Nanny to the Rescue
America's nanny offers a large dose of healthy parenting advice with secrets for raising happy, secure, and well-balanced babies and toddlers.
Babies don't come with instructions. And since today's parents are so overwhelmed with schedules and demands, they have little time to bone up on their parenting skills. Often removed from grandparents and relatives who in times past lived next door or just down the street, they have no one to guide them through the disorienting world of raising children. Enter Nanny to the Rescue! Michelle LaRowe, 2004 International Nanny Association "Nanny of the Year," gives her tried and true solutions to childcare. Her expertise with chapters titled "Who's the boss?" and "Discipline is not a four letter word" gives confidence to parents who need specific ideas for real day-to-day problems. A proud member of Christian Nannies, Michelle offers foundational truths sure to help encourage moms and dads.
Nanny To the Rescue Again
Faced with multiple choices regarding school, friends, and activities coupled with the ever-widening influence of the outside world, parents of 6-12 year olds need help. America's nanny is back to offer a large dose of healthy parenting advice with secrets for raising happy, secure, and well-balanced children.
|Parenting Books That Work! By Sharon Scott |
Loving Your Step-Children
Loving your step-child can be both simple and hard. It is not enough for parents, step parents and extended family to feel a deep glow of love for the children in your circle of influence. You must convey that feeling into a message that is heard, felt and integrated by the child. Children need to be told both verbally and non-verbally how much they are valued for just being them.
As I interviewed children for my latest book Raise a Confident Child, I was struck by how many children thought their parent's love was tied to their performance, character or behavior. As Jeremy told me "When ever I score at soccer, my dad really loves me."
As I teach in parenting classes across the country, many people ask me what they can do to have stronger families and more harmony at home. My answer is in the non-verbal clues we give our children. Verbal communication is the language of information and much of that is spent in lecturing, teaching and correcting our children. No wonder they tune most of it out. Studies have shown we remember only 10-20% of what we hear.
Non-verbal communication is the language of relationships and is remembered and believed 80-90% of the time. So even if you do tell your children you love them, do you show them how precious they are to you? Do your actions demonstrate that your love and acceptance is not conditional upon their school grades, soccer goals or manners at the table?
Below are 8 simple (note I did not say easy, because any positive change in behavior is hard, but the end result is well worth the effort) ways to express your love and appreciation to and for your child.
1. Play games together. From the earliest months of your baby's life, it came natural to play peek-a-boo when changing a diaper, or airplane when trying to get food into your toddler's mouth. As children get less dependent on us, we forget to play silly games to hold their attention. Bring out the board games and turn off the TV, or play tag in the backyard. Do not allow competition or winning become more important than just being together.
2. Read with or to them at least 20 minutes daily. Children, even a few months old are comforted and soothed by the sound and rhythm of your voice as you read to them. The most important sounds a child can hear come from his parents and care-givers. When you read to children, you share such an important message for them, that you value reading and learning. Snuggling up and reading every day before bedtime or while dinner is cooking should continue, even after the children can read by themselves. We found the best way to curtail arguments while the after-dinner chores were being done, was to read aloud. Good stories provide problem solving experiences and allow children to look at events in their own lives from a different perspective. Turn off the TV and turn on the imagination as you read together.
3. Start and end each day on a positive note. Remember to use body language to indicate approval. A hug, high five, pat on the back or smile says so much without saying anything verbal .It has been said that eyes are the windows of our souls. If that is indeed true, and I think it is, make sure your eyes always say "hello, I'm glad to see you and I am glad you are in my life." Recognize when your child is helpful and cooperative. Many times we take it for granted when our children do their chores without being reminded, are pleasant to the family and write down messages. However, we only react, sometimes loudly and with negative body language, when the message wasn't given, the chore wasn't done quickly enough or the attitude is less than approachable.
4. Try complimenting them at least once a day. Think of it like a daily vitamin, they may not need the supplementation today, but then again they might. Don't let a day go by without letting them know how much they are appreciated and loved. A wonderful ritual a blended family we know does is recite to children individually each night a list of all the people in their lives that love them. They end with saying, "You are such a blessed and lucky person, look how many people love and care about you."
