Tag Archives: youth

Ending the Lectures to Get to the Real Learning

Ending the Lectures to Get to the Real Learning. Episode #8 - Raising Kids Who Can Cope

Episode #8 in the “Raising Kids Who Can Cope” Series

Click arrow to listen to the 90-second podcast.

We all want to raise kids who are emotionally and socially intelligent and are able to recover from disappointment to grow stronger every day into adulthood

As adults, we have a wealth of knowledge and experience to draw on when talking with young people. It can be tempting to lecture children about what we have learned. However, research tells us that the most effective way to learn is through personal experience.

Though we want to steer children away from negative experiences when we can, if we use a few key strategies to talk to young people, we can help them learn how to think for themselves and solve their own problems. In doing so, we prepare them for the times when we can’t be there to help them know what to do.

Consider using television as a way to start conversations, such as, “How would you have handled that character’s situation?” or “What would you have done if you were in that character’s shoes?” Keep your tone relaxed and be prepared to really listen to their responses. A good follow-up question might be, “If you did that, what do you think would happen next?” It’s a great way to begin talking about natural consequences. When you ask open-ended questions and allow the young person to think through the imagined scenario, they become better prepared to face a real situation on their own.

The more you listen and ask questions the more likely they are to take part in future conversations where you can help them improve their critical thinking skills for making healthy choices for themselves.

Raising Kids Who Can Cope is a 28-part series developed to build skills, knowledge and awareness in adults who play a role in young people’s lives. It is brought to you by Jackson County UW-Extension and Together for Jackson County Kids. Find out more at Raising Kids Who Can Cope.

References

Ginsburg, K. R. (2011). Building Resiliency in Children and Teens. Grove Village IL: American Academy of Pediatrics.

Calling out the Problem, Not the Person

Calling Out the Problem Not the Person. Episode #7 - Raising Kids Who Can Cope

Episode #7 in the “Raising Kids Who Can Cope” Series

Click arrow to listen to the 90-second podcast.

We all want to raise kids who are emotionally and socially intelligent and are able to recover from disappointment to grow stronger every day into adulthood

Did you know that the word discipline means “to teach” not “to punish”? Children will make mistakes from time to time. One of the responsibilities of being a parent is teaching children how to navigate through life. What we want to avoid doing is calling a child a “bad girl” or “bad boy” or tell them that “only naughty boys or girls do that”. This does not address the problem behavior or let the child know what an appropriate alternative would be. As parents we want to teach our children, not call them names. Telling a boy or girl they are a bad child hurts their self-esteem and confuses them if they don’t know that what they did was wrong.

Also, calling a child names when they misbehave can have a reverse effect on your child. Children crave attention from their parents.  If a child is getting most of your attention when they are a “bad boy” or “naughty girl”, then they are going to repeat those inappropriate behaviors more often to continue to receive attention, even if is negative attention..

When a child misbehaves it is important to let him or her know that what they did that was wrong, why the behavior is inappropriate and what behavior you want them to do instead. Showing a child the appropriate way to behave rather than inappropriate behavior is important because children are learning and don’t know how to act in certain situations. Children learn what is right when parents teach and guide them. When a child behaves correctly, it is very important to give him or her praise immediately and tell them that what they did was right.  This will reinforce the appropriate behavior in the child.

Raising Kids Who Can Cope is a 28-part series developed to build skills, knowledge and awareness in adults who play a role in young people’s lives. It is brought to you by Jackson County UW-Extension and Together for Jackson County Kids. Find out more at Raising Kids Who Can Cope.

References

Ginsburg, K. R. (2011). Building Resiliency in Children and Teens. Grove Village IL: American Academy of Pediatrics.

Holding a Family Meeting

Holding a Family Meeting. Episode #6 - Raising Kids Who Can Cope

Episode #6 in the “Raising Kids Who Can Cope” Series

Click arrow to listen to the 90-second podcast.

We all want to raise kids who are emotionally and socially intelligent and are able to recover from disappointment to grow stronger every day into adulthood

Holding family meetings will strengthen your family and help children become more helpful and capable, as well as allowing them to build important communication and problem solving skills.

A good way to start having family meetings is to propose a regular, weekly meeting time.  You can use your first meeting to discuss structure of future meetings, as well as the decision-making process.  It may be helpful to have an agenda.  Taping a blank piece of paper to your refrigerator door, where family members can write down items they would like to discuss during the meeting that week, will get you started.  Of course, calling an emergency family meeting will mean there will be no agenda.

There are several reasons to host a family meeting in your home.  Family Meetings increase family unity and cooperation, decrease family conflict, increase love and mutual respect, increase family organization and build skills and competency.

The long-term effects of family meetings are numerous, but learning good communication and building healthy self-esteem are things that will turn children into confident teens and responsible adults.

