Conor's getting ready for his second day of school. He wants to take pictures of his Irish cousins with him but we insist they stay home and he can tell them how his day went when he comes back home. He regretfully agrees.
His drop off went much better today. He got his hugs and kisses and asked if we could please stay with him at school. But I told him that mom and dad had work and that he had work, too. He knew the drill and decided to go with his teacher, Ms. Maritza.
I think it kinda sucks that we have to give up our freedom to fit into society and learn crap and get ready to spend the rest of our lives working. But there is no alternative. None. And so we raise him with the masses as gently as possible.
Fear of the dark is common at the age of about three years old. It occurs suddenly because children’s imagination starts to come alive at two and is often in full swing by the age of three. Once the imagination kicks into gear, it’s difficult for a child of this age to tell the difference between fantasy and reality. And in the confusion, a dragon or medieval knight that they saw at a party or read in a storybook can find itself alive in their real world. And darkness represents the bridge between that fantasy and reality. Most kids grow out of this phase in a matter of weeks or months. So be patient and don’t try to rush a child through this phase as it may actually prolong it. Tips include;
Don’t tease the child. It’s very real to them and it can prolong the stage.
Give one of his stuffed animals the title of ‘protector’ to help him as a friend to accompany him and keep him safe.
Use a night light so he can see something and not make up shapes in the void of nothingness.
Don’t bring him into your room to make him feel better. It only reinforces that his room isn’t safe after all. Instead, visit his room so he can see the monsters aren’t the problem and mom and dad know this and are willing to go into the room.
(Note: As my son goes through this stage, I learned of this developmental stage from Claire Lerner, LCSW, a child development specialist.)
Why some kids can eat anything and others are picky eaters is a mystery. Some parents say they just feed their kids what the rest of the family is eating and they learn to eat it or go to bed hungry. While this sounds cruel to parents with picky eaters, think of it a different way; when you prepare a meal for the family, make sure it has enough variety that the kids have a good opportunity to find something in the meal that they will eat. In due time, they will learn to try other things that they will discover they actually like. That said, there are ways to get kids to eat better. Here's some things to think about;
1. Kids need to eat every three to four hours. Schedules are important and when you begin to regulate a feeding schedule, you're on the right track The rule is 3 meals, 2 snacks and lots of fluids. Snacks might include carrots, pretzels, yogurt and water. 2. Respect your kid's appetite or lack thereof. If you try to force or bribe your child, you could be reinforcing a power struggle of food. Mealtime shouldn't be associated with anxiety or frustration. Try smaller portions so they're not overwhelmed. FULL STORY...
This week -"There's An Elephant In The Bathtub" by Roger Bradfield
Many research studies show that boys learn to read at a slower pace than girls because they don't have male figures in their lives that read. So I've decided to ask men to read outloud to kids so that boys can see that it's cool to read.VISIT THE READING ROOM...
DadsDecoded is now also a dad group in Quincy, MA where men get together to learn how to be better dads. We go to pubs, ballgames and day hikes once a month to get together and trade stories about what's working and not working with our families. We learn from each other and take those ideas home and try them out so we live better and more loving lives with our children and our wives. If you live in the area and want to join our group, email me at email@example.com