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What are Executive Functions?

 

Executive function is like the CEO of the brain. It’s in charge of making sure things get done. When kids have issues with executive functioning, any task that requires planning, organization, memory, time management and flexible thinking becomes a challenge. The more you know about the challenges, the better you’ll be able to help your child build her executive skills and manage the difficulties.

How Can We Best Support a Child With Dyscalculia? 

How can we best support a child with dyscalculia? 

1. Don’t call attention to their struggle. 

Just be kind, patient, understanding and encouraging with them. 

2. Address math anxiety. 

Students with dyscalculia aren’t the only ones to have math anxiety. Talking openly about this, is a good way to normalize it for every child. If you see a child becoming overwhelmed or flustered, take a quick break to do some stretches or take some deep breaths together as a class.  

3. Use visuals. 

Use manipulatives to represent numbers. You don’t need anything fancy – you can even use paper clips or poker chips. Mix it up occasionally with small treats. 

4. Incorporate number lines. 

The number line is a great visual tool to help all children see relations between and among numbers. Graph paper helps students keep their number lines straight, neat and organized.  

5. Practice in short sessions. 

Practicing in short bursts with the child throughout the day. Even thirty seconds or a minute of quick one-on-one practice a few times a day helps students become more comfortable exploring math concepts.  

6. Allow helpful tools. 

Have items available that make math less intimidating, such as graph paper, pencils, erasers, and calculators. Provide the student with a quiet place to work or allow noise-canceling headphones.  

7. Make it playful. 

Give students time to play board games with dice, dominos and play with coins together. Playing games allows students to practice math skills without realizing it, taking away a lot of anxiety. 

8. Focus on logic and language. 

It is difficult for students with dyscalculia to memorize multiplication tables and recognize numerals. Focus on areas they might be stronger in, such as logic or vocabulary to explain math topics instead of expecting memorization to suddenly just click. Demonstrate real-world applications whenever possible. 

9. Use technology. 

Allow the student to record lectures to watch or listen to again. Email copies of your notes. Encourage students to play math apps and games. 

10. Offer extra support. 

Allowing extra time for tests, use of a calculator or other tools, or shortened homework assignments. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

6 Ways to Show Faith in Your Child

Why Play Matters

Play is one of the main ways in which children learn and develop. It helps to build self-worth by giving a child a sense of his or her own abilities and to feel good about themselves. Because it’s fun, children often become very absorbed in what they are doing.  

Play is very important to a child’s development; it is an integral part of a child’s early years foundation stage and supports their learning journey too. Young children can develop many skills through the power of play. They may develop their language skills, emotions, creativity and social skills. Play helps to nurture imagination and give the child a sense of adventure. Through this, they can learn essential skills such as problem solving, working with others, sharing and much more. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

6 Ways to Show Faith in Your Child

How to Help Overcome Math Anxiety?

Math anxiety can range from general discomfort and mental disorganization to feelings of panic and physical nervousness. For many students, math anxiety turns into a cycle of failure because the more worried they become, the less they learn. 

  1. Surround the child with positive reinforcement. 
  1. Supplement teaching with a qualified tutor. 
  1. Have the child write down his or he worries about math before doing It so they can realize the unfounded fears. 
  1. Try to create positive emotions by making math fun. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Improving Kids Social Skills

Feeling alone and disconnected from peers is a distressing thing for a child to experience. And it’s not only the children who suffer. As parents, we also feel frustrated and hopeless about not knowing how to help your children make the friends they so strongly desire. Developing social skills and interacting with the world around them will be a critical part of their success and happiness, even more important than their academic results. 

Kids with ADHD often struggle to stay tuned in to their environments; they frequently misread social signals.  Misinterpretations may lead to overreacting to ambiguous social situations or can also lead to under-reacting. The kids who don’t see these signals may be insensitive to the feedback cues others are giving them, leading to anger from peers who feel that their ‘social hints’ are being ignored. 

  • Talk to your child about the need for social skills. Discuss the importance of making friends and getting along with others. 
  • Set a social goal with your child. 
  • Carefully arrange a supervised, time-limited playdate for your child to spend with other children to practice newly learned social skills.  
  • Choose play activities that are simple and enticing. 
  • Record your child at home. Review these videos with your child to increase self-observation and awareness. 
  • Help your child understand the motivations and feelings of others by observing out loud what others’ faces and bodies are telling us.  

You already help your child to develop social skills by modeling good social skills yourself and by creating situations in which your child can practice. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Acknowledging Childs Feelings

Kids experience complex feelings. Just like adults they get frustrated, excited, nervous, sad, jealous, frightened, worried, angry and embarrassed. 

Our kids don’t have the vocabulary to talk about how they are feeling. Instead, they express their feelings through facial expressions, through their body, their behavior and play. Sometimes they may act out their feelings in physical, inappropriate or problematic ways. They need guidance on how to manage their feelings in positive and constructive ways. 

