Teach the Whys

“I kept six honest serving-men (They taught me all I know);Their names are What and Why and When And How and Where and Who.”– Rudyard Kipling – As we teach morals, it’s best to tell children reasons for why the behavior or attitude is a poor moral choice or a wise one. When I was […]

Give Specific Feedback

“The object of teaching a child is to enable him to get along without his teacher.” – Elbert Hubbard – When I was taking classes for a Master’s Degree in writing, I was mentored each semester by a different award-winning author. Each one coached me on my writing and critiqued my manuscripts. One semester, my […]

Teach the Importance of Small Acts

“Sow a thought and you reap an act; sow an act and you reap a habit; sow a habit and you reap a character; sow a character and you reap a destiny.” – Charles Reade – In his book The Road to Character, David Brooks wrote, “You become more disciplined, considerate, and loving through a […]

Give Kids an Emotion Vocabulary

“It’s not easy to learn to whistleif there’s no one to show you how.”– Janusz Korczak, King Matt the First – Remember that important milestone in moral development called perspective-taking? It enables us to see from another person’s point of view, to understand that they are afraid or frustrated or overjoyed or worried. Perspective-taking is […]

Have Rules and Communicate Them

“If a thing is right, it can be done, and if it is wrong, it can be done without; and a good man will find a way.” – Anna Sewell, Black Beauty – Most new parents have never taken child development courses, and many have never spent much time with children. Sunday school teachers are […]

Speak to be Echoed

“Behavior is generally learned by imitating observed experiences, so the more examples of caring our kids witness, the greater the chance that those will be the behaviors they copy.” – Michele Borba, Building Moral Intelligence As my sixteen-year-old son and I stepped out of the Department of Motor Vehicles, I tossed him the keys to […]

On the Other Side of the Coin

Correcting Behavior “Never give up. Keep on trying until you get it right.” -5 year-old Seeing Our Opportunity In the face of challenges, my father often says, “You can see it as a problem, or you can see it as an opportunity.” If we look at behavior challenges as opportunities instead of problems, we have […]