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Teaching concentration and focus . . .

Playing on the floor with your child is a wonderful way to enhance your child’s attention span. Attention requires practice, and practice will occur naturally during “floor time” for a child who has been blessed with the ability to concentrate and focus. Floor time can also help a child who is easily distracted. During floor …Continue reading

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Understanding naughty . . .

Your child has emotional, relationship, and physical needs that feed into behaviors, so when your child is being naughty, it is important to think about what is causing the behavior. Ask yourself, “Why is this behavior occurring now?” As a parent, if you can figure out why your child is behaving in a particular way, …Continue reading

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Kids, exercise, and brain power . . .

The evidence for including physical activity in a school’s curriculum is accumulating as research links students’ cognitive performance with markers of physical fitness, such as aerobic capacity and body mass index. Rather than cutting back on recess time, encouraging kids to exercise seems to help them tap more of their academic potential. Research continues to …Continue reading

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State your expectations clearly . . .

Children are much more likely to follow through on your expectations when your requests are stated clearly. Actually, we all are more likely to follow through on expectations that are clearly stated. Here are some thoughts about being clear: Watch your timing. Most of our expectations and directives are not emergencies, so it is important …Continue reading

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Physical play . . .

Adults can easily forget that kids learn a lot through physical play. Physical play might involve roughhousing, wrestling, climbing, swinging, and running around. All children need this kind of play, and participating in it is one of the ways kids can learn to solve problems. Take self-soothing as an example. When children have a hard …Continue reading

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Understanding naughty . . .

When your child is being difficult, she is not trying to be a little bundle of naughtiness. Your child is simply a little person with complex emotional, psychological, and physiological needs. Last week we started discussing the feeling, relationship, and physical needs that feed into difficult behaviors. In the discussion last week, we covered the …Continue reading

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Children need to move . . .

Your child may seem unable to sit still, but there is a reason for it. The brain wiring needed to curb his or her restless impulses is not yet developed. That’s why children need room to roam, a change of scene, or a novel toy—all of which activate the calming chemical dopamine in the frontal …Continue reading

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Face-to-face time . . .

The amount of time you spend face to face with your child matters. When you spend time face to face, you are sending the message that you delight in just being together. For your child, there is magic in your eye contact, smile, and voice. You are sending the important signal that your little one …Continue reading

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The whys of whining . . .

Whining, that fussy tone of voice between talking and crying, is commonly heard from toddlers, but it doesn’t necessarily mean you have a spoiled child. Often, children whine when they can’t truly express their feelings. You are most likely to hear whining when something in your child’s world has gone awry. Anxiety, hunger for food, …Continue reading

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Preschool . . .

Preschool is one way to gently introduce children to a school setting. When school is viewed as inviting and tempting, a love of learning is more likely to develop. Preschool is appropriately a time for children to explore, feed their curiosity, take initiative, and build a sense of competence and self-esteem. It is not the …Continue reading

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