Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Teaching Toddlers Table Manners

It's a common scenario: Breakfast is proceeding nicely (read: quietly) until your toddler knocks his cereal bowl over onto his high-chair tray. Intrigued by the oozing mess, he dumps his juice on top of it, too!

Understandably, your first response may be to scold your kid. But if you really want him to have stellar table manners, strange as it may seem, overlook this slipup. Making a big scene will only fuel his bad behavior because to a kid this age, any attention is good attention.

Instead, make a fuss when he does eat properly. Say, "Look how you're using that spoon just like a big boy!" When he spills, just remove him from the table without saying a word about it. "This technique is called 'ignoring to extinction,'" explains Charles Shubin, M.D., medical director of pediatrics at the Family Health Centers of Baltimore.

When he spills something on purpose, you could also respond without talking directly to your child. Say, "If Jack didn't drop food, that would be much better," as if he weren't there.

Either way, try to be realistic. Your toddler isn't trying to annoy you, he just lacks the patience to sit through an adult-length meal. Once he starts playing with his food, he's usually not hungry anymore. Let him leave the table when he starts to get restless  -- and applaud the mess he didn't make.
READ MORE - Teaching Toddlers Table Manners

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Learning Manners

Hi mom and Dad, In this guide, I'll tell you:
  • Getting an early start
  • Preschoolers' etiquette
  • Teaching kindergartners and grade-school kids
  • Summary


Every child is capable of age-appropriate manners. You can't expect young children to be perfectly well-behaved all the time, but you can get them in the habit of practicing polite behavior early on, so you can lay a strong foundation for positive social interactions. Here's how, age by age.

Getting an early start

Toddlers as young as 18 months can begin to grasp the rules of politeness. They may not fully understand what you're teaching them, but you can:
Put good manners in context. Thinking about other people's feelings is the root of polite behavior. So explain to your child that when you help your neighbor hunt for her lost keys at the playground, she feels good and so do you. Point out how kind the cashier is at the supermarket. Talking to young children about caring for others helps them absorb this value, even without fully understanding it.
Take temperament into account. Some 15-month-olds are outgoing and wave hello and goodbye to everyone. Others are slower to warm up, and that's okay. For a toddler who isn't comfortable being the center of attention at a birthday party, being polite may mean she whispers "Thank you" into your ear and asks you to convey the message.
Keep it simple at the dinner table. Toddlers don't have the motor or emotional skills all at once to practice good table etiquette, so start with one rule, such as "When you eat, you sit at the table" or "No feet on the table." Repeat often.

Preschoolers' etiquette

At this age, kids have improved memory and language and better impulse control, which means it's easier for them to learn and retain good manners. What to do:
Intervene when necessary. If your son has taken another child's toy at the playground, step in and insist that he return it. Tell him that if he won't let go of the toy, there'll be a consequence. And don't imply that he's the one who gets to make a decision about the toy by saying, "I'd really like you to think about giving the toy back"  -- he shouldn't have a choice in the matter.
Use favorite characters. When your child refuses to say "I'm sorry," tell her that she's behaving like one of Cinderella's stepsisters. It provides your child with a concrete example to learn from.
Offer praise. If your child says "please" without being told to, compliment him on his manners, and reward him with what he asked for (within reason, of course!). Most 3-year-olds have the verbal skills to say, "Please may I have more grapes," so let him have the extra grapes.
Try imaginary play. With 3- and 4-year-year-olds, remembering table manners at a pretend tea party is a fun way to drive politeness lessons home. Practice the small table rituals like a napkin on the lap, not starting until everyone has a treat, and even introducing "guests," whether they're stuffed animals or siblings.
Supervise. Kids learn from repetition, so be prepared to play the manners police consistently. If there's a problem, exert your parental authority.

Teaching kindergartners and grade-schoolers

As kids get older, they're more able to follow directions, and they love to put their manners on display. At school, they're being asked to be quiet, take turns, and raise their hands. Here's how you can help your child's manners along:
Discuss expectations. As your child's verbal skills improve, talk about what she considers proper manners. Tell her about your expectations, too, and listen to what she says is hard for her to do. If she can't sit still while your family finishes dinner, let her leave her chair to move around, but make her stay within talking distance. (Also, kids are more likely to follow rules if they think they invented them, so have her come up with her own ground rules for manners.)
Maintain boundaries. While it might be tempting to tell your child that it hurt when she said your new dress was gross, try to keep the discussion to what is and isn't acceptable. A better way to handle it is to tell her, "It's not okay to talk to me that way."


