Every interaction you have with your baby is a form of communication. It’s not just about the words you say: the tone of your voice, the look in your eyes, the hugs and kisses you give them — they’re all messages you’re conveying to your baby. The way you communicate with your child not only teaches him how to communicate with others, but also shapes his emotional development and how he establishes his relationships with others in the next period of his life.
What are the forms of communication?
Communication can take two forms: verbal and non-verbal.
Verbal communication is the way we communicate through words. It includes:
The level and tone of the voice
the words you say
Dialect, or using words the child understands.
Nonverbal communication is intentional and spontaneous communication through body language. It includes:
Sensory contact like a hug
Try these nine tips for applying your verbal and nonverbal communication skills:
1. Listen intently (Your Child)
Listening intently helps children feel heard and understood.
Using gestures, such as smiles of encouragement and nods of approval, shows that you are truly engaged and interested in what your child is saying.
Going down to the same eye level as your baby is when he talks to you helps him feel safe and connected to you.
Show that you are listening intently to what the children are saying by asking them questions such as, “What?” and “why?” and “how?”. This helps your child improve his communication skills by teaching him ways to tell stories and what details to include in them.
2. Reflexive listening
It’s a great way to show your kids that you care and keep up with what they say, mirroring what they say. Repeat what they tell you using different formulas. For example, if your child says, “I don’t play with Marco anymore,” you can respond with, “You don’t play with your friend?”. This leaves room for your child to express his emotions freely. You might be surprised at how much they have to say!
3. Speak clearly
Speak in a language that your child understands, appropriate for his age. Be clear and specific and don’t use insulting words. Speaking kind language helps set a positive example for your children. Remember that the conversation should make your child feel respected and loved.
4. Avoid taking bribes
Giving rewards such as candy for basic behaviors may seem to give you short-term control over your child, but it doesn’t allow you to develop clear boundaries with them, and can lead to mistrust between you and them. Try to keep your expectations of your child’s actions clear and realistic, praise good behavior when you see it, and discipline it softly when needed to encourage better behavior.
5. Expression of feelings
In order to help your child develop his emotional intelligence, it is important for him to learn how to express his feelings. When your child expresses his feelings verbally, listen to what he has to say and empathize with him without judging him. Look at life from his perspective. If your little one is expressing feelings nonverbally — like getting angry or laughing at something they love — help them express what they’re feeling by teaching them words for happiness, sadness, relief, hurt, fear, hunger, pride, sleepiness, anger, helplessness, annoyance, confusion, and joy.
6. Use “observation” statements
When you praise your child for specific actions he has taken, it helps him feel good about himself and lets him know the behaviors that you like. Instead of saying “Well done!” Try to be more specific with your “I noticed”: “I noticed you put all your toys back in after playtime. Well done!”
7. Spend quality time together
Once your children start to grow, parenting becomes a more daunting task. That’s why spending time with kids and having nice talk with them is a great way to bond with them! Find ways to connect with your child by praising something they care about, paying attention to their interests and joking with them. Remember, laugh with your child but never at him.
8. Focus on behavior
If you are upset with your child about something, make sure that your criticisms and comments are directed at his behavior and not at his person. For example, instead of “I don’t like you being messy,” try “I don’t like you leaving your clothes lying around.”
9. Lead by example
Consider the example you set for your children. The parents represent the children’s entrance into the world. What you do and what your child sees is just as important as what you tell them and what they hear from you.
Don’t make a promise to your child unless you’re sure you can keep it. This helps build and maintain trust between you and your children.
Remember, guiding with kindness and love is always the way to bond and connect with your child!
There are times when a father or mother passes by when they feel tired and confused about the best way to discipline their child. It goes without saying that self-control is no small feat whether you’re dealing with a howling toddler or an angry teenager. No parent would wish to find themselves in such situations, yet the bottom line is that screaming and physical violence are useless.
Fortunately, there are other, more effective methods, and one of them is positive discipline. We consulted Lucy Clover , Professor of Child and Family Social Work at the University of Oxford , who is also a mother of two young boys, to explore how this approach can help parents build positive relationships with their children and teach them skills such as responsibility, cooperation and self-discipline.
There are no bad children, just bad behaviour
What is the reason for choosing positive discipline?
“Parents don’t like hitting their kids or yelling at them, but we do it when we’re stressed out and don’t see any other way around,” says Professor Clover. But the evidence is clear: simply yelling and hitting doesn’t work and may cause more harm in the long run. Screaming and hitting may negatively affect the whole life of the child even. The toxic psychological atmosphere left behind by this method may also lead to a number of negative consequences, such as an increased risk of dropping out of school, depression, drug abuse, suicide, and heart disease.
“It’s like someone saying to you, ‘Take this medicine, it’s not going to help you, it’s going to make you sicker’,” says Professor Clover. “When we know something isn’t working, that gives us good reason to look for other ways.”
