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Parent Tips

These are Topics below are for informational purposes Only & are provided are as reference material not for the purpose of self diagnosis.

Information Reference material on how to deal with common parenting challenges and problems, so that you raise happy and healthy kids.

All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sand pile at school.

These are the things I learned:
  • Share everything.
  • Play fair.
  • Don't hit people.
  • Put things back where you found them.
  • Clean up your own mess.
  • Don't take things that aren't yours.
  • Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.
  • Wash your hands before you eat.
  • Flush.
  • Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
  • Live a balanced life - learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
  • Take a nap every afternoon.
  • When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together.
  • Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup: the roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
  • Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup - they all die. So do we.
  • And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned - the biggest word of all - LOOK.

Everything you need to know is in there somewhere. The Golden Rule and love and basic sanitation. Ecology and politics and equality and sane living.

Take any one of those items and extrapolate it into sophisticated adult terms and apply it to your family life or your work or government or your world and it holds true and clear and firm. Think what a better world it would be if we all - the whole world - had cookies and milk at about 3 o'clock in the afternoon and then lay down with our blankies for a nap. Or if all governments had as a basic policy to always put things back where they found them and to clean up their own mess.

And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when you go out in the world, it is best to hold hands and stick together.

[Source: "ALL I REALLY NEED TO KNOW I LEARNED IN KINDERGARTEN" by Robert Fulghum. See his web site at http://www.robertfulghum.com/ ]

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Top Ten Rules for Dads


Guidelines for Teachers and Parents

Occasionally, a parent or a teacher will want a child to be considered for acceleration to a higher grade because of his or her superior intellectual and/or academic ability. Generally, there is no special criteria which applies to acceleration; rather, each case should be considered on its own merits.

Acceleration is usually inadvisable except in very special cases. Following is a list of the major factors which should be considered before the final decision is made.

  1. Chronological Age: Children who would nearly have been in a higher grade, had their birthday been earlier, are more likely to be successful. Thus, a birth date in October, November, or December would be considered a plus factor for acceleration.

  2. IQ: Although an I.Q. score itself should not be a basis for acceleration, those being considered should be at least one standard deviation above the mean.

  3. Academic Ability: Academic grade placement scores should place the child at or above the grade level for which he is being considered. Most important here are reading, language, and spelling. Specific skills must be given a thorough analysis also. For example, a child may have developed a superior sight recognition level in reading, without developing concomitant phonetic word attack skills. In such cases the child may be placed in a grade which will allow him to “miss” the development of important skills in this area. Arithmetic at the elementary level is not too often far above grade level, because specific skills involved may not yet have been covered in class. Reading comprehension is usually one of the best predictors of elementary school academic success.

  4. Peer Relationships: If the child has grown up in the same neighborhood and has a close relationship with his chronological age peers, being singled out of the group for acceleration could pose social or emotional difficulties for the child.

  5. Siblings: Does the child have a sibling in the grade to which consideration is being given? It would probably be damaging to the family structure if, for example, a third grader were accelerated to the fourth grade, where a sibling was enrolled, even if they were in separate rooms.

  6. Sex: Because of the rate of maturation, a girl might generally be considered a better risk for acceleration than a boy. This of course does not rule out boys, but presents one further dimension to the problem.

  7. Physical and Emotional Maturity: Will the child visually appear out of place in the new setting because of his physical size? More important, will the child feel out of place. Intramural sports, for example, and future classroom “romances” can be affected. If the child is not relatively secure emotionally, the more could prove harmful. Further, the school must consider whether the child is secure enough to handle the new social situation.

  8. Parental Attitude: The schools have long known that unless the parents approve a move of this importance, the home climate and discussions can hurt the chances for success. More often than not, the parents are flattered that their child is considered for acceleration and wholeheartedly endorse the move, volunteering to help with the child’s assignments until the child is caught up. Too often it is the parents, themselves, who initiate the proposal, stating that their child is “bored” with the easy work.

When all the factors are weighed, the person responsible for the proposed move considers the number of positive answers to the issues listed above, as opposed to the negative. The acceleration should be carefully explained to the child and his feelings should be assessed. In some cases a “trial period” may be advisable before a final decision is made. It should be carefully explained to the child that he is not “on trial”, so to speak, but it should be made clear to the child that this period (of a month, or so) is a time for the school and the child, himself, to see if it was best to do this. There must be no feelings of failure if the child needs to be returned to the previous grade after this period.