Teaching young kids manners is an on-going process. Try to be patient, and keep your expectations in line with what your child is capable of achieving at his age. Your time and patience will be rewarded every time your child says "please" and uses his napkin at mealtime.
READ MORE - Learning Manners

Discipline for Toddlers

 Discipline isn't only about punishment. It's about teaching your child to follow rules
Kicking. Screaming. Hitting. Biting. No parent wants to see her child act like a little monster, no matter how adorable she is. But just what are you supposed to do when your child acts up? Experts say spanking isn't the answer, and there are plenty of effective ways to bring out the best in your child without using physical force. How to stop bad behavior, and make sure you and your partner agree about setting rules:

When to start disciplining your child
You can set limits even with babies, once they're about 6 months old. Tell them not to grab Mommy's eyeglasses, for instance, or to be gentle when petting the cat. Being firm and setting safety guidelines early on is the caring thing to do. By establishing boundaries, you introduce your child to the realities of the world, which has no shortage of rules. And cultivating a healthy respect for what Mom and Dad say will make it easier to enforce crucial limits later.

Setting rules
The best way to lay the groundwork for discipline is to make your house rules simple and clear, such as "No hitting" or "No climbing on the table."

Handling bad behavior
Pick your battles. Decide whether a reaction from you is really worth it. If you come down hard on everything from whining at bedtime to biting, you'll wear everybody out. And your attempts at discipline will be far more effective if you focus on the things that really matter to you.
Say no. If your child has done something wrong, like hit a friend, say immediately and firmly, "No hitting." If your child is old enough, you can also have her apologize. Limit your no's to actual bad behavior, though, or your child will start to tune you out. If she's doing something you don't like that's relatively harmless (she draws on her hand, for example), say something like, "Paint is for paper only."
Create consequences. One child's time-out is another child's excuse to daydream, so find a consequence that really matters to your child. It might be taking away a privilege or having to do something she doesn't like. A child over 2 can heed a warning  -- "If you keep throwing sand, you'll have to come out of the sandbox." Be sure to always follow through with the consequence. Your child won't take you seriously if you don't.
Be consistent. Kids love to test your will, and without consistency, rules become as tempting to break as a leaning Lego tower in a roomful of 2-year-olds. Stick to your rules and eventually she'll realize that the actions you don't like have consequences that she doesn't like.
Empathize. Let your child know that you understand how she feels. "I know how frustrated you are. I wish we could stay at the park all day, too, but..." Just knowing you understand where she's coming from can help her calm down.
Make a deal. If your child won't go to bed, offer to keep the hall light on. It sounds like a compromise to her, but you're not actually backing down. And instead of offering a bribe, such as a treat if she stops crying, offer rewards for good behavior: If she stays by your side at the grocery store, you'll stop at the park later.
Offer another option. As much as possible, when your child breaks a rule, show her an acceptable alternative behavior. So when you say, "Don't dump out Mommy's purse!" follow it up by suggesting, "Let's dump out these blocks instead."
Praise the good. The most powerful form of discipline by far is positive reinforcement  -- for a child of any age. The more praise you give, the more your child will want to behave. Also, try to counter each infraction ("We don't hit!") with encouragement ("You're petting the dog so gently").
READ MORE - Discipline for Toddlers

Monday, November 28, 2011

3 Big-Kid Discipline Dilemmas - Solved! (part 2)

Q: When my 9-year-old gets his 4-year-old brother to do something inappropriate, like open an unbought bag of corn chips at the store, who gets the time-out?

A: Both children should receive consequences, but a time-out isn't the way to go.
"The purpose of a time-out is to create some space between the child and a parent who wants to heave him against the wall, but time-outs don't teach a lesson," says Brown Braun. "Your child isn't necessarily thinking about what he did."
Instead, calmly say to the younger child: "You opened something that we weren't going to buy. That is against the rules of the market and our family.  I'm going to buy the chips now because I have to. But you may not eat them because you did not follow the rules. And I'm not going to keep bringing you to the store if this happens again."
Later, talk to your older son. It's normal for him to do a little boundary testing - and to try to manipulate his sib. Not only does that let him claim "It wasn't me!" but, points out Brown Braun, "it's pretty intoxicating to be the nine-year-old whose younger sibling will do anything for him."
To make the reprimand fit the crime, say something like "I'm disappointed that you're choosing to teach your brother to break rules. Rules matter, and your brother looks up to you."
Just as important, when you see your older child setting a good example, praise him for being a stellar role model. "Your nine-year-old loves the power, so turn it into a positive kind of power," Brown Braun advises.

Q: I'm mortified when my 6-year-old daughter throws fits in public. Should I ignore it? Or discipline her right then and there, risking more embarrassment?

