Friday, April 01, 2011

Follow-up to week one parenting class

I thought it might be beneficial to follow-up on the things I have learned each week in my parenting class and touch base on the homework I had to do as well as note any specific challenges or successes I/we have had.

So, in week one of parenting class our focus was strongly on incorporating one-on-one parent/kid play time in to our lives on a regular, if not daily, basis. I have to say I came home a little bit cocky about this, thinking "oh, I don't need to put it on the calendar, I will be super mama and do this EVERY DAY with EACH KID for THIRTY MINUTES!" Well, the reality was a little different. I would often find myself at the tail end of the day and realize I hadn't had any 1-on-1 play time with the girls and would scramble to do it right before bed. Since the evening time is tricky in our house, often things start falling apart then, it was a struggle a few nights to want to to playtime when Iris, specifically, was being really defiant and hurtful. One night it made it hard for me to enjoy playing with her and another night Matt sent her to bed early for her poor behavior so we didn't get a chance to play.

The few nights I did play with one of the girls it seemed to be difficult for the other girl to respect that sacred time, so I am going to be more aware of that in the future. I think, overall, I got three 1-on-1 times per girl with an average play time of about 20 minutes.

I did a great job being conscientious of not speaking negatively of my children when they were within earshot and I also did a great job of not applying general negative labels to them.

I also worked hard at applying praise to behavior I wanted to see increase. This praise piece becomes a stronger focus in week two, so I will discuss that more there.

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