Posts tagged parenting

How to Stop a Child from Being Bossy

How to Stop a Child from Being Bossy | @BloomMaternityChildren have specific personality traits.  Some are shy by nature and others are outgoing.  There are children who possess natural leadership abilities and those who find more joy in going along with the crowd.  Some children can’t seem to be able to sit still or be quiet for longer than 10 seconds at a time, if that, while others could play silently with toys for hours without any trouble.  With each of these traits there are both benefits and challenges for parents to overcome.  Few of the challenges are more frustrating than working with a child who is “bossy,” however there are positive ways to redirect challenging behavior.

Get rid of the negative assumptions about bossy children.  A child who is bossy most likely has strong leadership qualities and is very bright.  When a child is bossy it usually means that she has great ideas and wants others to experience these ideas with her.  For these reasons it is important to change the negative stigma associated with a bossy child and recognize that in time and if encouraged, a “bossy” child can become a great leader.  This is especially true when tempered with compassion and empathy.

Model directives that are kind.  Demonstrating positive behavior for any child is important, but even more so with a child who has bossy tendencies.  A child with these kinds of leadership skills will soak up every word and behavior pattern she is exposed to.  Parents with a child of this temperament will need to be extra careful with how they request things from her and how they respond to her demands.

Choose when you ask vs. when you request wisely. There is a very subtle difference between asking a child to do something and requesting or requiring it.  Because you want to model kind directives, if at all possible you should politely ask the child to do things like pick up her shoes or put on her coat.  Give her plenty of time to get the job you are asking her to do done because children who have “bossy” tendencies need to be self-motivated to do just about anything.  If the request is not optional or needs to be done in a hurry, make that clear from the beginning by looking her in the eye and calmly stating, “I need you do to _________ and I need you to do it quickly.”  You can even give the reason why you need it done so quickly.  It may seem like stopping to make sure your child clearly understands your needs will take too long, but in reality it will save time in the end.  In this circumstance, using “I” statements instead of “you” statements is very important.  For instance, you should say “I need you to put the toys away” instead of “you need to put the toys away.”

Do not always let the child get her way.  A child with “bossy” tendencies will expect to always get her own way.  Often times these children are first born or only children and are used to getting to set the schedules and decide what to play with.  It is very important that she does not get her way all the time.  It can be challenging for parents to continually say no to her because she is so persistent and can easily wear adults out.  It may seem easier to just give in and let her have her way rather than fight with her to do something different.  However, it is even more important for the “bossy” child to have to learn that she will not always get her way in life.

Avoid making older siblings your “eyes” for their younger siblings.  Older siblings can be very helpful to their parents in many ways, but this can easily turn into a problem with a child who tends to be “bossy.”  What was once a helpful set of eyes when you could not be in the room with a baby or toddler can quickly turn into a tattle tale and a child who thinks she is in charge of her younger siblings.

Ignore tattling.  It is important to teach your child that if her sibling or someone else in the house is in real danger, you should be notified.  However, it should also be clear that tattling because she does not like the way someone is doing something is not allowed or encouraged.  She should try to work out the disagreement with her sibling without your interference and with kind and calm words, not by yelling or physically hurting the other child.  By encouraging her to work it out by herself and asking her to listen to the other child’s point of view, you will be teaching her empathy and compassion.

Give her more control over herself. All children need some control over their lives.  Often, a child who is bossy to other children and even adults is in need of extra control over her life.  Because she is unable to control certain life events she is reaching to regain control of other areas and people in her life.  It is not always possible to give her control over where she lives, where she goes each day, what other siblings or adults are in the house or how long she can play.   In order to counteract the loss of control in these areas, try giving her greater control in other areas.  Give her more choices about what and when she eats, where and when she sleeps, what clothes she wears, what she plays with and even who she plays with.

“Bossy child” is an extremely negative phrase for a child who is seeking to share her ideas and excitement about life with others.  Use these ideas to not only help your child become a positive and compassionate leader, but also to see her for the brilliant child that she is.

Syndicated with permission from Gonannies.com.

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Three Activities That Build Character in Kids

Three Activities That Build Character in Kids | The Bloom Blog | @BloomMaternity

Three Activities That Build Character in Kids

Most parents desire to raise children who have solid character and compassion. A child will learn these traits from watching those he sees around him and partaking in activities that focus on cultivating these skills when he’s young. To build character in your child, consider doing these three activities with him.

Clean up a neighbor’s yard for free.  Raking leaves and mowing lawns can be a fantastic and lucrative job for a pre-teen child, but it can also be a wonderful gift to give someone.  Every now and then, go with your child to one of your neighbors’ houses with a rake or shovel.  Help that person out with no intentions of making a big deal about it.  You can even make it a secret sneak “attack,” which might make it even more fun for your child.  The best way to build a generous character is to teach giving without any kind of reward, even the award of recognition.

