A child’s brain is not like an adult brain. It is a brain born under construction and it’s up to parents to create a world — both physical and social — that is rich with the right instructions.
Based on years of research in neuroscience and psychology, here are parenting rules to help your child build a brain that is flexible and smart
- Teach your children right and wrong with calm words and action, this is simply SHOW and TELL. These are for the model behavior you want them to emulate from you in the early stages
- Set clear and concise rules for your children to follow, try as much as possible to simplify these rules so they can fully understand the terms.
- In a resolute manner, calmly explain the consequences of them, breaking those rules you set. Make sure you set this consequence in a manner which you can always follow through when they don’t behave. NOTE: Never take something a child truly needs, such as food
- Be a good listener. It’s important to hear them out, so let you children finish the story before you try to solve the problem. Sometimes, depending on the nature of the behavior you have to talk to your children about the consequences of their actions rather than dishing out consequences
- Give them attention. All children want their parent’s attention, the most important tool for effective discipline is attention.
- Children need to know when they do something bad, and when they do something good. Always praise them when they do something good and caution them when they do something bad. When praising them, be specific.
- Find a distraction. Sometimes children misbehave because they’re bored and they don’t know better. Find something for your child to do
- Ignore bad behavior when you can. If your children are just doing something slightly aggravating and you think they’re doing it to get your attention, try focusing on something else, instead. Once they realize they’re not getting a rise out of you, they’ll probably stop.
- Stick to a predictable routine. Kids are generally happier when they know what to expect each day. That predictability gives them a sense of security in a world that can sometimes seem big and scary. Have your child wake up, have meals, do chores, and go to bed at about the same time each day.
- Give them age-appropriate chores. Once children are about 3 or 4, start asking them to help you with things around the house. At first, these should be simple tasks, like putting their dirty clothes in a laundry basket. Give them clear, step-by-step instructions—and make sure to let them know what a great job they did when they’re finished.