Tips for Parents of a Child with Dyslexia

Dyslexia Needs Prompt Identification

An inherited disability that causes children difficulty learning to spell, read, and plan effectively, Dyslexia should be diagnosed as soon as possible. If it is not, those who have it will fall behind in developing vocabulary skills and advanced language and reading skills. As a result, others may think of a person as mentally “slow.” Such an opinion can then cause a person to feel intellectually inferior. So, it is vital to pursue a diagnosis as soon as warning signs are spotted.

Here are some of the challenges:

Problems with Language

Those with Dyslexia have difficulty in processing language. As small children, they take longer to speak as they struggle with phonetics; when older, writing comes later than it does for their peers as they have trouble learning the alphabet, recognizing letters (i.e., confusing “d” and “t”), and remembering them. After they acquire writing skills, they can sometimes be confused with spellings, and they may write numbers and letters backward. There can be difficulty using appropriate words as dyslexic individuals get mixed meanings. They can also have difficulty with rhyming patterns they encounter in nursery rhymes. These children learn to read later than others as they have trouble sounding out letters and words. They often confuse some letters such as “b” and “d.” They can also write letters and numbers backward. Dyslexic children have trouble matching letters with their sounds and matching meanings to words.

Individual Education Plans

With an IEP (Individual Education Plan), teachers can focus on areas in which individual students need help. For instance, children can work with Reading Specialists who can assist them with speech sounds (“phonics”), reading more fluently, and comprehending what they read. Students may also need help with learning to write.

Other Ways to Help Dyslexic Children

Today, there are more options for helping children with Dyslexia. For instance, Orton-Gillingham has a step-by-step program for matching sounds with letters. Multisensory instruction is also available; for example, children can run their fingers over letters made of sandpaper as they learn to spell.

What Parents Can Do in the Home

Parents should encourage reading and writing at home. They can purchase books on CDs and have children listen as they read along with the recording, demonstrating their enjoyment. Have children re-read books they have enjoyed, for doing so will reinforce what they have learned. Also, let the children read aloud to them.

This article was originally published on BryanDunst.com

How to Parent Through a Divorce

Divorce is a difficult and life-changing event that can affect your entire family. Whether you are a parent or not, it can be hard to know how to deal with the aftermath of this situation. To make sure everyone in your family can heal from this as quickly as possible, here are 4 tips on how you can help them through their divorce.

Have an open and honest discussion.

When you hear the news of your parents’ divorce (or any other family member’s for that matter) it can be shocking to know what to say or do. There is a lot of information flying around and the potential for misinformation so take some time and have a serious conversation with them about what will happen moving forward. By opening up this line of communication, everyone who is affected by the divorce can become more comfortable and start feeling like themselves again.

Reassure them that they are not alone in their feelings.

While having this conversation might seem scary at first, one beneficial side-effect is that you get to learn just how many people truly feel exactly how your loved one does about the divorce. This can be incredibly reassuring for them, as it lets them know that they are not the only ones feeling this way and that they have a support system.

Give them some time and space.

After getting the news of a loved one’s divorce, it is understandable for someone to need some time and space to themselves to process everything. It might be tempting to bombard them with questions or advice but try to resist doing so until they are ready to talk about it. By respecting their boundaries, you are letting them know that you care about their feelings and want them to feel comfortable coming to you when they are ready.

Let them know that you love them no matter what.

The most important thing to remember while someone is going through a divorce is to let them know that you love and support them. This can also be one of the hardest things to do because it can be difficult for your loved ones to see beyond their pain to realize how many people truly care about them. Even though they feel like they are at rock bottom, they still deserve love and support from everyone around them even more than ever before.

This article was originally published on BryanDunst.com

Parenting a Sensitive Child

Parenting is the process of raising a child through every developmental stage. It is done by providing an environment that promotes healthy growth. Parents should understand their kid’s temperament and character to enable good parenting. An active child can process information faster and is curious about their surroundings. Also, a parent should have a unique disciplining approach for a sensitive kid. By doing this, they will promote smooth parenting while meeting the child’s unique needs.

Provision of Downtime

Empathetic kids are susceptible to over-stimulation. For instance, they may feel overwhelmed when in a large group of people. Loud music can also disturb their concentration. Therefore, guardians should ensure that they are in a relaxing and quiet environment. They should also get a chance to engage in activities that make them relax and settle down.

Create a Routine

Creating a daily routine for sensitive children allows them to settle. They get familiar with their daily program, which makes them feel safe. They also get less active and have an undisturbed day. It is advisable to notify the children when there is a change of routine. Doing this ensures that they are comfortable with the forthcoming changes. They also prepare and adopt the changed program without feeling disturbed. Praising them for cooperating also makes them feel part of the decision-making process.

Verbal Expression

Most sensitive children communicate through actions. For instance, a child throws tantrums when they are angry. Therefore, teaching children how to express their feelings in words can be helpful. Learning communication skills allows them to outgrow special care. They end up becoming independent as they grow.

Use of Neutral Tone and Voice

Susceptible children are more receptive to low and neutral voices. Speaking in a low tone creates understanding and makes the child give feedback too. Note that talking to a sensitive child in a neutral voice enables them to concentrate on the message conveyed. Also, it elicits positive actions.

Good parenting allows a child to grow through all developmental milestones. Therefore, parents should know their child’s temperaments. Knowing this helps them determine whether they need special care. Creating a routine is also vital. Children should also learn to express themselves as they grow. Also, disciplining them with love and respect is advisable.

This article was originally published on BryanDunst.com

The Value of Hiring a Parenting Coach

Many parents are typically overwhelmed and get stressed whenever their kids act rude, aggressively, or throws tantrums, whether they are at home or outside. This is because parents don’t have a solution for the child’s behavior.

