Monday, March 21, 2016

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Listening Helps Settle Arguments

Bicker, bicker, bicker! Sometimes it seems that brothers and sisters are always fighting.
You can’t stop it all, but you can help your children learn to settle their disputes in constructive ways.

• Try to get the whole story of what caused the problem before jumping in and blaming anyone.
For example, say: “You must have been really mad at the baby to hit him,” and then let the older child explain.
Let her know that angry feelings are acceptable but that you can’t let her hurt the baby.

• In an argument between two children who can both talk, give each a chance to tell his or her own point of view.
You can help by describing the situation rather than judging it: “It looks like you two can’t agree on a television program. You both seem pretty upset. Want to tell me about it? Laurie, you go first. Then Joey, I want to hear your side of the story.”

This kind of approach will save a lot of hurt feelings and resentment between the kids, and it will help them learn to settle disputes themselves without fighting

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A Start on Telling Time

When your child is hungry and impatient with the speed of mealtime preparations, point to the large hand of the clock and say to her, “We will have dinner when this big hand gets to the bottom (or the top) of the clock.”
As you say this, point to where the hand will be. Then make every effort to meet this prediction accurately.
If she is not familiar with the clock, you will need to explain that the hand does move, but too slowly for her to see it.
Don’t try to teach her hours and minutes at first. This is difficult even for some first graders to understand, though by kindergarten many children will understand the concept of hours.

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April 2016 Preschool Curriculum Download

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March 2016 Preschool Curriculum Download

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Discipline is Teaching
Discipline is our way of teaching children about safety and societal norms.
Whatever type of discipline parents choose, the key is that some form of it is essential.
When you are faced with a two-year-old who is throwing a temper tantrum, or who is being unkind to a playmate:

1. Be specific. Instead of vague instructions like, “Cut it out,” use specific ones like: “Don’t take Jeremy’s toys. It’s not nice.”
2. Use body language. Move next to your child, put a hand on her shoulder, make eye contact.
3. Toddlers like to say the word “no.” So, avoid the word as much as you can when dealing with the child. Instead save “no” for times when you describe unacceptable behavior.
4. With older children, set guidelines in advance. If your child knows the consequences of his misbehavior, he will think twice about acting up.
5. Be consistent, even when it’s hard to follow through. Children need to know their parents’ word is good—for punishments and for rewards.

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March 2016 Curriculum

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Organizing Time
Young children organize time on the basis of important events which are repeated.
Some events like a birthday or a holiday occur only once a year. Grocery shopping occurs more often, while eating takes place three or four times daily.
 The regularity of these events helps children acquire an internal clock about when things will happen.

Preschoolers can participate in some planning for future events. Such planning will teach two related time concepts:
1. The past, present, and future are separated by time.
2. There is a need sometimes to delay gratification of one’s expectations and desires.

Some children have difficulty organizing events in time.
Activities to promote good time organization at the preschool level can be incorporated into daily events such as dressing, using songs and rhymes, or helping with a daily chore.
Routine activities of daily living, such as dressing or bathing, involve the sequencing of events in time.

Children who dress themselves may occasionally put on shoes before socks. Or they omit underpants because they have not followed the correct sequential order.
Discovery of an omission or error is a learning experience.
Equally valuable is the planning, in advance, of what clothes to put on and in what order.
For example, you tell your child to select what he would like to wear tomorrow. Then, he places these items in a row on the bed: what comes first, what comes next, what follows this, and so on.

Songs that have a theme that is repeated have always been popular with young children, and have stories that have a line that reoccurs. (“Little pig, little pig, let me in!”)
“The Farmer in the Dell” is an example. The story unfolds in a sequence, while there is a constant, the farmer, who makes decisions about whom to “take.”

Rhyming and rhythms have the same role—to teach about events in time.
The Dr. Seuss books, for example, often don't make a lot of sense to a young child. But he likes the sounds and the beats which occur in patterns through time.

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