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10 Parenting Tips

It never hurts to have a Parenting Refresher Course…these tips are taken from Parents Universal Resource by Sue Scheff . I thought that they were pretty timely and helpful and I hope that you will too. After reading the tips and you find that you need more information or would like to schedule a Parenting Workshop for an individual or a group…The ACES-Family Life Center offers Free Parenting and Relationship Education Workshops. Call Today to schedule a time 256.536.4779 and ask fro Donna Gullatte or Cynarra Fuller.

1. Communication

Keeping the lines of communication open with your child should be a priority for all parents. It is important to let your kids know you are always there for them no matter what the subject is. If there is a subject you are not comfortable with, please be sure your child has someone they can open up to.

2. Knowing Your Children’s Friends

In my opinion this is critical: Who are your kids hanging out with? Doing their homework with? If they are spending a lot of time at a friend’s house, go out of your way to call the parent and introduce yourself, especially if they are spending the night at a friend’s house, it important to take time to call the parents or meet them.

3. Know your Child’s Teachers – Keep track of their attendance at school

Take time to meet each teacher and be sure they have your contact information and you have theirs if there are any concerns regarding your child. In the same respect, take time to meet your child’s Guidance Counselor.

4. Keep your Child Involved

Whether it is sports, music, drama, dance, or school clubs such as chess, government, the school newspaper or different committees such as prom, dances and other school activities. Keeping your child busy can keep them out of trouble

5. Learn about Internet Social Networking

With today’s Cyber generation this has to be a priority. Parents need to get educated and they also need to help educate their kids on Cyber Safety – to think before they post. Help them to understand what they put up today, may haunt them tomorrow. To not get involved with strangers and especially to not talk about sex with strangers. Avoid meeting in person the people you meet online without a parent being there. On the same note – cell phone and texting – don’t allow your child to freely give out their cell numbers and never post them online. Parents make sure to look for resources to help assist in protection on those electronic gadgets.

6. Encourage your teen to get a job or volunteer

In today’s generation I believe we need to instill responsibility and accountability. This can start early by encouraging your teen to either get a job or volunteer, especially during the summer. Again, it is about keeping them busy; however, at the same time teaching them responsibility. I always tell parents to try to encourage their teens to get jobs at Summer Camps, Nursing Homes, ASPCA, Humane Society or places where they are giving to others or helping animals. It can truly build self esteem and it helps others.

7. Make Time for your Child

This sounds very simple and almost obvious, but with today’s busy schedule of usually both parents working full time or single parent households, it is important to put time aside weekly (if not daily at dinner) for one on one time or family time. Today life is so all about electronics (cell phones, iPods, Blackberry’s, computers, etc) that the personal touch of actually being together has diminished. Pick a time, 8:30pm? 9:00pm? To take 15 minutes and turn off all electronics and talk about your day.

8. When Safety trumps privacy

If you suspect your teen is using drugs, or other suspicious behaviors (lying, defiance, disrespectful, etc) it is time to start asking questions – and even “snooping” – I know there are two sides to this coin, and that is why I specifically mentioned “if you suspect” things are not right – in these cases – safety for your child takes precedence over invading their privacy. Remember – we are the parent and we are accountable for and responsible for our child.

9. Are you considering outside treatment for your child?

Residential Therapy is a huge step, and not a step that is taken lightly. Do your homework! When your child’s behavior escalates to a level of belligerence, defiance, substance abuse or -- God forbid -- gang relations, it may be time to seek outside help. Don’t be ashamed of this – put your child’s future first and take steps to get the help he/she needs – immediately, but take your time to find the right placement. Read Wit’s End! for more information.

10. Be a parent FIRST

There are parents that want to be their child’s friend and that is great – but remember you are a parent first. Set boundaries – believe it or not kids want limits (and most importantly – need them). Never threaten consequences you don’t plan on following through with.10 Parenting Tips

It never hurts to have a Parenting Refresher Course…these tips are taken from Parents Universal Resource by Sue Scheff . I thought that they were pretty timely and helpful and I hope that you will too. After reading the tips and you find that you need more information or would like to schedule a Parenting Workshop for an individual or a group…The ACES-Family Life Center offers Free Parenting and Relationship Education Workshops. Call Today to schedule a time 256.536.4779 and ask fro Donna Gullatte or Cynarra Fuller.