Good Parenting Skills For Teenagers

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good parenting skills for teenagers

Role of Parents in Upbringing Children

Prof Ajith D’Souza & Prof Renita D’Souza

Being a parent is one of the most challenging but rewarding jobs anyone could ever adopt. It is the longest task and responsibility that an individual will ever perform. Parenting is an active process that demands that individuals use their skills and knowledge plan, give birth, raise, and provide for children. The parenting process includes protecting, nourishing, and guiding the child. It involves a series of interaction between the parent and the child through the life span.

Just as children go through the stages of development, parents also go through the stages of parenthood that require appropriate parenting stage responsibilities. These stages involve changing task and roles of both parents and children.

 

 

1.      Image building (conception to birth of the baby)

The young parents dream and build images of ideal parenting and of what they want to become before the baby is born. Parents are reminded of their past and how they were parented, to prepare for the financial needs care and upbringing.

 

2.      Nurturing (Birth – 18 months)

Each child has specific wants and needs that require nurturing. By meeting the needs of the child, a positive relationship can be built, which consistently sends messages of love and support. Expressions of love and affection, listening to the child’s ideas, feelings, problems and difficulties, kindness and sympathy, help the child to feel connected to the family and society. Parents build an attachment with the child and identify themselves as a parent, assess and understand what kind of parents they really are. Grand parents, parents in law, friends, and relatives find out how the parents handle this new role. This stage is critical in building trust, bond and close attachment between the parent and the child. Trust emerges as the child’s basic needs for warmth, food, dryness of nappy, safety, eye contact, and touch are satisfied. The child’s belief and trust of the parent as a dependable source forms the basis and establishes a firm foundation for all future relationships for the rest of the life. Numerous personal adjustments must be made by the mother to meet demands of the baby in terms of resting period, feeding schedule, managing the soiled clothes, maintaining contact, giving personal attention when the baby is at play and shows initiation to become mobile.

 

3.      Authority (18 months to age 5years)

The parents become the persons in charge when the baby begins to walk and talk. This

Is the period when the parents set rules for the child’s action and behaviour, decides

When to say yes and when to say no and prepares the child for separation that is to be away for schooling. The parents exercise utmost care to discipline, maintaining consistency, and avoiding ambiguity in giving directions helps the child to conceptualize what is expected of him.

 

4.      Interpretation ( Age 5 to puberty)

The child’s question from “what” turns to “why” and “how”. This requires explaining each of the queries; the number of such queries grows as the child’s language skills grow and understanding expands. Parents will have to respond satisfactorily with convincing replies. The child experiments with rules and social norms, examines the quality of treatment he/she receives and the relationship maintained within the family. The type of parenting used in such situations plays a significant role in determining the sort of adult the child will become. Acceptance, appreciation and affection expressed by parents equip the child to develop a positive attitude and approach towards life. It is at this stage children make harsh conclusions and judgements about parental intentions and actions as they struggle to understand relationships, meaning or realise that other people also have feelings. This stage necessitates parents to interact with the child in an age – appropriate manner. They may need to frequently revisit and revise their parental roles as the child continues to mature. The child may show special interest in materialistic possessions, and might experiment with unique clothing and accessories of dress, appearance and behaviours. Parents can attempt to alter adverse behaviours that occur by making rules age appropriate, modifying expectations when necessary, and by serving as a role model for the child to follow.

 

5.      Preparation for independence (Teen years)

The parents of teenagers face challenges over their authority as parents. A teenager fights with parents in making decisions, and on issues considered as personal matters.

Teenagers begin to show that they are “grown up” and are capable of handling difficult situations themselves, that they are different from their parents in many ways, and that their problems and needs are not well understood by the parents. During such times, teenagers need parental guidance to make decisions and to make tough choices. They need careful and sympathetic listening, brief counselling and independence to prove that they are capable of making certain decisions and able to accept the consequences of such decisions.

Children imitate parents and others adults whom they admire and respect. In recent

Years, particularly in metropolitan areas, parent education classes have been initiated in an effort to extend parenting knowledge and skills to new parents who reside mainly in nuclear families.

The relationships maintained between the spouses, with their respective parents, with the other family members and between the siblings bear a strong influence on the parenting. In the Indian context, a first – born boy enjoys better parental care than a girl. Last born is more likely to be pampered in a smaller family and neglected in a larger family. Parents who have exposure to baby and child care during their own childhood and adolescence, such as taking care of younger sibling may find parenting easier than those who have had little or no exposure to child care.

The parents of a child, born with certain gifts or disabilities are more likely to face greater parenting stress, strain and effort than parents of a normal child. Typically, educated parent maintain realistic standards, aspirations, and better relationship with their children, so to strengthen parenting skills, parents need to understand and learn about them and also about child development.

Parents with genuine interest in parenting build healthy relationship with school, neighbourhood, and community groups.

