Actions not words
Explain that the word “sorry” is useful only it it means, I will try not to do it again, and that all apologies are only as good as the actions that follow them.
Combat disaffection with involment. Children of all ages are generally more contented once they have a role. Whether it’s washing up, gardening, making something, decorating or sewing, give your child a task that is achievable and rewarding.
Work animal magic by giving your child their own pet to look after. Knowing that the animal is solely dependent on them can give them a first taste of real responsibility.
Teach them to live by their own lights, not to be led astray by other people’s.
Take the long view. Separation can be as upsetting for parents as it s for children. If you are dreaming the school trip and think you will be anxious the whole time your child is away, remember that in all likelihood it will be a great experience from which they will grow in confidence and independence. A little time apart from parents can be truly liberating for a child. Make sure that you take a lot of photos of your children and you together as well as individual shots.
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Words and books
Speak freely. Don’t limit your vocabulary for little ears. Even small children can learn what we think of as big or difficult words if they are used in an understandable context. If you think that they may be mystified, still use the word but explain it in the same breath. That dog is really mischievous – playful and naughty…
Allow kids diction. When children are just learning to express themselves, don’t constantly correct them. Once in a while, it’s find to remind kids that for example, “Sammy and me went…” should be ” Sammy I went to” but try to listen to what they are saying before you obsess about how they are saying it.
Promote nonsense. Why disparage children’s words? They are often descriptive and apt. Encourage your kids to make up and use words of their own invention. You may find yourself using them too.
Bottoms up. All kids are crude. Older children often find scatology hilarious, and let’s face it. Adults are pretty entertained by cudeness. Don’t worry about it but don’t promote it : try to keep it within bounds and instil in your child a sense of when it is not appropriate.
I always play with your kids before the photo session, so your kids feel comfortable while their photos has been taken.
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