Category Archive:
Social/emotional needs

Relight the Candle

relight the candle

Five-year-old Tommy walked over to his mother, Judy. ”Write my name for me, Mommy.” ”Tommy, you know how to write your name.” ”But I don’t ‘member,” he said. Tommy’s mother, Judy, phoned me, near tears, about this conversation. Judy’s concern was that Tommy had forgotten something as seemingly simple as the three letters in Tom. […]


Beginning a Conversation

We were looking forward to spending the weekend with old friends and their eight- and ten-year-old sons, whom we had never met. As soon as quick introductions were made, the boys picked up their electronic game machines and headed toward the den. At dinner the boys made plates of food and sat at the coffee […]


Understanding Self-Discipline

understanding self-discipline

It has been said that the only true discipline is self-discipline. With self-discipline we take ownership of our own behavior. We take responsibility for our lives. As we discipline our children we might consider that our goals should include these objectives of helping our children take ownership of their behavior and responsibility for their lives. […]


Do The Hokey Pokey

In the gardening shop I looked up to discover a sign over my head. ”What If The Hokey Pokey Is What It’s All About?” For whatever reasons, I started to laugh. Uncontrollably. My husband came from across the store to see what could be so funny. For weeks afterwards Mark and I had a running […]


You Can’t Say You Can’t Play

Exclusion begins early in life, and it can be observed even in preschool settings. In days a class divides up into three main groups: Leaders who say who gets to play in their games, The children excluded from the games The children in the middle who live in fear of being rejected. For the kindergartner […]


Characteristics of the Adolescent

adolescent characteristics

For centuries the Judeo-Christian tradition has held a coming of age ritual for thirteen-year-olds. The Jewish Bar and Bat Mitzvahs and the Christian confirmation announce an adolescent’s provisional membership in his or her religious adult communities. With changing legislation over the past 50 years young people’s official entry into the adult world occurs eight years […]


Use a Purple Pencil

use purple pencil

Harold, the hero in Crockett Johnson’s classic book Harold and the Purple Crayon, uses his imagination and crayon to create an adventure. Off Harold goes, using his waxed stick to draw a path, along with a moon to use as his navigational aid. During his escapade, Harold’s crayon creates a forest, an ocean and a […]


The Neglected Needs of Teens

neglected needs of teens

Around age 12 with the onset of puberty, the human being undergoes physical and psychological metamorphoses. The child changes into an adolescent, and life will never be the same, for parent or child. The young adolescent needs opportunities to step outside his or her familiar community of home, church and school, while still using these […]


Learning from Bumps and Bruises

learning from bumps bruises

As I visit with preschool administrators around the country a common theme emerges: the dynamics of smaller families are affecting children’s abilities to learn how to endure the bumps and bruises of everyday life. Many school principals and teachers hear from upset parents the first few days and weeks of school because children go home […]


Fears of the Young Child

Fear, sadness and anger are three of the most difficult emotions for children, and adults for that matter, to learn to manage. These emotions are interrelated in that fear can be the core emotion behind anger and sadness. Children need to be able to modulate their emotions in order to focus their attention, to concentrate, […]