Parenting Styles

         The styles of parental responses and interactions with their children can be classified into three types (Baumrind, 1971), the styles followed by parents may not fit into any one -category, as parents combine the styles depending on the situation, age and sex of the child. Further, parenting styles shift as Parents gain knowledge about the parenting process through various sources, relate their own experiences, and receive responses/feedback from the child and from significant other ground client The three parenting styles are permissive, authoritarian and authoritative.

Permissive Parenting

          Permissive parent give too much freedom, set no limits or boundaries, and provide no guidelines for the child to follow socially accepted norms. They employ little or no punishment. Often these parents are uninvolved in parenting and spend little time with their children, giving excuses of stress and work such parents allow their children to face difficult situations in which they have little or no experience or skill to manage on heir own and to contend with the consequences. Permissive parenting may result in children who have less self-control, become aggressive and irresponsible, and have low self-esteem,

Authoritarian Parenting

         Authoritarian parents are demanding, strict, give punishment, and do not allow choices or the freedom to express various opinions. They dislike questioning of their authority, set very high standards, and demand that their standards be satisfied. These

parents value submission, obedience and tradition, while discouraging independence and individuality. This parenting style may produce a child who lacks self-confidence, curiosity and creativity, self-control and who has low self-esteem. Under such parenting style, the child will exhibit difficulty in making one’s own decisions and behaving in a socially approved manner under given circumstance.

Authoritative Parenting

         Authoritative parents employ explanations, discussions, reasoning; they balance their parenting style by using punishment and rewards appropriately. Punishment is never harsh or physical. Instead, it is given by way of deprivation of an opportunity or gifts. Moreover, punishment is used only when ample evidence of willful wrongdoing is observed. When children correct their behavior, they are rewarded. Rewards include praise, a pat on the shoulder; a smile or a nod. Generally, the reward is proportionate to the positive behavior that is being reinforced. Such parenting style results in children who have good self-control, high self-esteem, self-confidence, responsibility, independence and control over their emotions.

Practical Suggestions to Understand and Prevent Misbehavior in Children

Effective parenting is often challenged by misbehavior of children. Understanding why children misbehave is important to respond effectively. Children misbehave when they:

•     are sleepy, sick, need fresh air, exercise and food,

•     are puzzled or unsure about what is expected of them,

•     need attention and love, or need to feel secure,

•     want to fulfill their curiosity,

•     are not physically and mentally ready or able to follow the rules,

•     are bored,

•     are angry, disappointed and frustrated, and

•    want to assert independence.

 

Strategies and techniques to prevent a child’s misbehavior are as under:

•     Set rules that are age-appropriate, then help the child to understand the rule and why it is important.

Suggestions for Positive Parenting

Positive parenting is the loving and supportive care provided by both parents. The parenting role has shifting its paradigm from fear-based to love-based. Positive parenting also can be termed ‘conscious parenting’, or always seeking the betterment of children in the long run. To achieve the goal of treating or rearing children in a way so that today’s children can be tomor­row’s healthy and successful adults, key issues involved are as follows:

—     The happiness and harmony between father and mother are important prerequisites for a physically fit and mentally happy child.

—    Maintaining harmony between parents and children is essential for positive parenting.

—     Children should be allowed to explore and do things themselves to enhance their self-esteem, so that they might experience a happy, gratifying, and purposeful life.

—     The parents’ own behaviors, attitudes, beliefs, and values affect greatly the child’s development. Hence, parents need to recognize their own belief system and how it can impact on the lives of their children. Further, they should attempt to keep in tune with the changing times.

—    Children need unconditional love and support from their parents for healthy development. Rationalizing, reasoning, giving adequate time, and answering questions are essential on the part of parents. These childrearing practices promote the same future behaviors in their children.

—    Support children emotionally at times when they need it most, so that they do not feel let down or alone. It seems likely that a child who feels emotionally isolated senses a breach of faith and trust on the part of the parents.

—    Accept each child as an individual with his or her unique gifts and talents. Each child is different; hence comparison with others is unwarranted.

—    Positive requests to children, without forcing them to do something, work wonders.

—    Showing positive feelings and appreciation for even the small work done by the child will encourage the devel­opment of confidence and a secure self-concept (i.e., “I feel good about myself and about my abilities”).

—    Listen carefully to your children and provide support and guidance.

—    The relationship of parents with other members of family, relatives, and neighbors affects the general environment to which children are exposed.

—    Parent education, in terms of learning and practicing good parenting skills to rear and manage today’s children, is essential. Modern-day children are more world-wise, having been exposed to many more situations than their parents, which may lead to a feeling of incompetence and helplessness on the part of the parents to manage their children.

Conclusion

       Parenting is not an easy task. Becoming a parent is the easiest part, whereas, being a conscious and positive parent is a momentous task. Parenting is the most important role one faces in a lifetime. Parents who provide an encouraging environment for their children are rewarded when, as adults, their children realize a successful fit into the culture and society.