How To Get Out Of Doing Your (Kid's) Homework
By Gary E. Dudley, Ph.D.

With the new year upon us and school back in session, many
parents return to the duty of helping with homework. For some
parents, however, "helping with homework" has come to mean taking
over the responsibility of getting the homework done. Sometimes
this means loud, ongoing exhortations (nagging) in an effort to
make the child get the task done. Other parents, opting for
efficiency, simply do the homework themselves and save the
struggle. In either case, there is a serious blurring of the
responsibility involved, and parents often feel trapped between the
choice of "letting the child fail" or making certain that the
dreaded homework gets finished. Having an alternative would be

The question of homework is often a focus of power struggles
between parents and children whom we see. We often recommend that
parents consider that their responsibility in regard to homework
is that of a consultant, rather than that of the director.

1. Your attitude is extremely important in encouraging and
motivating the child. Take the approach that you are concerned
about the child and his or her well-being. Avoid preaching,
judging and blaming.

2. Explain to the child that homework is an important part of
learning and education. Learning is their part of the family
contract, just as your part is working and paying the bills,
as well as guiding and directing them. You fulfill your
responsibility to the family - doing the homework is how they
can help fulfill their responsibility.

3. Tell your child that you will help them achieve their homework
by providing an environment that is free from television,
phone calls, noise, games and other distractions during
certain hours each evening.

4. Tell them that you will consult with them, if they desire, as
to the best places and times to get homework done but that you
will not be offering advice that is unsolicited.

5. Tell them exactly when you will be available to help them with
their homework, and maintain your availability during those
times. Thus, it is important to have a regular time each
evening when you can assist and not offer help at any other
time they ask.

6. Then, at the agreed-upon times, ask them if your help is
needed. Do not encourage or advise them to accept your help,
do not chide or criticize them if they do not ask for it. When
your child does not finish homework, there are consequences at
school. Avoid protecting your child from those consequences.

7. Remember, your tone of voice and the way you approach the
child is the most important factor. Expressing encouragement
and the expectation that your child will be successful is
helpful. Praise their effort, rather than their ability, and
express your hopes for their successful education, rather than
your demand for performance. How you handle this will directly
affect your child's self-esteem, which is the personality's
sole source of nourishment.

8. Help your child to develop an internalized sense of reward for
his or her achievement. When reaching a goal, teach the child
how to feel good about it, rather than to expect praise or
rewards from you or someone else. If he or she fails to reach
a goal, help them to feel good about their effort, and to feel
OK about trying again. Blaming and "I-told-you-so's" will only
discourage the child from making a second effort.

9. Finally, once in a great while, the teacher is part of the
problem. If, while examining your child's assignment, it
becomes clear that they are repetitive, below his ability
level, or too difficult for your child, it's time for an
appointment with the teacher. If you are working with a
therapist, let him or her know about your concern, and perhaps
a phone conference or face-to-face meeting can be arranged to
address your concerns.

Repeated failure at following through on homework, or chronic
poor school achievement, may signify other problems. If your child
has had to deal with a divorce, recent death or other loss,
consulting with a psychologist may be in order.


Wow Way To Go You're Special Outstanding
Super Well Done I knew You Could Do It Fantastic
Remarkable Superstar I'm Proud of You Nice Work
Beautiful Looking Good Your On Top Of It Bravo
How Nice Your Catching On Now Your Flying Hooray For You
How Smart Now You've Got It Your Fantastic Your Incredible
Good Job Your On Target Your On Your Way Hot Dog!
Dynamite That's Incredible
Your Beautiful You're Unique
I Like You Good For You Nothing Can Stop You Now Bingo
Terrific Your a Winner Remarkable Job Marvelous
Magnificent Hip Hip Hooray You Figured It Out Phenomenal
Superwork Great Discovery Beautiful Work Spectacular
Superjob Your Darling You've Discovered The Secret You Are Fun
You Care Your Important You Tried Hard Your a Treasure
You Belong Fantastic Job You Learned It Right Creative Job
I Trust You What An Imagination Exceptional Performance Your Important
A+ Job You Are Responsible Your A Real Trooper I Respect You
Your a Joy Your Growing Up What A Good Listener That's Correct
Your Perfect Beautiful Sharing Outstanding Performance You're A-OK
Awesome You Make Me Happy You've Got A Friend
My Buddy
A Big Kiss I Love You You Mean The World To Me That's The Best
A Big Hug You Made My Day You Make Me Laugh Your Wonderful
Sensational Your A Good Friend You Mean A Lot To Me Fantastic Job
I Love It You Brighten My Day You Are Exciting Your Precious
Brilliant Your My Friend Our Family Loves You Do It Again

P.S. Remember, a Smile is worth a thousand words!