Most times, the parents may ask friends or relatives who have kids how they handled the situation with their kids. Everyone has a different opinion, and sometimes the solutions the parents get may not work for their children.

When that happens, parents think about seeking a parenting coach for advice, but some parents think of parenting coaches as a type of psychoanalysis or therapy, which makes them afraid.

However, skilled professional coaches help parents understand their relationship and their relationship with the children. Depending on the child’s issues or what provokes them, the parenting coach provides the parents with tools to help correct their child’s behavior.

The changes that a parenting coach suggests to parents help them have a foundation to build a healthier and stronger relationship with their children.

Benefits Of A Parenting Coach

The advice parenting coaches give parents can help them handle any situation with their children by assisting them to do several things like;

  • Learning how to respond to different situations better instead of reacting
  • Learning different ways to be a firm, yet a kind parent
  • Building a calmer, happier, and more healthy family setting without yelling
  • Learning effective communication techniques for their children of different ages
  • Remaining calm during different parenting situations
  • Improving their relationship with their children as well as that of the child and their siblings
  • Providing their children with tools and attention to find a solution on their own
  • Understanding how children’s needs and behavioral patterns change at different ages

All these solutions assist parents in offering their children the type of parenting they need to thrive positively socially, emotionally, and intellectually. That helps the children at an early age and helps them effectively cope with different life circumstances in the future.

With the current lifestyle, parents are always busy and overwhelmed with different tasks. However, with the help of a parenting coach, parents find easier and faster ways to deal with their children’s behavior, which is not only less stressful but leaves them with more time to enjoy what they love.

Instead of focusing on past issues, parenting coaches help parents focus on the present and future, allowing them to create goals and clear steps to achieve those goals.

This article was originally published on BryanDunst.com

Raising a Strong-Willed Child

Before you became a parent, you might have imagined many things about your future child. You likely knew that they would be smart, kind, and capable of achieving their dreams. Yet, you might not have bargained for a child whose will is so strong that they border on being defiant. While you can’t change your child’s reactions to the world, you can help them learn to manage their behavior. Parenting a strong-willed child is easier when you keep these strategies in mind.

Remember the Benefits of a Strong Will

If you take a moment to think about a few leaders that you know, you’ll likely notice that they have what people commonly consider to be a strong will. You simply can’t get to the top unless you have a serious passion and drive to get what you want. Your child’s strong will comes with valuable traits such as perseverance, confidence, and a desire to be independent. While this might not seem great when they can throw a tantrum for hours when they don’t get their way, it will one day work out for them to have a personality that makes them ideal for being a CEO.

Encourage a Flexible Mindset

Every activity that your child does at home and school provides them with a chance to practice their social skills. One way that you can help your child is to plan activities at home that require them to adjust to other people’s preferences. For instance, everyone could vote on where to go for a dinner out. Your child might have to learn to go with the flow if their choice is outnumbered. Being in a safe place lets your child work through their difficult emotions before they have to be in public.

Help Them Find Ways to Manage Stress

Children with strong wills often experience more stress than others who adapt quickly to changes. You can teach your child coping skills that they can turn to when they don’t get their way. Try showing your child how to practice deep breathing or briefly play with a soothing toy until they calm down. Make sure to practice these skills when your child is calm so that they can become automatic for them to use later when they are upset.

When you have a strong-willed child, it is important to remember that your mindset also influences your child’s behavior. Try to remember to take a break when you feel stressed, and encourage your child to do the same. Over time, your child will learn how to respond appropriately to changes in their environment and routine, and you can look forward to one day seeing the positive aspects of their strong personality helping them to become a leader in their school and community.

This article was originally published on BryanDunst.com

The Psychological Benefits of Physical Touch in Early Life

In the past, a newborn baby would be removed from his or her parents and taken directly to the nursery to be cleaned, weighed, monitored, poked, and prodded. As it turns out, advances in modern medicine are returning to a more natural approach for good reason. Doctors now recommend skin-to-skin contact immediately after birth. Not only does it regulate the baby’s breathing, blood pressure, and heart rate, it also triggers endorphins that are critical in a child’s social, moral, and psychological development for a lifetime.

Children who receive positive physical touch from caregivers, who are comforted with a hug when upset, held, and cuddled, tend to have more positive social interactions and moral regulation into adulthood while children who receive more negative touch, such as corporal punishment, or a lack of positive physical interaction in early life tend to have more negative outcomes overall. Additionally, children from both groups, tend to imitate the behaviors they see, which can impact their relationships in the future.

Physical touch releases oxytocin, an important neurologically communicative hormone that plays a key role in childbirth and breastfeeding. It is also integral in forming love bonds between children and caregivers. It affects the parts of the brain which control emotions and empathy as well as social skills and trust. When children learn to love, trust, and empathize with their caregivers from the beginning, they will project those important lessons upon their peers and in their relationships as adults and parents themselves.

A child’s brain development hinges on positive and appropriate stimulation from caregivers. Children from homes of extreme neglect tend to have smaller, less developed brains. Without intervention, they may pass negatively modeled behaviors and their own development on to future generations. Likewise, children who come from loving homes tend to have better brain development, higher academic achievement, less legal trouble, and an easier time forming relationships. They also enjoy longer lives than those who were neglected or abused as children as adverse childhood experiences are known to lead to a shorter lifespan.

To ensure a child has the best chance in life, avoids mental health issues later on, and achieves his or her full developmental potential, caregivers should practice gentle and loving interaction from the start.

This article was originally published on BryanDunst.com