Parenting concepts are deeply rooted in Indian families, because of a strong, sustained tradition of educating and training young parents to accept, perform and establish enduring relationships and responsibilities with their children. Generally, the young mother is introduced to the nuances of parenting by way of the ‘hands on’ method at her parental home, and under the guidance of her mother or an experienced family member. This practice could be the reason why the need for professional parent education usually is not expressed.

Effective parenting enables children to build and develop positive behaviors and good, solid self-concepts that are important to functioning fully as a healthy adult. Parenting, as such, is greatly dependent on intra-familial issues that play a significant role in parental performance. However, parenting skills can be strengthened if parents learn about themselves as a ‘parent’ and about child development. Learning about the stages of human development helps parents understand about their ever, changing roles in the lives of their children and also what is expected of a parent at each stage. Finally, a father’s love and influence is as important as a mother’s in the life of a child. Fathers should overcome the internal and external barriers that exist to fulfill the duties of fathering.

      The concept of parenting and parenthood varies according to region, and varies within the rural, urban and tribal areas in India.

 

*********************

About the Author

Prof Ajith D’Souza & Prof Renita D’Souza

Parenting & Family Advice : How to Encourage Good Study Habits in a Teen

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Parents Help

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parents help

Are Parents Helping or Enabling Their Adult Children?

The primary job of a parent is to prepare their children for how the world really works. We teach and train our children from childhood the knowledge and skills necessary to become independent adults, self-sufficient and upstanding members of society. In the real world, you don’t always get what you want.

Many young adults today have unrealistic expectations when they initially go out on their own. Many feel they are entitled to immediately live a middle-class life style (or better), because that’s what they’re used to. They weren’t born, or were very young children, during the years their parents struggled to make ends meet, pay their bills (and on time), having to eat hot dogs and beans instead of steak dinners, struggling to live within their means.

Many young adults are living at home with their parents, not out of true need, but out of what I refer to as the “Whine Factor.” They whine about the costs of housing, and how they just “couldn’t possibly live in a tiny little apartment, in a sub-standard neighborhood.” They whine about having to live on red beans and rice, ramen noodles, or macaroni and cheese, because their current salary doesn’t allow for the kinds of meals they were used to at their parents home. (Someone get me a tissue…..snif)

What happened to teaching our children how the Real World is?! That in order to have the things you want, you have to work very hard. That you have to perhaps work two jobs instead of one, all the while going to college? Many young adults, some who now have children of their own, believe their parents somehow “owe them” financial assistance, to rescue them from the burden of their own poor money-management habits! Excuse ME…?!

Let me see if I get this right. Young adults, married or living together, working full-time jobs, with or without a child to support, choose to spend their money frivolously, rather than ensuring they are living within their means, and when they run into financial trouble and can’t pay their bills, the parents OWE it to their children to rescue them?! Sometimes even expected to “help” many, many times over? Huh?!

I’m of the thinking that if my grown, adult children, CHOOSE to spend their money on things they “want” rather than their “needs” (like a place to live, utilities, food, etc.., like the rest of us do) and their electric gets shut off because of non-payment? Okay! So their food goes bad and they have to throw it away. Maybe, just maybe, it’s more of a “help” to allow them to experience the consequences of their own poor choices, in order to learn the valuable lessons needed to be grown, independent ADULTS.

Rescuing them from their choices and subsequent consequences, giving them money as a fix to their immediate self-made problem, allowing them to move back in with their parents, this is called “help”? I think it’s actually enabling our young adult children rather than help, preventing them from the realities of the real world. In the real world, you work long and hard for the things you need and want. That’s the only way to truly appreciate what you have, when you’ve worked very hard for it, all on your own.

Sometimes the best help of all parents can give is saying no. Parents need to Close The Bank Of Mom And Dad

About the Author

Hello, my name is Lin Burress and I’m the author of “Telling It Like It Is”. Topics discussed on Telling It Like It Is include, but are not limited to:

Abuse issues, Blogging Tips, Dating Tips, Family issues, Children and Teens, Blended Families,
True Friendship, Caring For The Elderly,
Parenting, Marriage, Divorce, Relationships and more.

HELP! I HAVE NIGHTMARES!!!! & My Parents Compare Me To My Sister

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Health Crafts For Kids

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Please – No Kids In Our Wedding

A wedding is always exciting. A lot of planning and preparation go into action so that the wedding will be memorable meaningful and as one-of-a-kind as the marrying couple. Yet, each couple has consideration unique to them.

With today’s escalating wedding costs, many brides and grooms who have no children of their own, ask A-wedding Day something akin to: “We want an adult only wedding and wedding reception. Is there a proper way to request that our guests not bring their chilren to wedding ceremony and wedding reception?”

The answer is both, yes and no. If you think that this makes no sense, keep reading.

