How to Talk to Kids Like People
by Susie E. Caron © 9/27/15
“Don’t talk to children as if they are children. Talk to them as people.”
I was so embarrassed...
During my internship in elementary education, one of my supervisors overheard me speaking to a small child. The child had asked me for help and I’d given her detailed instructions. As soon as I’d finished, the supervisor pulled me aside and said, “Don’t speak to children as if they are children. Talk to them as people.” My cheeks flushed with embarrassment. I hadn’t meant to sound as though I felt smarter and better than the little child I’d spoken to, but apparently that’s how I sounded. It never occurred to me that the way I spoke to kids mattered. I asked her some questions about this. My supervisor helped me to understand that the way kids are spoken to makes a difference in how they approach tasks and how they feel about themselves now and in the future. This is something I never forgot but how could I change? First I needed to reassess something.
What were my goals for the kids?
I wanted the kids to grow up feeling strong, smart, able and capable to tackle whatever life handed them. But I discovered that kids are affected by more than just our words. They read our attitudes and intentions loud and clear and it affects how they feel about themselves. For example, if I spoke to kids as though I am better than they are, then my superiority makes them feel small, inadequate, or incapable of properly doing things without my help.
How could I change?
Now I had a problem. I had to figure out how to change the way I talked to children? What would it sound like to speak to kids as just people? I thought about the others in my life. I wondered, how do I talk to my friends, my instructors, my fiancé and my parents? To my friends I spoke in a kind of matter of fact, friendly way. I was more serious and conscious of my words when I talked with college professors and instructors. My fiancé and I enjoyed fun filled and intimate conversations. I laughed when I thought about my parents, because when we spoke, I was either trying impress them with my accomplishments or assure them of my safety. So I wondered, how do I want to talk to kids?
“I will speak to children the same way I wanted to be spoken to by them.”
I would no longer:
Instead I would let Kids know I respected them and their efforts.
I would talk so that:
In other words,
In my mind they each child became unique, an individual worthy of my time, and respect. I talked with kids as real people, with thoughts, feelings, and abilities all their own.
Were there any benefits?
I noticed that the way I spoke to children became the way they thought about themselves. The results I’ve witnessed have been phenomenal: respectful kids, a love of learning, warm parent-child connections and interactions, good communication and a desire to succeed in their area of interest. The kids showed me that when they felt good about themselves they also responded better to others, and to the challenges in front of them.
How do you talk with kids?
If you have read this far, you may be considering how you might change some of the ways you talk with kids. Would you like to enjoy these benefits: more respect, eagerness to learn, positive engagement, conversations and fun with kids? If so, make this your motto:
“I will speak with children in the same way I want them to speak to me."
The benefits can last a lifetime.
Thank you for taking time to read my article.
Please share it on your favorite social sites and if you have questions or want to share something, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or comment below.
Twee’ means you and me,
Working together to build great kids.
Tastes from Childhood
by Susie E. Caron © 9/20/15
Do you recall some of the wonderful things you ate during your childhood? The changing seasons or holidays bring to mind the sights, tastes, and aromas of things cooking, or meals shared with loved ones. Memories like these are precious and we love to share them. However, in our busied lives sometimes we think, "Oh I'll bake that next year." or, "I should get that recipe from Auntie soon." or, "I'll put this in a cookbook to give to my kids when I retire."
What if you could easily do it now?
What if you could enjoy those tastes you remember again, and pass them along to loved ones?
That's why, in addition to my parenting articles, I've decided to add a regular blog article every month to a category I call Tastes From Childhood. In it I will share some of my recipes and memories, and I will give you opportunities to share some of yours! That’s right!!! You can submit your tasty memories by Guest Blogging right here. That way you can share your favorite food memories with your family and friends without having to cook or bake anything. Of course, you could bake, cook, or prepare it so you can share with your family. Then remember to send your photo of your food along with your guest blog. I'll provide some questions below, about the food, your memories about it, who introduced you to it, and why the memory is dear to you. How's that sound? If you are interested, see the rules below, and contact me at the following email address. email@example.com
Here are the rules:
(Rules will continue to be available under the Guest Post tab above.)