Verbalizing acceptance of your child’s emotions is a key to helping him feel loved and understood. Acknowledging out loud his disappointment makes him feel heard and respected, which calms him down and reduces his need to protest physically. 

Acknowledging their feelings will assist him toward a better self-understanding. Children often experience a swirl of emotions inside and do not know what is happening. When you can label his emotions and attach it to a situation the child will feel calmer. 

As the child grows, he will internalize this way of working with emotions and handle life situations in a more effective way. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Discipline Your Child with Love Not Fear

Discipline is an important and effective tool but use it in a way that keeps your child’s dignity intact. They need to understand the ways their actions affect other people, and which behaviors others will and won’t tolerate. 

Effective discipline requires guiding and redirecting your child with love, not fear. Here are some tips to help you discipline with love:  

  • Make corrections about learning rather than getting in trouble. Don’t just tell your child not to run around with food in his mouth. Explain why this rule is important. Tell your child that it isn’t safe because they could choke, and that your job is to help keep them from getting hurt. Make explanations short. Kids tune out of long-winded speeches. 
  • Yell less. Try to stay calm. Loving discipline requires us to keep a clear head so that we can talk to our children and reach their hearts as well as their ears. 
  • Teach your child healthy behavior habits. Be pro-active by working with your child to create a daily schedule and a list of responsibilities (including a chore chart). This gives them much-needed structure, and a chance to practice self-discipline by completing necessary tasks. 
  • Model good behavior. The more we model how to respond to disappointment, sadness, boredom, and not getting what we want, the more our children learn emotional discipline.
  • Acknowledge your child’s feelings. Your child may be angry and uncooperative because a playdate just ended. You can say, “I see you are feeling upset because Jack left, but you still need to pick up your train set.” 
  • Never hit, spank, shake, or slap your child. Fear-based discipline simply doesn’t work if you want to raise a healthy, well-adjusted child. 
  • Be logical about consequences. Issue consequences that make sense and are appropriate for the situation. And make sure they’re something you’re willing and able to follow through on. 
  • Hug often. Physical affection outside of discipline time is a crucial element of disciplining with love. And if you’ve established a bond of touch in your relationship with your child, it will be more natural to conclude your time of discipline with a reassuring and reconnecting hug. 

We want to inspire our children to gain our approval and that inspiration doesn’t come from fear. Rather, it comes from discipline that is positive and based on a respectful, healthy relationship between parent and child. 

How do you discipline your children with love? 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Encourage Your Child to Identify and Communicate their Needs

Learning to identify and express feelings in a positive way helps kids develop the skills they need to manage them effectively. 

Being a parent means you’ve got a really important role to play in helping kids understand their feelings and behaviors. Kids need to be shown how to manage their feelings in positive and constructive ways. 

When kids learn to manage their emotions in childhood, it leads to positive attitudes and behaviors later in life. 

But as your child begins to grow and mature, how can you CONTINUE to encourage them to identify and communicate their needs?  
  
It can sound something like this: 
  

“I’m thinking you want some attention right now. Do you know what type of attention you want? Maybe to talk a little…? Or to sit next to me?”   
  
“I can tell this is hard… and frustrating, I get that. Do you know how you can help yourself start to feel a little better? If you need my help, I’m right here. You can let me know what type of help you need from me when you’re ready.”  
  
And yes, once you start this you will probably hear a lot of… “I don’t know.”   
That’s ok… keep at it… 
 

You can say: “That’s ok, sometimes it takes time to know what to do.” or “Hmm… let’s think together. I’ll tell you my ideas and you can tell me yours.”  
  
You’re planting the seed that it’s up to your child to advocate for what they want.  

 
 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Ways to Teach and Encourage Respect

Figuring out how to explain respect to a child is no easy task. To truly teach children empathy and respect, you will have to start with yourself. Every time you talk to your child, they are learning about respect or disrespect in relationships. Your job as a parent is to be aware of your actions and be a role model of respectful behavior and good manners for your children when reacting to them.  

The following are some ways to teach and encourage respect: 

  1. Model Respect. By modeling respectful behavior for your child, you are not only teaching respect for others but also teaching your child to respect themselves. 
  1. Discuss Respect. Talk about the way we treat others. Focus on the words we use and the attitudes we portray.  Explain the expectation of respect for others demonstrated in both attitude and behavior. 
  1. Teach Turn-Taking. Helping children to patiently wait for a turn to speak encourages respectful listening.  Encouraging children to wait develops an attitude of patience and respect. 
  1. Teach Polite Responses. As children begin vocalizing, adding phrases to their vocabulary like, “excuse me,” “no, thank you,” and “yes, ma’am/sir” continues to encourage an attitude of respect. 
  1. Praise Respectful Behavior. When children demonstrate good manners and respect to others, give specific praise for the positive choices they are making. 

Time and consistency together with our intentional teaching efforts will teach children this valuable character trait. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog 

Losing Your Temper with your Kids

Losing our temper with our kids sometimes doesn’t make us bad parents; it’s just part of life with little ones. But when our explosions become habitual, when we’re losing it on a regular basis, then it’s a problem. It’s a problem because it increases the stress levels in our home, weakens our relationships with our children, and to top it all off, it rarely solves any issues. 