When you send out your wedding invitations and reply cards, address them to:

Mr. and Mrs…. or
Mr…. or
Mrs…. or Miss…. or Ms…
This indicates to them that they are the only invitees. You may even add Adults Only Wedding. Most people will take into consideration that the invitation was not sent to – and Family and will make arrangements for their children so they can attend the wedding without them.

So, you may ask: “Where does the NO come in” Well;

What about your family and wedding attendants? Is there a chance that they will get insulted and view you as ungreatful?

Did you take into consideration your out of town guests? Will they leave their children behind and travel without them? Will they simply decline your invitation replying that they can not attend? Will they be offended and think that you are inconsiderate, especially when they see your ring bearer and flower child? or will they bring the kids anyway?

This hapened at my wedding 41 years ago. Ours was a small wedding with only 35 guests. Even first cousins were not invited. Yet almost everyone understood that this was all we, 2 students on a very minimal budget, could afford at the time and did not take offense.

Everyone except Rose and Harry who drove from Haverhill Mass to Brooklyn N.Y to attend. They brought their children Debbie and Mark 7 and 8 years old at the time. Fortunately our reception was a buffet and we did not assign seats. 5 tables of 8 left a few empty seats, enough to accomodate these two.

As it turned out, the seats were not necessary because Mark and Debbie attached themselves to the photographer. You guessed it. Every group picture potraits Mark and Debbie sitting right smack, dab in the middle. It made no difference to them, if it was a photograph of the wedding party, the bride’s side of the family or the groom’s. The two parked themselves in the center.

Today we have grown up children and grand children and have learned a lot since our own wedding.

Having seen both sides of the coin, you may ask: “Is there an adequate solution that will benefit all?”

The answer is a resound YES!

It takes thought and planning but can be done even on a tight budget.

FIRST STEP

If our suggestion appeals to you, you should add a note for guests who have children that if they must bring their children, the kids will be supervised and entertained in another location.
Let them know that their children will be cared for by a qualified adult.

Ask them to reply if they plan to bring their children and if so how many, what ages and what gender. Provide this information to the supervisor(s) so they can prepare accordingly.

To decide how many adult supervisors you need consider:

Up to what age a minor is considered a child to be supervised.

Check your list of possible locations for your wedding ceremony and or reception, to find out if they have an additional room you can reserve as a children’s Center for the duration of your wedding.

Most religious institutions have school rooms.

Hotels may offer you a small conference or meeting room, or a suite that includes a sitting room.
Restaurants that facilitate weddings usually have rooms of different sizes and will be glad to accomodate you with an additional smaller room.

The same holds true for country and other club houses.

Now that you know what to look for, choose the wedding venue that is able and willing to accomodate your young friends.

SECOND STEP

Figure out how many children need to be supervised,

Secure a very capable adult or adults who can play educational games, do art and crafts, are good story tellers or readers, and are gentle and caring. Your best choice would be a teacher, a camp councellor, a den mother or a girl scout troop leader, for example.

DO NOT HIRE A TEENAGER to just sit with the kids and watch TV!

Assure your guests that their children will not just be baby-sat but will have a good time.

Interview potential adult supervision candidates and find out how they plan to give the children a good, meaningful time while their parents are at the wedding, especially since the children will be of varying ages.

If you can afford it, provide an artisan such as a ballon artist to make crowns and animals, a face painter, a magician etc…

A wedding planner who also plans Bar-Bat Mitzvahs and other children’s events can help you locate such individuals. Or if your community has a pier, a promenade, an open street market or other locations where street artisans gather to show their talents, choose those that you believe will be best for your young guests and interview them. Since many street artisans work for donations, they may agree to provide their services at a reasonable price.

So, now you have a venue, and qualified supervision for your guests’ children. It is time to plan your next step.

THIRD STEP

Find out what art and craft materials you need to supply,

Decide what entertainment items will be appropriate such as a movie on VHS or DVD, etc…

Gather your needs and have them packed and ready to deliver to the Children Center at your wedding location.

Ask your caterer to suggest a kids menu. Make sure it is healthful.

If you plan the menu by yourself, stay away from too many sweets. Avoid nuts as some children are allergic to nuts. Do provide fruit, salads and how about Pizza?

FOURTH STEP

Having planned a children’s haven, you should decide how many supervising adults you need. Your best criteria should encompass:

The number of kids in attendance.
You should plan on one adult for every 10 children.
Ages of the children divided as follows:
Pre-school to 3rd graders;
4th to 6th graders;
Jr. high 7th and 8th graders.

Now that your guests children are taken care of, Enjoy your Adults Only wedding, assured that your guests will have a good time as will their children.

All of the above can be accomplished even on a tight budget of only a few hundred dollars.
Stop for a moment and ask yourself this question: “Is our DREAM WEDDING, happy and relaxed guests, combined with good will toward their children worth a few hundred dollars?”

