Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Review (& lengthy parenting post)

I highly recommend this book, that a friend recommended. Not only is she a parent, but she's a licensed, professional counselor. What's great about the book, is that it is part of a series that you can follow through different ages & stages of growth (through the teen years). I thought I'd summarize some of the highlights, but there's such a wealth of information I couldn't possibly include all the important parts. Just trust me. This one for the first three years is well worth the money. As I'm sure the others for older kiddos are too.

~Positive Discipline is based on using kindness & firmness. It has nothing to do with punishment - which over time "will create rebellion, resistance and children who just don't believe in their own worth".

~Building blocks include:
1) mutual respect
2) understanding the belief behind behavior
3) understanding child development and age appropriateness
4) effective communication
5) discipline that teaches (neither permissive nor punitive)
6) focusing on solutions instead of punishment
7) encouragement
8) children DO better then they FEEL better

~Power struggles are often just that - because parents take power away from children, instead of guiding them to develop their power in useful ways.

~Create routines; offer choices; teach respect by being respectful; provide opportunities to help; be patient

~Time-outs should not be used with children under the age of 3 ½ to 4 yrs. Until they reach the age of reason & logic, supervision & distraction are the most effective parenting tools. A positive time-out, creating a calming space (reading a book, listening to music, laying on a favorite pillow) may help to soothe or distract an upset child.

~Young children rarely misbehave purposely. As adults we often read intent into children's behavior, that reflects our thinking, rather than the child's.

~There's a whole section on the 9 temperaments… all children possess varying degrees of each. Understanding which ones your child reflects more of, will help in deciding how to teach/react/reaffirm behaviors.

~The main factors in using positive discipline are using kindness, which "shows respect for the child and his uniqueness" and firmness, which "shows respect for the needs of the situation".

~"Slapping and spanking is far more likely to create a sense of doubt & shame than healthy autonomy."

~Try saying what you DO want, rather than 'no'; try distraction and redirection; offer limited choices.

~Tantrums are normal & will happen at times. We can learn not to add to the chaos. Avoid words. Allow a safe place for emotions to settle. Offer support. Plan ahead.

~You can't make them do it: sleeping, eating, toilet training (too much to recap, but especially with sleeping, routines help & visual picture schedules can help even more).

~Focus on using encouragement vs. praise. Encouragement focuses on the task & is unconditional. Praise focuses on the person & is conditional - I'm 'good' only if I accomplish a certain task & get a reward. Be specific - "that was such nice sharing" vs. "good girl".

~"Encouragement means noticing progress, not just achievement."

~There's a great section on childcare & a helpful checklist on what to look for.

~I feel blessed to have a happy, healthy, & caring baby boy.

1 comment:

J said...

Oh good because I asked for this book for Christmas and got it, but haven't read it yet! I did read "Love & Logic for ages 0-6" and this sounds VERY similar, only possibly more in-depth when it comes to detail. I'll make sure to read it soon!