- Working through some reasoning with them on difficult situations, and the good and bad of different choices can help while they are at an age where right and wrong are starting to make sense
- Reward good behavior! Talk about your expectations of their behavior (ie, you will make your bed and brush your teeth in the mornings before school) and when you catch them being good, positively reinforce this!
- You are what you eat! No wait, that’s not right… you are your child’s mirror for behavior! Just think twice before swearing at someone while driving, or yelling at the ref at your kid’s soccer game. They are sponges still at this age and model themselves after you and your behavior
- Not something from the AAP site, but something I’ve read before and I think makes sense. They come home from school exhausted, and we grill them about their day etc. With how busy our lives have become, we don’t give them a lot of downtime, so something you can do is just come home and play a board game together. Let them decompress from the craziness of the day. You may get more than “nothing” when you ask what they did that day.
- Power struggle much? The most important thing to do as your children starts to demonstrate their further need for independence is to provide unconditional love and support with clear boundaries and expectations. Simple, right?
- Stay involved with your kids. Talk to them, every day, and know who their friends are. This is SO important. Studies have shown that kids who are connected with their families make safer, better choices.
- Be a role model! Notice, I repeat this. It never ends.
- Same with praising them! Praise their good choices, their grades, etc! We all do well with a little praise. I’m not talking participation medal for everyone, but positive reinforcement is always good!
Have tips to share? Comment below!