Visit a retirement home. The elderly tend to crave the attention and presence of children.  Very little else brings joy to their life like a visit from a child.  Individuals that have lived a full and happy life have a lot to offer to a child.  Your child might find it difficult to look past the limitations senior citizens have to see the wealth of knowledge and wisdom they possess.  However, a few lighthearted visits to bring treats, sing some songs, or play some games can help open your child’s eyes.  This activity is best done with parents or close caregivers because it can be overwhelming for your child at first.  There is almost always at least one person that your child will connect with during these visits, and once that connection is made the sharing can begin.

Cook and deliver a meal for friends.  Children naturally want to help out when they are young, especially with cooking meals.  As they get older, this normal inkling to help make dinner may lessen.  But if the meal preparation is done for a reason and has a very specific purpose, the child might be a little more interested.  It is important in this activity to allow the child to be involved in the process from the very beginning.  Perhaps your child has a friend whose family is welcoming home a new child or having some other challenge in life.  This would be a great opportunity to model and teach compassion.  Have the child help plan the meal, shop for the supplies, prepare and make the meal, and then deliver it.  This too could be done in secret, with no one but you and the child knowing what was done.  The sense of satisfaction he will get from knowing that he worked hard to help someone else will be a reward in and of itself.

There are thousands of ways to teach children the character building lessons of compassion, generosity and sacrifice in everyday life; however, they can only be truly learned by the child if he witnesses the adults in his life regularly practicing these things too.  The key to each of these activities, as well as thousands of others, is for the child to do them with Mom or Dad.  That is the only way the importance of the endeavor will be learned and recreated.

This post is syndicated with permission by Go Nannies.

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30 Blogs About Parenting Girls

30 Blogs About Parenting Girls | The Bloom Blog | @BloomMaternity

30 Blogs About Parenting Girls

As the parent of a girl you will have a lot of ups and downs in your life, maybe even more so than if you have a boy.  Girls are more emotional for the most part just because they are girls and for no other reason.  It is in their biological make-up.  In saying that, are there certain things you need to know when raising a girl?  Definitely!  These 30 bloggers have put together some very good advice.

Dad’s Role

Dad is probably thinking that he doesn’t know a thing about raising a girl.  He never played with dolls or had tea parties.  However, the role of a dad is very important to your daughter and these five blog posts will tell you why.

Mom’s Role

As a mom you might think that it will be a snap raising your daughter because you are a girl and you know how girls think.  It might not be that simple.  Do you remember how you felt about your mom growing up?  Be prepared!  Read these five blog entries to help you avoid the mistakes that your mom may have made.

Toddler

Toddlers are toddlers right?  Do you need to do anything differently when raising a toddler girl?  These five bloggers seem to think so.  Read through these posts and see if you can see why toddler girls are different.

Tween

You might think your daughter has jumped over the tween years and gone right into the teen years, but that’s part of the whole tween thing.  Some days she will act like a little girl and play with her dolls and the next day she wants to go shopping for an iPod.  These five blog posts will help you with your tween.

Puberty

Going through puberty is difficult, but watching your daughter go through puberty is a nightmare.  Your little girl is growing up.  What can you do to help her transition?  Check out these five blog entries for answers.

Teen

Once your little girl becomes a teen you may no longer recognize her.  Her body will change and her moods will change.  How do you parent a teen girl?  These five blog posts will help you figure it all out.

Syndicated with permission by http://www.fulltimenanny.com.

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Expert Insights with Christina M. H. Powell, Ph.D, of Question Your Doubts

I reached out to my good friend Dr. Christina Powell and asked her some of the most common faith based questions parents face. As a mother, Harvard trained research scientist and an ordained minister, she’s in a unique position to provide helpful insight. Here’s what she had to say.

eNannySource: What are some practical ways to teach kids about faith?

Dr. Powell: The Bible instructs parents to teach kids about faith “when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up” (Deuteronomy 11:19). Everyday moments provide great teaching opportunities for parents to share their faith. A walk in the park exploring nature can lead to a conversation about God as creator. A prayer before mealtime can become a quick lesson on gratitude and God’s provision. Bedtime stories and background music in the home can teach Biblical principles. Children learn about faith best when you weave the lessons into the fabric of family life.

eNannySource: What do you say to parents who are worried their kids won’t behave in church, so they don’t take them?

Dr. Powell: Every child is unique, and churches take varied approaches to children’s ministry. Children should be included in the family’s worship practices so they learn to value church and their place in the Christian community. However, for a season, a parent might need to find a compromise that works for their child and their church. In a church without children’s programs, perhaps an energetic young child can enjoy singing with their parents in the main sanctuary, but may need to leave before the sermon. An imperfect solution that increases a child’s involvement in church is better than an approach that does not include the child.

eNannySource: What is the best way for parents to answer faith-based questions like “Why did grandma die?” or “Who is God?”