About the Author

Nily Glaser is the CEO of
A-wedding Day
, a Wedding Resources Information Center, and a Discount Shopping Mall for wedding gifts and accessories that specializes in theme and family weddings. All Wedding Accessoried By Nily – Exclusive to A-wedding Day.

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Good Parents Pay

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good parents pay
How did you get through college, did your parents pay for anything or did you do it all alone?

I am just wondering for you students or graduates, did they pay?

I want to go to medical school too, and my mother can not afford to even send me to college, let alone medical school so I am on my own when the time comes. I would not want to burden my mother anyway.

What did you do?

What are good jobs for college students?

The only thing my parents did was teach me a good strong work ethic. I paid for college all myself.

First off, I decided to stay in-state, for tuition to be less. Than I got 2 scholarships (one from the state of Nevada, the other from the University) that covered all of my tuition in full. In fact, those scholarships would actually OVER-pay my account, so I actually recieved an extra 400 dollars a semester. I got PAID to go to college.

However, obtaining those scholarship wasn’t easy. I had to keep my grade up throughout high school, and continue to do so at my university. I Applied to A LOT of scholarships, doing surverys or essays.

Also, In order to pay for all of my books, and parking fees, I have held down a job for all 4 years of my undergraduate studies. I worked Retail awhile, as a store supervisor, and I worked in an office as a project Assistant, making phone calls, or putting together large mailings. Both jobs were vary flexible with my classes, I just had to make sure I left enough time during the “store open” hours to work.

So… I plan on graduating in Spring 08 with a Bachelor’s of Science, and NO debt.
That may change because I will have to go out of state for my graduate studies, but No, my parents still won’t be helping me. I’m on my own, and very proud to be. :)

Beauty Of Annihilation: Perfect Download

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Parenting Websites

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parenting websites
Does anybody know of any parenting websites and magazines?

Two magazines that have sites: (Two in one, yay.)

Parenting Magazine- http://www.parenting.com/parenting
Parents Magazine- http://www.parents.com/

I have never read the following magazine, nor have I really explored the website, but it has a good message board online. (Click on discuss.) It deals with “natural” parenting. Cloth diapering, breast feeding, the whole works.

Mothering Magazine- http://mothering.com

And one last one- I don’t know if the magazine still exists, but the website does-

http://www.sesameworkshop.org/parents/

There’s a whole bunch of others, but these are the ones that I have experience with.

Modern Deaf Communication Buying Ads In Thousands Of Parenting Websites

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Parenting Resources

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parenting resources

Several Parenting Resources You Can Make Use Of For Your Child

Parenting is definitely one of the most difficult tasks you will ever have in this lifetime. As a parent, you not only have amazing responsibilities, but you must also implement all of your actions in the most skilled manner possible in order to achieve the best results possible. Obviously, being a good parent takes quite a bit of work.

There are a few factors of parenting that you can focus your efforts upon in order to ensure you are a great parent though. By focusing your efforts on these areas of your life, you can be sure that you will be a great parent for your child. There are a few factors like giving praise, being consistent with your methods, and other factors that can affect the way your child views you as a parent.

As a parent, you should never underestimate the power of praising. Praise can raise the spirits of your child instantly. Not only can praise raise the spirits of your child instantly, but also the effects of praise can often extend over the child’s entire lifetime. If you praise a child while they are younger, they will likely remember that praise for years to come. If you praise a child consistently, it is likely that the praise will make an even larger impact on their life.

If you can train a child to expect praise for performing a specific action, you can be certain that that the child will perform the action more consistently than they probably would if they never received praise for performing the action.

If you use praise to guide your child towards the best actions they can take, you can be positive that your child will take those actions more often than they would if you did not praise them for taking those actions in the first place.

Also, many parents believe that the best approach to parenting is playing it by ear. Many parents believe that they can simply watch the unfolding of their child’s life and guide them towards the most appropriate actions at any given time. Even though some parents honestly believe this is the best way to approach parenting, you should know that planning ahead is often a much more suitable tool for working with a child.

By creating a plan, you will always know which actions to take under all circumstances, because you can always take actions that move your plan forward. You should remember that your plan should be malleable though, and not a solid plan that must be followed. As long as you create your plan as a malleable plan, you can be sure that it will always be guiding your child towards the best life they can possibly have.

About the Author

It’s one of those grand buzz words that abound these days – parenting skill – like you apply for it and it arrives in the mail in six to eight weeks. It’s not quite that easy. If you look for
parenting resource
s and maybe join a
parenting group
, you’re likely to have more success. For all the free information you’ll need, please visit our website now.

Single Mothers- Parenting resources – YoungLoveMoms.com VEVO

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Good Parenting Skills

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good parenting skills

Good Parenting Skills In Financial Knowledge Thus Attain Financial Empowerment And Money Basics

Good parenting skills is training your kids when they are small in gaining financial knowledge. This is because they will never forget even when they become adults. That is why if you want your children to be financially responsible, you have to start teaching them money basics like saving. Get a nice looking jar and teach the kids to be putting aside some cash and throwing it in the jar instead of spending all of it on toys and sweets.

