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  • Parenting Skillz #9  The Key To Positive Social Relationships in Children and Teens

    Parenting Skillz #9 The Key To Positive Social Relationships in Children and Teens

    Oxytocin has been dubbed the “love chemical.” It is the hormone that is released when we feel love and trust in relationships. For most people, they know oxytocin as a significant part of the parent-child bonding process. However, it is also very important in overall human relationships and is considered our “social glue.” The release of oxytocin is not automatic but rather, a learned response. It is very important for children to develop an effective oxytocin response. We find that when children are abused or neglected, they often have underdeveloped oxytocin responses. This is because they have been locked in the fight or flight response and have ....

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  • Parenting Skillz 8 The Key To Reinforcing Positive Behaviors In Children and Teens

    Parenting Skillz 8 The Key To Reinforcing Positive Behaviors In Children and Teens

    The Key To Reinforcing Positive Behaviors In Children and Teens Have you ever had a “gut feeling” about something? Have you ever considered that children have these as well? Of course they do! The problem is, they don’t know how to express this to us. They know something doesn’t feel right, so they act out or exhibit a grumpy mood. The good news is, there is a way to boost their mood and reinforce positive behavior choices. Serotonin, also known as the “feel good” neurotransmitter, plays a part in our wellbeing and is important in balancing mood. Ninety percent of the serotonin in our bodies is produced in the gut. This is because the gut and the brain ....

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  • Parenting Skillz 7  How to Motivate Children and Teens

    Parenting Skillz 7 How to Motivate Children and Teens

    Have you ever wondered why children and teens seem to be so addicted to their smart phones and other devices? Parents are frustrated with their children’s lack of attention and motivation but what do their devices have to do with this? The answer is found in science! Often referred to as the “motivator molecule,” dopamine is a “feel good” chemical that is released in the brain which helps us focus and feel motivated. When dopamine levels are low, it can result in symptoms such as difficulty focusing, decreased motivation, trouble problem-solving, and social anxiety. If your child has been diagnosed as ADHD, many ADHD medications target dopamine levels. ....

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  • Parenting Skillz 6  Consistency

    Parenting Skillz 6 Consistency

    Your child needs to know that no matter what happens, you are always going to be a consistent parent. Maintaining consistency means that you are going to be patient, connected, adaptable, and edutaining with your child all the time so your child knows what to expect from you and you know what to expect from them. Here are some pointers on parental consistency:
    Do not sway in how you react to your child day to day, even if your child makes mistakes or has a temper tantrum. Instead, strive for a consistent approach in your parenting and especially in how you react to and resolve these types of situations.
    Be Predictable. An inconsistent parent may yell at ....

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  • Parenting Skillz 5  Edutainment

    Parenting Skillz 5 Edutainment

    In our 5th and final post in the Parent Skillz Series we address the concept of Edutainment. It is well known that when we learn something we best understand it and concretize it in our knowledge when we play with it. Men will play with their work shop tools, women will play with a new hair style, and of course children will play with their toys to discover all of the facets of that toy through imaginative and creative interaction. Be the parent your child needs you to be. They need you to be in their world. That means interacting and playing with them on their level to prompt them through the tasks and chores they don’t want to do. Mary Poppins sang, "A spoonful of sugar helps the ....

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  • Parenting Skillz 4  Prompting

    Parenting Skillz 4 Prompting

    Prompting for Success
    Our 4th part in our parenting skillz series asks the question, "How can you set your child up for daily success?" One of the most effective ways to do this is to focus on prompting instead of punishment. Here’s what you need about prompting your child toward good behavior and decisions: 1. Friendly Competition
    One of the ways to prompt your child toward good behavior is to create a simple competition where you dare them to turn a negative behavior to a positive one. If your child is fidgety and doesn’t sit still or tends to be disruptive, for instance, create a friendly competition or prompt that steers them to better behavior. To have them sit ....

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  • Parent Skillz 3 Patience

    Parent Skillz 3 Patience

    As we continue our 5 part parenting skillz series, our 3rd post begins by encouraging you to take a few extra seconds when responding to poor behavior. This demonstrates compassion, empathy, and self-control on your part. Sometimes all you need to do is think about responding in the most patient manner to help re-direct your child. A few seconds can make a big difference. 1. Ask, Listen, Explain
    Patience helps you to establish better solutions for difficult moments with your child. If your child has a temper tantrum, for instance, take a few seconds to calm down before reacting. Then, ask questions to help determine what is really driving the behavior. Listen to what they ....

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  • Parent Skillz 2 - Attunement

    Parent Skillz 2 - Attunement

    This is the second part of our Parenting Skillz Series. Attunement
    Do you ever feel like you can read your child’s mind? You know what they are going to do or say next because they have had the same reaction before? This is attunement. Improving your attunement skills will allow you to create a more patient and understanding relationship with your child. 1. Modify Your Child’s Behavior Be attuned to your child’s anxieties and try a creative approach that allows them to focus on positive behaviors and interactions instead of their anxieties or stresses. If you are attuned to the fact that your child has anxiety about going to school in the morning, for instance, ....

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  • Parent Skillz - Connection

    Parent Skillz - Connection

    This is the first in a 5 part series of posts focusing on parenting skillz. One of the most important things that you can do as a parent is establish a connection with your child.
    In fact, children need connection more than anything else. Here are a few ways that you can begin to build a great connection with your child: Daily Interactions:
    1. Make one-on-one connections with your child. Instead of asking a question from across the room, take an extra 15 seconds to walk to your child, get down on their level, maybe tap their shoulder or touch their arm, and ask the question. Chances are they will engage right away (instead of ignoring you) and answer you because you ....

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