Teens

3 tips for guaranteed back-to-school success

By | 2017-08-19T22:22:23+00:00 August 19th, 2017|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens|

As adults, we've had years of practice transitioning through change. Yet we still often handle it poorly, procrastinate, and don’t prepare adequately for successful life transitons. Unlike adults, children haven’t had years to practice successful change. A child’s developing brain prefers and responds best to routines- as much as your kiddo may try to fight it by begging for late bedtimes and ice cream for dinner. Routines help children to feel safe and grounded and can aid tremendously in taking the ambiguity and stress out of new situations. What’s more is that children tend to have less anxiety when they [...]

Say the right thing when your child is upset

By | 2017-07-13T15:43:37+00:00 July 12th, 2017|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

When you're upset, has anyone ever told you to "just stop crying" or "don't be sad"? Is it helpful? Is it that easy just to automatically stop crying or to feel differently (aka better) at a moment when you are really down? Unless you have super powers, it's near impossible to change how you feel at the drop of a hat. Usually comments that instruct you how to feel make you feel worse because they dismiss your emotional experience. And yet, even though these types of comments make us feel terrible, we continue to say these things to kids. Why? Because we're human and [...]

Stop that end of school year slump! Easy-peasy tips for keeping your kiddo on track

By | 2017-03-24T23:22:05+00:00 March 24th, 2017|Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

Spring break is nearly over but there’s still a few months of the school year to trudge through. Keeping kids motivated at the end of the school year can certainly be a challenge. With the weather getting nicer and spring sports and activities in full swing, it’s easy to lose sight of grades and homework, and before you know it, you’re scrambling to get your kiddo to complete late work and boost his or her GPA before the last bell. This year, be proactive and stay on top of homework with these easy tips: Structure It Up Structure is super [...]

My kid is a bully…. Now what?

By | 2017-02-18T22:03:48+00:00 February 18th, 2017|Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

Last month’s blog post focused on helping your child weather the social and emotional tolls of being bullied. This month’s focus is on kids who engage in bullying others. The big question involves why kids bully. It’s easy for kids of all types to get caught up in bullying. Nice kids bully. Intelligent kids bully. Kids who have been bullied sometimes bully others. Kids who bully others are often searching for affirmation in the form of power, dominance and control- all things children tend to lack just by nature of being a kid. When kids bully others, it can also [...]

3 things you should never say to your kids

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 October 30th, 2016|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

We all experience anger. Sometimes it’s directed at our co-workers, bosses, spouses, our friends, or even the family pet. Anger is a healthy emotion. It lets us know when we don’t like what’s happening, and that we want what’s happening to change or stop. A lot of times, our angry feelings escalate quickly, causing us to become overwhelmed with emotions and act without thinking rationally. This is not so healthy, as reacting impulsively out of anger often causes us to say or do things we later regret, such as pressing “send” on a flippant email response to the boss, driving [...]

Your Kiddo’s Grades: How Involved Should Parents Get?

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 September 24th, 2016|Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

Parents & Homework: Too involved? Anyone remember the days of report cards that showed up in the mail? I have vivid memories of my sisters and I awaiting anxiously by the mailbox at semester's end. We would intercept the mail to check for any surprises before my parents got ahold of it... just in case. This scenario is certainly a blast form the past, as the majority of  schools these days allow students and parents to easily (and sometimes compulsively) check grades via the internet. There are certainly advantages to such access, as it allows for communication between [...]

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Boogers, Bubbles, and Zits … Therapy with Kids is Great

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 August 22nd, 2016|Adults, Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

I love kids. I think they're incredibly unique and insightful. Just when I think I know what I'm doing, a kid puts me in my place ... and I'm immediately humbled all over again. And kids are absolutely hilarious. The other day I was thinking about the reasons I love working with kids, and I decided to compile a list to share with you all. So here it is (in no particular order): Kids have no judgments. Kids are not afraid to tell it like it is. One time I was testing a 7-year-old boy and he told me he couldn't [...]

Employment in high school: Should you encourage your teen to work?

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 April 2nd, 2016|Teens|

The research on adolescent employment is mixed, with almost all experts agreeing that the question "Is it good for teens to work?" is oversimplified. Having a job as a teenager can have both positive and negative effects and depends on many factors (e.g. level of investment in employment, specific experiences teens have while working, and motivation to work). Teens who do benefit from high school jobs are more likely to be highly intrinsically motivated to succeed in school. That is, they value earning good grades and self-select to work fewer hours in order to keep up with schoolwork, participate in [...]

Kids and allowances: To give or not to give?

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:54+00:00 February 27th, 2016|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

Many parents struggle with decisions about how, when, and if to give their children allowances. While there is really no one correct answer to each of these questions, there are some great opinions and research on this topic. As a child psychologist, I support giving children an allowance; it can be a valuable parenting tool if done effectively. Below I explain my reasoning for allowance giving and provide answers to some of the common questions parents often ask me: What's the purpose of giving an allowance? Allowances provide children with valuable educational tools. If your children have access to their "own" [...]

I’m sorry for my ADHD, Mom; Let’s have a better life

By | 2016-10-31T01:22:57+00:00 January 24th, 2016|Children (ages 0-5), Children (ages 6-9), Teens, Tweens (ages 10-12)|

I think we sometimes forget that kids who have Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) don't chose the problems they have. Whether it's talking too much, bouncing off the walls, or having the attention span of a gnat, kids with ADHD often truly cannot control their behavior. They are many times labeled as annoying, socially immature, self-centered, out-of-control, and rude. While these labels certainly do describe typical ADHD behaviors, they certainly don't help us to understand and intervene with kids who struggle with ADHD. In my work as a child psychologist, I help several kids and families with ADHD. The ways in which [...]