Parenting Tips by Victoria Prooday
Parenting Tip #13: Can kids play on tablets while eating, shopping, riding in a car, waiting in the restaurant ?
It is EASY to raise children if we let them play on IPads while eating, shopping, riding a car, waiting in the restaurant or while you are busy talking on a phone. Unfortunately, nothing GOOD in our life comes EASY. Raising GOOD children requires tremendous investment of our time, energy, and creativity!
Giving kids IPads is a bandage solution. It is convenient for us as it keeps them quiet in the moment. Unfortunately, we are depriving kids of the essential life skills such as patience, ability to deal with boredom, self engage in meaningful activities, and connect with others.
Avoid using gadgets as a free entertainment service while your child is bored. Teach your child to become his own entertainment service! Here is an example of what you can do to teach your child to wait while you are on the phone. There were no IPads when we were children and we survived!
Parenting Tip #12: Giving children control and choices
We all read parenting books advising "giving children control and choices". However, it doesn't mean giving kids control and choices in EVERYTHING.
As parents, we don't even notice that we often ASK kids, 'Is it time for bed?' 'Is it time to put the toys away?' Do you want to eat vegetables? Do you want to put on your jacket? Are you ready to get out of the car?'
Don't be surprised if your child answers "NO!!!" Why? Because your child gives you an answer to your question. You asked if he wants, he says,"No" because he/she doesn't want :-). Questions such as 'Do you want?", "Are you ready?' imply that there is a choice of not doing it. Don't ask or give choices where there is no choice. Instead say, 'Let's fly like butterflies to bed ', 'We are going to eat a long and green vegetable. What can it be?' 'Let's get out of the car to see a beautiful bird', 'Let's see how many cars you can tidy up in 2 min', 'Who is going to put on a jacket first, you or me?' There are times for choices, but there are times for just telling kids what to do without giving them choices or asking for their permission. They are just KIDS. Their life experience is too short to know what's the BEST choice for them. That is the ART of parenting!
Parenting Tip#11:My child is ungrateful!
Many parents come to me with one common concern, "My child is ungrateful. He/she takes everything for granted and constantly asks for MORE".
Why? Because we (parents) let it happen. We give them everything without making kids work for anything. All they do is FUN, FUN, FUN and the moment it gets just a little "boring", we run to entertain them with more FUN. Very sad, but that is the reality!
How to fix it? Make them WORK! Bring kids back to the kitchen, laundry room etc. Make them set the table, prepare food, put dishes in a dishwasher, do laundry, clean the house, unpack shopping etc. For change to happen, the change has to be incorporated into their day to day life.
Parenting Tip #10: Parenting is the hardest and the most creative full time job of all
It is only easy when we give children what they WANT instead of what they NEED. Their WANTS are easy: eat junk food, play gadgets all day, go to bed at midnight, have others to do everything for them. However, kids' NEEDs are often the exact opposite of their WANTS. Kids need to eat healthy food, go to bed early, do chores, read books, do HW, clean up, find what to do when it is "boring" other than playing gadgets etc. Helping kids WANT to do what they NEED to do is HARD! That is the ART of parenting.
Parenting Tip #9: We can't teach children positively using negativity
We can't teach kids emotional control using anger. Be who you want your kids to be. If you want your kids to have self control, model self control. If you want your kids to be greatful, show gratitude. If you want your kids to be respectful, show respect.
Parenting Tip #8: Handmade Holiday Cards
Remember the special feeling of getting a handmade holiday card in the mail? It felt like magic. Handmade cards are unique, much more personal, much warmer, and have a much deeper meaning.
We all have a busy life. It is easier and faster to send a Facebook message or an email. Unfortunately, we are depriving our children of the priceless experience of making, sharing, and receiving handmade cards. This holiday season, let’s put a conscious effort into making with our children handmade cards for people we love! The more love we share, the more love we feel💞
Parenting tip #7: Training is Required!
We all know that skating, biking, swimming require training kids. Moreover, we all know that these skills require POSITIVE training if we want our kids to love doing it. What about getting dressed, hanging jackets, putting shoes away, unpacking lunch boxes, doing HW, tidying up toys, cleaning rooms, table manners, conversation and social skills, organization skills etc? ALL require training! All require POSITIVE training! As we don't expect a child to be able to swim without teaching him the skill first, we can't expect a child to tidy up his toys without teaching him! For ideas on how to teach kids life skills in the positive and stimulating way, visit my YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPBCH6MwxPuiOzmsWmy7SzQ
Parenting Tip #6: I don't have time to spend with kids!
On a daily basis I hear from parents, 'Victoria, when I come home from work I have so many important things to do. I don't have time to spend with kids'. Really? Kids ARE our work. They are our most important work. All we have to spend with our children is 2-3 hours a day. Don't they deserve it? Instead of plugging them to TV, incorporate them in whatever you do, such as cooking, setting a table, cleaning, gardening, opening mail etc. These are great ways to connect, contribute to the family, and teach new skills. No technological babysitters can do our parenting work😉
Parenting Tip #5: Get a Pet Fish
One great way to teach kids responsibilities is to get a pet fish. Make feeding and cleaning the fish tank to become your child's responsibility. As your child proves to you that he/she is able to take care of one fish, you might consider getting a second one. Another added benefit of a fish pet is the calming effect of watching the fish swimming. Join your child in watching the fish swimming and discuss 'What is the fish thinking about?'
Having responsibilities is a learned life skill. Back in our childhood, we had to take on responsibilities out of necessity which prepared us for the adulthood. Today's children have no responsibilities and everything is being done for them. The long-term consequences of such childhood are devastating as children are not prepared for the real life. Every small responsibility given to kids counts!
Parenting tip #4: Don't carry your child's backpack.
Don't carry your child's backpack. Kids' backpacks should be their responsibility to pack, unpack and carry. To prepare kids for adulthood, we should slowly pass the load to their shoulders starting from backpacks.
Parenting Tip #3: Fishing
Fishing is a priceless gift that nature shares with us and our kids. Fishing teaches kids independence, problem-solving, planning, motor coordination, patience, and self-confidence. It has a calming effect on the nervous system and is a great stress reliever. Fishing connects kids with nature and family. Fishing is free, fun for any age, available all year around.
Parenting Tip #2: Spend Time with your Child
Schedule a weekly 1:1 quality time with your child. To connect with your child, disconnect from the world by turning off your phone. Activity ideas: visiting a library, baking a cake, washing a car together, hiking, learning magic tricks, making science experiments, swimming together, making a shadow or a puppet theater, scrapbooking. What are your child's favorite 1:1 quality time activities?
Parenting Tip #1: Note in the Lunch Box
Hide a love note in your child’s lunch box to share your feelings and put a smile on your child's face. Examples of notes: Thinking of you right now. Can’t wait to see you after school. My day is brighter knowing that I have you. Make it the best day ever. This lunch was made with love. I miss you already. Share your ideas of notes in the comments