5. Truly listen to them. One of the most effective ways to show a child you love him or her is to pay attention when they are talking. Be empathic while accepting your child's feelings and try to maintain eye contact while they are sharing with you. Children are often deeply upset over things that seem pretty trivial to adults. When we brush off or trivialize their concerns it feels like a rejection of him personally.
6. Have family meetings. It is good to remember a family is an organization. In fact, it is the basic organization of society. This is just one of the reasons I am such a proponent of family meetings. You wouldn't think of running a successful business without a plan, goal setting meetings, team building sessions and clear missions and expectations. For more information on how to set up family meetings see www.ArtichokePress.com .
7. Develop love touches and signals. The safest touch your new baby has is you. Let him feel your cheek against his sweet little head; rub his legs and arms when you change his diaper. As children grow older, surround them with love in the form of hugs, kisses, holding hands when taking a walk or even winking at them when they look at you. Develop love signals for children as they begin to draw away from displays of affection in public. Perhaps your family gives high fives, touches thumbs, or squeezes each other's hands quickly to show you are all on the same team.
8. Keep a list of reasons you admire them. Sometimes the very things that irritate us the most with children are the strengths they will need to succeed in life. We have to recognize that a stubborn child will turn into a tenacious adult, eventually.
9. Separate the deed from the doer. Remember it is the behavior that we find unacceptable not the child. There is a big difference between the two and when we are angry, we tend to lump them together. Just because John takes money from the dresser does not make him a thief. It makes him a boy who made a bad decision and needs to learn that it is not acceptable to take money or anything else from anyone without permission.
10. Don't make it or take it personal. All families have squabbles and all children say they wish their parents and caregivers were more lenient, generous or understanding. We all try to do the best we can with what we have been given, but we are the adults and must make sure that no matter what the children have given or called us, that we give them guidance, love, discipline and respect. It is our obligation to set consistent boundaries and to assist them in growing into self-directed, contributing members of society.
So often we do what is called unconscious parenting, just getting through the day. It is not that we don't love our family; it is just that the love sometimes gets lost in the translation through poor communications or unskillful methods. I would like to challenge you to be more conscious in the words and actions that affect the children in your circle of influence. Hopefully, you will find some techniques here that will assist you in your efforts.
You do the most important work in the world.
"I was a step-parent at the young age of 24 and would have appreciated the information contained within this article in relation to my role in my step-children's lives. Thank you."
-Mary M. Arthur
© Judy H. Wright
Parent educator and PBS "Ready to Learn" consultant, Judy H. Wright works with Head Start staff, child care resource centers, schools and parent organizations internationally. As a powerful and popular presenter for adults who work with children, Judy's also authored over twenty books. For more information on books, clients and testimonials or to book Judy for your next event, call 1-877-842-3431 or go to www.ArtichokePress.com. She is a founding member of Montana Speakers Network and is a regional representative for National Association for Women Writers.
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13 Ways to Spend Time with Your Teenage Daughter
The older my daughter gets the more it's sinking in that I don't have much time left to spend with her! She's turning 16 in a couple of months, and I know I won't be seeing her much after she gets her driver's license.
Children explore the world around them and learn through pretend play. With so many passive activities like watching TV and playing video games, we sometimes need to encourage our children to pretend play. Here are a few suggestions on how to get those creative juices flowing for both you and your child.
Back to School Care Packages!
I am crying tears of joy mixed with great sadness as my oldest daughter prepares for her freshman year of college at the University of Maryland in the fall. She has already told me I am to send care packages.
Jammin with Your Kids: The Wonderful World of Music
Does music need to be "dumbed-down" for kids? The answer became quite clear to me and my husband as we observed how our own child responded to complex melodies and varied musical styles in the first months of her life.
Ten Ways to Help Your Child Make Friends
Nothing touches the heartstrings of a parent or teacher more than the plaintive cry "nobody likes me" or"I don't have any friends." We wish there were something we could do to insure the child will be, if not the most popular, at least included in the games on the playground. Actually, there is something we can do to increase their acceptance by the group and become more approachable to others. We can teach them some skills and behaviors that will enhance their chances of being picked as a friend.
