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Discover the secret of childhood from 0-3 year old:

Posts Tagged ‘brain development’

The word is ‘hurt.’ Can you say, ‘Mommy, that hurt!

Thursday, November 17th, 2011 11:08 am | By Stephanie Woo

“I don’t like it,” the 3-year-old muttered to herself as the guests left. Miserable throughout her older sister’s birthday party, she was now growing angry. “I want Ally’s doll, not this one!” Her parents had bought her a consolation present, but the strategy went down like a bomb. The girl threw her doll to the floor. “Ally’s doll! Ally’s doll!’ She began to cry…

“You seem sad. Are you sad?” is what the girl’s dad said. The little girl nodded, still angry, too. The dad continued. “I think I know why. You’re sad because Ally’s gotten all the presents. You only got one!’ The little girl nodded again.“ You want the same number and you can’t have it, and that’s unfair and that makes you sad.” The dad seemed to be pouring it on. “Whenever somebody gets something I want and I don’t, I get sad, too.” Silence.

Then the dad said the line most characteristic of a verbalizing parent. “We have a word for that feeling, honey,” he said. “Do you want to know what that word is?” She whimpered, “Ok” He held her in his arms. “We call it being jealous. You wanted Ally’s presents, and you couldn’t have them. You were jealous.” She cried softly but was beginning to calm down. “Jealous,” she whispered.” “Yep” Dad replied, “and it’s an icky feeling.” “I been jealous all day,” she replied, nestling into her daddy’s big strong arms.”

Excerpt from Brain Rules for Baby by John Medina, pg 207

I love this story. It makes so much sense. And it reminds me of Janet Lansbury’s recent article about acknowledging your child’s feelings.

When children fall or hurt themselves, I’ve seen parents pick them up and try to distract them with a toy or something new and shiny. Either the child keeps screaming or has a confused look on his/her face. When I feel hurt, I hate it when my friends try to get me to see a movie or have a drink. But when they say, “That’s hard. It is really tough to have that happen to you.” I always nod and say, “Yes, it IS hard!” Their simple acknowledgement makes me feel so much better.

Brooke and Mackenzie are 11 months now. Whenever one of them falls, gets hurt and starts crying, I’ll pick her up, hold her and then I say, “It hurts, honey. The word is ‘hurt.’ Can you say, “Mommy, that hurt!” It works like magic. A cry or two more and they are ready to crawl out of my arms and move on to the next thing.

One more thing, if you haven’t read Brain Rules for Babies, you must. If you have a baby or are around babies, read this book. To see other books I recommend, click here.

Confession of a twin mother

Thursday, October 20th, 2011 4:29 pm | By Stephanie Woo

Last week, as I picked up Brooke out of the stroller after our morning walk, I had a breakdown. A wave of desperation washed over me. I simply cannot go on taking care of these two kids today.

Just so you know, I’m not the type who “can’t” do anything. I can do anything, I’ve always thought. And yet there I was, I just couldn’t do it anymore. And it wasn’t the first time this happened.

That night, I called my coach, Kim Ann Curtin of The Coach Shoppe. She’s the best personal development coach in the world. And we worked through it all.

I was reading in Brain Rules for Babies by John Medina that children are wired for safety, not learning. They need safety first before they will learn. And if the environment is not safe, then they will not learn. Safe environment actually produce smarter kids. What kind of environment is not safe: emotional, stressed out, angry environments. The kind of space I was in when I broke down.

Luckily my coach set me straight. I clearly had not asked for the help I needed in the last three days when the kids were sick. As a result, I didn’t sleep for three nights. My nanny asked for the day off suddenly which I agreed to and I was left in a bind. Physically and emotionally I was already at the end. Rather than prevent this from happening, I let it get to my absolute limit before I reached out for help.

My coach made this all so clear for me. Who suffers the most in all of this? My kids. They saw mommy break down in tears. During the hour I waited for my husband to come home, I felt so paralyzed I couldn’t do anything for them (after Daddy came home, we were able to work together and cook lunch for them, bathe them, and put them down for a nap, before I went down for a long nap myself. Daddy took over for the rest of the day, while I rested). This isn’t what I want for my kids.

The next two days, I took my coach’s coaching and handed the kids over to the nanny.  I went for a massage, had dinner till 11pm with friends and took care of myself. It was a wonderful two days and I was myself again, happy and grateful for my beautiful children.

That’s why a coach is absolutely essential for every single mother. Husbands, mothers, mother-in-laws, friend, even fellow mothers can only do so much for you. Those relationships are generally multi-layered. But a coach is there for one thing and one thing only: your well-being.  And for a mother, that means also the well-being of her children. A coach is essential. If you need a coach, read more here.

Stimulating brain growth

Saturday, February 12th, 2011 4:00 pm | By Stephanie Woo

My mother says holding babies in position where their head is hanging down (across lap, over shoulder) is scientifically proven to stimulate frontal lobe growth = smart babies. And babies love it because they were head down inutero! Plus, these exercises train them to strengthen their neck. God’s design – ingenious!