A: "Everyone feels embarrassed when that neon light goes off that seems to say 'I've lost control,' but now's the time to put on your mom hat and not worry about it," says Brown Braun.
Instead of lecturing or punishing your daughter right then, calmly let her know what you expect of her and what will happen if she doesn't follow through. For instance, if you're out at a restaurant, say "It is not okay for you to talk to me that way. If you stop, you can stay at the table. If you keep it up, we're going to have to leave." (Brown Braun says parents always worry that this outcome is exactly what the misbehaving kid intends, but, in fact, "having to leave is powerful stuff" - especially if it means going without dinner, TV, or company once you get home.)
"Try to avoid threats like 'If you do that one more time, you will not be able to go to Disneyland next Saturday.' Consequences need to be immediate and directly related to the misbehavior," adds Brown Braun. Of course, having to take your food "to go" will be a pain for you, too, but it's the best way to nip this type of behavior in the bud.
Last, remember to use a firm voice and avoid pleading language like "Oh, come on, honey, stop that." "Your child needs to know you mean business," says Brown Braun.
READ MORE - 3 Big-Kid Discipline Dilemmas - Solved! (part 2)

Thursday, November 24, 2011

3 Big-Kid Discipline Dilemmas - Solved! (Part 1)

You probably thought there couldn't be anything more exasperating than a toddler's bedtime tantrums or public meltdowns. Now you realize: Those were the easy days. At least your 15-month-old wouldn't scream "You're the worst mom ever!" when denied a new pair of jeans.
The school years bring countless joys, but the increased defiance that sneaks into your child's repertoire isn't among them." At this age, children can challenge your authority in ways that push your buttons far more effectively than before," says Alan Kazdin, Ph.D., director of the Yale Parenting Center and Child Conduct Clinic. Back talk, sarcasm, sibling manipulation, elaborate excuses for avoiding chores - these pose no shortage of tests to your parenting skills and your patience.
So what's a frustrated mom or dad supposed to do?
In search of answers, we asked a group of moms to share their most vexing discipline scenarios, then enlisted Kazdin and other child-behavior experts to weigh in with some proven solutions. In general, the experts said, school-age children demand a more nuanced approach than they did when they were little, one that emphasizes praising positive behavior rather than punishing defiance. But keep in mind, "there's no one right way to discipline," says Los Angeles child-development and behavior specialist Betsy Brown Braun, author of Just Tell Me What to Say: Tips and Scripts for Perplexed Parents. "What worked for one child or situation may not work for another. You have to keep trying different approaches, and mix and match techniques - but you'll eventually find something that works for you."

Q: My 7-year-old has become totally sarcastic. When I tell her to apologize to her sister, she'll say "So-reee" snidely, even on the tenth time I have her repeat it. Help!

A: "I applaud a parent wanting to have her children face their actions - that's a good, positive intent - but an insisted-upon apology doesn't work at this age," says child-behavior expert Kim John Payne, M.Ed., author of Simplicity Parenting. There's a developmental reason for that: Before they're about 8 or 9, children just can't feel true repentance.
A more effective response is to state your disapproval ("We try to speak respectfully in our family") while also commending your daughter for something she's done well. For example: "You normally look after your sister very nicely." Says Payne, "When disapproval comes with a genuine affirmation, you're less likely to get a defiant child or one who collapses and sulks."
Once you've made your point, tell both girls that you'll talk about the situation after everyone's calmed down. Separate them, perhaps by giving them both small jobs, and later on, take each one aside so she can tell you her side of the story. "Listen, but don't comment," Payne advises. "If you say too much, you're on someone's side."
Finally, tell your 7-year-old that she needs to "make good" with her sister, and ask her for ideas. (She could, for example, ask her sib if she wants to walk the dog together.) "Making good" or "putting things right" is more effective phrasing for children than "I'm sorry," Payne says. "It stays in concrete actions, not in abstract feelings."
READ MORE - 3 Big-Kid Discipline Dilemmas - Solved! (Part 1)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

6 Ways to Be a Great Parent

No-stress ideas for happy moms

1. Play video games

That's right: They're good for something. Wendy Hart Beckman of Cincinnati found that the best way to actually have a conversation with any of her three sons was to do it while they were playing a video game together. The bonding plays out in a different way with each child, she says. With her oldest, the distraction of the game allows them to have revealing conversations that might prove too uncomfortable face-to-face. With her middle son, she uses video games as a way to help him work on social skills. And her youngest son enjoys teaching her how to play new games, so it gives them a common interest. Try it -- you might even be surprised at how much fun you have.

2. Keep a diary
"When things get chaotic, I grab a pen and record what's happened and why," says Christine Louise Hohlbaum of Paunzhausen, Germany, a mom of two. "It often defuses the situation for me immediately."
Writing out the ups and downs of life as a parent can help you vent, problem-solve, and track your child's development. "We get frustrated, angry, and overwhelmed, with little opportunity for an immediate outlet," says Hohlbaum. Give yourself one and -- bonus -- your kid will also see a productive way to handle frustration.

3. Hang out with your friends
With all you have to do for your kids (plus everything else!), it's no wonder friends fall by the wayside. But if you can stay close, you'll be happier -- and show your kids how important friendship is.
"My kids enjoy hearing us talk about when we were kids," says Tami Berman, a mom of three in Newburgh, New York, who's still close to her two best friends from grade school. "And they've made a vow with my friends' kids to stay close, too. It gives them a sense of stability."
Keeping up is hardest when children are small -- but that's exactly when you need friends the most. Set up a bimonthly dinner (families invited, too), then grab a drink afterward.