A positive competitive attitude when children achieve the best
that's is every parent's dream. And yet most of us have seen
a report card or heard a trumpeter's solo that falls short of what our
kid's can accomplish. Why can some boys and girls repeatedly pull
themselves to heights while other to equal or superior ability
cannot. Parents assume skill is pretty much determined by natural
ability; the student with the best IQ will get the best grades
or the athlete with the most natural ability will surpass his
classmates. Genes do count when determining performance to some
extent, however, the real edge in achievement comes from mental
attitude, character, and strategy. You can help build a winning
mental attitude by:

1. Find something to praise. A child who feels good about him or
herself will usually succeed. Nurturing self-esteem is a central
element of inspiring a child's peak performance and you can't start
too early. It isn't easy to compliment your little leaguer who has
just lost his game and struck out three times, but it's important to
praise what psychologists call successive approximations. For example,
you could say something like "You struck out, but you took a healthy
cut. Keep swinging like that and soon you'll connect. This
will keep him trying even though he has falling short of the implied

2. Rather than telling your child what he did wrong point out what he
did right. If you keep telling your child there is something wrong with
him, sooner or later, he'll believe it. Criticize the behavior, not
the child. Remember, the last moment of trial is what he'll remember.
Make sure he knows what you want him to do, not what you don't want
him to do. That thought should inspire positive action.

3. Assess you child's strengths. Too often we want to mold our kids
into what we want them to be rather than listening to their own
opinions and self assessments. One of the first things you should ask
a child is "What do you like to do", What's fun for you", "What are
you good at". Children take pride in statements like; "I can throw a
football far", "I like to draw", "I'm good at math". Sometimes these
statements are clues to abilities that you may not have been aware that
your child had. It is extremely important; however, not to push your
child into areas where he or she may not have ability to succeed and
may make him feel like even more of a failure or not live up to your

4. Encourage self praise. Talking positively to yourself about
yourself reinforces a positive self image which, in turn, improves
performance. Better performance causes more self praise which even
further elevates the self-image which triggers further improvement.
Negative self-talk, on the other hand, only perpetuates failure.

5. Help a child to relax. Knowing how to relax is a key to peak
performance. When you are relaxed your mind is clearer and your body
can function at its greatest efficiency. Performance Anxiety can
interfere with your child's ability to succeed. This will reinforce
his feelings that he "can't do it" and will weaken his drive and

6. Teach your child to concentrate. Parents often complain that they
can't keep their child's attention for more than a few seconds. Yet,
the same child will play video games or watch TV for hours and seldom
lift their eyes from the screen. Eye contact is a very important
factor. Try to help your child look at you when you are giving him or
her instructions or the teacher if he or she is in class. Ask your
child questions about what he or shy may be studying to force them to
concentrate and think about what they are currently doing.

7. Rehearse mentally. Most kids have very vivid imaginations and
they can easily visualize what you ask. Before a test, urge your child
to study hard to create a mental motion picture of the whole situation
of the test. Having him visualize the entire event from the instant
the class bell rings until students are told to set down their
pencils. This will help him work through test anxiety and after a
while the test will seem routine.

8. Remind your child of past success. A good report card posted near
your daughter's mirror reminds her that she can do well and reinforces
the urge to repeat her success. Add messages of encouragement. "You
did it last year, you can do it this year".

In general, there are no real short cuts to bringing your child
to his best. It's a gradual process of support, encouragement, and
hard work and those efforts will pay off not only in peak performance,
but in closer, warmer relationships between parent and child. Many
parents make the mistake of trying to gord their kids with bribes,
threats, or fear. All of these fail. Your daughter may be delighted
to receive a dollar for an A on her report card, but it's the
recognition, not the money, that pleases her. And it's the feeling of
accomplishment that will inspire future success.

Dr. Mark Bradford & Associates Dr. Mark Bradford & Associates Mark Bradford 1623 E. St. Louis Street Springfield, Missouri 65802 Phone: 417-833-9999 FAX: 417-833-2727 mark@drbradford.org
Health and Healing Center
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