Raising Kids Who Can Cope is a 28-part series developed to build skills, knowledge and awareness in adults who play a role in young people’s lives. It is brought to you by Jackson County UW-Extension and Together for Jackson County Kids. Find out more at Raising Kids Who Can Cope.

References

Fleming, E., Kumpfer, K., Molgaard, V. (2007) Strengthening Families Program. Ames, IA: Iowa State University University Extension.

Solter, A. (2003) Family Meetings for Conflict Resolution. Aware Parenting Institute, 118. Retrieved from http://www.awareparenting.com/familymeetings.htm

Reflecting Emotions

Reflecting Emotions. Episode #5 - Raising Kids Who Can Cope

Episode #5 in the “Raising Kids Who Can Cope” Series

Click arrow to listen to the 90-second podcast.

We all want to raise kids who are emotionally and socially intelligent and are able to recover from disappointment to grow stronger every day into adulthood

When we as adults pay attention to children’s emotions, we are letting them know that their experiences and perspectives are important. Children need to be heard and understood on their terms. At the early toddler stage, your child does not have the words to tell you what he is feeling as your child experiences the world around him.  Children deserve empathy to feel listened to and respected. As a parent, you can watch and listen to what the actions of your child is telling you.

Parents can project to children that it is OK to feel angry, frustrated, confused, disappointed as well as happy, excited, and surprised. You help your child build resilience, gain confidence, and feel competent when you help her learn to manage those emotions in healthy ways.

When we are empathetic toward children and their emotions, we create an emotional safety net. They feel secure in coming to us with problems and children will feel confident in learning and listening to their emotions.

Raising Kids Who Can Cope is a 28-part series developed to build skills, knowledge and awareness in adults who play a role in young people’s lives. It is brought to you by Jackson County UW-Extension and Together for Jackson County Kids. Find out more at Raising Kids Who Can Cope.

References

Ginsburg, K.R. & Jablow, M.M. (2011) Building Resilience in Children and Teens. Elk Grove Village, IL: American Academy of Pediatrics.

http://www.healthychildren.org/English/Pages/default.aspx

Including Young People in the Decision-Making Process

Including Young People in the Decision-Making Process. Episode #4 - Raising Kids Who Can Cope

Episode #4 in the “Raising Kids Who Can Cope” Series

Click arrow to listen to the 90-second podcast.

We all want to raise kids who are emotionally and socially intelligent and are able to recover from disappointment to grow stronger every day into adulthood

As caring adults and parents, it is our responsibility to make decisions that will keep young people safe from harm. However, there are many decisions that affect the day-to-day lives of youth that aren’t related to their immediate safety.

Young children can easily be involved in the process of making simple decisions for themselves, with guidance and support from adults. When discussing rules or other decisions, youth may express what they want, and adults can ask questions to help them think through the potential positive and negative consequences of those decisions. Through open communication with adults, children begin to understand how to weigh the pros and cons of any choice they make. Then, as the children demonstrate increased decision-making skills and responsibility, the adults may gradually allow the children greater input in choices that affect them. Because they started small and were later involved in increasingly complex decisions, young people will feel more prepared to take on these challenges.

Youth who are included in the decision-making process – especially when those choices directly affect them – learn many important resiliency skills, such as healthy communication, responsibility, accountability, and critical thinking. They are also more likely to have a greater sense of independence and stronger “buy-in” to the results of those decisions, because they had a voice in determining their own future.

Raising Kids Who Can Cope is a 28-part series developed to build skills, knowledge and awareness in adults who play a role in young people’s lives. It is brought to you by Jackson County UW-Extension and Together for Jackson County Kids. Find out more at Raising Kids Who Can Cope.

References

Ginsburg, K.R. & Jablow, M.M. (2011). Building Resilience in Children and Teens. Elk Grove Village, IL: American Academy of Pediatrics.

United States Department of Agriculture (2011). Essential Elements: 4-H National Headquarters Fact Sheet. Washington D.C.: 4-H National Headquarters.

Modeling Behavior: Being the Person You Want Your Child to See

Modeling Behavior: Being the Person You Want Your Child to See. Issue #3 - Raising Kids Who Can Cope (2)

Episode 3 in the “Raising Kids Who Can Cope” Series

Click arrow to listen to the 90-second podcast.

We all want to raise kids who are emotionally and socially intelligent and are able to recover from disappointment to grow stronger every day into adulthood

When a child behaves in a way we disapprove or has trouble coping with a situation we may see as “no big deal”, it can be frustrating for us as adults. We can be quick to see the child’s actions as misbehavior or defiance, especially if we feel we’ve asked them repeatedly not to act that way. But if we tell our child to do one thing and then do the opposite ourselves, we’re sending a mixed message to our child on how to behave.