4. Let your child make her own crazy choices
As a toddler, my daughter was so insistent on wearing exactly what she wanted -- even if that was a tutu and patent-leather shoes on a snowy day -- that I let her. Much later, I realized the value of letting her pick out her clothes, books, room decor: She developed independence and individuality, and was better at making sound choices (about food, friends, activities) than kids who'd had decisions made for them.

5. Say no to your kids
During my first few years of motherhood, my vision of the perfect mom was one who was all-loving, all-giving, all-nurturing, who never got angry or said no. If I slipped up (as I did frequently), I just had to work harder to attain perfection. And if my kid was cranky, unruly, and demanding, that must mean I had to be even more patient and understanding.
I believed this until the day I exploded. When I finally said no, the sun came out. I realized that being a great mother didn't mean endlessly indulging my child but guiding her, acting as her leader.
With my two youngest, I've been more confident saying no, and it's been smoother. They know the rules because I've made them clear, and they also feel secure that yes means yes.

6. Put an end to Candy Land
Most of us believe that good parents are interested in their children. That's true -- up to a point. Around about the 50th game of Candy Land or viewing of Jay Jay the Jet Plane, you may wish your child were interested in your stuff. He can be. "I think there's too much of an emphasis on self-sacrifice in parenting," says Lisa Phillips, a mom of one in Woodstock, New York. So instead of listening to nothing but children's music, they turn on funk and soul. With kids along, hikes might be slower and scrapbooking might be messy. But at least you're not stuck in the Molasses Swamp.


READ MORE - 6 Ways to Be a Great Parent

Easy Toddler Fun

You've just gotten the phone call canceling your playdate. Or the delivery people have called to tell you they'll be there with your new water heater sometime between early morning and 5 p.m. The day stretches out before you. What to do?
We asked moms around the country for their best tips for keeping their toddlers happy and occupied. And not one of them calls for turning on the TV! These activities are easy to do at home using stuff you already have, and are sure to delight both of you.
In the bathroom...
  • Draw a bath, throw in a couple of clean sponges, and ask your toddler to help you "clean" the bathtub while she's in it. While she's busy, you can scrub the sink or just sit there and enjoy some downtime.
  • Nothing occupies a toddler more than his own little squirt bottle filled with water and a small sponge, I've found. Show him that the idea is not to soak but to spritz -- and then clean the smudges off the walls.
  • Mindy Swanson of San Diego sprays shaving cream all over the bathtub walls and adds a drop of food coloring. "Let your kids mix it together and you're rocking," she says. "Finger-paint-o-rama!" A quick spray is all it takes to clean up afterward. An added bonus: Your bathroom smells like Daddy.
In the kitchen...
  • Mini-muffins are a perfect project. "They're very simple to mix up, and your child can do almost every step," says Christina Bess, a mom of two in Maplewood, New Jersey. "Plus, they only take ten minutes to bake. Turn on some disco and do some crazy dancing while they're cooking." (To see her recipe for banana-chocolate-chip muffins, plus more toddler-enticing recipes, go to
  • Rebecca Horvath of Bluff City, Tennessee, sets down a big plastic bowl of uncooked rice, along with some cups, spoons, and containers, for her 3-year-old. "Emily pours and scoops for as long as I'll let her," she says. Another option: uncooked beans. (But watch your toddler carefully.)
  • "Washing vegetables is one of the first ways that my kids 'helped' when I made lunch or dinner," says Lani Horn, a mom of three in Seattle. "So what if it ends up being more about running their hands under the water?"
In your room...
  • "I hand Francie a hairbrush and she brushes my hair while I get to read a magazine," says Amey Stone of New York City.
  • "I give my toddler some face paints and let her paint herself," says Martha Brockenbrough of Seattle. "She'll stand in front of the mirror and paint her face, arms, and legs, and then her sister. It's my secret weapon."
  • Play doctor. When I was pregnant with my son, I got to lie down on my bed while my then almost-3-year-old listened to my heartbeat, checked the baby, and worked on my feet. (Don't ask why -- I could never figure out what she was doing with them.)
In the family room...
  • Don't shoo your toddler away if she wants to help. Whenever I vacuumed, I had my kids move their toys out of the way. When I finished, my son got to do 'toes,' which is when he stepped his foot on the button to retract the vacuum's cord.
  • Robin Whitsell of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, goes "shopping." "I give my toddler one of those fake credit cards that come in the mail, and we 'shop' with stuff I keep in the junk drawer."
  • Put a gym mat or big cushion in front of the sofa and see what your toddler can do. Two-year-old Jesse Kolodny of Long Beach, California, entertains himself by throwing his stuffed animals onto the gym mat and then jumping down to get them. "He makes up all sorts of fantasy games, like he's on a boat and the mat's the water," says his mom, Harper. "Or he rolls his Hot Wheels off of the couch onto it."
  • Toddlers are fascinated by the act of emptying and refilling. Sarah Gilbert of Portland, Oregon, gives her 19-month-old a big urn filled with fabric scraps. "He loves to take them out and put them back in, piece by piece."
In the end, the greatest thing about toddlers is that they have fun so easily. Good luck wrangling them to the dinner table, though.
READ MORE - Easy Toddler Fun

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

3 Ways to Rethink Discipline for Your Big Kids

A new study reveals how kids aged 12 and up respond to discipline differently than young children.

