Holiday Parenting Tips

  • Suits your child’s own unique personality and interests.
  • Is it appropriate for the child’s age and stage of development. (It will challenge the child physically and/or mentally, but not be so difficult to use that it will frustrate or overwhelm your child.)
  • Can be used in increasingly complex ways as the child grows.
  • Requires the child’s active participation, not passive observation.
  • Is safe, washable and durable. (It will not fall apart easily.)
  • Promotes positive values and non-violent play. (Through play, a child practices life.)
  • Gifts From the Heart

Give your child the pleasure of giving.

  • Talk about those you love and care about, and plan together how you might remember them during the holidays.
  • Ask, ‘What does Suzie like to do?’ or ‘What do you think would make Grandpa happy?’

Give your child a chance to create.

  • Help him/her make simple gifts ‘ a picture for Daddy or some play-dough for a favorite friend. Bake cookies and deliver them to special people together.
  • Give your child a family tradition.
  • Plan a holiday activity that might become a treasured memory in later years. For example, designing and making your own holiday greeting card or hosting a neighborhood dinner.

Give your child the joy of celebration.

  • Include him/her in the holiday preparations ‘ baking, wrapping, decorating the house. Chat about what you are doing and why. Share values of the season in a simple concrete way.
  • Give your child an example of caring.
  • Share your holiday time, traditions, or favorite foods with someone who needs a friend or a helping hand.

Give your child some extra patience.

  • When adults are super-busy, children feel left out. They try to tell us what they need by the way they behave. (For example, throwing tantrums, demanding, refusing to cooperate, dawdling ‘ these are all ways children express their feeling and stress.) Avoid unreasonable expectations ‘ such as shopping for hours with a young child.
  • Give your child some time with you.
  • When things get hectic, pause together to admire a sunset, snuggle up with a picture book, or take a walk around the block. Your own time is the best gift of all ‘ and it’s free!