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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 to Avoid Gaslighting Children 

Gaslighting is a psychological term used to describe the process of grooming someone into believing that they are losing it or going crazy. Gaslighting parents do it to maintain dominance over the child. They will, for example, talk down to the child and attribute every claim and complaint to his or her imagination. 

Understand the importance of avoiding behaviors that could deny, withhold, or trivialize a child’s thoughts or feelings. Evaluate the ways that you respond to what your child says and does. Focus on providing a more nurturing environment for them. 

  1. Denying the child’s feelings or needs. Do you ever ignore, deny, or trivialize what they say as incorrect or unimportant? Even if you don’t realize it, this can hurt your child’s self-esteem and trust in you. 
  1. Respond with understanding rather than anger. Try to become more aware of your emotions as well to avoid letting them get the best of you. If you notice that you are feeling stressed, take a few minutes for yourself to calm down. 
  1. Focus on reinforcing the child’s positive behavior. Even if the child is fearful of something, do not criticize them for it. Make sure to encourage them to find healthy ways to overcome their fears and build confidence. 
  1. Don’t expect a child to act like an adult. Make sure to allow children to be children. When they are upset, focus on addressing their most common concerns. Pay attention to the possible reasons behind their behavior. 
  1. Label and honor their feelings, be empathetic if you don’t understand. It helps to acknowledge, label, and talk about what your child is experiencing. You can validate their feelings even while you set the rules. Offer compassion and reassurance, even if you have no idea what the problem is. 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

How to Help Kids Learn from Mistakes

Learning from mistakes and errors is an important part of child and adolescent development. Most adults understand this concept. Yet, we have failed to teach our children that there is a positive side to getting things wrong. 

Parents’ actions influence the way children feel about themselves. When a parent holds a child, the child can feel how important he or she is. Parents should talk to their kids, listen to what they have to say and show them that their opinions count. 

Here are ten ways to help children learn from mistakes: 

  1. Acknowledge that you don’t expect them to be perfect. 
  1. Let them know your love is unconditional, regardless of their mistakes or lapses in judgment. 
  1. Don’t rescue kids from their mistakes. Instead, focus on the solution. 
  1. Provide examples of your own mistakes, the consequences, and how you learned from them. 
  1. Encourage children to take responsibility for their mistakes and not blame others. 
  1. Avoid pointing out your child’s past mistakes. Instead, focus on the one at hand. 
  1. Praise children for their ability to admit their mistakes. 
  1. Praise children for their efforts and courage to overcome setbacks. 
  1. Mentor your child on how to apologize when their mistakes have hurt others. 
  1. Help kids look at the good side of getting things wrong! 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Ways to Become a More Patient Parent 

Managing kids can be a challenge. Some days keeping the peace while keeping your cool seems impossible. While your own patience may be frayed by angry outbursts, opposition, defiance, arguing, and talking back, it’s during these episodes that you need your patience most. Of course, you feel angry, but what counts is how you handle that. 

Your interactions with your child can either be patient, reflective and responsive driven by your goals and values, or reactive, driven by your feelings in the present moment. What will you model for your child? 

Here are 6 things to help with having patience in moments of struggle 

  1. Don’t take behavior issues personally. Look at misbehaviors as opportunities to help your child develop. 
  1. Consider your limits and boundaries. Set limits BEFORE you get angry and prevent the situation from escalating and your anger from erupting. 
  1. Be aware of your anger rising. Stop what you are doing and take a deep breath. That breath is your pause button. It’s at this moment you can make the conscious choice to keep calm and remain reflective and responsive and be there for your child. 
  1. Have a mantra. Having a mantra, you can repeat to yourself during trying times can help restore your calm. Choose a mantra that’s meaningful to you and calming for you. 
  1. Wait before discipline. Rather than giving in to your strong feelings and becoming reactive and punitive toward your child, take a ten-minute time out of your own to calm yourself down. Come back when you can have a constructive response to your child and their behavior. 
  1. Practice empathy. 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

APPROPRIATE CHORES BY AGE 

We should teach our children a sense of responsibility from an early age. This is a life skill that will allow the child to flourish in their respective communities and carry on throughout their life. House chores are simple exercises that are beneficial to both their home and the child. Though tiring, these teach the child to contribute to their respective community and to be responsible with their duties. 