After the money has accumulated to some amount do not take it from them, open the jar together with them and let them use the money to buy something of their choice. This will make them see the importance of saving money. They will realize that keeping money aside pays.

When they are a bit bigger, you can set up a business together with your children or child. Let them work in the business and earn money. It can be just a small thing, like starting an ice-cream stand, selling lemonade, sweets or making something and selling it.

When you get the profit (of course you explain that this is the cash you get after subtracting all the cost), split it and let the kids have their share. Let them understand that though you might be a partner, the business is ultimately theirs. These are parenting skills that ensure children learn how to better their personal finances thus achieve financial empowerment.

Train your children to save and invest some of the money you give them as pocket money. Challenge them to start some business projects with the cash they have managed to save up and watch how creative they can be. What ever you do though, be careful not to kill their personal dreams. Support them in what they want and not force them to do what you think is best for them.

About the Author

Stephen shares his experience in Personal Growth Tips that will definitely Add Value to your Life. Website:- Self Improvement Tips

Parenting Skills for the Masses

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Good Parents

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good parents

What Good Parenting Entails

“There are only two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children. One is roots; the other, wings.” – Hodding Carter

All parents want their children to develop into well adjusted adults, respected as much for the integrity of their character as for their professional skills. This doesn’t just happen overnight. It takes years of patient guidance, consistent discipline and above all, an abundance of love that is tangible to the child even during the worst periods in their growing up – and believe me, there will be many of those, before you can sit back and say with relief, “My work is done”.

Many people equate an abundance of love with spoiling their child. I think that perhaps they have not understood what the term LOVE means, especially as it relates to a child. Let us start with what it is not:

1) Love is not over-indulging your child, giving in to every whim of his/hers because you feel guilty, tired, afraid you would lose your temper or scared that your kid may not love you.

2) Love is not harshly disciplining your children for every little broken rule in the mistaken belief that you are doing it for their good and if you don’t punish them often and hard, a life of turmoil and misery beckons.

3) Love is not protecting your kids from the natural heart aches that come with growing up – whether it is a friend’s betrayal, loss of a pet or loved one, not getting something deeply longed for.

4) Love is not using emotional blackmail at any time or for any reason in order to control them and get them to do what you want them to do.

Love that is most beneficial to children is one that focuses on them and accepts them for the unique individuals that they are. To be a truly loving parent, we need to learn to be a bit dispassionate about our kids. Even the most well meaning of parents tend to forget this. Unbiased love for your children helps you to focus on the child, rather than the fact that he/she belongs to you. You then learn to accept the possibilities and limitations of each of your children and to marvel at their individual potential. If there are no pre-conceived expectations, there is less pressure on the child and there are no feelings of disappointment in the parent. When children sense that they are not being measured against their siblings or friends, their confidence grows, there are less disciplinary issues and above all, they feel valued for themselves. Learning to love our kids this way is one of the hardest lessons in parenting; it being so natural to think in terms of “My Children” with the emphasis on “My” rather than on “Children”.

Good parenting is a skill honed through trial and error. Most parents are so concerned about being good parents that they tend to over compensate for their perceived inadequacies. They tend to overlook the fact that most kids prefer laughter, a home filled with warmth and understanding and parents whom they can trust and turn to in times of trouble rather than being inundated with designer clothes, shoes and toys. How often do we hear the complaint that kids now-a-days are too obsessed with material things. Perhaps it is time we, as parents, ask ourselves how much we have contributed to our children’s obsessions. A lot of people seem to have lost faith in their ability to be good parents, mistakenly thinking that they should always be infallible. What we must never lose sight of is that for the most part, we do get it right and that our love for our children will guide our parental instincts. Problems arise only when we do not learn from our mistakes. Children seem to have an infinite capacity to forgive their parents if they know or feel that their mothers and/or fathers are trying to do their very best for them.

Parents are only human – a fact that is often ignored by our kids and even more so, by ourselves. It is alright to get angry or depressed, irritated or to just want some time to yourself. What is not alright is to let these feelings affect your behaviour towards your children. How you handle your emotions is a good indicator of how your kids will manage theirs when they grow up. Rather than pretend that everything is fine, it would be better if you explained to your kids that you are upset about something and that you need sometime to work through the problem. Not only will the children be relieved that they are not the reason for your turmoil, they will probably try hard not to upset you further. Explaining the rationale for your actions to your children in terms they can understand teaches them empathy, alleviates their concerns that they are the cause of your distress and shows them how negative emotions should be handled.

Most parents have a hard time trying to decide whether or not they should shield their young children from the harsh facts of life. War, famine, death – these are constantly in the news. Closer to home it might be the prolonged illness or death of a close relative, friend, or even a pet, the break up of a close friendship, divorce, losing a job or home. There is no guarantee that life will always be smooth sailing and the sooner children are taught to face such situations with equanimity, the more resilient they will be when, as adults, they have their own misfortunes to face.

