trust

Shopping with Kids: Supporting a Growth Mindset Among the Shiny Objects

Knowing her grandparents will soon be asking for gift ideas for our daughter, my husband and I decided to take our five year old window shopping today. As usual and as I’ve written about before, we began with the caveat that although we wouldn’t buy anything, we’d take pictures of what she likes so that …

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The Gift of an Uncomfortable Moment: Building Childhood Resilience

When my daughter was three years old, for some reason that’s unbeknownst to me, she decided that what people do with Halloween candy is…donate it. Who was I to argue with her thoughtful idea? So, for the past two years, we’ve gathered up her loot and handed it off to a grateful recipient. I somehow …

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Preparing for the Inevitable: The Importance of Trusting Play

“Mommy, let’s pretend this isn’t a train tunnel.” “Okay, what is it?” “It’s a tomb.” Well, hello, conversation stopper. She paused for effect, which is a good thing, because I certainly didn’t expect that. After a moment to process and very consciously trust that children’s play serves an important purpose for them, I mentally cringed …

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Observing the Experts (Who Are Rarely Adults, With This Exception)

  For the past week, I’ve attended a multi-age outdoor school led by Teacher Tom, who’s hailed by parenting experts as one of the “world’s leading practitioners of ‘democratic play-based’ education.”* If you haven’t followed his blog or bought his book, you should, and if you can attend his class, even better. Although I exceed the age limit …

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The Doctor, the Dentist, the Anxiety, Oh My! Helping Your Child Find Peace in Predictably Scary Situations

From the backseat of the car, my daughter asked me to tell her a story. Since we were on the way to her annual well child exam, I wondered if she was seeking a virtual role play in which the heroine of my story would be on her way to the doctor, too. So, sure …

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“I’m Not Your Mom” and Other Tips for Raising Self-Sufficient Humans

After finishing a two-week, multi-age summer class with Teacher Tom, who’s an internationally respected teacher and writer, I asked my child what she thought he was really good at. She pondered my question for a moment and thoughtfully replied, “He’s really good at sitting.” Well, shoot. At the risk of bragging, I’m a fine sitter, myself. Now that I know …

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