Dr. Powell: Children need answers to faith-based questions that deliver the right amount of age-appropriate information. Your answers should be honest and simple, but not sugar coated. Be careful of distorting theology in your attempt to answer the question on the child’s level. As your children develop, you can provide them with more complex answers to meet their growing spiritual needs.

eNannySource: What tips do you have for parents whose children doubt the spiritual truths their parents share with them?

Dr. Powell: Faith is a decision that each person ultimately makes for himself. At some point in the process of learning spiritual truths from parents, children must decide to make their parent’s faith into their own faith. Doubting can be part of this process. With an older child, guiding the child in the process of discovery can be more helpful than directly providing answers. Show the child how to seek answers from the Bible and through prayer. Help the child connect to peers with a solid faith. Introduce the child to books that strengthen faith. Be a mentor, but let the child go through the discovery process.

eNannySource: What role does faith play in the lives of children?

Dr. Powell: Faith can comfort a child in the same way that faith comforts adults, helping children work through their fears and better understand their world. Faith provides stability through the ups and downs of life, giving perspective to successes and failures. Faith also teaches a child how to relate to peers and authority figures and make wise life choices.

eNannySource: What can happen if parents don’t pass on their faith to their children?

Dr. Powell: If parents do not pass their faith to their children, their children may walk away from the faith. Responsibility for the next generation of the church lies primarily with parents. Teachers, pastors and youth leaders can come alongside parents, but no one can replace the role of a parent in a child’s life.

eNannySource: Is there anything else you’d like to share?

Dr. Powell: In the process of teaching children about faith, we may find they teach us about faith as well. Jesus told his followers they must become as little children in their hearts when they come to him (Matthew 18:2-4). Our children remind us of the trusting relationship we need to have with God.

Christina M. H. Powell, Ph.D., is an ordained minister, public speaker, and writer trained as a biomedical research scientist at Harvard University. She is also the mother of two girls. She blogs athttp://www.questionyourdoubts.com and is writing her first book exploring the many roots of doubt and the corresponding response of faith.

This post was syndicated with permission from eNannySource.com.

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Scientists link serotonin deficit to SIDS

New research sheds light on a possible biological cause, pinpointing a defect in the brain that might account for babies who suddenly and unexpectedly die during their sleep.

Does this effect how you currently or in the future will put your baby to sleep – only on their back or side?

Scientists link serotonin deficit to SIDS – The Boston Globe

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Day 4 – Save on Cloth Diapers and Accessories

Cloth diapering is as easy as disposable and a lot better for the environment!

Cloth diapering is as easy as using disposable diapers and a whole lot better for the environment.

Day 4 of the 12-days of Christmas sale gives you the opportunity to SAVE on cloth diapers and accessories. You don’t cloth diaper but have been thinking you might want to give it a try? Did you know that you will spend over $2,500 for one child on disposable diapers? Compared to that, cloth diapering is affordable, you can re-use cloth diapers on siblings down the road, the colors and styles are super cute and it is GREAT for the environment! Here is a great way to get just a few diapers and see how you like it! All GAD diapers have been re-priced TO INCLUDE a microfiber terry insert!! Regular price $20 for the two pieces, now only $16. Need detergent for your cloth diapers? Get some Rockin’ Green! Want to make cloth diapering even easier? Bummis flushable liners make dealing with the poop a whole lot better!! Diapers, wet bags, dryer balls, detergent, liners, bamboo wipes….we’ve got everything you need! Happy shopping.

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They’ll let anyone be parents

They'll let anyone be parents to a baby, child, kid, teenagerIt shouldn’t shock me that this parenting stuff is difficult, but it does. And just when I think I’ve made it over an insurmountable hurdle with one of my kids’ issues and I’m patting myself on the back for being such an awesome mom, up pops another hurdle, tripping me and sending me flying back to Parenting 101.

Not that there is such a class. But, boy howdy, do I wish one existed.  

It occurred to me today that, generally speaking, a person can’t be hired for a professional job unless they have a college degree. Many of us spend four years—FOUR YEARS—or longer immersing ourselves in our field of choice, studying for long, arduous hours in the hopes that we’ll one day be granted an opportunity to prove what we’ve learned.

But ANYONE can become a parent. There are no required classes, no prerequisites, no bachelors degrees in parenting. And I’m realizing that maybe it explains why the world is such a strange and screwed up place. People—clueless ones, like me, who are simply making it up as they go—are out there making parenting decisions, providing their children with examples of how to behave. These babies, kids and teenagers are watching us. They’ve imitating us. And whatever examples we provide, (both good and bad) they’re emulating and embracing.

There probably should be a college for parenting that offers a two- or four-year degree you have to earn to prove you can raise a healthy, happy, well-adjusted baby into a considerate, confident adult. Parenting School would test and then weed out all of the people who couldn’t hack being parents. Maybe then the world would be a better place. Or, maybe, Parenting School is a silly idea because it would just confirm what we already know: we’re all human and, as such, none of us are really qualified to be parents.

[photo credit: SXC]

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