Toddlers 

  • Put toys back into their containers 
  • Put books back on their shelves 
  • Place clothes in the laundry bin 
  • Clean up after their mess 
  • Help make the bed 

Preschoolers 

  • Make the bed 
  • Set the table 
  • Feed the pets 
  • Water the plants 
  • Dust the shelves 

Elementary 

  • Do the dishes 
  • Clean the floor 
  • Fold the laundry 
  • Take out the trash 

Pre-Adolescents 

  • Do the laundry 
  • Clean their rooms and toilet 
  • Clean the house 
  • Wash the car 
  • Make simple meals 

Teenagers 

  • Look after their younger siblings 
  • Plan and prepare meals 
  • Go to the grocery store 
  • Mow the lawn 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Foster Your Child’s Emotional Safety

Children don’t get traumatized because they get hurt. They become traumatized when left alone with their hurt. 
 
At a young age, children need guidance and support to process and deal with their big feelings, otherwise they will either suppress them or act out. For example, contrary to what we’ve been told, anger is not a bad emotion. Children just need support in releasing it in a healthy way. 

As adults, we need to provide them with this safe space to do so. Talking and journaling with them daily is a great way of doing this.

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Putting Too Much Pressure on Kids 

Many parents want to help their children be the best they can be. However, some parents put their children under too much pressure to perform. Being under such intense pressure can have serious consequences for kids. 

Kids who feel that they are under enormous pressure to do well from parents and adults can experience consequences in multiple areas of their life, from their mental health to their sleep. Here are just a few of the consequences of putting kids under too much pressure to perform. 

  • Higher rates of mental illness. 
  • Higher risk of injuries. 
  • Increased likelihood of cheating.  
  • Refusing to participate. 
  • Self-esteem problems. 

There are some things that you can do as a parent to help your child without placing too much pressure on them. 

  • Encourage your child to do their best. Focus on the process, rather than the result. 
  • If you find yourself placing too much pressure on your child, ask yourself why their performance, test score, or success matters to you. 
  • Talk to your child about the sport/assignment/performance they are working on. Set aside your feelings to make room for your child to express theirs. Giving your child the space to be seen and heard will encourage them rather than make them feel they have disappointed you. 

Good parenting requires parents to nurture their child’s strengths and help with their weaknesses instead of forcing attributes upon them. 
 
Make sure your child is happy with what they are pursuing. 
 
Just like adults, children need a ‘check-out’ time to alleviate tension and reduce stress. 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

 Promoting Healthy Attachments with Children 

Attachment is a crucial element for our child’s early development and is an important predictor of their later social adjustment. A secure attachment to their closest caregivers helps your baby deal with distressing situations, strange environments, and perceived threats. It will help her grow to be a curious, confident, and cooperative child. She will also be more likely to manage her social behavior, impulses, and emotions appropriately as she grows.  

Let’s look at some ideas below. 

1. Be Involved 

Attachment is largely dependent upon what parents do. Therefore, while your little one is an infant, it is especially important that you are present, interactive, and positively engaged with him. Hold him, read to him, smile at him, sing to him. You are his favorite person in the whole world. Your very presence is what he craves and being with you helps him learn that he has a “safe place.” 

2. Be Sensitive 

Responding to her cries and being sensitive to her signals shows her that she can trust you to meet her needs. She needs to know that she can count on you to comfort her, feed her, and soothe her. When she is secure, knowing she has someone who will meet her needs, she is free to explore other areas that are key for healthy development. 

3. Be Appropriate 

Parenting an infant can be exhausting. But it is critical for his social and emotional development that your responses to him be appropriate. Even when you are tired, it’s important to be positive and encouraging. He is learning from every interaction with you; remember that you are modeling for him how to be in control of your behavior and emotions. 

4. Be Affectionate 

Smile at your baby from across the room. When you interact with her, let her see how much you enjoy her. Hug, giggle, snuggle, coo with her. Show her that you notice when she makes a face or tries to talk. Developing this sense of attachment and security frees her to be curious about the world around her, confident that she can return to you, her “safe place”, if she needs to. 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

The Power of a 4-Second Pause 

The act of pausing, repeating back what we hear in a positive way, and letting go of any agenda is known as reflecting. By actively choosing to do this, we encourage our kids to not just recall information but to be aware of what they learned — what was interesting, how they feel about it, and what they can do to build on the experience. When we pause, we’re telling our kids that we’re open to hearing anything else they have to say. 

The simple technique of pausing makes our job as parents easier. Because when we can take the time to enact a four-beat pause, we: 

  • don’t need to have all the answers 
  • don’t have to be perfect 
  • don’t jump to conclusions 
  • don’t answer the question we think our kids are asking 
  • answer only the question he or she is asking 
  • give our preschooler time to gather his or her thoughts and verbalize them. 

