Learning how to use H.E.L.P

Toddler Whispering Workshop -- Lesson 1

2. Limit choice. Giving limited choice helps a child feel as if she has some control over her world. Too many choices are often confusing and counterproductive. Two choices of breakfast cereals, for example, are more than enough at this age.

3. Limit undesirable behavior. A child who has a meltdown whenever anyone says "no" is not, as some parents fear, a "bad" kid. Quite the opposite; when I witness such a scene, I say, "Poor little thing. No one taught her about boundaries." Children need to learn and accept what's expected of them. The only way that happens is when parents teach them.

4. Limit anything that's not good in big doses. For most children, television and sweets would be at the top of this list. There may be other activities, foods, toys or places that have an adverse effect on your child. If so, accept that your toddler doesn't do well in certain circumstances rather than continually trying to acclimate her.

5. Limit potential failure. Although your toddler's abilities are growing every day, don't try to push her. By giving your child a toy that's too advanced for her or taking her to eat in a posh restaurant that isn't kid-friendly, you're not only putting your child in over her head, you're asking for trouble.

6. Limit your own undesirable behavior. Toddlers develop skills by repetition and imitation. During every waking hour, your toddler is watching, listening and learning from your example. Therefore, pay attention to what you may be inadvertently "teaching" her. If you curse, for example, don't be surprised if the same words are among the first to come out of your child's mouth.

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