Meeting Monday 27th of May 2013

Theatre 9 A.M.

How to deal with the summer holidays.

Activities and suggestions

Meeting the first week back after the holidays. May 6th 2013

Address some of the issues that you wrote down during the resilience workshop

Workshop on Resilience

Strategies to help your child become independent and capable. What can we do as parent s to help them achieve this.


If you are interested in these suggestions you may want to look at the site for parenting.

Mistake # 5 Punishing for Making Mistakes

As parents, you can help your child by normalizing making mistakes. It is part of living and as long as we live, we will make mistakes. You can help your child see mistakes as opportunities to learn instead of signs of inadequacy.

When your children can see mistakes this way, they will feel better about being accountable for what they do because they have learned that admitting to a mistake does not make them bad or get them into trouble. They will also learn to ask for help.

Sometimes making a mistake means you have to make amends and or apologize. You will want to teach your children that the mistakes they make are not as important as what they do afterwards.

Making amends involves helping your children understand these steps:

1) Equate making a mistake with responsibility instead of blame

2) Make amends by apologizing to the people you hurt or offended

3) Resolve the problem by working together on finding a solution,by the way, when you make a mistake it is okay to let your children know. They are very forgiving and you are modeling what to do when a mistake is made.

March 4th

Mistake # 4 Giving in

Some of this “pushing” is normal and even desirable because as children grow in skill and experience they will naturally want to be able to do more and more.

They are often ready to take on more responsibility before you are comfortable letting them have it.

For young children, your job is to set limits without a lot of discussion. But, as children get older it becomes more important to involve them in the decision making of what those limits will be. When you learn and use a positive parenting system you will have the framework and tools to work with your children in setting age appropriate limits everyone can live with.

There are 2 main tools in your parenting toolbox for setting limits. The first is natural consequences. Natural consequences are effective teachers and

happen naturally if you are not standing in the way.

If you look outside and it is snowing, and you don’t put on a coat, you will be cold. If you leave the house without an umbrella and it rains, you will get wet. The problem with letting your child experience a natural consequence is that you are reluctance to seeing them “suffer”.

So, you try to make sure they avoid the pitfalls of forgetting their lunch or getting wet in the rain by constant reminding, nagging and lecturing. Try just waiting before you say anything or act and see what happens if you don’t intervene.

Remember that old saying, “experience is the best teacher”? Well, that is the incredible benefit of natural consequences. When a child discovers something

through experience, it is much more impactful than if mom warned her over and over what would happen.

Obviously, there are times when natural consequences are inappropriate or dangerous. You don’t ignore your child playing in the street when a bus is speeding in his direction.

So, there has to be another option. Logical consequences are what you impose after a child does something for which a natural consequence is not going to work.

You need to be careful when using logical consequences because sometimes they are thinly veiled punishments not learning experiences.

A word of caution when using logical consequences, make sure they are going to teach your child something and that they are related to what happened.

If your child leaves her bike outside and it gets stolen, grounding her is a punishment not a logical consequence. A logical consequence would be sitting

down together and looking at ways she can earn the money to replace the bike. For sure don’t ground her and then buy her a new one. As Jane Nelsen, author

of Positive Discipline says, don’t “bawl them out and then bail them out” and expect them to have learned a lesson.

If your child consistently forgets his homework and expects you to bring it to school, a logical consequence would be to say, “I am sorry you forgot your homework, you will need to handle it with your teacher. I can’t bring your homework to school today”.

When the offense and the consequence are related, then there is an opportunity for your child to learn from his choice or his misbehavior.

The reason for logical consequences is not to punish your child for something she did in the past but to help her learn a valuable life lesson. They say to your child, you made a mistake, you can learn from it and try again.

Consequences teach children that there are certain results from the choices they make. If you make an agreement with your teen that he is responsible for

keeping gas in his car and now he can’t get to work because the tank is empty don’t rescue him by jumping in the car and taking him yourself.

