Archives for 2018

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...]

My Toddler Runs Away!

Der Miss Faith, My son will be 2 next month and occasionally runs away from me.  I have a 6 month old also, so I’m usually holding the baby and I am so afraid this will become a habit.  When I call after him he does not stop or he’ll stop, grin, then run away again.  I know he doesn’t understand that it isn’t a game and I’m afraid chasing him reinforces the fun-factor for him … [Read more...]

Do You Like Your Toddler?

In observing families for my dissertation, I visited two families who on first glance were similar. Both had two-and-a half-year-old boys, and both moms did many of the actions I had observed that set parents up for success: each mother successfully flowed together and apart with her son throughout the day, letting him come in and out of her tasks, which she made inviting and … [Read more...]

Pinterest for Play Yards

When I first started transforming my flat, boring, soggy yard into my Play Garden, my goals were for it to be fun and engaging for children, interesting and comfortable for adults, and beautiful for everyone. I wanted it to feel natural, and be a haven for bees and butterflies. I also wanted to grow fruits, vegetables, and other edibles. So when I got started brainstorming for … [Read more...]

The Benefits of Risky Play

A few days ago I heard an interview on NPR asking the question, "Is It Time to Bring Risk Back Into Our Kids' Playgrounds?"  (didn't hear it?  You can read about it here.)  Spoiler alert: the answer is YES!  They talked about how exposure to controlled risk through play is an important part of learning and establishing a person's risk tolerance in other areas of life even into … [Read more...]

Demanding and Whiny 4-year-old

Dear Miss Faith, My son makes demands almost every time he talks. If I ask him to talk nice or say it nicely, he shouts out please. Then I say, please ask the whole thing in a nice voice. This gets him really upset and he proceeds to scream and cry.  I don’t give him what he wants until he says it nice but usually it’s when he’s so distraught and crying.  Ugh. Not a good … [Read more...]

Join Our Play Garden Classes!

Registration is now open for 2018 Play Garden classes!  A Waldorf-inspired curriculum includes seasonal songs and circle games, puppet shows, eating a home-made snack together, and weekly activities such as gardening, baking, crafts, or water play.  Parents are welcome to play with their children, do practical work, or relax and chat.  Please click here for more information and … [Read more...]

Faith on This Week In America

I had a fun interview with Ric Bratton on the radio show This Week In America, which airs in 128 markets.  It's only 18 minutes long, and we talk about establishing mutually responsive relationships with kids, how to respond to their needs instead of reacting to their whims, how to let children help in meaningful ways, and much more. Ric is interested and engaging; the time … [Read more...]

Do You Let Your Toddler Help?

A large body of research shows that people are healthier, happier and feel more fulfilled when they are able to contribute to the well-being of others: helping others reduces chances of dropping out of high school, contributes to job satisfaction, can be effective treatment for depression, reduces symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, and increases longevity, among other … [Read more...]

My Toddler Hits!

Dear Miss Faith, I care for a little boy of 24 months.  His parents are having big relationship problems, and this sweet little boy has suddenly become very aggressive, hitting me and the other kids I care for many times each day.  I have tried telling him "Gentle hands!" and I help him touch gently, but it is not working at all.  I'm losing my patience and the other children … [Read more...]

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