Modeling healthy behavior is very important in teaching a child how to cope with stress. Modeling behavior means demonstrating through your actions how you want your child to deal with stressful situations by using healthy coping skills. Children learn as much from watching us as they do from what we tell them. If we model unhealthy coping methods, a child is most likely going to mimic our actions even if we tell them not to.  If our actions are consistent with how we tell our child to behave, it reinforces the positive skills we’re trying to teach them.  The more we model positive behavior in front of our children, the less often we have to repeat our expectations to them.

Raising Kids Who Can Cope is a 28-part series developed to build skills, knowledge and awareness in adults who play a role in young people’s lives. It is brought to you by Jackson County UW-Extension and Together for Jackson County Kids. Find out more at Raising Kids Who Can Cope.

References

Ginsburg, K. R. (2011). Building Resiliency in Children and Teens. Grove Village IL: American Academy of Pediatrics.

Effective Communication: A Life Long Skill

Effective Communication: A Life Long Skill. Issue #2 - Raising Kids Who Can Cope

Episode #2 in the “Raising Kids Who Can Cope” Series

Click arrow to listen to the 90-second podcast.

We all want to raise kids who are emotionally and socially intelligent and are able to recover from disappointment to grow stronger every day into adulthood

Listening to what a child says and not just hearing her or him is a start to helping them work through an issue. Showing we are listening leads to more effective communication and better understanding for everyone.

We can show that we are listening through a few easy steps. facing towards a person that is talking, nodding our head as they talk, and having open posture not arms crossed in front of our body are nonverbal ways of showing that we are paying attention to a person while she or he is speaking. We can also show that we are listening by rephrasing back to the speaker what she or he has said and asking clarification questions. These techniques are called active listening.

When we want to get a point across or express how we’re feeling to someone else there are simple tricks for that as well. Use “I statements” such as “I want you to…” or “I feel happy or sad when…” instead of just saying “you, you, you” all the time.  When people, especially children, hear “you” all the time it can start to sound like blaming and they can tune out or start to feel less about themselves.  By using “I statements” we let them know how we feel about something and what we would like to happen without sounding like we’re accusing or blaming.

Raising Kids Who Can Cope is a 28-part series developed to build skills, knowledge and awareness in adults who play a role in young people’s lives. It is brought to you by Jackson County UW-Extension and Together for Jackson County Kids. Find out more at Raising Kids Who Can Cope.

References

American Academy of Pediatrics. (10/10/2014). Components of Good Communication. Healthychildren.org Retrieved from http://www.healthychildren.org/English/family-life/family-dynamics/communication-discipline/Pages/Components-of-Good-Communication.aspx

American Academy of Pediatrics. (10/10/2014). Components of Good Communication. Healthychildren.org Retrieved from http://www.healthychildren.org/English/family-life/family-dynamics/communication-discipline/Pages/Communication-Dos-and-Donts.aspx

Listening… Really Listening to Young People

Listening (Really Listening) to Young People. Issue #1 - Raising Kids Who Can Cope

Episode #1 in the “Raising Kids Who Can Cope” Series

Click arrow to listen to the 90-second podcast.

We all want to raise kids who are emotionally and socially intelligent and are able to recover from disappointment to grow stronger every day into adulthood

A great place to start is by listening to them. Kids are like anyone else. They have voices and things to say. They want to be heard. If we model good listening, they will learn those skills too.

But listening is more than hearing. Hearing is simply a sense that most of us have, while listening is a skill based on paying attention. When you really pay attention to young people – that is, taking in not only the words they say, but also the sound of their voice and their body language – you can become a sounding board for what they are thinking and feeling, which can help them process through their emotions and learn from them.

In order to really listen, you may need to temporarily turn off your “adult alarm” – or that part of the brain where red flags of concern go up for our children. Stay calm and allow them to talk through what they are thinking or experiencing. Stopping them to lecture not only cuts off communication, but it prevents them from reaching their own understanding of their situation.

When the lines of communication stay open, you, as the adult, will have plenty of time to provide advice – if they ask for it – or share your values and opinions in nonjudgmental ways after the young person has talked out the issue.

Raising Kids Who Can Cope is a 28-part series developed to build skills, knowledge and awareness in adults who play a role in young people’s lives. It is brought to you by Jackson County UW-Extension and Together for Jackson County Kids. Find out more at Raising Kids Who Can Cope.

References

Horowitz, S. (2012, November 9). The Science and Art of Listening. The New York Times Sunday Review. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com

Ginsburg, K.R. & Kinsman, S.B. (2013, December 3). How to Communicate With and Listen to Your Teen. Healthy Children: American Academy of Pediatrics. Retrieved from http://www.healthychildren.org.