Give up lecturing and scolding and let him figure out what he is going to do. Providing him the opportunity to learn from experiences like these saves him from bigger problems later on. Watch out if you never allowed him to deal with the consequences of his own actions.

Consequences (or even better use the word solutions) work the best when you involve your children in coming up with solutions together.

Setting limits together allows for communication, respect and teach your children how to work through problems and come up with an acceptable solution.

Meeting February 11th

Mistake # 3 Negotiating too Much

First of all, be wary of giving a child too many choices. The use of choices needs to be both appropriate and acceptable.

Some choices are not appropriate at anytime. These are in areas that affect your child’s health and safety. Your child doesn’t get a choice to play in the street or only eat candy.

Appropriate choices are best used in a couple of ways. If you want to ward off a negative response from your child you can give him a choice between two options.

For instance, if your 9 year old doesn’t want to take a bath and is arguing with you, try this. Remaining firm and friendly ask him this way, “Would you like to take your bath before or after dinner? You decide.”

Notice that not taking a bath is not one of the choices. He can now only make a choice based on the ones you’ve given but he will feel a sense of control over the situation instead of fighting with you.

Next, it is appropriate to use choices when you want to avoid a power struggle. Perhaps you have an issue about what your daughter picks to wear to school. She insists on wearing play clothes to school instead of school clothes.

Make a space in her closet or in a particular dresser drawer. Put all the clothes you feel are appropriate for school and tell her she can choose anything from that drawer. That way you are limiting her to choices you feel are appropriate. She feels empowered and you are no longer the bad guy.

Giving limited choices is also an encouraging thing to do so your child can feel a sense of his own power while you are teaching and protecting him. Young children love to be able to chose which hand to hold when you are at the mall. So, no matter which hand they choose you still have control over making sure they walk with you.

It is also very important that you make sure the choices you offer are all acceptable to you. Don’t offer two choices and really only want your child to pick the “right” one.

Don’t offer choices that you can’t live with. So, if you say, “Be sure to put your clothes in the laundry room or they won’t get washed and you will have to wear dirty ones”, if you aren’t willing to let them wear dirty clothes.

For choices to work for you and your child make sure that you are willing to accept either choice they they make. If they argue for another choice, you reaffirm that they get to pick from the two you suggested or you will choose for them.

The choices you offer will need to change and become broader in scope as your children get older. Young children respond well to simple, limited choices like “Do you want to ride in the stroller or hold my hand, you decide”.

As children get older, including them in the discussion about what is acceptable and what isn’t makes arriving at a mutually respectful and acceptable solution more likely.

With older children you can decide to negotiate the changes and try them out for a week and then re-negotiate if necessary.

Meeting January 14th 2013

Mistake # 2

Must I Have a Reason to Say No?

Are you a parent that thinks that you can't say no without a good reason?

You don't always have to have a reason to say no because you are the parent, however consider if this is your only answer most of the time.

Do you feel guilty if you say no?

Your job as a parent is not to be a friend . They will have lots of friends our job is to be the adult and the loving teacher. We need to develop a thicker skin as children can say very hurtful words. We need to be able to deflect these words and consider the age of the child.

Lots for discussion here so bring your ideas to the meeting.


Looking at the 5 biggest mistakes that we make as parents.

Mistake #1

Explaining, Lecturing, Nagging.

Do we use words like,

Do this, Do that?

Do we talk and explain and lecture?

By changing our behaviour we can encourage the child to make changes.

Don't ask the child if they would like to do this or that.

Instead we might say,"The table needs to be set be set before we eat supper and have an expectation of whose job this is. Family meetings are useful to set up these systems.

You need to clean your room before you can go out to play and mean it.

Make eye contact and avoid shouting orders from one room to another. When you do this with children at an early age you avoid power struggles later on. Establish consistency and routines.


