Thursday, August 7, 2014

Mommy Group Toddler Session 1: Class 5

This week we covered so much.

1. How to praise your child
2. What to do with hitting
3. Raising a gender
4. How do I teach my son to be good

This article is one of a few that have come out recently further confusing parents. Basically they are talking about two different areas...intelligence and morality. The research has shown forever that with intelligence it is best to praise effort and working hard vs. outcome...Rather than saying "you are so smart"...we are saying "you worked hard on that". This is because the label of smart has proven down the road to create children who aren't motivated to put forth effort because in doing so if they do well it could mean they are not "smart"...so they just would rather remain "smart" and not work hard. Those whose effort has been praised are seen to work harder down the road.
However when it comes to morality, it has been found that connecting behavior to a character trait, and more specifically using a noun vs. a verb, it is most effective in creating the internalization of this trait. So "being a helper" is more meaningful than my behavior was "so helpful".
Additionally modeling is still the most powerful teacher for morality and values and disappointment so the child feels guilt vs shame is the most powerful deterrent to bad behavior.



As for hitting it is a normal toddler behavior. Their verbal language is limited so instead of walking up to someone and asking them if they want to play, they might go up and hit them. Seeing the reaction to hitting, over and over again, they are interested in the reactions of people. Be firm and gentle and say it hurts when you hit someone, Jessica doesn’t like to be hit. Or simply hitting hurts and remove your child from the situation.

I would like to raise my child without some of the stigma of gender. Boys are taught at a young age to be strong, not to cry, stop beinga baby, be a man. Our girls we are telling them to be quiet, don’t talk too much, be pretty, wear this so people like you. I would love to see my boy have a full spectrum of joy in being who he is. We were talking about how boys get shamed out of liking to play with dolls, or my little pony or to wear pink. My teached recommended several books for raising a specific gender.
Growing a Girl- Seven Strategies for Raising a Strong, Spirited Daughter- Dr. Barbara Mackoff
The Wonder of Girls- Understanding the Hidden Nature of Our Daughters- Michael Gurian
Girls will be girls -Raising Confident and Courageous Daughters-JoAnn Deak, PH.D

The Wonder of Boys- Michael Gurian
The Good Son- Michael Gurian
The Mind of Boys- Michael Gurian
Raising Cain- Michael Thompson, Ph.D., Dan Kindlon, Ph. D.

I would also like him to treat women as they deserve, which is why I plan on raising my boy to be a feminist. Or at least to know about the feminist movement and support it. We watched this together, even though I am sure he doesn’t have any idea what it means. I want to start these conversations early.

This is an amazing author, all of his books are amazing and recommended reading.

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