So maybe it wasn’t 45 years, but I have had any number of parents contact me for advice about consequences, specifically what to do when they went a little overboard.

The usual pattern is their daughter does something wrong and they give a punishment. The girl talks back and the mother increases the punishment. The girl says she doesn’t care and mouths off again and the thing just escalates until you have the teenage girl grounded for the entire summer.

After everything calms down, the mother feels rotten because she overreacted. But what is she supposed to do now? If she backs down then her punishments don’t mean anything. If she follows thru then she is being cruel.

This is a tough spot for a parent to be in.

If you’ve been there you know what I mean. If you haven’t been there yet, this is some place that you really don’t want to go.

Over the past year we have researched and uncovered a number of mistakes that parents make when giving consequences or disciplining their children or teens.

I would like to share with you my secret for how you can avoid the Biggest Mistake that parents make when punishing their children.

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Biggest Mistake

Summer is upon us and it brings with it the summer vacations that are associated with school going children. Mothers now have to scramble to come up with innovative ideas and summer activities for children and it is no surprise if you have already exhausted your idea bank.

How do you go about making sure that the summer months are fun and interesting instead of boring? And how do you do this with budget restraints? Well, there are a number of things that you can plan for this summer that can help you in handling child behavior, and here is a list of some ideas.

Planning small vacations
Instead of taking a long vacation during the summer, try and break it into smaller parts that are also more affordable. Ideas for these include planning day long activities at amusement parks, museums, zoos, local festivals, etc.

When you take small vacations your child has more things to do than he would at a single event.

In order to look for ideas you can go to your computer and do a search for upcoming events and activities close by. You can then work on identifying some good deals. You can also discuss your plans with friends and coworkers and ask them for ideas about any places or ongoing discounts that they might know of.

I remember an instance when our local library offered free passes to the art museum which I used along with my kids. We ended up saving around $40 that we would otherwise have to pay as entrance fees. Plus my kids had a blast.

If you intend to venture into another state, going through the state’s ‘visitor bureau website’ and looking for coupons is always a good idea. For example, on a trip that we planned to Cedar Point, Ohio, I asked the visitor’s bureau to send me a packet of information. Along with this packet of information they also sent me discount coupons for the amusement park which resulted in a total savings of over $30.

Keeping tour Stock Levels Full
Once the summer is upon us, you will need to stock up on the essentials that your children need around the home. With your children spending more time at home, you will continually have to come up with different ideas to get them to eat.

Keeping your fridge stocked up with fruits, vegetables, bread, meat, cheese, etc. is a good idea. This will enable you to make different types of sandwiches and you can thereby avoid spending money on fast food. Besides, having foodstuff readily available would also encourage your children to make snacks for themselves when they’re hungry.

Eating Outside:
Kids, as well as most parents, love backyard BBQs. Now is the time to have them! Have a nice day with only the family or let each child invite a friend or two. Invite some friends over yourself.
Eating outside every once in a while is a great way to break the monotony and you also get to save on cleaning after eating. Eating in the backyard or the patio can be great fun, and if you have outdoor plastic furniture, it is fairly easy to clean as well.

Plastic mats can also be used to add a certain ‘picnic’ touch, and all this requires in the form of cleaning is a quick shake and pat.

A small lunchbox cooler can be a good investment to take along on your day trips. Taking it along with you enables you to take the whole day’s supply of food with you. Taking this along will not only help you save money, but you would also ensure that the food that your family is eating is healthy. You can also use the cooler while you shop for meat and ice cream.

Other Good Buys:
Another thing that you can think about buying is a seat organizer for your car that would allow you to keep things such as toys, books, maps, wet wipes, diapers, etc. in an organized manner. If you are planning a trip to the beach, you can also pack your towel into this.

Kiddy pools and sand boxes are also great ideas especially if you have young children. Children can spend many hours playing in these and the investment is considerably small compared to the enjoyment these will provide to your children. These two things are great summer activities for children under the age of four.

If a member of your family is planning on buying your child a gift, you could suggest that they buy one of these things, and this would save you some money. This could be in the form of a birthday present, a congratulatory present, etc. You could also set aside the money that you receive on your anniversary and birthday to spend on things such as these.

It is important that you remember to have an assortment of toys that your children can use to play outdoors. Visiting places like the Dollar Store can often yield good results, and you can find economical things such as sandbox toys and tools, water and bubble guns, sidewalk chalk, etc. with ease.

Rainy Days
Rainy days can often play spoilsport for parents and children alike. These days can definitely bring about undesirable child behavior.

A good idea to keep your children occupied during these periods is to keep a good stock of craft supplies at home. The internet is a good source for free printable coloring worksheets. Things such as play dough, paper, crayons, puzzles, etc, are also good economical ways to keep your children engrossed on days when the weather plays truant.

If your child likes to play in the mud and you do not mind the mess, why not let him go out in the yard and make mud pies or mud soup. Better yet, if you want to have a day that your kid will remember, get out there with him and feel the mud between your toes… have some fun. Have a few towels ready next to the door for when you come back in.

Also remember that your local library can be used as a great resource to make summer plans for your family. While the library is a great option to utilize on the rainy days, you can also ask the librarian if there are any special activities or reading sessions that are planned for the summer.

I remember coming across a great reading program offered by our library in conjunction with a leading fast food brand wherein the stars that we got for achieving our reading goals could be redeemed for discounts at any of the chain’s restaurants. This ended up motivating a number of children to hone up on their reading skills.

Setting goals pertaining to your child’s reading habits during the summer is a great idea. In doing so, getting your child’s teacher’s suggestions is recommended, as this would help them prepare for the next grade in advance.

If your child has not started reading yet, you can always make use of this time to start reading out to them. You should realize that the power that literature has over our mind, as well the help it provides in speech development is truly amazing.

Over Scheduling is a Bad Idea
There are parents who tend to go over the top by organizing way too many activities and classes for their children. Kids often end up remembering things such as just running around the park and having fun, having ice cream on a really hot day, etc. as opposed to activities that parents end up spending money on.

It is very important that you allow your children to be children. Children end up remembering these small outings that you take them on, and these often have more impact on them than spending four weeks in a summer camp would.

You should bear in mind that this is supposed to be ‘their’ summer vacation. Also, since you would not enjoy a choc-a-block schedule for your vacation, neither would your child. You should ensure that you leave some time for your child to simply unwind and relax. This has to be kept in mind when you intend to sign them up for different summer activities.

Getting your child to pick a couple of activities he might be interested is also a good idea.

Summer activities for children should be fun and relaxing. Keeping the right amount of excitement and relaxation will keep your child’s behavior calm and manageable through the summer months.

Keep Track Of Memories
The most important part of the summer vacation is that you make the most of it. Irrespective of whether days are spent lazing by the kiddy pool in the backyard, or days filled with activities, try and make the next summer vacation memorable for your children.

Keeping a memory book and updating it regularly with the things that you do as a family is great. These memories can include your child making his first sand castle, eating his first hot dog, crawling around in the sandbox, and anything else.

If you do not have pictures to go with your memories, you can simply fill your memory book up with text; and sometime in the future you and your children can reminisce about the good old summer days that have gone by.

It is essential that children get their required nutritional needs met in the formative years, and this could be as early as when they enter school. This is when their brain starts to develop to its full potential by gathering various ideas and observing different things.

In order for the brain to develop it is essential that the brain receives adequate amounts of the following.

a) Glucose: This directly affects your child’s blood sugar level. Glucose is a source of energy and is also important in building your child’s attention span. Inadequate supply of glucose can result in your child falling asleep in class. Since breakfast is regarded as the day’s most important meal, it is important that your child’s breakfast should consist of enough glucose levels to keep your child going through the day.
Children who skip breakfast are known to have difficulty with their memory and also have short attention spans.
b) Iron: Iron helps in transporting oxygen throughout the body through the blood system, and this also includes supply of oxygen to the brain. Iron deficiency can result in anemia, and this can commonly been seen in children who do not receive well balanced diets.
Besides having an adverse affect on your child’s attention span, if your child suffers from iron-anemia, he probably wouldn’t be very motivated in being a part of activities that require ability and imagination.
Food stuff such as chicken, tuna, red meat, leafy vegetables, etc are good sources of iron.
c) Vitamin A: Vitamin A is a very important nutrient required for the development of the brain in the baby’s fetal stage. The most common source of Vitamin A is beta carotene, which can be found in yellow and orange fruits as well as dark leafy veggies.
d) Vitamin B: This nutrient helps in releasing the energy that glucose provides. Inadequate supply of Vitamin B can result in depression and aggressiveness. Since there are 12 different types of Vitamin B which are classified essential, getting them all through one source can be difficult. Vitamin B can be found in most cereals.
e) Zinc: Zinc helps in maintaining communication in-between the nerve and brain cells. Zinc deficiencies can result in your child’s inability to solve academic problems, a condition that is referred to in the medical fraternity as cognitive impairment.
Peanuts and cereals are good sources of zinc.
f) Folic Acid: Folic acid plays an important role in the formation of white and red blood cells. Inadequate supply of folic acid can result in your child complaining of tiredness, forgetfulness, and irritability.
Most fresh fruits and veggies are good sources of folic acid.

Your child’s diet should ideally have a balance of fruits, vegetables, fish, meat, cereals, and plenty of clean drinking water. This will ensure that your child excels in his academics as well as in sports.

However, does this imply that the parents of all the bright students do their shopping and cooking everyday, and ensure that their children eat what’s being given to them? No, this isn’t necessarily the case.

An increasing number of parents are now discovering the benefits of adding nutritional supplements in their children’s diets so that their diets can remain balanced. Nutritional supplements work by filling the gap that a busy and hectic schedule brings about.

While you, as an adult, can willingly take mineral supplements and multivitamins for the betterment of your health, your young child could have to be coaxed into taking his, and this is when educating him about it does not work. However, remember that these are important for the growth of your child.

Children are known to dislike swallowing pills, and these include multivitamins that taste bad and are big. To children, the taste outweighs the benefits of the pill in question. While increasing your child’s awareness about matters such as this is beneficial in the long run, young children often have to be cajoled into taking their supplements.

An alternative is to get them chewable supplements which often taste quite good, thereby taking away the feeling that they are supplements. Young children are known to be more receptive to chewable supplements as opposed to pills that have to be swallowed whole.

Another alternative comes in the form of liquid supplements. Liquid supplements do away with the need for pills altogether. Nutritional supplements in the liquid form can be easily mixed into cereals, drinks, and anything else that your child would eat in the course of the day. Children nowadays are known to favor taking liquid supplements mixed with juices, sports drinks, etc.

Adults who are averse to taking pills are also known to favor nutritional supplements in the liquid form. Besides, liquid supplements are absorbed more easily and readily by our bodies.

Starting Early Is Essential
If you expect your child to perform well in school, then it is important that you start early. Vitamin B supplements should be taken by expectant mothers so that the fetus grows well. While nutritional supplements aren’t normally recommended for children under 2 years of age, getting you child used to liquid or chewable supplements at that age is a good idea.

Smart kids that excel in school don’t necessarily have anything that your child does not. The key difference is that their parents focus on providing a well balanced and proper nutrition.

Now that you know what you can do, it is important that you work in identifying the eating habits of your smart child, and take effective measures to bring a change in his life as well as yours. Remember, proper nutrition for children does go a long way.

When dealing with violent and aggressive behavior from your children suffering from Asperger’s Syndrome, and children with autism, you, as a parent need to learn how to handle the situation, and this involves two primary factors.

Parenting Aspergers children, and coming to terms with their violent bursts can be quite a challenge. Let’s talk today about the two basic things you must know of to handle such behavior.

Children’s behavior in Asperger’s Syndrome patients’ change for various reasons, just as the case is with all other children.

Children don’t just act out on a whim. Your aim is to find the evident cause. While there is always a reason, parents often fail to identify or notice it.

Improper behavior normally occurs due to the following reasons, and this includes both mild behaviors and severe behaviors, such as violent behavior.

• It could be because your child is going through physical pain, and this could be as simple as having a stomachache.
• It could be because your child wants something, and this could include fighting with other children in order to play with their toys.
• Your child could also become aggressive if he wants to avoid something that he does not like, and this could include not wanting to do homework.
• Your child could also lash out in order to take care of a sensory requirement and these could occur in surroundings which are very busy, noisy, hot, bright, etc.

Therefore, the first thing you need to do in order to reduce or eliminate this kind of behavior is to identify which of the four categories above fuel your child’s problem behavior.

The next step is to help him learn a replacement behavior to use in which they can communicate their likes and dislikes. This could also involve making use of some of their existing self-stimulating or obsessive behavior such as pacing, rocking, flapping hands, etc.

The purpose of this is that it helps eliminate aggressive behavior. This change can also be brought about by encouraging your child to negotiate and express feelings verbally.

Some Aspergers children and other children with autism are also known to respond well to communicating using pictures, drawing, cards, puppets, etc. You will have to identify what will work with your child and since you’ve spent a considerable amount of time parenting him, this should not be too difficult.

This process can be a bit time consuming at the onset, but keep in mind the behavior. If your child’s behavior is extreme, then there needs to be a change in the existing situation as soon as possible.

Hoping or insisting that he stops his aggressive behavior and partakes in whatever is going on won’t really help. There needs to be a change of scenario to begin with.

You also need to maintain a routine in your child’s life and this will help in reducing aggressive and inappropriate behavior from occurring. You should know that Aspergers children find great comfort in a sense of routine.

