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49 Comments

  1. says

    This is such a good read. I’m a Montessori teacher and soon-to-be-mom and I was thinking along the same lines–my parenting approach pretty much the same as my teaching approach. But I keep thinking that I get the children in my classes for at least 3 hours a day–I wonder how I’d fare if I have to do this 24/7 with my baby. Here’s to hoping we can manage. :)

    Mars M.
    http://www.montessoriinmars.blogspot.com

    • Tazz says

      don’t worry! If you’re a conscious parent, you’ll be fine. I teach elementary and now have a baby of my own. I find that I treat him the way I do my students. You really can;t change who you are, and if you’re a fantastic teacher, then you’ll be a fantastic mother too. esp when teaching is something you cannot fake. It has to come from the heart :)

  2. Tazz says

    As an elementary school teacher, I was shocked but not surprised to see some of my kids didnt know how to do basic things, like putting their stuff away or cleaning after themselves. This is due to parents coddling and not allowing them to do it for themselves (‘he’s too little/she’s too small for that/oh that seem’s hard’ etc). I believe in letting the children try, even if it seems difficult. Basic stuff like arranging their stuff, putting them away, being respectful to others is something they can all learn and start doing. The look in their faces when they realise they can do something is always something I love to see!

    • Cheryll P says

      It’s not always coddling, although that is certainly one cause – one giant challenge I see in my own home is that my husband prefers things cleaned up or put away a certain way – and my almost-3 year old simply cannot always remember the complicated system or do it quickly enough, so he gets removed from the opportunity and cleaning happens magically after he’s in bed. Then, when he’s away from home and the toys or bins are different – even the system he thought he sort-of knew fails to make sense, too. We parents need to be patient, provide many different ways to show what constitutes success in tasks, and allow for mistakes and corrections. Likewise, we need to check out what happens in the classroom or elsewhere and try to draw connections, not boundaries. Patience and flexibility are so useful in cultivating problem-solving.

    • Jevemor says

      I fully agree. I had to teach my daughter to be independent from a very early age, mainly out of necessity, because I am disabled. She started walking at 9 months, and I hardly carried her around after that. (Kind of wish I could have..) but it made me realize that she could do anything, if given the opportunity. By the time she was speaking, she spoke with good manners..She was dressing herself, and putting dirty clothes in hamper. It may seem strict to some that I have her set places at the table, and clear her plate when she’s finished…but these are all skills that need to be taught early, otherwise it’s hell to pay to try to backtrack and “fix” things you didn’t teach them. She just turned five, yet I hardly ever remember having to seriously discipline her, because she knew her limits and my expectations. She testing the limits a bit now, but I’m glad to only have ONE area to work on, rather than a rowdy, disrespectful child, starting from step one.

  3. Kristine Duehl says

    My 3.5 yr old CAN do all of these things. Getting him to DO them is another story. He has slowly been refusing to do more and more stuff. Pull up his pants after he uses the bathroom? He could do it 2 months ago and now refuses to do it. He will just walk around without his pants on. I’ve tried every way I know to encourage him to do it, but he just says “my hands don’t work, mommy, you need to help me.” I realize all this is his way of getting more attention now that his little brother is 9 months and requires more supervision, but I can’t seem to figure out how to demotivate him while still being understanding and supportive of his need for attention.

    • lisert@austin.rr.com says

      Teach him to help with his brother. I am 75 years old, three years older than my brother. I remember going to the frig and getting a bottle of formula and heating on the stove, testing the tempeture on my arm and bringing it to the bedroom to feed my brother. It was a morning ritual, my twin sister and I were rewarded with an apple which mother would slice and feed us.

    • Lisa says

      My son who is 3.5 year old is the same way. I’ve been trying sticker awards for potty by self, and am sometimes successful. He’ll put on his pants, wash his hands, then choose a sticker. Unintentionally, I only had abc stickers, but it worked out well because he reads the letter and color to me that he chooses.

  4. Celeste says

    Great article thanks! Just wanted to let you know that my son was always a LOUD talker as well. We had his ears checked and it turned out he had a ton of fluid in his ears causing a 60% hearing loss. We got tubes placed in and we have seen an AMAZING difference. Just thought that may be helpful.

  5. Annono says

    I believe if you work with your kids they learn early on. My child and the nieces of mine were all potty trained way before two years of age. The three year old is writing and doing math as the two year old knows her numbers and letters. The iPad is a great learning tool. Kids love to learn.

  6. janet swiler says

    I am a grandparent, and I would say learning to say thank you,no thank you, yes please, excuse me, and to see children stay in their places while in a restaurant, or staying under control in the marketplace. Good reading. Thank you.

  7. Susan Masters says

    Great advice as a grandparent you have the time to look back and consider what the best thing you gave your children it was your time. Time to show them again and again the life skills they need . It’s good training for parents too be organised get up in time and it is precious time !

  8. Sashila says

    Thank you so much for posting this. I loved it thoroughly . I have recently just started a preschool and I look forward into inculcating all these skills into my kids at school too ^_^

  9. Adrienne Conner says

    My daughters’ 3 yr Preschool teacher taught her how to put her coat on by herself. Lay the coat down on the floor with the top of the coat near your feet. Slide hands into the arms of the coat, put the coat over your head and around you. I can’t tell you the sense of pride my now 4 year old feels and how many younger kids in our weekly playgroup that she has taught how to do this. Proud Mama!!

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