Give Your Children Choices: Allowing your children
to make choices fosters independence and confidence. It also helps children make
good decisions for themselves when they’re on their own.
When they’re young, allowing your children to choose what
they wear can be very empowering. Of course, very little ones can be overwhelmed
by too many choices, so pick out two t-shirts and let them choose from the two.
As your children get older, they can have more decisions.
Even if you have your heart set on your daughter being a piano player, if she
wants to explore the violin or even hockey instead, encourage that.
You can also help your children make good choices by
helping them consider all the factors involved in that
choice. If they want to play hockey, they’ll have to
consider the early morning practices and loss of free
time. They’ll also want to think about the skills they
will learn, the teamwork they’ll benefit from and so on.
a Role Model & Teacher:
Demonstrate how your children should behave and relate
to other people with your own example. If we are
constantly angry and yelling (which we’ll talk about a
bit later), how can we expect our children not to use
anger in their interactions with other people?
you want your children to choose healthy foods, make
sure that you follow a healthy diet as well. If you want
them to read each night, make sure they see you reading
regularly as well.
You can be a role model by telling your children about
your experiences that they may not have seen firsthand.
Be honest, don’t be afraid to admit your mistakes and
let them learn from your sharing.
Play & Interact with Your Children:
involved with your children. Play games together, go on
outings together and have fun. Even if your children are
older and more independent, find things that you can do
together. Interacting with your children deepens your
family connection and allows you to demonstrate yourself
as a role model for your children.
Have tea parties with your little girl. Attend your
older children’s sporting events and get together to
talk about it afterward. Do art projects together. Get
involved with school project (but don’t take over)!
There are many opportunities throughout each and every
day to be involved with your children. Make sure you
take as many of them as you can. Sometimes we can get
involved in household chores or other things that need
to be done. Try to set a schedule for these activities,
so you have plenty of time afterward to interact with
your children. Or better yet, get your kids involved in
the household chores. Prepare meals together, reorganize
closets or clean out the garage. Even if the tasks
aren’t fun, keep the conversation light and enjoy your
Praise Your Children:
Praise them for the things they do well, improvements
and efforts they make and encourage them to pursue their
interests. Do what you can to make sure your children
are surrounded by people who praise including older
siblings, relatives, educators and friends. Be sure to
fill your child with praise. Tell them that you
love them, tell them when they do a job well. Don’t forget hugs
and kisses too! Remember, there doesn’t even have to be
a specific reason to share praise. Share it liberally
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