Category: Being Your Best Parent

Help kids choose kindness and respect | NPNparents.org

It was a Sunday night, and we were settling in as a family to watch a Blackhawks game when the game broke away for a nightly news update. The newscaster mentioned a looming storm, a car accident on the Kennedy and showed a clip of the President-elect behind a podium. My five year old looked at the television, looked at me, and then asked me why the President-elect was yelling. And to be honest, I wasn’t really sure since there was so much yelling going on for months and months in the poli...

Posted on March 13, 2017 at 10:50 AM by Amanda Simkin

Is your child questioning sexuality or gender? | NPNparents.org

If your child starts to become attracted to someone of the same sex or wants to break away from typical gender expressions (e.g., a boy wearing a dress), you're probably wondering, Is this just a phase? Buckle up, because it’s not simple.

The answer is yes and no. Some children have a clear sense whether they’re gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender from an early age and it never changes, while others might question and experiment with those identities only for a period of time. Most p...

Posted on March 07, 2017 at 10:18 AM by Concentric Counseling

Dads shouldn't get credit for showing up | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: sara*/Flickr

Exhausted, sweating, and questioning my travel attire (for some reason I thought jeans and a hooded sweatshirt would make the perfect Caribbean outfit), I just wanted to escape the customs line at Punta Cana International, find a bottled water and our seats on the shuttle, and then finally check in to the resort so the relaxing part of our four-day Dominican Republic vacation could begin.

With our then–8-month-old son taking in the sights from his comfy pe...

Posted on March 02, 2017 at 9:48 AM by Matt Beardmore

Help your boy express all of his emotions | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: Morna Crites-Moore/Flickr

The causes or consequences of why boys aren’t seen as emotional would make for a long and lively debate, but for busy parents just looking for practical ways to improve young boys’ emotional IQ, here are some quick tips.

The best kind of care is preventative, and it’s useful to help boys explore emotions by starting with what they know. Look to the people they interact with daily—in person or in fantasy—as a way to discuss feelings. Bring up e...

Posted on January 31, 2017 at 2:26 PM by Concentric Counseling

To the parents addicted to their phones | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: Christian Hornick/Flickr

My wife and I have been taking our 8-month-old son to swimming class for the past couple months, and each time we’ve gone, I’ve noticed something about the parents lounging in the deck chairs near the floor-to-roof glass wall that separates them from the pool. Most of them have their eyes locked on their phones instead of watching their kids in the water. It’s crossword puzzles, Gmail, CNN.com, games—you name it. I see it when we’re waiting to ent...

Posted on January 12, 2017 at 1:00 PM by Matt Beardmore

The only parenting advice you need in 4 words | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: Lauren McKinnon/Flickr

Thirteen years of parenting and dozens of parenting books later, I’m here to offer my own advice for parents: Forget about it. Advice, that is. 

We need an antidote to all the “do this, do that” out there for parents. Why? Why not use advice if we can learn from others so that our own journey with children is more joyful? Because, bombarded by so much advice, we can’t retrieve the applicable “to do” from our cluttered memory banks when faced with...

Posted on January 12, 2017 at 12:49 PM by Concentric Counseling

How I'm teaching my young kids 4 languages | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: Charlotte Tsou

Recently I was in NYC for work, and as I was walking through the city it became clear English is not the only dominating language. You could hear Chinese and Brazilian Portuguese spoken at shops, and chattering among street vendors in Hindi and Arabic. This is definitely a phenomenon in the United States of America—a country of immigrants. In addition, when I look around, there are many kids nowadays from cross-racial families, like mine. Looking exotic is ...

Posted on January 04, 2017 at 1:57 AM by Charlotte Tsou

I play opera for my kids (and so should you) | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: Amie Kuo

I was a theater major (turned banker), so naturally I enjoy music and performance, and my husband is a big opera fan. We're also parents to two toddlers, so music is an essential part of our family life. Before kids, my husband and I used to go to a dozen shows each opera season, and now we still go to half dozen shows as a date night, sans kids. (I know some who have parents tried, but personally I don’t think it is wise to take kids under five to the opera.)

...

Posted on December 01, 2016 at 1:55 PM by Charlotte Tsou

Don't talk about my body in front of my kids | NPNparents.org

If there is one thing I would change about my body it would be how people view it. Because they don't just view it, they feel the need to comment about it. In front of my children. 

Stop. Stop. Stop. Stop talking about bodies, about my body. 

"Oh my god, you're so skinny!" isn't praise or a helpful observation. It's annoying, unnecessary and not something I want my children to hear on repeat. 

I actually own a few mirrors. I've seen my reflection and I don't need every other stra...

Posted on September 19, 2016 at 10:14 AM by Julianne Neely

Raise your child to be a global citizen | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: DFID/Flickr

*SPONSORED BY LANGUAGE STARS*

 

As parents, we have high hopes for our children. We want them to be kind, curious, generous and caring. We want them to make contributions to society, however small, that make the world a better place. We want them to show empathy toward those who are less fortunate. In short, we want them to be global citizens. 

Global citizens are aware of the world outside their communities, and understand that we are all interconnec...

Posted on August 05, 2016 at 10:59 AM