We don’t have to be perfect parents. We just have to seize those opportunities to realize when we’re off-course and find ways to start moving in the right direction. They need a parent who models how to take responsibility and make repairs. A parent who apologizes and reconnects when things go wrong — as they inevitably do sometimes in human relationships. 

Remember: If you manage to stay levelheaded instead of losing your temper, your child will eventually learn that she can keep calm too. Here are some “stay cool” strategies to try the next time your kid’s behavior gets your temperature rising:  

1. Commit to NOT TAKING ACTION while angry. 

When you notice that you’re getting upset, that’s your red flag reminder to Stop, Drop (your agenda, just temporarily), and Breathe. 

2. Remind yourself to see the situation from your child’s point of view. 

3. Restore calm and safety. 

Take a few deep breaths. Switch gears emotionally by finding a more positive thought. Then, if you’re calm enough, reconnect with your child and try a “Do Over.” If you can acknowledge your child’s feelings, it opens the door to reconnecting. Empathize with why they’re upset. Set whatever limit you need to. Modulate your tone and keep breathing. Remember, anger doesn’t dissipate until it feels heard. So, listen and try to understand. 

4. Always apologize after you lose it

Remember that you are role-modeling, both when you yell and when you apologize. Resist the natural impulse to blame it on your child by saying that if they would just act right, you wouldn’t yell. It’s always your responsibility if you yell, and no child (or adult) ever deserves to get yelled at.  

5. Avoid a Repeat. 

Ask yourself, “What’s one thing I can do so I don’t lose it next time?” 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog 

Help Kids Develop Healthy Self-Esteem

Good self-esteem helps children try new things, take healthy risks and solve problems. It gives them a solid foundation for their learning and development. Parents can promote healthy self-esteem by showing encouragement. 

Use the following strategies to help your child feel good about themselves:  

1. Be spontaneous and affectionate. Your love will help boost your child’s self-esteem. Every child should believe that no matter what they do—success or failure— their parents still love them and will continue to be there for them.  

2. Help your child to set achievable goals. Work with your child to establish these goals. Begin with goals that are very easy to accomplish. Give your child a taste of success and the confidence boost that goes along with it. 

3. Encourage persistence. One way you can help your child is to set a good example. Demonstrate what it means to persevere. 

4. Give your child choices. This can be as simple as giving them two options for lunch or allowing them to choose which shoes, they wear that day.  

5. Discourage perfection. Your child’s self-esteem will suffer when they realize that they can never be perfect. Show your child that you value effort and progress.  

6. Avoid over-praising. Praise your child for making a good effort. It should be noted that excessive praise has been shown to hurt a child’s confidence rather than boost it. 

7. Allow your child to overhear you complimenting them. A child gets a big boost to their self-esteem when they hear a parent praising them to another adult. Your children are always watching you. 

8. Take good care of yourself. Taking good care of yourself shows your child that you’re important. They will believe that they’re important and should take care of themselves as well. 

9. Be a positive role model. If you’re excessively harsh on yourself, pessimistic, or unrealistic about your abilities and limitations, your kids might eventually mirror you. Nurture your own self-esteem and they’ll have a great role model. 

There’s no doubt that a child with high self-esteem is happier and more confident. Teach your children to love and believe in themselves, and they’ll reap the benefits throughout their entire lives. 
 
 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog 

Set Limit With As Little Emotion As Possible

While totally exasperating, tantrums and pushing the limits signal a leap in your child’s development. ⁠ 
⁠ 
💡 Set your limit with as little emotion (and as few words) as possible. The more matter of fact you can be, the better. Talk in a low, steady voice and be aware of the nonverbal messages you’re sending with your facial expression and body language. Using a kind and compassionate tone can be calming to your child. (And, it’s also a way to soothe yourself during a stressful time.)⁠ 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

6 Ways to Show Faith in Your Child

Why Phonemic Awareness Matters 

According to years of scientific research, the two best indicators of a child’s reading success are phonemic awareness and letter sound knowledge! 

If reading is your child’s door to the future, phonemic awareness is the key to unlocking that door. Without phonemic or phonological awareness skills, phonics is hard to master, making learning to read, reading fluency and reading comprehension challenging. 

Why Phonemic Awareness Matters 

From birth, we build our vocabulary and semantics (meaning) through listening, through oral language. The brain identifies every phoneme in every word, stores it in oral word memory and attaches a meaning. 

Then, when we read, we translate the text symbols we see on the page to phonemes and thereby connect to words and understanding in our oral word memory. For instance, if your child’s word memory has “dog” stored as having phonemes: /d/ /o/ /g/, then she sees d-o-g as text, she will recognize it immediately. 

Phonemes are the connectors of text symbols back to our oral language.  Phonemic awareness is the connection skill. 

Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.   

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog