The support and education sessions are designed for parents to help them learn from positive parenting strategies at home, especially in challenging times like the recent pandemic when everyone was quarantined at home.
In our previous video, “Support and Education for Parents – Session 2,” we discussed the importance of parental well-being. This session is the 3rd in the series that focuses on how to implement positive parenting strategy to help them set boundaries for their children.
Parents aim to nurture, protect, and guide their children through every stage of their lives. However, it is not always a pleasant journey. Children sometimes display undesirable or unexplained behavior as they grow and develop, and parents need to understand how to react and respond in such situations.
These parenting challenges can be frustrating when working from home. The video session discusses the positive discipline and redirection approach, which is essential for the child’s development and helps parents to learn how to stay calm and encourage more acceptable behavior.
What is the positive parenting and redirection approach in Montessori?
Positive parenting strategy is the redirection of the idea when you provide a stop sign for children when the answer is always no. It is the approach where opposition is converted into cooperation.
It focuses on teaching children what type of behavior is acceptable at home without provoking their negative behavior. These techniques help to get the desired behavior we want and allow children to become mentally healthier and better adjusted.
The video focuses on how parents should be role models for their children to help them learn to talk softly, respect each other, move around the house gently, and develop patience and respectful communication. It also talks about helping children follow the basic guidelines to handle their emotions. Let us understand them.
Work on setting up the boundaries:
First and the foremost thing while working from home, in unavoidable situations like the 2019 pandemic, is setting up a boundary. Setting up boundaries doesn’t mean you’re asking them to do what you say. Instead, you’re providing an understanding of the rules and boundaries needed to work safely, comfortably, and happily together. For example, a child must know they need to take care of themselves as well as others without getting agitated.
In a Montessori classroom, the first boundary is to walk with quiet feet indoors and run outdoors or in a gym. It is because there are a lot of obstacles such as shelves and tables and valuable work which can get broken if they run around. In the same manner, we must teach our children that they need to walk softly in the house and run in the backyard, or in the park.
We need our children to navigate around and explore. Therefore, it is essential to help them understand how to use materials, how we treat each other, and how we treat adults. Our hands should always be gentle and don’t hurt anyone.
Calm a frustrating child
Every time a child is frustrated when they are unsuccessful in completing an activity. They might want to throw down the material really quickly without paying attention. We as parents can say, “ok, we’re slowing down here. Remember, gentle hands, put it down gently”. Convert it into an opportunity by asking, “what’s frustrating them?” Invite them to try again with a free mind and tell them “we are here to learn and nobody is judging. Try once again.”
Try doing it without forcing them or showing any kind of anger. It’s just a pragmatic approach that says we’re gentle. Acknowledge their gentleness, rather than focusing on undesired behavior or unsuccessful behavior.
Montessori environments emphasize slow, careful hand movements. It does not mean that the children should not be fast and eager to explore. The key is to provide and promote that opportunity so that the boundary will not only help to develop more peace in your home but also help to open up a broader world of exploration for your child. It also helps you to see the potential of your child.
Children in Montessori environments are taught to make sounds according to the environment they are in and encouraged to speak quietly. It teaches children how they can actually hear more when they speak quietly because the person they’re speaking to takes that extra moment to stop and listen to them. The same concept works particularly at home when our children are emotional, frustrated, and crying, it is hard to understand them. You can say, ” take a deep breath and tell me what happened?” Make them feel acknowledged. The power of quiet voices really transcends into a more peaceful environment for your child.
Developing patience and respectful communication
Working at home and handling children and household chores can be daunting. You might have experienced a long phone call from the office and your child asking for something. Acknowledge your child’s presence at that moment and say while pointing to them that it would take 5 mins or so and once you are finished apologize by saying, ” I am sorry it took so long and now, you can tell me what you want to say.” It gives them pride, confidence and a feeling of control that parents respect their child’s space and are always there to listen to them.
In the video, the speaker mentioned many tips for fostering positive discipline in the home, “we’re not talking permissive parenting that’s really not what is occurring you’re approaching your child in love and respect as a partner or as an important member of your home community and with that, you want to treat them with respect and they will model from you and learn how to treat you and others accordingly in that same respect.”
Positive parenting is about raising our children to develop inner discipline and therefore become more independent and capable of making positive choices which ultimately develops them into young adults that can make a positive and important impact on their world.
Thus, setting up the boundaries for communication for acceptable and appropriate and safe, and productive behaviors and communication at home.
When a child learns what their boundaries for communication are, their voice feels respected and they recognize that they have a power in communication that develops their language skills and trust.
The author also mentions a type ‘O’ scenario where there are many ways to say no without saying no because no is a stop sign you want to be firm but loving. It also talks about the various stages of development of a child and how a child develops in those stages. She uses a lot of real-life examples that help parents to understand their child’s behavior and how to build positive parenting without saying no.
Natural or logical consequences
The idea of natural or logical consequences is more beneficial because it builds the importance of our understanding of the rule of right or wrong and how it affects them and you as parents. To make positive reinforcements, when children make a mistake, a parent has to be firm and acknowledge what they did well with self-validation and not praise again and again.
Respect for others
Positive parenting strategy also includes respect for others. Parents are children’s role models as they exhibit the same behavior both positive and negative. That’s why it is important for parents to understand whether being their role models, do you respect other humans, animals, and plants well.
For us, striving for empathy is hard to achieve, but when children exhibit it, parents are so incredibly proud of them and relieved. It is important for us to understand how they feel about their mistake as it begins to shape their conscience about forgiving.
The tips shown in the video, help parents in adopting positive parenting strategy, leading to a more pleasant, peaceful, and productive time at home with children.
Watch the video and learn how vital it is for parents to ensure that their child feels respected and acknowledged at home. This video helps parents to learn from various authors’ real-life experiences.
Adopting these positive parenting tips will help you to be more compassionate to build a happier and healthier relationship with your children.
Related video resources
- How to engage children in meaningful activities
- Peaceful household environment with children
- Helping children to express emotions
- How to create space for children in your home
For more Montessori tips for parents and parenting guides, click here.
Video Created by: Montessori School Rochester
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