 "Excellent job, Fiona!" "That's a smart idea - keep up the good work!" These words make a big impression on kids who are 7 and 8 years old, but by around age 12, sugarcoating starts to fall on deaf ears. New research from the Netherlands has found that while little kids respond best to positive feedback, spurring your child to take responsibility and try harder tends to work better with tweens. "An older child's brain can handle more advanced thought processing," explains Eveline Crone, Ph.D., lead author of this study. They're beginning to be more adept at sifting through choices (X wasn't correct the first time, so maybe Y is right) rather than continuing along the same path, as younger kids do. The next time you're faced with a tween dilemma, try these tell-it-like-it-is tactics:

The Issue: She's rude to her sister
You Say: "Not a smart choice of words. Try it again, and this time be sincere."

The Issue: She doesn't want to eat what you cooked
You Say: "You'll have to make yourself something else for dinner then."

The Issue: She got a D in math
You Say: "We're going to curtail TV watching until this grade comes up. It's time for some serious studying."

 By Jennifer Kelly Geddes, Parenting

READ MORE - 3 Ways to Rethink Discipline for Your Big Kids

Monday, November 21, 2011

Homeschool Record that open Door

Imagine your child is now a successful college graduate and happily married.  You have a lovely granddaughter whom you adore.   It is Mother’s Day and the entire family has  gathered around you, showering you with love and attention. You open a beautiful Mother’s Day card from your grown child.  In it is a brief but heartfelt note:  “I love you mom.  Thank you for homeschooling me.” At that moment, you know homeschooling through high school was one of the best decisions you ever made.
Click here for more detail.
READ MORE - Homeschool Record that open Door

How to Keep Your Kids Honest

We've got responses to 4 common kid lies that'll help them learn to be honest.

You know your kid is trying to put one over on you, but what's the best way to call him on it? "Kids lie for the same reason adults do - to avoid unpleasant consequences," notes University of Tennessee professor of psychology Charles Thompson, Ph.D. Show your child you're not going to blow your top - and help him be more honest - by improving your comebacks:

The Lie: "I already brushed my teeth."
Your Response: "I don't think so! Your toothbrush isn't even wet!"
A Better One: "Let's do it together now anyway."

The Lie: "Daddy said I could."
Your Response: "Daddy would never say you could do that."
A Better One: "Then let's wait until Daddy's home so we can talk about it together."

The Lie: "I didn't break the vase/toy/remote control."
Your Response: "Hmm...could you be lying so you won't get in trouble?"
A Better One: "You're worried that I'll get angry if you tell the truth, but I know accidents happen. Can we think of a way to fix it?"

The Lie: "My friend said I could keep this toy."
Your Response: "Really? You know you can't just take things that you like."
A Better One: "That's nice, but we should call his parents to make sure it was okay to give it away."
READ MORE - How to Keep Your Kids Honest

Sunday, November 20, 2011

5 Discipline Traps to Avoid (Part 2, End)

 Let's  continue the previous discussion about discipline :

3. Underdoing it

We've all been there. Little Jake is throwing sand at everybody within reach from the sandbox, and the responsible (I'm using the word loosely) grown-up is saying, distractedly, "You're going to get into trouble if you don't stop doing that." And little Jake keeps right on heaving sand because he clearly knows his mom isn't going to stop him. Sometimes these types of kids are punished, but they're not bothered by it. "I take away his Game Boy, but he just plays with something else," their parents tell me in the office. Or they'll say, "I put her in time-out, but she just plays there." Don't get me wrong. I'm not advocating harshness. But for a punishment to work well, I explain to parents, it needs to be something your child doesn't want to have happen again. In our house, taking away favorite toys (the length of time varies with the gravity of the offense), sending the kids to their rooms (our variation on a time-out), or losing screen time (computer and/or TV) generally works. So does "No playdates for X period of time" and, for the teenagers, "You're grounded!" Of course, every family, and every child, is different. In the office, I try to help parents think about what would be most effective; for example, taking away playdates might work for a social kid. Or if your child loves Dora, no TV/DVD for that day will get her attention.

