homework. Once she understands that the world does not revolve around her, she will be more considerate of other people in the workplace. Once she becomes responsible, she can stand independently and traverse the road to success.

3. Responsibility corrects unwanted behavior.

Learning about responsibility in theory and practice can cause a fascinating transformation in the attitude of your child.

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I know how tempting it is to give her all the comfort in life and to shield her from all harm. But at some point in child’s life, difficulties and challenges will be inevitable. A well-grounded child could have a better chance for survival than a spoiled child in the real world.

How do you know if your child is ready for responsibilities?

There is no definite timetable for teaching responsibilities. Even babies can make a sense out of this world simply by observing.

If you want to teach your toddler about responsibility, then show her what it means. It is by seeing your daily behavior that she can learn most.

Here are some of the daily household chores that your toddler can do according to her age:

  • Putting Toys Away

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Scattered toys are almost always a problem for most parents. Why don’t you solve this problem by making it as a fun activity?

Have a nursery rhyme for packing away the toys. Replace the lyrics with words that mean what you want to happen. You will be surprised how organized your house can be once your toddler learns about this skill.

  • Putting Clothes in the Hamper

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Folding clothes and dropping them in a hanger can also take up much of your time. Instead of whining over your pile of clothes, get the help from your toddler by asking her to put some of the clothes in the hanger. She would surely love this task!

 

  • Wiping Dirt from Her Face

The responsibility to oneself is a critical value that a person must learn. Hygiene can easily be taught once your child reaches the toddler stage.

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One simple task that you can give your toddler is wiping her face during meal times. Let her know that dirt must not stay on her face.

  • Piling Up Books

Do you love reading to your child? Then give your toddler the responsibility to keep the books orderly. It could also develop her motor skills, actually!

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Teaching responsibility to your toddler is super fun. Just be creative in your ways and you are surely on your way to having a truly responsible child with a great chance for success in the future!


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4 Effective ways to Get Your Kids to Stop Whining

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It’s irritating, it’s frustrating and it gets on your last nerve. Though it’s obnoxious and unacceptable, it’s actually effective for your child to get your attention. It’s whining. But, like other bad habits, you can nip it in the bud early with a few simple strategies to teach your child there are other appropriate, effective forms of communicating with you.

  1.  First, try limiting the situations that trigger it. Avoid extra errands when the kids are hungry.  Don’t let them get involved in a frustrating game or project prior to bedtime. Pay attention when your child is talking, as sometimes whining is a reaction when a child feels you aren’t giving them your full attention. Praise them for not whining and talking in a normal and understandable voice that allows you to fully understand what they are saying to you.
  2.  When the whining begins, don’t overreact. Keep your response simple, calm and neutral.  Ask your child to repeat the request in a normal tone. When giving in seems inevitable, don’t delay. If you must finish the grocery shopping so you can put dinner on the table, for instance, and your child starts whining for a snack, offer something healthy right away.
  3. Once a limit has been set, parents should follow through. It’s imperative that both parents are on board with this limit and fully follow through when the whining rule has been violated.
  4. If you have an older child that’s developing a whining habit, suggest they come up with a solution to their perceived boredom or other voiced problem.  If you suggest possible alternatives, it might just prolong the child’s whining.

Sometimes whining can be the result of trauma and trouble in their life. A divorce, serious family illness or problems at school may be at the root.  Additional positive attention and quality one-on-one time may be just the medicine your child needs at a time like this. Your pediatrician can also suggest alternatives to curb whining should the positive attention and disciplinary actions be ineffective.


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You Can’t Spoil a Child through Love

Though we all worry about spoiling our child, rest assured that you cannot spoil your child with love. Love doesn’t spoil children. Love is imperative to a child’s healthy development, and it’s just not possible to love your child too much. They need caring adults to spend time with them, play with them, teach them, protect them, and enjoy life with them.

It’s a parent’s job to provide love, safety and encouragement. The process of growing up provides children with lots of challenges. Try to listen openly and understand their situation and communicate honestly with them when they have difficulties and letdowns in their life.

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Set appropriate limits with your child and then adhere to them. Establishing limits with your child gives them a sense of safety and security.  Sometimes parents do not set limits because they don’t want to fight with their children. They don’t want to cause bad feelings. They may beg a child to comply. Or they may make a rule and fail to enforce it. They may nag without ever enforcing the rules. None of these helps children.

When your child fails to adhere or comply with the boundaries you’ve set for them, be firm yet kind in your response. This lets them know that you’re serious about the rule but dedicated to helping and loving them.

Bear in mind though that each child is different and what works for one child may not work for another. For example, one child may respond well to the direct approach of telling them a specific time to be home, where another child may need a gentle reminder that it’s now time to come home.

Develop a firm but a kind manner of making and enforcing your household’s rules and expectations.  There’s no need to fear our children, and there should be no need to instill a sense of fear in our children in order to get them to comply.  


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