How & Why-Make This Easy Doh Recipe With Your Kids.
by Susie E. Caron (c) 1-25-15
"What can I do today?" young children often ask.
This may or may not be a familiar question in this age of electronics. However, it's ideal to have something else for your kids to do when they are bored, bugging you with endless questions, or needing a good old fashioned hands on activity. Activities, like the one below, will benefit you and your kids in these significant ways:
I saved this recipe I used when my own two children were little.
Now you can make this doh with your kids, and give them some creative fun.
Suggestion: Give them some cookie cutters to work with! Older children could make winter shapes or Valentines. Encourage them to use their imaginations & make creatures!
My Favorite Fun Doh.
NOTE: Adult is needed for the cooking step.
Mix in a saucepan:
1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
1 cup water
1 Tablespoon Cream of Tartar
1Tablespoon Cooking Oil
Food color, or a package of unsweetened Kool-aid, if desired.
Cook this mixture over low heat stirring constantly until mixture forms a ball. (It works quickly.)
Remove from heat. Allow it to cool until you and the kids can knead it by hand.
This must be stored in air-tight containers, but keeps for weeks.
Did you enjoy this article? Would you enjoy more articles about practical, fun things you can do with your kids?
Let me know in the comments below and please share this with your friends. Just click the links. Thank you,and always remember,
Twee' Means You & Me,
Susie E. Caron
How to stop & win arguments with your kids.
By Susie E. Caron © 1/18/15
Do you often get caught in power struggles and arguments with your kids? Here is the way to stop and help you both win.
No one wins when you argue with kids. It’s impossible for lots of reasons, which I’ll explain below, but mainly, they want to win, so don’t compete. Maybe you cannot imagine how you could interact with your children without arguing about the particulars of their requests (or yours). Below I detail a simple strategy to stop arguments with your kids. Put it into practice and you and your kids will both be the winners.
Please understand that underneath 'winning', your children really want your attention. Most kids lack the skills to appropriately seek you out and verbalize, what they need and want. Besides, they begin any engagement with you, by expecting you to say ‘no’, or to ask them to do something they don’t want to do. While they want you to 'understand', what they really seek is you.
Kids feel a benefit when they argue with you for longer and longer. This is called secondary gain. Think about it, while they engage in arguments with you, they have your full and undivided attention. They ‘own’ you for that time period. So what can you do differently so you don’t get caught in the content of arguments with your kids? Here are steps that you can begin practicing right now that will help you and your kids toward better verbal engagements.
1. Notice the potential for argument - when they come to you with requests, or when you ask them to do something for you. You have to recognize the situation so you don’t get into the struggle. Then you can do #2-4.
2. If you are making the request, state it clearly beginning with “I want you to x,y,z.” (Don’t say “You need to…” kids hate that.) Ask the child to tell you what you requested. When they speak your instruction it helps them to hear you and puts them halfway to actually doing it.
3. If your child asks you for something that you will likely say ‘no’ to, respond to your child by saying “I want you to have this or that (or get to do that, etc.), however, …….” This is where you state clearly "it’s not possible (or going to happen) right now." You can include a simple reason if you wish, but don't continue to explain.
4. If and when the child begins to argue. Listen politely and don’t speak. When your child stops, to try to get you to talk, all you will do is validate the feelings. People can have all kinds of feelings. Kid’s feelings are okay too. It’s how they express those feelings that can upset you. So, do not argue about the content. This means that you don’t offer more reasons, or any kind of rebuttal. Instead you say something like, “I see that this upset (mad, sad, frustrated, etc.) you, but as I said, ….) then quietly and in a ‘matter of fact’ tone simply restate what you have already said.
5. If the child’s attitude & speech becomes rude, vulgar or disrespectful, stop the engagement and send them to cool off. (Kids really do feel horrible after getting disrespectful with you. It adversely affects their self-concept as well. So make sure to stop any disrespectful attitude or speech.)
6. After a cool off period, offer to talk again but only if the child will be respectful. A respectful conversation at a later time about the issue benefits you and the child. Revisiting the discussion in a respectful way teaches, self-control, respect for self and other, accepting there are different points of view, and possibly negotiation. But even here, you will mainly validate the feelings, but stay with your original statements.
As you practice these 6 steps you will find your kids will try more often to find polite ways to make their requests known. You will enjoy less arguing and will enjoy your time with your kids much more. Your kids will also enjoy being with you more as they develop respect for themselves and for you.
Please share this article with your favorite social media site and also let me know how you are doing with arguments and power struggles with your kids.
Twee' Means You & Me
How to teach young children to keep their bodies safe from unwanted touch, or worse.
by Susie E. Caron © 1/11/15
Our young children, ages 0-9 years, need to know how to protect their bodies, and souls, from unwanted touching or worse. It’s difficult for parents to talk about this sensitive issue with very young children. However, a parent's worst nightmare may be avoided, when little children are taught these two lessons, as early in life as possible.
Tickle Game. Ages 0-5 years
This is a game you play with toddlers, preschoolers and very young children.
The next time you are tickling your child, while they are giggling, they will naturally say something like,
"No.” “Stop." or "Don't."
This is a perfect teaching moment. You want your child to learn that he/she has the final say over what happens to his/her body. This is what you do:
As soon as the child utters anything like "No”, “Stop”, or Don’t", you immediately pull away, jump back and put your hands up in the air and speaking excitedly say this,
"Oh, I have to stop! You don't want me to tickle you anymore?