Parenting can be stressful, it is often under valued and unglamorous yet it can be and very often is uplifting and provides some of our most precious memories. If we remember to relax and enjoy our kids, love them for who they are, try to inculcate a strong personal value system from a very early age, revel in their accomplishments and be a constant source of support for them, we can be sure of doing a pretty good job. There is, of course, the added bonus of our own self improvement as we try to be more like the person we want our children to emulate.

About the Author

You too can successfully mould your child into achieving his/her full potential. Find out how, with this FREE eBook.
For e-books and articles ranging from parenting to web designing, visit www.ebookmall4U.co.uk.

Good Luck Charlie season 2 episode 10 Meet The Parents {Part 1}

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Pbs Kids Health

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pbs kids health

The power of friendship turns two women into marathoners

Karen Bradley and Stacey Harland live in Withcott, Queensland. These neighbours struck up a friendship about eight years ago and began meeting for morning walks. They also joined a gym together. In mid-2004 Stacey suggested they add running to their exercise routine.

“I enjoyed the distance running events at primary and high school. I didn’t ever win any races or break records but I got the odd second or third and represented my high school at the Darling Downs zone cross country. I had always been interested in doing a marathon and loved watching it on the Olympics but never really gave it much serious thought. I ran for exercise for a couple of years here and there, nothing ever too serious,” Stacey says.

Karen, on the other hand, had zero interest in running. She liked their morning walks and resisted Stacey’s suggestions to pick up the pace. “I’ve never been a runner – I didn’t like it at all. When another friend did the 10-kilometre race at the Gold Coast in 2004, Stacey got all inspired and thought we should train to do the same thing the following year,” Karen says.

Despite Karen’s reluctance to try running, Stacey persisted. “She kept nagging me to. I resisted greatly, however she finally wore me down,” Karen says. So Karen and Stacey began adding short stretches of running to their morning walks. “We started slow – just adding a bit of running to our walking, then a bit more running and a bit less walking,” Stacey says.

Slowly but surely the two working mothers in their early 40s built up their running stamina. It wasn’t long before they had a chance to test it. In early 2005, their gym organised a 5-kilometre fun run and breakfast. Stacey and Karen decided to participate. “We were a bit nervous and wondered if we could ever run that far as we hadn’t done that distance before,” Stacey says.

They finished the 5km race and loved the resulting feeling of accomplishment. The two women also noticed others runners doing that 5km stretch a second time. “We were totally amazed that some people turned around and ran it again. We were in awe. This helped us with our motivation. If they could so could we,” Stacey says.

They had considered doing that 10km race their friend had finished the previous year at the Gold Coast, which had been the catalyst for their running. By following a training program the two friends achieved their goal and finished the Gold Coast Marathon 10km event in July 2005.

Finishing that first 10km within a year of becoming a runner at the age of 40 is still one of Karen’s best running memories. “I was just on such a high from the whole race experience and in total awe that I had actually run 10km – and all with best friend Stacey of course.”

The elation of achieving another goal immediately sparked ideas for the next challenge. “We were just so happy that we’d done the 10km. We high-fived after we crossed the finish and said, ‘Next year the half’,” Stacey says.

Both Karen and Stacey have busy lives, with jobs, partners and children. They have to make time to do their training which can be a challenge. But the mental and physical rewards they get from running motivate them to stick to the training programs they choose. They run four times a week, usually early in the morning.

“Sometimes it’s a bit of a juggling act. On weekdays I usually get up at 5:30am for a run while everyone’s still in bed and then I’m back home in time to get ready for work and kids to school. Sunday long runs can sometimes be difficult to fit in, depending on other weekend commitments, but the majority of the time I can manage to fit this in first thing Sunday mornings,” Karen says.

While it may sound hectic, Karen finds the effort worthwhile because it allows her to focus on, and do something for, herself which in turn benefits her whole family. She says, “Running is me-time. Since I’ve had children I haven’t really had much time on just me. I started running 3 1/2 years ago, and at times I feel guilty if I’m going on a long run, or going away for the weekend for a fun run – although that doesn’t happen very often. However, as the children get older it’s getting easier. Running is something I can do. I don’t have to be good at it but I can do it and when I want and how I want and I get such great benefits, both physically and emotionally, from it.”

Stacey agrees. “I find time to fit running in around everything else. It is a chance for some me-time and a chance to have a chat with my buddy about all that goes on in our lives. The topic depends on what issues are pressing at the time. We find we can have a good talk while running. It is amazing how quickly you can get to the top of a hill while releasing all that anger. Otherwise we just chit-chat as we go. We are great friends and can talk to each other about pretty much anything.”