One of the greatest benefits of the pause is that it gives the child a chance to process new, confusing, or difficult information, and fully understand it. When we pause, we also give ourselves a chance to process the situation and formulate thoughtful responses. 

The pause is the tool, but it’s how we use the tool that makes all the difference. We need to be conscious of our body language and what we say when we interact. Being intentional with the pause brings positive outcomes for our kids and ourselves. 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Proactive vs. Reactive 

Have you recently faced some challenging behavior which caused you to act more reactive than proactive? What was the behavior and what did you try (or could you try) to get back to a more positive, proactive place? 

As parents we all spend some of our time operating from each of the reactive and proactive ends of the parenting spectrum. 

Being proactive is the more positive place to operate from for both ourselves and our children. But sometimes we fall into the trap of becoming more reactive when we are tired, distracted, frustrated or we fall into a pattern of negative interactions. And this is when we most often begin to feel frustrated, powerless or disillusioned at our parenting ability. 

When faced with an upset child, stay neutral and trust that you are helping your child take over his own problem-solving process by slowly building these skills until they become internalized and adopted. Here are positive parenting techniques: 

  1. Empathize: A child needs to know that her parents understand what she’s feeling and stand with her. By empathizing, you open a parent-child dialog that may stem a shut down. 
  1. Get Neutral: Understandably, your first reaction to your child’s bad behavior might be, “Seriously? Again?” Instead, try to read this incoming information neutrally, and remember to listen. 
  1. Narrow: After a child has shared everything on his mind, focus the conversation by asking a question like, “So, tell me what is bothering you the most about this situation.” 
  1. Optimize: Receive the information your child has shared without argument; instead look for ways to work cooperatively on solutions by asking, “What kinds of things can you do about it?” 
  1. Get Moving: Remember your ultimate goal: Help your child become more independent and solve her own problems. 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

How to Manage Your Child’s Temper 

You may feel exhausted and frustrated when your kid throws a tantrum. Tantrums are a normal part of a child’s development, and most experts believe they occur when a child is old enough to have wishes of his or her own but not old enough to express those wishes in a socially acceptable way. However, parenting style greatly affects child behavior, and there are several things you can do to minimize and manage your child’s temper tantrums. 

  • Control the environment. Don’t set up situations that are bound to be over-stimulating and stress-filled for your child. 
  • Control the outcome. Don’t be afraid to leave a situation that you can see is going to be a conflict for the child. Learn to read the “writing on the wall” about the potential for disappointment.  
  • Set limits and stand your ground. Don’t argue about situations you know the child understands already. State your limit, stay calm, and acknowledge their feelings. 
  • Teach patience. After a tantrum or an argument has settled, talk to the child about how to wait for what they want, or how to plan for what they feel they need, or how to have alternatives that are almost what they imagined. 
  • Minimize frustration. Offer strategies for handling “big” feelings after disappointments, such as talking to a grownup, playing a fun game, relaxation techniques or playing with pets. Positive self-talk, time and calming down can help them develop a new plan or just let go of something they wanted. 
  • Validate their efforts. Notice and comment on the times your child is willing to “let it go.” Acknowledgment of growth in being able to deal with unfairness and disappointment goes a long way in reinforcing good patterns. 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

What Is Your Parenting Style? 

When it comes to parenting, there is a great deal of diversity among families. Every parent has a different approach to how to interact and guide their children. A child’s morals, principles, and conduct are generally established through this bond. 

🟣Authoritarian Parenting 

Parents of this style tend to have a one-way mode of communication where the parent establishes strict rules that the child obeys. 

🟣Authoritative Parenting 

This type of parent normally develops a close, nurturing relationship with their children. They have clear guidelines for their expectations and explain their reasons associated with disciplinary actions. 

🟣Permissive Parenting 

Permissive parents tend to be warm, nurturing and usually have minimal or no expectations. They impose limited rules on their children. 

🟣Uninvolved Parenting 

Children are given a lot of freedom as this type of parent normally stays out of the way. They fulfil the child’s basic needs while generally remaining detached from their child’s life. 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog  

Dyslexia Affects 1 in 10 People

Dyslexia is about more than just reading letters backward. 
 
Studies have shown that an estimated 1 in 10 people has dyslexia, and 20% of school-aged children in the US are dyslexic. 
 
If your child is struggling with dyslexia, let certified dyslexia, dysgraphia, dyscalculia specialists help work with them to build confidence and reach their full academic potential. 

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

More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog