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Archive for the ‘teens’ Category


5 ways to show your teen that you love them Friday, December 31st, 2010

As your children age and become teenagers, they become less interested in their parents and more interested in their friends. As they start to venture out on their own more, there will be less quality time to spend with them. Despite the fact that your children would rather be hanging out with their friends, instead of eating dinner with their family, it is still very important for the children to know that they are loved and appreciated by their parents.

Continue to show affection to your child whenever you can. Even though days may be very busy, there is always time for a hug or a quick ‘how are you’? Say good morning to your child every single day. If there is time, sit down and have breakfast or a cup of juice with them. Tell them good night every single night. Even if they are already asleep, always go and say goodnight. It is so reassuring to know that whatever plans they may have that day, their parents are always there for them at the beginning and end of everything. Tell them you love them every day, multiple times a day, even if you are fighting and very mad at each other. You never know when you will lose the opportunity to express your love.

Talk to your children and encourage them to talk to you. While they may not want to share every detail of their lives, they need to know that you are there for them if they have a problem. Listen to them without making judgments or telling them why they are wrong. Try to understand their problem and consider solutions together. As a parent, if your child has done something wrong, there should be a image 20 5 ways to show your teen that you love themconsequence, but be sure to explain why they are being punished. Communication is the key to a solid relationship.

Always ask them questions about their plans. They may get annoyed when you ask them where they are going, with who, what they are doing, how they are getting there, why they are going there, and when they will be home, but in time they will understand that you only ask all these questions because you want to keep them safe. Sometimes children do not understand the risks out in the world, but eventually they will thank you for protecting them.

Help your child with their schoolwork and emphasise the value of a good education. While children do most of their academic learning at school, education can be further fostered at home. This is a great way to teach them time management and learn their strengths. It will prepare them for college and life.

Take an interest in your children. Ask them questions about their lives and be genuinely interested in their responses. Find out why they like the things they do and then go participate in the activity with them. Always express how you care about their interests and goals.

Generally, show your children you care at every opportunity. Try not to yell, and if you do lose your temper, take time later to talk to your child about why and how the situation could have been better handled. A teen will feel the most loved if they feel safe and appreciated in their own house, if they know that it is ok if they make mistakes, and if they are comfortable enough to seek advice for their problems from you.


Your Child’s First Part-Time Job Friday, August 6th, 2010

fastfoodgirlcropped 213x300 Your Child’s First Part Time JobPart of teaching our kids responsibility is to develop their skills of successfully juggling different aspects of life. We give them chores, encourage them to join extracurricular activities and ensure that their school work is on track. However, there is one very important aspect missing and that’s employment.

Kids these days represent a large segment of the marketplace. Teens spend $100 billion dollars a year while children under 12 spend $11 billion. But where do they get the money from? For many, their parents provide the majority of money spent in these purchases and others find the source of money from working part time jobs.

If your child approaches you and tells you that they found a job selling at the concession stand at the local movie theater, don’t be surprised. Having money to buy clothes, CDs and food is top priority for these youngsters. But as a parent you may have second thoughts about their enthusiasm for working. You may think that it may interfere with other responsibilities. This article will address some issues that parents may have about their child’s first part time job and offer advice that will keep both you and your child afloat amidst a sea of expectations.

A job at a young age can teach valuable skills which will be beneficial in college and in the preparation of a career in adulthood. For instance, it teaches responsibility and encourages independence. It also gives them basic work skills and let’s face it, it looks good on a college application and a resume for after college when they are ready to venture into real jobs. With the right job, it may set your child on the path to a lifetime career.

Another skill that is learned with a part time job is money management. Kids will realize that money doesn’t grow on trees when they have to earn it themselves. Better care will be taken in spending money and this will be beneficial to them in the future with managing their finances. Discuss preparing a budget that incorporates saving. This is a good avenue to approach investment and financial management.

It is also relieving to know that after school your child is being supervised by adults especially when both parents work outside the home. What you should be aware of though is that some studies have shown that working long hours can expose kids to dangerous activities such as alcohol use partly due to being around older co-workers who may negatively influence them. As a combatant to the occurrence of such situations, you should make it a point to visit the work site and meet the supervisor to get an idea of what the work environment is like and to let the supervisor know that you are monitoring the situation.

Lower grades are linked to working 13 to 20 hours a week. And, putting in too many hours at work will impact a child’s ability to successfully engage in extracurricular activities and socializing. A solution to this problem is to limit the work hours your child clocks in until he/she persuades you that other aspects of life will not fall to the wayside.

Given this information, as a parent you must monitor your child’s work hours. The law itself has requirements for working children but you as a parent have other concerns. You can provide guidance and explain to your child the importance of maintaining the other elements of his/her life such as good grades, household responsibilities and extracurricular programs.


How to Enforce Curfews for your Teen Monday, August 2nd, 2010

curfew2.s600x600 300x199 How to Enforce Curfews for your TeenTeens can be combative about issues like curfew. You want them to be safe and they want to stay out late with their friends. At times there are negotiations involved like if they turn in their assignments on time, they can stay out late on Saturday or something to that effect. But the question remains, how do you win the constant battle of enforcing curfews?

If your teen makes claims about friends being able to stay out later than they do, don’t hesitate to ask other parents. More than likely, these kids are staying out later than their curfews anyway. If you are contemplating increasing curfew hours, you should consider that the chances of your teen getting into trouble will be increased as well. For instance, having a shorter curfew can discourage teens from travelling long distances to hang out with people from neighborhoods you aren’t familiar with.

As a parent, it is advisable not to stifle your child’s will for independence. You should find a compromise that allows your teen to have some freedom but that gives you a sense of security. One such way is by creating a contract. This involves sitting down to compare both wants and expectations. Just as in a contract, guidelines should be set as well as actionable consequences for not following these guidelines. You should involve your teen in establishing these guidelines that way he/she feels that it is fair seeing as though they played a part in creating it. Pre-set guidelines also prevent the parent from over-reacting when curfews are broken as they refer to the contract to know what consequences will follow.

Before setting guidelines, you should consider your teen. For instance, if your teen is usually responsible and is accepting of rules, they may be able to deal with the responsibility of a later curfew. On the other hand, a teenager who neglects responsibilities and is known for getting into trouble will require tighter reigns to discourage further incidents of getting into trouble. If they are able to stick to their curfew then this signals that they are ready for dealing with the added responsibility of staying out later. Even though the parent should have an idea of what the child will be like in handling a curfew, the teen should be able to have a say in the final decision.

A good way to discourage breaking curfew, is to make an appearance at the location your teen says he/she is if they fail to show up on time. This is embarrassing enough to prevent a teen from doing this again.

Encourage your teen to call you if they will be coming home late. When they do, refrain from yelling and threatening them as they may not be able to trust you when they are making an attempt do the right thing. If a situation occurs that seems like a reasonable excuse to be late, make an exception. However, don’t fall prey to constant excuses.

The aim is to develop mutual trust and respect. This is feasible by constant communication and following through on promises. As a parent it is up to you to teach your teen this and start from an early age.


Strategies to Help Get your Teen Out of Bed in the Morning Saturday, July 31st, 2010

3241942029 d0650750ac 300x300 Strategies to Help Get your Teen Out of Bed in the MorningMore times than not, teens have to be forced, coaxed and threatened to get out of bed in the mornings. Research indicates that teenagers need about as much sleep as babies. With the balancing of school, work, sports and friends, however, they don’t get as much time to sleep the days away. With the need for so much sleep, they should go to bed from as early as 8:00pm but unfortunately, they may stay up late doing homework. No wonder then that they can’t wake up in the mornings.

You can insist that they start their homework as soon as they get home. If homework takes 2 to 3 hours to complete, then starting at 7:00 wont get them in bed early enough. After school work is complete, then time can be given to other activities. It is not a good idea though to engage in physical activity as this will release endorphins making it more difficult to fall asleep. They should instead find activities that allow them to unwind. It seems like setting a lot of restrictions but eventually, when a routine is set, it becomes a lot easier to follow.

….Then the weekend comes and the routine is thrown out of whack. After all the progress of sticking with the routine, it gets blown by them having a rowdy weekend. There is no school and so they push to stay up late but you have to insist that they not stray from the routine too much over the weekend. When they are able to prove they can wake up in the weekday mornings, then they will be allowed to stay up later on weekends.

You may understand about your child needing sleep but you have to instill in them a sense of responsibility. This will only groom and prepare them for the future. When they start working, their boss won’t be as understanding as you are about having a constantly late employee show up for work. You will have to enforce the discipline and consequences it takes for them to get out of bed early from now.

A good strategy is to set an alarm clock and place it across the room. The more annoying the better and it would help if you were able to change the sound once in awhile as they may become used to the sound. You may also want to consider turning down the thermostat a little in the winter season. This will give them a slight chill in the mornings, just enough to help them wake up.

Lastly, you can link rewards and consequences to waking up early. For example, if they are hoping to get the privilege of going to a concert on the weekend, they can if they can get themselves awake for school. You can use this as a coax like, “remember that concert?, you still want to go don’t you?” Then after about one or two reminders, you can say, “if I have to come in here one more time for you, there will be no concert.”

This issue is usually a sore spot for parents as it becomes very frustrating. Follow these tips to get your teens to bed early and make the waking up process a lot easier. You will appreciate the resulting benefits.


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