Discussions in groups about the handout given at the previous session.
Cyber bullies, Cell Phone bullying and tactics to use to prepare our children to handle all this technological age,with safety

FIRST MEETING October the 22nd
Meetings will be every other Monday because of other parental commitments. I will be pleased to see the return of many parents as well as new parents.

The topic will be on Bullying in Schools and the serious ramifications of not paying attention to this problem. I went to a a workshop and the topic was The Bully, the Bullied and the Bystander. In addition Cyber bullying: High - Tech Harassment in the Net Neighborhood was introduced.
The topics were both interesting and informative. With this in mind I will introduce the handout that I was given during the workshop. I hope that this will alert us as parents to some of the dangers that our children, in this day and age, face in a super charge high tech world, as well as promoting discussions around this issue.

October 15th
Welcome back to our new school year. We have been in school almost three weeks and I am happy to see you all again.
Parenting classes will begin the first Monday in October. I am looking forward to meeting with new parents as well as the returning parents. Come and enjoy our get together in the auditorium upstairs. Classes will run from 9-00 a.m. until 10-30 a.m.
If you have any questions catch me in the halls or phone Monika to set up a meeting.
Look forward to seeing you in October.
his day and age, face in a super charge high tech world, as well as promoting discussions around this issue.

September 2013


End of year term summer holidays. Have a wonderful and safe holiday.

The Monday session May 28th is canceled but the sessions will resume on a drop in basis where we can review skills or look at other issues.

Why children lie

Why children steal

Come, talk and enjoy each others expertise.

See you on Monday the 4th of June.

Siblings without Rivalry

By Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish

One of the hardest parts of parenting is the rivalry between children within the family. The goal of the sessions was to help parents, to help their children, to learn to live peaceably together. Hopefully the outcome was to sensitize parents to some of the issues that increase hostility, to a change of language and attitude that foster a decrease in hostility.

The sessions include;

  1. Keeping Children Separate and Unequal.

As parents we worry about being fair and making all are children equal. This is an impossible task which fosters siblings comparing themselves to each other either favourably or unfavourably. We have to learn alternative ways other than comparisons.

  1. Siblings in Roles

Brother and sister often put each other into roles as do their parents. These roles can be really powerful and can affect their relationship with others. Parents need the skills to free each child to become the best that he or she can be.

  1. When the kids Fight

During this discussion we will use the skills learned in ‘The Step Programme’ to help children practice skills to reduce rage. As parents we can motivate them to work out their own solutions.

  1. Problem Solving

We will look at approaches that enable us, as adults to sit down with the children, so that they can resolve some of their own conflicts.

  1. Looking at our own Experience as Parents

Time at last to review our own sibling relationships from the new perspective learned during this time.

How to talk so Children will Listen

by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish

Help Children with their Feelings

  • Listen with attention, really listen, don’t look around or do other things.

  • When they express their feelings, show them that you are listening.

  • When they feel something, identify what it sad, worried, tired, angry or excited. This helps to lower their anxiety. Someone understands me without judging me!

  • Sometimes they want what is physically nor possible. Turn this into a game of pretend or dream what it would bee like if you could have it.

Get them to cooperate

  • Don’t criticize just describe the situation. Talking too much does not promote their ability to listen.

  • Try to control your anger by describing what you want. Homework, clean room. Sometimes writing a note can be helpful. Doing the unexpected.

No Punishment. What then?

Consequences are teaching opportunities.

  • Tell them to be helpful.

  • Disapprove without being insulting.

  • Offer a choice

  • Show them how to correct it.

  • Express what you expect.

  • Don’t talk too much, act!

  • Most importantly let them experience the consequences.

Let them do things for themselves

  1. Let them choose try not to choose for them unless they are unable to choose for themselves. This can be used occasionally if we have a standoff. “You can’t choose so would you like me to choose for you?”

