Three Bs: Basics, bedtimes, books

January 2013 Posted in School
Resources for parents

American Academy of Pediatrics,
Well-researched information with a
holistic approach to raising children

Parent for the Future,

Supports parents in making a difference
in their children’s lives today and
toward their future.

The Search Institute,
See the 40 Developmental Assets each age.

Reading for All, 
Raises awareness of the importance of reading;
supports parents in reading to their children;
conducts book drives.

“The first thing to raising happy, healthy children is just meeting their basic needs – food, shelter, clothing and security,” said Alison Kelley, Marion County Community Services Director.

“You’d be amazed at how many people are working double shifts just to pay the bills. That’s why people should know that when they donate to food banks, toy drives, clothing closets and those types of things they really make a difference in people’s lives.

“We have a lot of families that don’t have books in their homes,” she said. “The kids don’t really have anything to call their own; they don’t have a book to call their own. In some of our after school programs we’ll see kids doing stuff like tucking dinner rolls in their pockets to take home.”

Kelley said infants through adolescents greatly benefit from a consistent family schedule – regular sleeping schedules, mealtimes, homewaork times.

“Those little brains are developing their little neurons; they develop better physiologically when they have predictability and security,” she said. “It actually increases stress not knowing what to expect next. It’s true for infants all the way up through adolescence.”

Don’t neglect to pencil in time for books.

“Reading to your children – reading, reading, reading – is absolutely critical in bolstering a child’s success,” Kelley said.

A must-read for parents, she said, is the bestselling “How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk” by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish.

“It is written to help parents reduce fighting, conflict and sibling rivalry,” she said. “So much of the time we’re really busy talking our kids out of their feelings, which makes them learn not to trust their feelings.”

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