If you want me to stop, I have to stop because your body belongs to you."
When your child indicates he/she wants you to continue, start tickling again and when the stopping words show up, immediately throw your hands away from the child, stand up and repeat.
"Remember, your body belongs to you and only you can say when you want tickled or not.
When you both have finished playing, give them a hug and tell them to remember,
“You own your body and nobody is allowed to tickle or touch you when you say stop.”
The Bathing Suit Places Chat. 3 – 9 years+
Watch for an opportunity to talk with your child about who can see them undressed, and who is allowed to touch them and under what circumstances. The object is to teach that nobody can touch them in their Bathing Suit places, unless you say it's okay.
Here’s what you do:
When you are bathing, drying, helping kids to change clothes, or get into or out of their bathing suits, simply ask these three questions.
1. “Is it okay for anyone to touch you in your bathing suit places?” This will seem strange so as your child looks to you for the ‘correct’ answer begin to quietly shake your head, ”No”. You can add here that it’s okay for Mommy, Daddy, the doctor sometimes, just to keep you healthy, etc.(Keep the list of people extremely restricted.)
2. Next ask: “Is okay for anyone to ask you to touch them in their bathing suit places?” Be prepared, because children really don’t know the answer. Begin to shake your head, “No,” and say “No, it isn’t okay for anyone to ask you to touch them in their bathing suit places. I know you wouldn’t do that either.”
3. Finally, ask, "Is it okay for you to touch yourself anywhere on your own body?" If your child hesitates, just offer the answer “Yes,” and ask, “Do you know why it’s okay for you to touch yourself? It’s because your body belongs to you!” (Note, I like to poke at my face and arms while making funny faces when I say this. It makes them laugh and keeps the conversation G rated.)
What you are doing is firmly establishing in their minds and through speaking in their own words that it isn’t okay for anyone to touch them or to touch someone else in their bathing suit places. However, because they own their own body, it is okay for them to touch themselves.
Don’t keep talking about this for more than the time it takes to dry off your child after a swim. For the lesson to sink in, you have to carry it off quickly and gently without showing signs of anxiety about the subject. Finally, gently say, “If anyone bothers you by wanting to touch you or asking you to touch them in their bathing suit places, come tell me as soon as you see me. I want to always keep you safe.” Then give your child a hug and let them go play.
I hope this information helps you to speak with your kids about body safety. Ultimately, I hope arming them with information like this will also help them to stay safe.
Please share this article with your friends and comment below to tell me what you think about keeping kids safe.
Twee' Means You & Me,
Working together to build great kids.
Susie E. Caron
How to get your kids to be good in the car.
By Susie E. Caron © 1/3/15
Do your children fight, argue and disturb you whenever you drive the car? Distracted driving is dangerous. Your kids may ‘know’ this fact, but continue to fight with you or each other anyway. There is a way to solve this problem get them to behave so you can drive them safely anywhere.
Before I describe what you need to do, I want you to make up your mind that you will not, any longer, drive anywhere with kids distracting you.This is absolutely essential. It is a decision you must make. Okay. Now read how to solve the issue.
Plan an outing, or better yet, take advantage of the next time one or more of your kids wants to go somewhere. Get into the car as usual. When they start to fight, argue or do anything that is distracting, give them one reminder. Calmly tell them: “Please stop fighting (arguing etc.) because you are distracting me. I need to concentrate on my driving to keep you safe.”
When they don’t stop, quietly pull the car over to a safe place along the road, or in a parking lot. Turn off the key, pull it out of the ignition, and get out of the car. Leave the door slightly open and stick your head into the car and say, “Go ahead and argue (fight, whatever). When you are done, I will get back in and continue driving. I will not drive when you are making it unsafe for all of us.” Stand outside and act as though you have all the time in the world. Of course, do not leave them alone or walk away. Just stand close by until you can tell they have calmed themselves.
You can get back in and continue to your destination, only once. If they start to fight, again pull over, repeat the process. But when you get back into the car, simply turn around and take them directly home. You don’t have to be angry, or get upset. You only need determination that you will not, under any circumstances drive while distracted. Be determined and this will work.
Of course, it works best it you are transporting them to a fun event that they want to attend. You may only need to do this once or twice, including taking them home and NOT going to an event, for them to comply, no matter where you are driving. Besides by keeping you safe and the kids safe now, you are modeling 'non-distracted driving' for your kids and perhaps influence them for their future driving.That’s it. That’s all it takes. Drive safely & Happy Motoring!
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Twee’ Means You and Me.
Susie E. Caron
Susie E. Caron MA,
Author, Blogger, Podcaster,
Christian, Wife, & Mother, helps build parent-child relationships, 1 blog, book & podcast at a time.
Welcome! I recently retired from combined careers in teaching, psychotherapy, and parent coaching to spend more time writing.
When I'm not busy creating books or articles, you might find me looking for dark chocolate or riding my beautiful horse Apple in the woods and fields of Vermont.
These articles are for educational and self-help purposes only and are not intended as psychotherapy.
If you experience unusual symptoms or discomfort please see your medical or mental health practitioner.
No patent liability is assumed for use of the information contained. The author disclaims any responsibility for loss or risk for use or application of this material.
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Blog Reviews & Thank You!
July 13 at 7:17pm ·
Just wanted to say that I love your posts about the different ways to connect/relate/understand your child. It has given me a new approach towards understanding my daughter and allowing HER to tell me how she feels instead of me suggesting to her how she should feel. Thanks Susie!