16: Bedroom Decor. Let your kids help decorate their room. Let them have fun and express themselves in what they want on the wall or colors that they love. I know that when I decorate my house in a way that I love, it makes walking into that room so much more fun! A kid feels the same way.
17: Imbed 'I'm Sorry' and 'I forgive you' into their mind at a young age. The importance of saying it and the understanding of it. Sounds simple but even as an adult it's hard to do both those things, same for children.
18: Face Your Fears! If your child is afraid of the dark, play some games in the dark or turn the lights off and draw funny pictures in the dark and laugh at them. If your child is afraid of water, take them to the pool but don't worry about making it constructive, just fun! But always talk to them about it before hand, don't just throw them at it head-on.
19: Be a Good Sport. What does that mean anyway? Well, it means give your best effort, and appreciate your team's and your opponent's efforts no matter who wins. And be gracious and humble. No one wants to be friends with a sore looser, which can diminish your kid's confidence. They don't have to LIKE to lose, they just need to know that it's a part of life. Being competitive shouldn't be confused with bad sportsmanship. It's okay to be competitive and enthused.
20: Family Dates! Daddy-daughter dates, mother-son dates, mother-daughter, father-son or the WHOLE clan. Spend outing time together! Make the effort to spend one on one time communicating and listening. Let them control the conversation and listen carefully. Have fun together, let them help plan the dates. My kids moods are MUCH MUCH happier when we're spending constant time together. TIME isn't always easy so make time.
21: Accept the gift. As parents, we give our kids everything. But children don't have jobs or means to give their parents everything in return. So when they give you a leaf, or a page they colored or a dandelion, it needs to be the most important thing you've ever seen because it's the only thing they have to give. Let them know how grateful you are. And that's another way of teaching them the 'good feeling' of serving others as well.
22: Teach! Kids ask a BAZILLION questions. And the only thing you can do to make you sane is by answer them. If they want to cook, teach them and let them, if they want to know how an airplane flies, research and tell them. It's fun when you learn new things too. Be honest with them. They trust everything you tell them so make it count. They soak in everything they learn & hear so encourage them. They'll learn knew skills and knowledge that will GREATLY increase their confidence!
23: Mind your manners. Have you heard of the Bad Manners Dinner Table Pig? We tried this one and it worked quite well. The only thing is, is that it's a game, which I agree that you need to make it fun and not miserable. But to make it a learning process we made a rule that who ever had the pig last had to clear the table. Manners takes TIME and EFFORT. The learning happens within the family every single day. Good manners will help your child interact with others in a way that will attract positive feedback. It takes chronic grueling and doing it in a happy manner. This is up for personal preference in handling the manners that are important to you. I'm going to be a proud momma for a moment if you will, and tell you about my son's service to a senior citizen. We were walking into church and this lady had two crutches and had a hard time walking, let alone carry a bag. My 6 year old asked, "Excuse me, can I carry your bag?" The woman was very pleased and handed it over, then he continued to walk and talk with her and open the double doors for her. I was in too much of a hurry running late to church, but that's all it took to get my head on straight. 24: Family Home Evening. Once a week, (for our family it's every Monday), we spend the evening together and make NO OTHER PLANS. We teach a lesson we play a game, we sing, we chat, but my favorite part is asking my children and family if there's anything we can do to make our home more happy. The kids always come up with meaningful and fun ideas. And again, it's spending time together. Gotta make that time.
25: Teach them Thankfulness. Being thankful means you know you are blessed. Knowing you're blessed means you appreciate your life and what you have. One way I taught my kids thankfulness was in their own prayers. Instead of just repeating 'Please bless this and please bless this' we worked on 'Thank you for this'. Also, just talk about it. I'm thankful for this, what are you thankful for?
26: Don't embarrass your children in front of others. Getting upset at your child can feel belittling to them, but even more so in front of others. It's the small things that matter. You can make a signal that only you and your kid knows what it means. If your child interrupts you in a conversation, you can give him/her the 'signal' so they know they need to wait and not interrupt. The child doesn't get embarrassed. Side note, NEVER punish your child when you're angry. Calm it down first and think of a reasonable response.
27: Pick good friends. Ask your child, "do you think friends make fun of you? Do you think friends make you make bad choices?" Etc. Help them understand good qualities they need to have in a friendship. Always listen to your child's concerns about friends and then help them figure out the best way to find solutions. Even role playing will help them with the thought process. Be in their life, know their friends, have them over for play dates. We all know friends can influence your child in every way.
28: Teach them about tricky people. Read THIS article now. And find a way to talk to them about predators. Like a good book. Having your children understand safety without scaring them is important to their confidence and courage. Let them be in the 'know'.
29: Raise a leader. For your child to gain leadership skills all you need to do is give them decision making opportunities. This also falls in line with #4 & also 16. Give them leeway and find the time and effort to make it happen often. Praise them for their success and encourage them further if by chance their choice doesn't work. Encourage their input for ideas. Let them take charge. If they're bored don't tell them what to do, ask them etc.
30: Optimistic! If you're not in the mood to be, then be aware of your adult conversations around children. They listen, even in the other room. Don't teach them to gossip or degrade others EVER. Don't EVER mention weight or being fat, you instead talk about a healthy body and healthy eating. Don't complain or whine in front of your kids. (Whining isn't allowed in our home on both sides). Have them look in the mirror and say things they love about themselves. Constantly tell them things that are great about them. Let them know more than once a day that you love them by saying it, if you're reading all this then I know you're already showing it. Talk to them if they say negative things, see if you can figure out where it's coming from. The media can have an impact on their attitude and optimism as well as friends, teachers, siblings and the parents.
on Jan. 26, 2013 at 3:27 PM