Friday, November 3, 2017

November-Emotional Development

November: Emotional Development

“Children are developing their social and emotional skills in early childhood. This influences their mental health and wellbeing, now and in the future.”-Kids Matter

Interactions with adults and caregivers impact the emotional development of small children. Emotional development entails the understanding of feelings and emotions and how to handle them. Children who grasp a variety of emotions and how to handle them are more likely to stay calm and grow into confident, curious learners. Adult interactions with children and their emotions play a large role in this process. Visit the link below to view the chart of examples on how to interact positively with your child when it comes to expressing emotions.

Developing a strong emotional skill set have shown to have an impact on social interactions and performance in school. Emotions impact our attention, memory, and learning; our ability to build relationships with others; and our physical and mental health (Salovey & Mayer 1990). Developing this skill set helps children to not be consumed with emotions when they unexpectedly occur. When discussing emotions with children it is important to know that both positive and not so positive emotions should be discussed so that children understand that all emotions are worth discussing.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

October-Setting Boundaries/Limits

Having a set of boundaries and limits in the home provide young children with a sense of safety. Young children may not voice this but they actually crave expectations and stability. Understanding how to create age appropriate boundaries will help you to be successful with following through with them. First, children who feel loved and valued are more likely to accept corrections. I know it is hard with busy schedules and multiple children in the same house but carving out one on one time with be very beneficial to being successful with setting boundaries and limits. Setting boundaries and limits help preschool age children to practice self-control. Children this age are egocentric so this can be challenging but understanding that we do not always get what we want when we want it can be difficult for young children. Sometimes we have to say no to children but try giving an explanation. For example, If you child asks to go to the park today but it is raining; instead of simply responding with “no”, you might say “ we cannot go to the park today because it is raining but we can go another time when it is not raining.” Keep in mind that you want to be able to follow through with your response so avoid responding with unrealistic outcomes.
Keep in mind when setting boundaries or limits at home that you must be clear and consistent. Young children do not always do well with abrupt change so giving warning before something happens is very helpful. If you have to leave for school, a doctor’s appointment, or just to run errands give you child a warning. “In two minutes we have to stop and go to school.” this allows your child processing time. Using a timer for this is great. That way you do not forget and it gives the child a signal that it is time to stop. Once the two minutes are up or the timer goes off simply say “ Two minutes are up, it is time to go. We can play when we come home.” Keeping things simple and positive will have you in a consistent routine with boundaries in no time! For more information on how to set boundaries or limits at home visit the websites below.

Friday, September 8, 2017

September-Setting Home Rules/Expectations

Setting Home Rules/Expectations

Having a set of home rules/expectations for children helps to create a safe and trusting environment. Rules and expectations should be simple, clear, and placed somewhere in the house that can be seen on a regular basis. Try engaging your child in the process of coming up with the list of home rules. Involving children in the process of coming up with the rules/expectations makes them feel more responsible; therefore, more likely to follow them.  Keep in mind your child’s age and ability level.  You want to set them up for success not failure. Some examples of rules/expectations at home might be:
  • We brush our teeth before bed.
  • We pick up our toys when we are done playing.
  • Put dirty clothes in the hamper or laundry basket.
  • During meal time we stay safe in our seat.
It is important to be consistent with the rules/expectations. If your child responds negatively to one of the house rules/expectations simply remind them of why you came up with those rules. For example:
Child: “I do not want to brush my teeth before bed!!!”
Adult: “Remember we have to take care of our teeth by brushing them every night.”
The benefits to having rules/expectations at home are endless! Having rules/expectations help your child to have a calm environment, makes you an active leader as opposed to a reactive leader in the home, and provide structure. They help your child develop long term traits such as being independent, responsible, and caring for things and people. As your child grows you can adapt the house rules/expectations.

For more information regarding this topic visit the links below.

Friday, May 12, 2017

May-Literacy in Preschool

Reading to your children is a simple and well known way to promote reading success later in life! The ability to read and write is called “literacy.” For infants, the sound of your voice and holding them in your lap helps build relationships. Toddlers may want you to read the same book over and over. Preschoolers enjoy books about anything and everything! Don’t forget you can read poems, magazines, newspapers, and even signs in the environment! Children also benefit from seeing adults read. Following are some more ideas and activities to promote Early Literacy!

DID YOU KNOW? Early literacy is a mix of experiences that involves all five senses. Early literacy tactics focus on a child’s developmental abilities and preparedness to acquire literacy skills. Activities not only include reading and exploring books, but also coloring, painting on the easel and construction and drama playing (Birken, 26).

FUN FACT: The single most significant factor influencing a child’s early educational success is an introduction to books and being read to at home prior to beginning school. National Commission on Reading, 1985

Monday, April 10, 2017

April-Sibling Rivalry


Jealousy, competition and fighting among brothers and sisters is often referred to as sibling rivalry. Almost all families with more than one child experience it. Conflicts can begin as soon as the second child is born.  Unfortunately, it can last a lifetime! Here are some ideas and suggestions to help you make it through the more stressful times:


FUN FACT: Studies show that siblings between the ages of 2 and 4 clash 6.3 times per hour. That frequency drops with kids aged 3 to 7 in conflict just 3.5 times per hour ... which means moms have a whole 20 minutes before the next ruckus!

Friday, March 3, 2017

March-Sleep and Bedtime Routine

A good night’s sleep is necessary for a child’s well-being, adults too! Not getting enough zzz’s can affect behavior, ability to attend, and mood. Getting your child to sleep is not always an easy task. The resources below will inform you about the benefits of a good rest and also list some ideas on how to get one!

DID YOU KNOW? Children tend to fall asleep faster and sleep longer when they go to bed before 9 p.m.

FUN FACT: lack of sleep affects behavior. In addition, keeping all electronics out of the bedroom will help children to get a good night’s sleep.

Friday, February 3, 2017

February- Stress Management

Stress Management
Stress is a normal reaction to challenges and changes and an inevitable part of all of our lives – even our kids! Some stress can be a good thing, but overwhelming stress can be damaging to your health and have negative effects on parenting skills. It’s good to have some tricks up your sleeve for trying times!

FUN FACT: Parents who are more sensitive to their infants’ needs and respond quickly to emotional cues tend to raise children who are better at regulating their own emotions. Successfully managing your own stress is vital to being responsive to your children!

DID YOU KNOW? There are free programs available for parents that provide counseling, resource linkage and hands on training to help ensure healthy children and healthy families. For more information, contact Jen Wallis, Family Support Facilitator at 282-5184 x 2406

Friday, January 6, 2017

January-Social Skills Development

Socially and emotionally competent children are skilled at managing their emotions and behavior, cooperating with others, forming positive relationships, and making responsible…decisions. (Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning, 2007) Current research in early childhood education supports that children need to be taught social skills and appropriate behavior, just like they are taught letters and numbers. Click on the links below to know what to expect as your child grows and how to help them grow socially and emotionally.

FUN FACT: Social interaction increases the speed and accuracy of learning in all ages, including babies.

DID YOU KNOW? At Don Earl, we implement a curriculum called Second Step to help students learn appropriate social skills. Second Step is a learning program designed to increase school readiness and social success by building social-emotional competence and self-regulation skills. Lessons are completed in the general classroom and sometimes in smaller groups with our family facilitator as part of our Positive Behavior Support program. For more details, contact your child’s teacher.