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Mary Mazzoni
Did you know that the Paralympics Games are making headlines in London and are being featured on Prime Time TV in many countries.

TV coverage of the Games is limited in the US - but you and your family can watch wonderful video of the Paralympics at http://www.youtube.com/user/ParalympicSportTV

You can also check out the schedule of events and watch events live at http://www.paralympic.org/

Frankly - I almost never watch television. But I love watching the Paralympics!

Have you and your family been following the Games?
Tara Kennedy-Kline
Liar, thief, bully, smart mouth, recluse, rebel...labels parents never want to hear attached to their children, yet chances are, it’s the parents themselves who’ve created them.

These “labels” are more accurately known as “behaviors”, and human behaviors stem from emotions. In other words, “The way we FEEL determines how we ACT”.

Since children are human...it stands to reason that their actions and behaviors stem from their emotions and how they feel as well.

If your child is acting out in a way that is undesirable or negative, chances are, they are feeling bad, scared, angry or frustrated about something (or many things) in their life...since they don’t have the same options as adults in similar situations, they act out or lash out to get their feelings out.

For example: If you are a parent, you probably have another adult person in your life. If that person is disrespectful, hurtful, angry or even physically violent toward you...you have options. You can tell them off, you can fight with them, you can have an adult conversation with them, you can choose to not be in relationship with them and/or you can leave. Our children have NONE of those options...

Now, can you imagine the anger and frustration you would feel if the person you lived with had total control over you? What you ate, when you slept, who you were friends with, what you wore, how you were allowed to talk and what you were allowed to do...ALL THE TIME!!! And if you dared to disagree or argue or not comply, you would be punished or disciplined...Can you imagine if that person were allowed to yell at you, insult you, embarrass you or even hit you when you did something they felt was wrong or inappropriate?

How would you react to that person? What would your relationship look like with him or her? Would you trust them? Would you lie? Would you hide mistakes? Would you refuse to speak to them or choose to speak to them with rudeness? Would you sneak the things you wanted? Would you fight back...or fight with others? Would you shut down? Would you run away?

These are all normal reactions that as adults we can see ourselves doing...but in children, we label those reactions as “issues” and we look to treat, medicate or discipline them.
I see this behavior as treating the symptom instead of the disease. If the cause of the pain in our leg is diabetes...do we take asprin for the pain, or do we treat the diabetes?

I’m not suggesting for a moment that children be allowed to roam free and have no guidance or accountability...but I am suggesting that when we engage in correcting our children, we should also be thinking about how we would react as an adult if we were being handled in the same way. If emotions truly are the basis of our behaviors...think about it; what emotions are you building in your child and what behaviors are you causing?

Seek first to understand...then guide in the direction of your dreams.
Tara Kennedy-Kline
Every child has an opinion and should be allowed to express it without fear of rejection or punishment ~ TKK

Ask yourself "What messages am I sending my child about communicating with me?"

For years, if my husband and I were having a conversation in our home, or just bantering back and forth, if either of our kids tried to interject or ask us a question, we wouldn't let them talk. We would usually stop them and say "This is an adult conversation!"

Eventually, my children began to yell and cry and carry on and become dramatic and my husband and I would get angry. Then they started to make up stories or lies to "tattle" on their friends...and my husband and I would scold them.

Then, one day, as my youngest son threw a fit in his room...I got quiet, got down on his level and just listened to him. At first he stopped yelling and asked "What are you doing!?"

"I'm just listening to you." I replied.

"Why are you listening to me?" he yelled

"Why wouldn't I listen to you Alex?"

..."Because no one ever listens to me..."


My heart was broken, but not because I was offended or hurt, but because I realized that I was raising a child who believed he was not worth listening to.
In a moment I understood why my kids were yelling and dramatic and needy and tattling and lying. Because they needed to use any or all of those things if they were going to be heard.

That day, I realized that if I was going to change the craziness that I had created in my home...I would have to start listening to my kids.

Today's Journaling: "What was my greatest accomplishment today?

"You're blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That's when you discover who you really are, and your place in God's family." ~! Matthew 5:19
cuteparents
A baby isn’t born with a fully developed brain. As it develops, its neurons make up to 15000complex connections with each other. This wiring of pathways readies the brain for all future tasks, and is most vigorous in the first six years of life. Pathways used often are strengthened; those not used gradually aliminated.this’use it or lose it’ principle of brain development is the key argument for preschools, as formal schooling begins only at age four or so.

Choosing a preschool for your child can be a tough decision! Friends and neighbors can be a good source of information, but it's important to do your own research too. Every child is different, and what works for one may not work for another. This is particularly true if you have a preschooler with special learning or behavior needs. The following checklist can help you get a head start on finding the right setting for your preschooler.

Preschool provides a wonderful opportunity for your child to make new friends, socialize, and learn from an adult. Starting preschool is an exciting (and sometimes nervous!) time for little ones and parents.

Here are the Preschool Tips that help you and your child :

1.Take advantage of opportunities to get to know your child’s teacher and his classroom before the first day of preschool.
2.If they’re offered, attend the orientation meeting, the Open House, or the Welcome Back Picnic.
3.Use those times to meet your child’s classmates and families. It might also be helpful to set up a playdate with a child or two from your child’s new class.
In the weeks before preschool starts, share your excitement about school with your child.
4.Focus on the fun things he’ll learn during the year, and all the different things he’ll get to do. If possible, visit the playground at preschool. If you’re excited, your child will be too!
5.Clear away a special area in your house for your child’s bookbag and jacket. Establish a routine that puts your child in charge of clearing out and hanging up the backpack each day. This will make the morning rush a little less hectic.
6.Find some quiet time at the end of each day to share two or three books. Ask your local librarian to share books about school feelings and the first day.
7.Take a few minutes to talk about her feelings and her day at school. You’ll both sleep better!

Preschool checklist: ten must have :

1.Teacher child ratio 1: 20
2.children or less per room
3.Adequate ventilation, natural light and space: ideally a garden with swings and a sand pit.
4.Proximately to home so the child needn't travel long distance and can be easily picked up if unwell.
5.Trained teachers who are not just competent but loving too.
6.Low teacher’s turnover, so your child is in experienced hands.
7.Clean and hygienic environment
8.Direct teacher parent communication with regular feedback
9.Books,toys,aids actually used by children, not just displayed
10.Completion free environment where children aren’t pressured or compared with others.
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