Rather than punishment and do’s and don’ts, positive discipline focuses on developing a positive relationship with your child and making them understand what is required of them with regard to their behaviour. The good news is for every father and mother that this method is effective. Here is the method you can use to start applying it:
Take time to be alone with your child
Solitude is an important matter for building any good relationship, let alone when the relationship we are talking about is the one that brings you together with your child. “It could be 20 minutes a day. Or even five minutes,” says Professor Clover. “You can combine that time with the activities of washing dishes together and singing a song, or talking to him while you’re hanging laundry. The whole point here is that your interest should be It’s on your child. What’s really important is that you focus on your child. Turn off the TV, turn off your phone, get down to their level and be alone with them.”
Commend their good deeds
We parents often find that we focus on the lapses of our children and may not miss an opportunity to point them out. Your child may perceive this as a way to get your attention, perpetuating his bad behavior rather than ending it.
Nothing gives children a high like praise. Praise makes them feel that they are loved by their parents and that they are special. Professor Clover advises parents, saying, “Watch for a good deed and praise it, even if that action is nothing more than playing with a brother or sister of theirs for five minutes. This stimulates good behavior and reduces the need to resort to punishing them.”
Understand your child exactly what you expect from him
“Telling your child exactly what he should do is much more effective than telling him what he should not do,” says Professor Clover. “When you ask your child not to make a mess, or to be polite, you make it difficult for him to understand exactly what he should do.” As clear as ‘Collect all your toys, please, and put them in the box designated for them,’ they understand exactly what is required of him, and increase the likelihood that he will respond to your request.”
“However, it is important to command him as much as possible. Asking him to remain quiet for a whole day, for example, is a request that he may not tolerate compared to asking him to be silent for ten minutes because you are talking on the phone. You are the best person who knows your child’s capabilities, so do not ask him for what he is unable to do, because it is inevitable Then he will fail.”
Create ways to distract him
“When your child is frustrated, distracting him with a more positive activity can be a useful strategy,” says Professor Clover. “By switching his attention to something else — by changing the subject, by playing a game, by taking him to another room, by walking with him, you’ve expended his energy.” towards positive behaviour.
And timeliness is also very important. Distraction also includes sensing that a problem is approaching and taking action to avert it. Paying attention to when your child starts to get fidgety or fussy, or when both of your children are looking at the same toy, can help you stop a problem before it happens.
Use soft consequences
Knowing that if we do act, something will happen as a result is part of the upbringing we receive as a child. Introducing this to your child is a simple process that encourages good behavior and teaches responsibility at the same time.
Give your child a chance to do the right thing by explaining to him the consequences of misbehavior that may await him. For example, if you want your child to stop scribbling on the walls, you have to tell him that he has to stop or you will end his playtime. This gives your children both a warning and an opportunity to change their behaviour.
If they do not stop, then you must carry out your promise calmly and without showing your anger, “And praise yourself for doing this because it is not easy!” And the saying here to Professor Clover, who also adds: “If they stop, give them enough praise. What you do is create a positive feedback loop for your child. Studies have shown the effectiveness of soft consequences in teaching children about the consequences of their misbehavior.”
Consistency is also an important factor in positive upbringing, so your fulfillment of your promise is important. As well as taking reasonable consequences. “You can confiscate a teenager’s phone for an hour, but confiscating a teenager’s phone for a week can be very difficult to do.”
Dealing with young children
Being alone with your kids is fun, and it’s free! Professor Clover adds: “You can imitate them, hit pots with spoons with them, or sing together. There is an amazing amount of research showing that playing with your children helps their brains develop.”
Dealing with older children
Just like young children, teens also love to be praised and want to be favored by their parents. So spending alone time with them is important for them as well. “Teenagers are very happy when you dance with them in the room, or when you get into a conversation with them about their favorite singer,” says Professor Clover. “They may not always show it to you, but that’s the truth. And this is also a great way to build a relationship with them on their own terms.”
Professor Clover suggests, “Ask them to help you set some rules as you begin to agree with them about what is required of them. Sit them down and try to come to an agreement with them about the dos and don’ts of the home. They can also help you define the consequences of the unacceptable behaviour.” Involve them in the process. This helps them know that you understand that they are becoming independent.”
Advice for parents during the COVID-19 pandemic
The pandemic has brought sudden and dramatic changes to families’ lives, leaving parents at the center of the fray. So here are some tips that can help parents get through these and any other stressful times:
We all know how stressful it is when our kids beat us up. Being aware of what is going on around you in moments like these and taking a step back is a simple and useful tactic. Press the “pause button,” as Professor Clover calls it. “Take five deep breaths slowly and slowly, and you will notice that you are able to handle the situation in a more calm and measured way. Parents all over the world say that just pausing for a moment is very helpful.”
Professor Clover says that parents often forget to take care of themselves: “Take some time for yourself, when the children are sleeping, for example, to do something that makes you feel happy and calm. “.
Do not skimp on yourself with compliments
Professor Clover advises parents: “It’s easy to forget the amazing work you do as a parent every day, so don’t underestimate how great you are. Take a minute every day, perhaps while you’re brushing your teeth, to ask: ‘What is it?’ What did I do well with my kids today?’ I know you did a good job.”
“Some of us may still be isolated and some may have come out of it, but know that you are never alone. Millions of parents all over the world are struggling to come to terms with this situation, and we all fail at times. But we try again. We will get through it.” With each other”.