Provide me with your name and email address. (Your email address will be kept confidential and will not be published, sold or shared with anyone.)
Send your short article 500-600 words along with the following:
1. title of your recipe or tasty food memory
2. your name or user name to post with your article.
3. a photo of the food, or of your family members enjoy it, (only with their permission please.)
4. the recipe and any special instructions needed to make it perfect.
Here are some questions you may want to answer, but feel free to be creative.
Please note: This is a family oriented and G rated site. I reserve the right to accept or decline guest blogs based on content and suitability. (If needed, I will edit for misspelling, punctuation, etc.) If your article is accepted I will try to post your guest blog based upon best time of year or holiday, if applicable. (That way you can send me holiday and seasonal articles months ahead if you wish.)
By submitting your recipe, photo and article you give me the right to post it on my blog on the scheduled date, as well as to re-post it at any time in the future. If you do not want to agree to this please do not send an article.
You will be notified when I receive your article and again when accepted, along with the date I plan to post it.
Special note to help you share your article: When your article is posted and you want to share your article with family and friends, you just click on your specific title (not the category). At the top in the address bar you will see a URL. Click on that to high-light it. Now copy it and paste it on your personal copy of the article (in Word) That is the specific address you will want to share with friends, family, on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc. Of course you can shorten it, by pasting it into a URL shortener such as GoogleURLShortener and more easily share that link instead.
Thank you for reading. I look forward to posting your articles, recipes and photos soon. Hurry because the available dates will fill up fast. Here is my email again:
Twee’ Means You and Me
& Together we are
Cooking Up Memories!
Who IS Raising Your Kids?
by Susie E. Caron © 9/12/15
Do you find parenting frustrating?
There could be several reasons. Today I write about how outside sources like government, education and even technology are influencing how kids are raised, and in the process you are being left with fewer and fewer choices. Then, I will offer a clear solution.
Government & Educational Involvement
Government and educational institutions are more involved in ‘child rearing’ today than ever before. They map out a lot of what parents must do with children to feed, house, and keep them safe, from conception to adulthood. Some of it is helpful of course. However, many of the ‘rules’ have taken away your ability to choose what you want to do for your kids. For example, it used to be easy to send your children to the local school. Recently, due to rising costs, smaller schools are being closed and even very tiny children must take buses to schools miles from their homes. In these instances parents don’t have a choice.
Parenting information is flying at you in rules, laws, and practices from government, education, society, and electronics (tv, games, music, tablets, etc.). Some parents shy away from disciplining their kids for fear of misinterpretation and false reports by neighbors and schools. Kids hear a lot about ‘child abuse’ and they use this to threaten parents to get to do what they want. Most parents are unsure about what to teach their children about God or loyalty to family and country. Many parents don’t feel safe to read to their children from books that are now considered ‘not politically correct’, even if they contain important social, emotional or moral lessons.
The Insertion of Electronics
That’s not all that’s influencing your children. Have you noticed the allure of electronics advertisements that claim to make your kids ‘smarter.’ Every parent wants their kids to be really intelligent and successful. But electronics are also raising your kids. The electronics explosion is growing so fast, parents cannot keep up to try to figure out what to let their kids use, and dangers are lurking. The result of all this is a huge reduction in parent’s ability to choose what their children see, hear and do.
What Can Parents Do?
Do you feel ‘frozen’ and afraid to follow your conscience as you parent your kids? Do you wonder, How can I possibly know how to properly parent my kids, with the many demands of government, schools and even technology? You cannot easily or quickly change all the things I just mentioned. However, I am ready to tell you, there is something you can do. You can, and must begin today to “Focus on what you CAN control”: Your moments with each child.
