Archives for 2018

Holiday Book Sale

Many of my readers don't know that my mom is none other than Rahima Baldwin Dancy, author of the classic early childhood book You Are Your Child's First Teacher.  Up till now I've kept it mostly on the down-low, but now I'm letting the cat out of the bag!  So...if you've read her book, then you automatically know lots of stories about my childhood.  Yes...I really used to climb … [Read more...]

Holiday Craft Projects with Kids

Children thrive when we slow down and do things with a "sense of spaciousness": the attitude that we have enough attention for our task AND the child(ren), and that we have all the time in the world for whatever is happening right now.  During the holiday season it can be especially hard to slow down.  We still have everything we normally do, plus holiday parties, shopping for … [Read more...]

How To Avoid the Terrible Twos

Everywhere you look, the message about toddlers is that they are “terrible,” that their favorite word is NO, and that they’re using all of their energy to become independence from us.  However, this cultural paradigm has gotten it all wrong!  Toddlers and parents are not going from connection to independence.  Rather, they are transitioning from one-sided relationships (where … [Read more...]

Bath-Time Hair Washing

Dear Miss Faith, My 2yo son screams bloody murder every time I wash his hair.  I'm ever so slow and careful, but nothing seems to help.  He particularly hates it when water falls into his ears, which is almost impossible to avoid 100%.  It's gotten to the point where he starts crying as soon as I mention that it's time for a bath.    Any suggestions you have would be most … [Read more...]

Verbal Apraxia and Motor Planning

Something I haven't talked about much here on the Joyful Toddlers blog is the fact that my daughter (who is four and a half now, as I'm writing this) was diagnosed with Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS), also called Verbal Apraxia.  When it was a big deal it felt too scary to talk about in such a public space, and now that it's largely resolved I mostly don't think to talk … [Read more...]

My Oat Bar Recipe for Play Garden

I know that parents are always on the lookout for healthy snacks that kids love.  I serve these Oat Bars at my outdoor parent-child Play Garden classes, and parents always ask for the recipe.  Well, here it is!  They are super simple, with healthy ingredients, and the children love them. Healthy Oat Bars Preheat oven to 375.  In a large bowl, mix: 2 cups of unsweetened … [Read more...]

My Kid Talks So Loudly

Dear Miss Faith, My son is almost three and he's very verbal, be he talks SO LOUDLY, all the time.  I am very sensitive to noise and sometimes I feel like I can hardly stand to be around him.  Telling him to talk more quietly doesn't seem to have any effect. Dear Mama, I get migraines and am sensitive to noise then, too.  You have my sympathy!  I have some ideas for you.  It … [Read more...]

What Reviewers Are Saying

I was pleased to be approached by Gail Cornwall (gailcornwall.com) for a review copy of Joyful Toddlers & Preschoolers: Create A Life that You and Your Child Both Love.  Gail is a freelancer for The Atlantic, The Washington Post, Salon, The New York Times, among others.  She also writes parenting articles for Scary Mommy, Parenting Magazine, and more. After a nail-biting … [Read more...]

How to Get Your Kids to Do Chores (Without Resenting It)

About a week ago, a friend pointed me to a piece on National Public Radio Called How to Get Your Kids to Do Chores (Without Resenting It).  I clicked on it, and to my absolute delight, a host of friendly researchers were being quoted!  These are researchers whose work I discuss at length in my own book in Chapter 8: Your Confident, Helpful Child.  The trick to cultivating older … [Read more...]

Why Explaining and Convincing Don’t Work with Young Kids

When we ask a child to do something, and they say no (or ignore us), the option of explaining why we're asking them to do it, and inviting discussion, is so attractive.  It's what most parenting books suggest, after all.  And research shows that explaining and discussing ARE useful tools for helping to get buy-in from children: when they're adolescents. In early childhood, … [Read more...]

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