And nothing is a bigger help to get up early when everyone else at home is still asleep than knowing that a running buddy is waiting for you. Karen says, “When the alarm goes off I just have to get up and go whether I’m in a good or a bad mood because I know Stacey’s waiting to meet me. Which is a great thing because otherwise I know it would be way too easy to turn off the alarm, roll over and go back to sleep. I definitely wouldn’t be where I am now with my running if I didn’t have a running partner.”

The early starts make them feel that they are getting more out of life. Stacey says, “We do often make the effort to look around as we are running – seeing the wildlife, listening to the birds in the pre-dawn light, looking at the views and watching the sun rise. We also think about all the extra hours of living we have had, being up and about rather than still asleep in bed.”

Their new lifestyle has brought benefits to their health, and that of their family members. Stacey says, “I’m sure it has health benefits besides weight management. I know I’m a lot fitter than other girls my age in my touch team, plus all the other benefits that might not be obvious at this point in time such as reduced risks of osteoporosis, cancer and arthritis.”
Karen says, “Running has a great affect on my quality of life. I have an interest now and it is such a positive and healthy one. I eat whatever I want – which probably isn’t a good thing – but it’s good to be able to not have worry constantly about what you eat. I feel well, fit and more confident with my body image. My running has had a positive impact on my family. My partner, being an ex-footballer, used to run from time to time but he is running quite frequently now and will probably enter some races this year. My children also sometimes want me to go on a run with them. Especially when it gets to school cross-country time they get very committed. I’m sure they would not be interested if it wasn’t for my running, so that makes me feel great.”

Stacey says, “My children will often ask me how far I ran when I get back all hot and sweaty. My son once said he wanted to be a runner just like mummy. My husband thinks it’s good I get away for the odd weekend here and there to participate in a running event.”

Both Karen and Stacey are now dedicated runners and have many other motivations to keep up their training regime. Karen says, “It is the great sense of achievement after a run, especially after doing a PB or finishing a race in your goal time; the extra time I get to spend with my best friend; the fat-burning and fitness benefits. It’s a whole new exciting interest in my life.”

Both women say they usually feel better after a run. After a great run, Karen says she feels elated, on a high and so glad she made the effort to do it.

Stacey says, “If we’ve just done a personal best for a time trial, or had a good speed session, you can’t help but feel pleased with yourself. I also like the days when you feel you could just keep running – it’s very motivating.”

Stacey expects to keep running until they’re no longer interested or no longer capable. “I don’t know when that will be or which will be first. I do know that if Karen decided she didn’t want to continue it would be a thousand times harder for me to keep running.”
The single-most important thing about running to Stacey is testing herself. “I started running mainly for exercise and fitness but I want to see just how far I can run. I have goals I still want to achieve,” Stacey says.

The two runners keep find newer and bigger challenges. As they pledged at their first 10km finish in July 2005, they returned to the Gold Coast in 2006 to run the half marathon. They did it again in 2007, and ran many other races in between.

In 2008, they decided it was time to up the ante yet again. They enlisted the help of running coach Pat Carroll in March and prepared for the Gold Coast marathon, held at the start of July. With their new program, they ran four times a week including one long run. Four weeks before race day they did their longest run ever which they clocked at 32.7km. Stacey says, “I felt strong and spritely the whole way and entertained the thought that maybe I could push myself for another 9.5km. So hopefully I have another day like that on July 6. Karen wasn’t so lucky – she struggled the whole way from our first few hundred metres. But that too is a testament to her determination in that she kept going and going.’’

Those long runs come with a clear benefit. “Funny how anything shorter than three hours now seems easy. We have been talking and we feel we need another goal to focus on after the Gold Coast or else life will seem a little bit hollow. Though sleeping in for a couple of weeks will be nice,” Stacey says.

Running has changed their lives. “If (when) we complete the marathon at the Gold Coast we’ll be able to say ‘If we can do that – we can do anything’. It has given us a can-do attitude,’’ Stacey says.

Stacey and Karen did run their first marathon a few months later: as planned, they ran the entire 42 kilometres 195 metres side by side and crossed the finish line together. They ran their second one in July 2009, each setting a big PB.

About the Author

Margreet Dietz is a professional writer and the author of Running Shoes Are a Girl’s Best Friend. Originally from The Netherlands, she has worked as a journalist since 1996 from Brussels, Toronto and Sydney respectively before making Squamish, BC, her home in 2008. She is a regular contributor to endurance sports publications. A five-time Ironman triathlon finisher, Margreet is training for the 2010 Rotterdam Marathon, which will be her 12th marathon.

WTTW PBS Kids: Miss Lori warms up her tour audience in Hyde Park Chicago 2008 video

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Kids Health Posters

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octomom should be the poster child for Obamas health care plan?

fart out 8 kids run up ,millions in health care costs have the government cover it. then move on get paid to do a tv show and end up wealthy….

AMEN!!!

Rachel’s Story – IDLE-FREE for our kids

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