4. Being inconsistent

Once you've said no to something, like "No throwing sand," you have to continue saying no. You can't give in sometimes ("Well, okay, you're having fun and nobody seems to mind getting it in their eyes"). Kids get confused and pick up quickly on the fact that they have, well, latitude. If you really enjoy throwing sand, and you know that sometimes Mommy and Daddy let you, of course you're going to throw sand. Since you don't want to say no to everything, pick your battles and decide what's really important to you. In my case, I'm not so concerned about neatness, but I won't tolerate meanness, lying, or anything violent or dangerous. Once you've decided on your rules, set them clearly and stick to them.
The other part of this is follow-through. If you take away your child's TV privileges for the day and then give in while you're making dinner because you don't want him underfoot, he'll figure out pretty soon that there's a good chance he may not get punished if he decides to break the rules.

5. Always focusing on the negative

Sometimes I think we parents must sound like the grown-ups in the Charlie Brown specials, all "WahWahWah." And when you've got a kid who has trouble with rules, it can make for a really difficult relationship when all you seem to do is reprimand her. The solution is to catch your child being good. If she goes a solid 15 minutes without picking on her sister, she should get kudos. Even if it's only five minutes, try your best to notice it. You'll be surprised how effective this can be: It's human nature to like praise, and to want to please the people we love.
This can work for you in other ways, too. As you enter a store, instead of saying, "If you don't behave, I'll be really angry and won't get you a treat," try saying, "We have to get the shopping done, and I need help. If everyone is good and helps me, we'll stop for ice cream on the way home." Think about it: Which would you rather hear?
It's not a bad idea, actually, to ask yourself variations on that question often. What would you rather hear? How would this make you feel? Granted, you're a grown-up, and would probably need to be told only once not to bite. But asking yourself questions reminds you that your kids aren't just crazy beasts put on this earth to make you insane (although it feels that way sometimes) and that discipline isn't just about keeping order. Discipline is about keeping our children safe -- and helping them grow up to be kind, successful, happy adults.
So the next time your child is the one throwing sand in the sandbox, take a deep breath. As you scoop her up and think about what might work this time (since your last method didn't), remember that she is little and has so much yet to learn. And, most of all, remember that you love her. Because that, more than anything else, is what discipline is really about.

* Claire McCarthy, M.D., is a contributing editor and a pediatrician who's busy raising five kids.
READ MORE - 5 Discipline Traps to Avoid (Part 2, End)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

5 Discipline Traps to Avoid (Part 1)

Making mistakes is part of being a parent, and discipline is an area where we slip up constantly. It's one of our most daunting tasks, and to do it well we have to make clear, sensible, big-picture decisions at exactly the same moment when we are angry, frustrated, or embarrassed. And that's just as hard as it sounds. After 17 years of being a mom and a pediatrician, though, I've been able to learn a lot about discipline from my own experiences, and from other parents. While there are all sorts of possible blunders (like the time I forgot I'd left my daughter Natasha in time-out), here are five biggies that most of us are guilty of -- and ways to avoid these common mistakes:

1. Thinking that one style fits all

This one's not surprising: The bookstores are teeming with manuals, each touting an expert's best -- and only -- method. Friends and Grandma love to tell you what worked for them. And there is definitely something appealing about the simplicity of a one-approach-fits-all strategy. But some children freak out when you speak to them sharply, while others are unaffected. Some learn the first time you tell them something; others need so much repetition, you despair of their ever learning. Some listen right away; others need time to scream it out before you can talk to them.
And it's not just temperament; it's age and development. The job of a toddler is to push limits, to do crazy stuff that you've told him time and time again not to do. The job of a tween is to start asserting her independence from you, in sometimes obnoxious ways. And neither one is going to listen to a big lecture. A toddler is going to need simple, direct, quick discipline. A tween is most likely to respond to a punishment that removes her from her peers. But despite your best efforts, both the toddler and the tween are likely to keep doing the same bad thing for a while. Understanding where they are in life is key to picking the right approach to discipline, and preventing desperation (yours).

2. Overdoing it

My husband does this a lot. He has a way of getting in a bad mood when the kids are fresh (imagine that!), and he metes out punishments that are either more reflective of his mood than the crime or thoroughly unworkable, like saying "You have to stay in your room this afternoon" when he has errands to run and needs to bring the kids with him. The punishment should fit the crime, not your frustration level. And it needs to be something feasible, that doesn't overly affect siblings who've done nothing wrong. A friend taught me a great trick. If one of the kids is doing something he shouldn't -- being mean to a sibling, for example -- I say, "There will be consequences." (It's particularly good to use in public, because while it may strike fear into your kids, it sounds pretty benign.) Over the years, it's been shortened to "Consequences!" with the appropriate firm-but-not-yelling voice, furrowed brow, and I'm-totally-serious gaze.
If the misbehaving child doesn't stop, there are consequences, but I have a moment to think about them. Sometimes I'll ask, "What do you think your consequences should be?" It's interesting how often kids come up with a fair punishment (e.g., apologizing and letting the wronged sibling play with his favorite toy for the rest of the day).

