Parenting

Top Five Habits of Successful Parents

Every parent would agree that parenting is one of the most demanding jobs on earth. No matter what guidance you get, something always seems to go wrong. Here is a list of the five habits of successful parents that will help you on the way.

1. Reading habits

If a child has trouble sitting still, allow doodling while you read aloud. And remember that your child’s favourite doll or stuffed animal may like to hear the story too. Ignore your child’s reading level sometimes. If a youngster is fascinated by dinosaurs or insects, get every book and magazine you can find on the subject. It is not necessary that every thought or word be fully understood. Assign each child a shelf or two in a bookcase for his or her favourite books. Make it a family tradition to add a special book at each gift-giving occasion such as Christmas.

2. House chores

Include your children in the housework, even if they are young. It may slow the progress but it is an essential first step in helping that child feel part of the home workforce. Have your young child dust and sweep along with you at first. The youngster will feel grown up, and you will get more work done. Some household jobs that a five-year-old can do are:

a) Make her own bed every day. It may be a little sloppy at first, but it will improve in course of time.
b) Put clothes back in the closet or the proper dresser drawer.
c) Put toys back in the toy chest.
d) Water houseplants.
e) Feed the pet.
f) Set the table.
g) Clear the table, one thing at a time.

    Some household jobs that a teenager can do are:

    a) Empty wastebasket.
    b) Carry out trash cans.
    c) Vacuum rugs and floors.
    d) Clean and sweep the kitchen floor.
    e) Iron his own clothes.
    f) Vacuum the inside of a car.
    g) Wash the car.

      3. Motivating children to do house chores

      The important point is to catch them young. If you start giving house chores only when the child is older, they may not do it. Teach your child step by step how to do whatever job you ask him/her to do. Don’t assume that the task will be completely learned by watching. Show, teach, train. Once you have given your child certain definite jobs with clear-cut responsibilities, let him work without constant supervision. Check the result when he is finished and compliment him. Clearly define the time of day when a child’s job is to be completed – either before school, right after school or before dinner. Don’t let tasks hang over into the evening. Assume that both boys and girls will do the housework in equal amounts and without sex designations. Finally, don’t redo a chore that a child has just completed. Redoing is destructive to a child’s ego.

      4. Showing differences of opinion in front of children

      In any marriage, even the seemingly perfect ones, there will be disagreements and differences of opinion. Is it ok to argue in front of kids? The answer is yes. But there are certain caveats.

      a) Keep it down. never yell, scream or shout in front of kids. Keep your voice down and tone civil.

      b) Indulge in a clean, fair fight. No name calling or degrading the other person. Also, when you are wrong, accept it and apologize.

      c) Do not fight about matters involving kids. Which school or afternoon activity the child should enroll into, or which outfit the child should wear etc. should not be a reason for argument in front of the child.

      d) Do not ask the child to take sides. It puts them in an incredibly difficult dilemma.

      e) Move towards resolving conflicts. Don’t let an issue fester for a long time, being the topic of argument every single day. Find a resolution together.

        5. Screen time

        Children younger than 18 months should not have any screen time. Children between 18 and 24 months can have screen time but only one hour maximum, and it should be a quality program. Between 2 and 5 years, limit screen time to one hour and half hour a day. Till the child is 12 years old, it is good for parents to preview the content of what they are watching and have parental controls in place. For an older child, it is important to empower him/her to be a wise user of media. Explain to your teen about sexting, cyberbullying and the dangers of sharing personal information online.

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