Adults like to have a plan for what is coming next in their day. Children are no different. When they know what’s happening later, it can help them balance their emotions and better handle the transition between activities.

Words for Parenting has been on a break for a few weeks while mama and lettering artist Alanna has been settling in at home with the family Alex, James and Tristan after Tristan’s birth and care at BC Children’s Hospital NICU.

International Women’s Day 2018

“That was hard” is a judgement-free way to acknowledge that your child’s struggles are real, powerful, and valid. It shows that you have empathy for how they are feeling and strengthens your trust and connection.

You can offer support without taking over. Before jumping in, you can ask “Would you like my help?” If yes, you can say “What part do you need help with?”

With our words and touch we express our love for our little ones. We trace lines that have been drawn many times before us. We continue this circle and expand our world from one generation to the next. I Love You.

A stick helps your child’s imagination grow but creates unease among the surrounding adults. Explaining that “sticks need space” can help them play with their stick/wand/horse/sword more safely.

Opening up a conversation with your little ones helps their creativity thrive and gives them an outlet to express big feelings. “Tell me about it” prompts them to talk about their thoughts rather than interjecting your own into the conversation.

Children have a big job of exploring the world through play. They discover the limits of their abilities best when they are allowed to play uninterrupted. We can help them feel comfortable in this exploration by saying “I’ll be here,” so they know they are supported if they run into trouble.

You don’t have to have all the answers. Resist the urge to answer or supply the “correct response” and allow the exploration of wonder and imagination. Through trial, error and discovery, children unravel the mystery of the world at their own pace.

Words For Parenting

Helpful phrases for raising healthy, independent children. Writing by Jacquie Munro, lettering by Alanna Munro.

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