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ABC’S OF PARENTING SERIES

The fifth part of our ABC’s of Parenting Series is The letter E.

The letter “E” has a full range of words that relate to Parenting! Below is a small list that we think are important while dealing with our kids. We have included our thoughts, tips and tricks related to the letter E.

Eager

Kids are naturally eager to learn. From the moment they are born they are eager to communicate with the people in their lives. They start trying to explore their environment from a very young age.

The best way for a child to learn about the world around them is to allow them to question everything. Be prepared with answers or ask a question back to them to get them to think it through.

Early

Children learn from an early age how to function in the world you are creating for them. Early childhood development is considered from Birth through Kindergarten. This is the time they learn to interact with people and also when they start to develop specific interests. Think about this early education as laying your child’s foundation for their entire future. Use this time to develop their skills to set them up for great success!

Educate

Education does not happen only in a classroom. Think about ways you can educate your child at home as well. We like to turn games into learning adventures. For instance, when we are in the car we play :”eye spy” and as they get older you have to spell the answer. We also shout out math facts and word problems. The kids have developed many math and language skills from these simple activities, and the car rides go by much faster.

Elephant in the Room

Kids are very intuitive and they certainly know when something is going on. We call it the Elephant in the Room when there is something no one really wants to talk about. It is usually a problem that will make someone in our family uncomfortable or embarrassed.

When there is an elephant in the room, talk about it! As you talk about it, you can verify if it is a real issue. You really need to acknowledge it because most likely it won’t go away, it may actually grow bigger. As you talk about this elephant, be aware of your families emotions and be mindful of everyone’s feelings.

Emotional Intelligence

The emphasis on emotional intelligence in children has been seriously neglected over the years. We have been so focused on education and intelligence that we have forgot about emotional maturity.

We need to foster in children, awareness of emotions and also an understanding of our own and others emotions. A child needs to be able to express and also control their emotional responses. It seems obvious to me that a child with good self control and emotional intelligence would be less likely to break the law or have addiction issues later in life.

Empower

An empowered child tends to become a well adjusted teenager and adult. By giving your child choices and allowing them to take risks you are giving them the power to feel strong and confident. Teach them to follow through with there passions and interests. Give them confidence in themselves when it comes to their choices. Building confidence and self-esteem makes children find comfort in who they are as well as teaches them they can be independent.

Encourage

Encouraging a child does so much more for them that praise does. Encouragement uses “you statements” rather than “I statements”. For example, “you must be so proud” rather than “I am so proud”. Think about the difference. A “you statement” makes them look inside of themselves, whereas the “I statement” makes them look at you for more information.

When you encourage a child, you empower them to see the great inside of themselves. When you praise with a “I statement”, they will always be seeking approval from others. In terms of setting a child up for success, in the long-term, encouragement is far more effective than praise.

Engagement

There are so many ways to engage with your child to help foster the bond and trust between you two. A simple and easy thing is to actually look at them when they are speaking to you. Get down on their level and actually listen to what they have to say. Smiling is another easy one, show them the joy they bring to you.

Whenever possible, say yes to them! Let them know they can ask you things and you will follow through. Build the fort in the living room with blankets and pillows. Make shadow puppets. Let them stir the batter for cookies. I bet you will find you will have more fun too!

NEXT UP – THE LETTER F

BACK TO – THE LETTER D

What is your favorite parenting word that starts with the letter E? Feel free to share in the comments!

If you want, feel free to read our post about Teamwork Works!

You might also enjoy a quiz to find out your Parenting Motto!