  2. Respect them when they are trying.

  3. Don’t ask too many questions. Let them be.

  4. Don’t offer answers too quickly. Let them think.

  5. Let them look for answers sometimes outside the family.

  6. Let them hope.

Encourage your children

Describe what you see;

  • This room looks clean.

  • The homework looks as though you have put a lot of effort into it.

Describe what you feel;

  • It’s really encouraging for me to see a clean room

  • I appreciate your help.

Describe what is appreciated

  • You put the toys away and the clothes in the drawers. You are organized.

  • Hey you were playing without fighting that shows me that you cooperate with each other.

Don’t label your children

  • Offer them new images of themselves. Don’t describe them as careless, clumsy, slow etc.

  • Put them into situations where they can behave differently.

  • Say something positive; catch them doing the right thing.

  • Store and keep your children’s special moments

Systematic Training for Effective Parenting

Democratic, respectful and practical parenting.

The program is based on the teachings of Alfred Adler. After his death a student, Rudolph Drekiurs, wrote books that resulted in the creating of the STEP Program.


The basic Adlerian Concepts.

Children are social beings.

A child's behavior is goal oriented.

A child's first goal is to belong and feel significant.

A misbehaving child is a discouraged child.

Mistakes are opportunities to learn.

Need for the message of love to be foremost.

The parenting classes will follow the STEP program chapter by chapter and on some chapters we will spend more than a week. The change in this program comes from the parents and skills need to be practiced.

Parenting is the hardest job that anyone will be require to do in their lifetimes as we are esentially untrained for this commitment and tend to follow our parent's style.

Chapter One

Understanding Yourself and your Child

  • We learned about the challenge of raising a confident and responsible child.

  • That our job is one of guiding not punishing, encouraging independence and not doing for a child what the child can do for him/herself.

  • Our expectations for children to cooperate is a valid one.

  • Children's behavior has a purpose. (Goals of misbehavior)

  • Families can work, play and grow together.

This was a very heavy chapter because it contained a great deal of information, as well as a re framing of personal ideas of parenting. We did an exercise on the different styles of parenting and reflected on whether we were autocratic, (brick wall), no boundaries, (jellyfish) or democratic, (backbone)

This program depends on a shift in parents reactions. The idea that we tuned in to our feelings of a child's misbehavior led to the understanding of the goals.

  • Attention

  • Power

  • Revenge

  • Display of inadequacy

Points to remember

  1. Challenge to raise children who are healthy,confident,cooperative and responsible..

  2. Help your child cooperate by setting limits and giving choices

  3. Remembering the roles that affect your child's behavior e.g.temperament, heredity,environment,ages.stages and sex roles.

  4. Parents expectations are powerful and can be positive or negative.
  5. All children want to belong, and they will attain this through useful behavior or misbehavior.
  6. Four goals of misbehavior and how they can by identified by our feelings around the behavior..
  7. Building a good relationship with your child involves;
  • Showing respect
  • having fun
  • giving encouragement
  • showing love

Chapter Two

Understanding beliefs and Feelings

  • The way to change your child's behavior is to change your approach.

  • Your child's beliefs about how to belong.

  • Your child's feelings and actions come from theses beliefs.

  • You have feelings and beliefs too.

  • You can change your feelings and beliefs so that you can help your child.

Points to Remember

1. To identify a child's goals, look at;

  • how you feel when the misbehavior happens

  • what you do about the misbehavior

  • how the child responds to what you do

2. The only behavior you can change is your own. To help a child stop misbehaving, concentrate on changing how you respond. Do or say something that your child does not expect

3. Beliefs and feelings affect how a child decides to belong.

4 To help your child form positive beliefs, you can;

  • Help your child take part.

  • Give choices

  • Be a good listener

  • Notice and teach courage

5. Beliefs come from a child’s point of view of what is important to the family, the child’s place, what the parents say or do, and the style of parenting

6. Feelings come from beliefs. You can change your beliefs and feelings by changing self talk. This can help you respond to misbehavior in a way that helps your child

Chapter Three

Encouraging Yourself and Yourself

This week we will look at;

  • How to encourage your child to be confident and to improve his/her self esteem.