Next artikel tips no 3,4 and 5. Coming soon. 
READ MORE - 5 Discipline Traps to Avoid (Part 1)

Friday, November 18, 2011

6 Solutions for Kids that Bite

Biting is a part of almost every little kid's life -- either he puts his fangs to someone else or someone sinks her teeth into him. How to handle both:
When your child's the biter
  • Get eye to eye with the nipper. Then, using a stern voice, say, "No. We don't bite." Babies as young as 9 months can understand that, and given that they usually bite because they're teething, a gentle but firm no typically suffices. Older babies and toddlers tend to chomp out of frustration or anger and require further action. Keep reading!
  • Immediately remove the biter for a mini -- time-out, which will help defuse the intense feelings. For most toddlers, even a 30-second break will feel like an eternity.
  • Once he's calmer, have him tell the other child "Sorry." Not talking yet? A gentle pat will do. The goal is to introduce the idea of empathy, says David Schonfeld, M.D., director of developmental pediatrics at Cincinnati Children's Hospital.
  • If the tot continues to bite a lot going forward, praise him whenever you see him not doing it during a similar situation. You can say something like: "Harry, I'm proud of you for asking Sally nicely to share the toy." Should the habit continue beyond age 2 or after several weeks of positive reinforcement for not biting, check in with your pediatrician.
When your kid's the bitee
  • Wash the bite with soap and water right away, even if the skin's not broken. If there's even a little bleeding, apply antibiotic ointment and cover with a bandage. Actual deep puncture wound? Call the doctor; she may prescribe an antibiotic.
  • Keep an eye out for signs of infection, such as redness or swelling at the bite site, or a fever.
READ MORE - 6 Solutions for Kids that Bite

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Benefits Toys

In Wikipedia, A toy is any object that can be used for play. Toys are associated commonly with children and pets. Playing with toys is often thought to be an enjoyable means of training the young for life in human society. Many items are designed to serve as toys, but goods produced for other purposes can also be used. For instance, a small child may pick up a household item and "fly" it through the air as to pretend that it is an airplane. Another consideration is interactive digital entertainment, such as a video game. Some toys are produced primarily as collector's items and are intended for display only.

The origin of toys is prehistoric; dolls representing infants, animals, and soldiers, as well as representations of tools used by adults are readily found at archaeological sites. The origin of the word "toy" is unknown, but it is believed that it was first used in the 14th century.

Toys, and play in general, are important when it comes to growing up and learning about the world around us. The young use toys and play to discover their identity, help their bodies grow strong, learn cause and effect, explore relationships, and practice skills they will need as adults. Adults use toys and play to form and strengthen social bonds, teach, remember and reinforce lessons from their youth, discover their identity, exercise their minds and bodies, explore relationships, practice skills, and decorate their living spaces.
READ MORE - Benefits Toys

Premium Toys For Your Son

In the previous post, I discussed about premium product for your daughter, this time I will discuss about the premium products for the boys. check this out :

1.  Transformers: Dark of the Moon - Ultimate Optimus Prime

  • The ultimate warrior has arrived! Your electronic Ultimate Optimus Prime figure is already a force to be reckoned with. His blasting battle sounds, glowing weapon lights and launching missile sounds let his enemies know they're in trouble!
  • Convert your Optimus trailer to Omega Combat Armor for his big showdowns and extend the wings, flip the Ultimate Super Cannon into place and extend the energy collection panels.
  • Electronic robot warrior figure features lights and sounds, and converts to truck vehicle mode ? and back again! Figure comes with trailer that converts to the Omega Combat Armor! Optimus Prime figure fits inside!
  • Your fighter's enemies will be shaking in their boots! When the battle is over, convert your warrior into truck vehicle mode so he can roll right into the next adventure.
  • Features extending wings, an Ultimate Super Cannon that flips into place and extending energy collection panels. Features blasting battle sounds, glowing weapon lights and launching missile sounds!
Based on Transformers: Dark of the Moon, the Hasbro Transformers Ultimate Optimus Prime Figure is the premium movie-adapted Transformers toy on the market. Designed for ages five and older, and standing over 22 inches tall, this action figure is more than deserving of the title "Ultimate." With a sleek design, glowing weapon lights, and battle and conversation sounds, Ultimate Optimus Prime is an ideal toy for serious Transformers collectors.