Work Before Play
Many families, ours included, have learned that breakfast is eaten after we are dressed and have made our beds. Dressing and making a bed somehow only takes five minutes when done before breakfast and take forever if done after breakfast. If it is your child's job to see that the pets are fed and watered, he should be required to do that before he sits down to eat. Wise parents establish a time line for when you expect the job done. For instance, a phrase like, "By the time I take you to your baseball game," or, "Before you can turn on the TV," lets them know what you expect. That way the kids know the ground rules and they are measurable. If the task is not done within the time frame, they recognize there will be consequences, either natural or logical
Back to School - Disappontment?
Our back-to-school buying habits do not help kids succeed in the classroom!
What do you mean average? Not good? Just doing good enough?
Diagnosing ADHD in Children, an Introduction
Everyone in a private practice setting who works with children or adults is going to have their own opinion on how Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder - ADD or ADHD - should be diagnosed. Some clinics take the perspective that "more is good," and will recommend a large battery of tests, often costing many thousands of dollars. Other clinics, typically with hurried physicians, will simply give a brief rating scales to the parents and then make a quick diagnosis and prescribe treatment, usually a medication.
Stop, Look, Listen! Steps to Better Parenting Communication
As a parent is seems that the majority of your day is spent trying to get your children to listen to what you are trying to teach them. Make them understand how to me a responsible child. Convince them to make the right choices. Kids call these lectures. Some parents call them friendly reminders or teaching opportunities.
5 Great Tips For Choosing Safe Toys For Your Children
Every children in the world whishes to have toys and every parent trys to give them what they want. So until they grow-up children spend most of their time playing with different toys. If you are careful when you choose toys for your kids you can even consider that you are making an investment. But you have to know if you are making a good investment or not. There are many educative and safe toys. but you can also find many dangerous toys on the market this days. In this article you will find five tips for choosing safe toys for your children. After all every parent is concerned about their children safety.
How to Make a Time Capsule
Looking for an unusual and memorable gift? Why not preserve a slice of history by creating a time capsule for your loved one?
Eating Disorders in Children
If I had a dollar for every time I persuaded a girl of 8 or 9 that they were not, in fact, fat, I'd be considerably richer. When my older daughter was about that age, their mothers were putting a lot of her friends on diets. It drove me absolutely crazy to see these poor little girls, worrying about their "tummies" or "fat" that wasn't even evident, except to a mother who was hoping for a super model-skinny pre-pubescent child, which is ridiculous. When they were at my house, they ate well, I wouldn't allow them to drink or eat anything diet and I encouraged them to eat healthy food that would strengthen their bodies and bones. I also tried to assure them that they were not fat; that they would grow into their bodies and they were absolutely beautiful just the way they were. With that came some nutritional education about eating a healthy combination of foods that would not make them fat, but strong and naturally slender.
Simple Tricks To Help You And Your Kids To Find Friends
One of the most prevalent problems of the computer age is isolation and loneliness. In order to build and maintain relationships there are a number of simple skills, which can be learned, to enhance the opportunity to find and keep friends.
The Secret, Unconscious Game Children and Parents Play Where No One Wins!
Did you know there's a game children and parents play all the time and yet, neither of them knows about it? This article discusses this unconscious, no-win game children play with their unknowing parents; how points get scored; why the game isn't a good thing to play, and how parents can stop the game.
"Before every action, ask yourself: Will this bring more monkeys on my back? Will the result of my action be a blessing or a heavy burden?" --Alfred A. Montapert
?Mommy, I Can?t Sleep!?: Sleep Disturbance in Children
Oh Please, Don't Say Maybe!!!!
Dads, Handle your Kids Mistakes
One of the most difficult parts of being a father
is learning to accept your children's mistakes. It
certainly can be easy to be loving, supportive,
and helpful when your children are mistake-free,
but most fathers who are paying attention don't
find too many mistake-free periods of their
Time Managment Skills for Children
Time management is an organisational concept traditionally associated with adults and the workplace. The experts tell us that more efficient use of time means greater productivity. So organisations encourage individuals to prioritise, plan ahead and make the most of the time that they have at work.
Ten Helpful Little Tips For New Parents
The Greatest Gifts in Life, which are always created for free, but never come with instructional guide, are your children. The following suggestions may help any new parents feeling blessed by the birth of their first baby, but also feeling overwhelmed by this wondrous experience.