  • Encouragement can help your child feel loved, accepted, respected, and valued.

  • Praise and encouragement is not the same thing.

  • You also need to encourage yourself ,

Points to remember

1. Encouragement is a skill to help children grow in self esteem.It shows that they are important, capable, and loved.

2. You encourage when you;

  • love and accept your child

  • notice your child's efforts

  • appreciate your child

  • have faith in your child

3. Praise is a reward that children earn. It teaches them to please others.

4.Encouragement is a gift. everyone deserves it. It can be given for effort. It can be given when the child is not doing well. It can be given just for being.

5.Encourage your child as often as you can.

6.Children need extra encouragement during hard family times.

7.You can also encourage children when you show respect for yourself and others.

8.Setting realistic goals will encourage both you and your child.

Chapter Four

Listening and Talking to Your Child

We will learn;

  • To have a good relationships, talk together using special skills.

  • You can listen to hear how your child is feeling.

  • You can show your child that talking about feelings is O.K.

  • You can talk about problems without blaming.

Points to remember.

1. Communication is important for your relationship with your child.

2. Children want parents to hear, understand, and accept their feelings.

3. Use reflective listening to check on your child's feelings

4. You messages put down or blame children5.

5. Use I messages to tell what is happening and how you feel.

Use these words;

  • When " When you don't call,

  • I feel I feel worried

  • Because because I don't know where you are."really angry, get aweay from your child. calm down or get some help.

6. Avoid angry I messages.

7. If you are angry, get away from your child. Calm down or get some help.

8. Building respect and trust takes a long time. Don't give up.

Chapter 5

Helping children Cooperate

We will learn;

  • Cooperating means working together.

  • Children can be responsible for some of their own problems

  • You and your child can talk together and solve problems

  • Family meetings help families enjoy each other and solve problems together

Points to remember;

1. Communication is important for your relationship with your child.

2. Children want parents to hear, understand,and accept their feelings

3. When you use reflective listening, you reflect your child's feeling and the reason for feeling.Start by using the words, you feel, and because.

5. I messages don't blame the other person. They tell how you feel and why you feel that way.

6. Avoid using angry I messages.

7. If you are really angry move away from the child and calm down

8. Building respect and trust takes a long time. Don't give up.

Chapter 6

Discipline that makes Sense

We will learn;

  • The purpose of discipline to help the child learn to be responsible.

  • Discipline is a way to guide your your child to learn to make choices.

  • Consequences can help your child learn to cooperate and be responsible.

  • Using consequences shows respect for all family members.

Points to remember

1. Discipline helps children learn to cooperate. It helps them learn self control.

2. The keys to effective discipline are;

  • show respect for your child and yourself..

  • Expect your child to cooperate.

  • Provide choices.

  • Apply consequences

3. Instead of giving orders set limits and give choices. limits and choicesgive everyone some control.

4. A consequence happens when a child makes a choice.It is a way to set limits and give choices.

5. When the child makes a choice let the child act on this choice.

6. Remember;

  • Be firm and kind.

  • Talk less and act more.

  • Don't fight or give in.

  • Usr respectful words.

  • Respect the choice

  • Make it clear when there is NO CHOICE.

  • Give children the responsibility for their choice

  • Don't worry what others think.


Chapter 7

Choosing your approach.

You will learn how to practice and choose all the skills you have learned in the previous chapters.

Points to remember.

1. Use all of the skils you have learned in these sessions and remember to use tyhe approach that fits with what is happening .

2. Keep on encouraging and not praising your child

3. Have faith in your child.Have a sense of humour.

4. Have patience in yourself.

5. Set realistic goals.Have the courage to be imperfect.

And above all know that there is support if you need it.