More details here

2. LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean Black Pearl 4184

After 13 years of waiting, Davy Jones has come to claim Jack Sparrow for the undead crew of the Flying Dutchman. As the tentacled terror boards the Black Pearl with his sidekicks Maccus and Bootstrap Bill, Captain Jack Sparrow gets ready to battle for his ship and his freedom with Will Turner and Joshamee Gibbs by his side. Includes Jack Sparrow, Will Turner, Joshamee Gibbs, Davy Jones, Maccus and Bootstrap Bill minifigures. Includes 6 minifigures Jack Sparrow with compass, Will Turner, Joshamee Gibbs, Davy Jones, Maccus and Bootstrap Bill with assorted weapons Features large black sails, firing cannons, pirate flag, anchor and turning helm Also includes opening cabin with detailed interior Cast the anchor! Steer with the turning helm! Build the most infamous Pirates of the Caribbean ship to ever sail the Seven Seas! Measures over 21 (53cm) long, 20 (50cm) tall and 5 (12cm) wide

Prepare to set sail on a high seas adventure with the Black Pearl, LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean Set. Inspired by the Pirates of the Caribbean films, this replica of Captain Jack Sparrow's "nigh uncatchable" ship is crafted from more than 800 LEGO pieces for a highly detailed appearance. Complete with six LEGO mini-figure characters from the films, the Black Pearl set is recommended for LEGO builders ages 8 to 14.

more details here

The Xbox 360 4GB Console with Kinect. Kinect brings games and entertainment to life in extraordinary new ways – no controller required. Easy to use and instantly fun, Kinect gets everyone off the couch moving, laughing and cheering. See a ball? Kick it. Control an HD movie with a wave of the hand. Want to join a friend in the fun? Simply jump in. Wi-Fi is built-in for easier connection to the world of entertainment on Xbox LIVE, where HD movies and TV stream in an instant. Xbox 360 is more games, entertainment and fun.
 Price Comparison:
The Wii system ($200) includes the 3 controllers (Wiimote, nunchuk, & motionPlus) needed for 1 player, but costs another $40-80 per player, depending on the accessories that you buy. The PS3 Move retails for $100 for 1 player and the XBOX Kinect retails for $150 for 2 players, but both are accessories so they require the original game system. Also, the PS3 Move requires $50-100 more per player, depending on the accessories that you buy, while the XBOX initially supports 2 players but is capable of tracking 6 players for future games. All 3 motion systems include a game to showcase the controller's features. For 2 players, the Wii is the cheapest system and the PS3 is the most expensive; but when the Xbox supports 4 players (probably via a software update in 1 year), it will be cheaper than getting a Wii. Winner: Xbox Kinect (assuming 4+ players).
more details here.

Designed for Toddlers, ages 1 - 5, the Strider running bike is lightweight, easy to control and features an adjustable seat and handlebars to accommodate a growing child. Most importantly, the Strider teaches your child balance, coordination and develops glittering confidence.

And the Strider is steady, stable and safe. At the first feeling of instability, your child will instinctively place his feet securely on the ground. So there are no "tricycle tip-overs" or "training-wheel wobbles" that stir-up a fear, hesitancy, or dislike of bike riding.

Parents will be happy to learn that the Strider's assembly is a breeze. So buy a Strider and give your child a safe, confident bike riding experience.

Please note: If your child is 3 1/2 years old or older, we recommend purchasing the Extra Long Seatpost in addition to the standard seatpost included with the Strider.
  • Weight: 6.9 pounds for ease of handling by really little riders. Note that a typical 12" pedal bike with training wheels weighs 20+ pounds!
  • Tires/Wheels : Puncture-proof all-terrain tires with sealed bearings and 8mm steel axles means no more airing up tires or searching for repair parts
  • Warranty: 1 year warranty against manufacturing defects. No questions asked!
  • Environmental: Paint certified to be significantly below the CPSIA limits for heavy metal content, including lead.
  • Frame Design: Unique frame design has integrated Launch Pad footrests for gliding and learning advanced riding skills.
  • Construction: Durable welded steel frame, fork, and handlebars
  • Sizing: Adjustable handlebar and seat height to fit riders from 30" to 44" tall (saddle height adjusts from 11" to 16" from ground; 19" w/XL Seat Post)
  • Weight Limit: Rider weight limit of 50 pounds.
 Want this cool stuff for your kid with 10% discount. Click here
Also see one of customer review here

5. Ripstik Caster Board

Best described as a cross between a skateboard and a snowboard, the Ripstik caster board is the perfect ride for kids looking for the next big thrill. The board is distinguished by its pivoting deck and 360-degree inclined caster trucks, which offer a snowboard-like carving ability. A simple weight transfer lets you turn or accelerate without pushing, just like when you're carving down the slopes.

The Ripstik's unique twisting motion moves you forward with out ever pushing off the ground.
The board offers such features as spiked traction pads, a kick tail and nose, and a concave deck design, which combine to improve your foot control--a must for tricks. And thanks to the 76mm polyurethane wheels and precision ABEC-5 bearing casters, skaters will enjoy a smooth ride on almost any type of pavement. Designed for children 8 years and up, the Ripstik's plastic end platforms and metal torsion beam support up to 220 pounds.

Measures 33.5" long x 10" wide. Weighs 8 lbs. Wear helmet and pads for safety. 90-day warranty.

Look more detail about this product here. Discount 45 %.

Customer review here

Oke just it, my review for your son's toy.
So, choose the best and safe toys for your son. have a nice day.

READ MORE - Premium Toys For Your Son