The Moment to Moment Interaction Between Parent & Child
You cannot control what is coming at you and your children from the outside. You are only one person and unless you get involved in lobbying or run for office, or boards of education, or hide in cave, away from electronics, you cannot effectively change the things that interfere with your right and ability to parent. The only thing you can control, and the only thing that really matters now and in the future is your moment to moment interaction with your kids.
"Effective parenting really only occurs in the moment to moment engagement between parent and child."
What Counts the Most?
So, if you want to have the greatest personal impact on your children, this is what counts the most. However, parent and child interactions become less powerful as children age. They are the least influential ages 12 & up; with more impact during ages 6-12, and with the most intense impact in the years 0-5. However, no matter what the age of the child, a parent who understands the value of a parent & child moment, can help that child/teen/adult continue to grow. That’s why it’s so important that parents focus more on their children in the moment to moment times they are together.
You are raising the world’s next society. I write blogs, podcasts and books because is critical for you to you know how important you are and that you can effectively impact your children’s thoughts, feelings and actions.
How Can I Help You?
I am currently writing a parenting book to help you focus on those moments between you and your child. I want to help you make those moments richer in relationship, to benefit you both so you can be a more confident and effective parent, and have more fun with your kids while you do it.
I invite you to sign up on this web site, so that you will be among the first to hear more about my upcoming book. I will be producing podcasts for parents right about the same time too. When you do, you become a member of my Parent Tribe and that gives you opportunity to preview some of my work, help me select from book covers and other things. I will also make sure that you receive freebies that I may want to include in my book and ask you to give me feedback before my book is released. How does all that sound?
I would love to see your name on this list and in my new Parent Tribe.
Twee' Means You & Me
and Together We Can Raise Great Kids.
Let Kids Fail (Some of the time)
by Susie E. Caron © 9/7/15
As the kids start back to school, this may seem a strange topic. However, I hope you’ll read this and tell me what you think about letting your kids ‘fail,’ at least some of the time.
As good parents, the last thing we want is for our kids to ‘fail,’ at anything and anytime.
That’s one of the reasons most parents today have become like ‘hovering, protecting, helping, success coaches.’ Another reason parents hover, etc. is that today’s life is extremely fast paced and demanding of our time and energies. We figure that we have to help our kids or they won’t stand a chance. Our kids are also have to handle more than ever thought possible and they seem to ‘expect’ us to help. As parents we tend to step in every time we think they could ‘falter.’ We don’t want them to fail. We want them to succeed.
What if there are some good reasons that kids NEED to fail, at least sometimes?
While it is important that kids have success, there are some really good reasons to let them fail, at least some of the time. For example, if little Jimmy forgets his homework frequently, a parent might NOT drive it to school just in the nick of time. If Sally doesn’t get the part in her school play, Mommy might NOT go talk to her friend, the director, to make sure Sally gets the part after all. If Chad doesn’t get to play in his little league game, Daddy might NOT scold him for not getting to play.
The problem with helping too much is that our kids don’t get a chance to grow from their mistakes. They actually can learn more through their struggles and failures, than in their easy successes. Failures from time to time also create opportunities for kids to take responsibility for their words, decisions and actions. Kids whose parents hover and assure their ‘successes’ soon find that their kids do not grow ‘responsibility muscles.’ Instead they continue into adulthood expecting their parents to ‘handle’ many things in their lives. When parents don’t step in, adult children simply blame their parents for whatever misfortune they find themselves in. I know you don’t want that.
Kids whose parents help them to learn through their failures grow up more responsible, and know how to look for new understanding, opportunity, and direction throughout their lives. It’s important for parents to value and applaud their children’s successes, plus help kids learn valuable life lessons and responsibility through their struggles and even their failures.
I hope you and your kids turn every difficulty and ‘failure’ into an opportunity for new learning and growth.
Thank you for reading my blog. Tell me what you think about this topic or what you do to help your kids through their struggles.
Twee’ Means You and Me
Working Together to Raise Great Kids
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!