Again, the two main factors that will help you deal with the aggressive behaviors your child is showing are:

1) Find out the cause of the behavior among the four given categories above
2) Help your child learn how to communicate the cause of his behavior using less harmful means.

Children lie.


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This is part of their normal development. Throughout childhood, children clarify boundaries by testing limits. Lying is one of the things that they test. Therefore, when your child lies you should not take it personally.

Although some children are capable of deceiving by age four, five years of age is when children commonly experiment with lying. However, lying usually does not signal a serious problem. Unless lying becomes habitual or compulsive, your child will grow out of it.

Problem of Lying

Defiant Child Disrespectful Child


Some children have a greater tendency to lie than others. This is particularly true if the child sees others lie, or where he views lying as a way to protect himself from harm.

Certain personality types also have a inclination to lie. Lying hurts the liar. Chronic or habitual liars rarely feel good about themselves. Lying may cause difficulties for the child at school and with their friends. It isolates him from those he loves and may disrupt family life.


Reasons Children Lie

Very young children are not yet able to distinguish fantasy from reality. Children this age have a very active imagination and cannot always differentiate between their imagination and what really happened. Also, children this age often appear to be lying when in actuality they have honestly forgotten what happened.

Around the age of 5 or 6 children develop a better understanding of the difference between fantasy and reality. At this age, children develop a conscience and understand that certain behaviors disappoint their parents. Children also begin to experience feelings of guilt when they do wrong. At this age a child may construct a lie to avoid punishment or disapproval.


By the age of 7 or 8, children can differentiate between fantasy and reality and usually tell the truth. At this age, children lie to avoid punishment or to avoid doing something unpleasant. They also begin to understand the concept of polite social lying. They may lie to spare someone’s feelings. Lies at this age may also be a cry for help. A child who is very fearful or feels overwhelmed by school or some other area of his life, may lie in an attempt to deal with this pressure.

In adolescence, lying begins to take on a new significance. However, when an adolescent lies it is not always a sign of trouble. Teens may lie simply to protect their privacy or to establish their independence. They may also lie in “acceptable situations” such as not to hurt a friend’s feelings or to avoid embarrassment. Of course, a teen may lie to avoid punishment or doing chores, or in order to get something that he can’t get by telling the truth.

How to Prevent Lying


Be a Good Role Model
You are the most important role models for your child.

  • Tell the truth. Avoid little white lies.
  • Don’t lie to your child to get him to listen to you.
  • Keep your word. Always explain and apologize if you must break a promise.

Encourage Truthfulness

  • Stress the importance of honesty at home.
  • Let your child know that you value truth.
  • Teach your child alternatives to lying.
  • Praise your child for telling the truth, particularly in situations where it is difficult for your child.
  • Create a safe family environment so that your child can express his feelings.
  • Don’t accept excuses for lying.

What to Do When Your Child Lies

  • Do not ignore lying.
  • Give your child a chance to confess.
  • Give appropriate consequences for lying.
  • Don’t act spontaneously. Think out consequences for lying beforehand.
  • Separate the punishment for lying from the punishment for whatever the lie was designed to conceal.
  • Have your child apologize
  • Show your child how to repair the lie
  • Don’t lecture.

When Lying is a Problem
The following types of lying may indicate a more serious problem.

An older child or teen that lies:

  • To get attention.
  • Habitually as a way to deal with the demands of parents, teachers, and friends.
  • In order to take advantage of others.
  • To hide a more serious problem, such as a drug or alcohol problem.

What to Do About Problem Lying

If a child or adolescent develops a serious and repetitive pattern of lying, then you may need professional help. Have a child or adolescent psychiatrist evaluate your child. Based upon what you find you have several treatment options:

Individual counseling – This is particularly helpful if the lying is a cry for attention.
Family counseling – This is useful for families who feel that trust has been seriously damaged, or in cases where lying is something learned from other family members. Family therapy may be vital when the child lies in order to protect himself from harm.

Group therapy – This form of therapy helps where the child lies as a way of getting attention.
Assessment for a learning disability – Some children lie in order to cover up school difficulties. Lying may be an indication of a learning disability.

Conclusion

Lying is a normal part of childhood and rarely indicates a problem. Addressing lying early and appropriately will help prevent it from becoming a more serious concern. If your child has a difficulty with lying you need to be patient. Your child needs to know you care about him. Your child may have spent years to become a master of distorting the truth, exaggerating, and lying. It will take time for you to change your child’s behavior.

NOTE:

If you would like to have a quick step-by-step plan on how to end your child’s difficult behavior forever and your child is between the ages of 2 and 11:

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How to Improve Your Child’s Behavior