Category Archive:
Constructive discipline

Three Ways To Change Behavior

three ways to change behavior

“Lisa is so different from Grace. Grace never broke anything when she was this age. Lisa breaks something every day,” Meg told me at our playgroup with our one-year olds. Meg, a long-time friend, was over 30 when she had her first child. Five-year-old Grace lived up to her name. Grace was gentle and content […]


Use Your Thinking Hats

using your thinking hats

Some women get rocks set into precious metals for anniversaries, birthdays or Christmas. I get books. Over thirty years ago, my husband presented me with a jewel of a book for Christmas. I’ve used this gift to teach thinking skills to children and adults. The title? Six Thinking Hats by Edward De Bono. De Bono, […]


Sincere Praise Can Make A Difference

One of the formative experiences of my early twenties was taking the Dale Carnegie Course in Public Speaking and Human Relations. Each class we focused on a tenet of Carnegie’s philosophy, one of which is to give sincere, honest appreciation. But giving honest and sincere appreciation can be a difficult skill to master. Some compliments […]


Be The Storyteller For Your Child’s Special Moments

be the storyteller for your child's special moments

Erle Stanley Gardner. Agatha Christie. Dick Francis. I’ve always loved reading mysteries and I’ve read so many that I can usually guess ”who dunnit.” In my late teens I took a writing seminar with a mystery writer. My first question to her was “Do you know the ending when you start writing?” She laughed and […]


Helping Children Learn To Apologize

Injury occurs one of two ways: accidentally or intentionally. We need to help our children be prepared to deal with the inevitable in their lives. Accidents do happen and we need to show them the way to make amends when things have gone wrong. We need to teach these skills, though, beforehand, versus after the […]


Helping Your Child Change Self-Perception

Labels. We all are labeled by the roles we play or how others perceive us. On the day we are born, the labeling begins. “He looks just like his daddy. She’s an angel. He’s a handful. She’s fussy. He’s scatterbrained. She has no patience. He’s greedy.” Names and adjectives are used to describe children and […]


Help! My Child Is The Bully!

Amanda, a preschool teacher in California, contacted me about a column about bullying. “I do agree”, she wrote, “that bullying is a very serious issue but the people that usually need more support are the mortified parents of the bully.” Let’s define bullying behavior. Bullying can be physical, verbal or excluding behaviors that include but […]


Three Levels Of Obedience

three levels of obedience

Sometimes when I am working on the computer I feel like a three-year-old. At least, I think I feel like a three-year-old. I try to do some function that I haven’t done in a while, and I look at the computer screen wondering how I did it. When I am utterly confused, I’ll phone one […]


An Ounce of Prevention: Handwashing

handwashing an ounce of prevention

“My mommy said I don’t have to wash my hands after I go to the bathroom,” one of my preschool students said. How was I going to side step this power struggle? “At school,” I said, “we wash our hands. Do you want to use the pump soap or the bar soap?” Fortunately, for children […]


Helping Your Child Learn To Listen

steps to reading success

“You can’t help your child learn anything if you don’t teach them to listen and pay attention. That’s what you have to do first.” I overheard Tricia, a mother of three, as she visited with a father at a parent get-together. Afraid of breaking a child’s spirit, we are sometimes reluctant to “make” a child […]