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How can I help my child make good decisions?

December 21, 2010
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What the Experts Say…

“Children enjoy making choices because it helps them feel grown up. One way to make sure your child makes the right decisions is by limiting her alternatives to ones you approve.”
Psychologist Laurence Steinberg, in his book The 10 Basic Principles of Good Parenting.

In Other Words…

Guiding children should not merely be about keeping them out of trouble. We should guide in a way that helps our children develop their own decision-making powers.

How This Applies to You…

Look for opportunities to let your child make choices between options you approve. For example, you may give them the option of having milk or juice with breakfast, or the option of which book they want to read at bedtime. The more often you allow your child to make choices the better they will learn to become good decision makers.

To Find Out More…

For an excellent (and free!) program on parenting, see The Parenting Journey at Arkansas Families and if you have children less than 5 years of age, check out See the World Through My Eyes.

For more in depth reading on parenting, we recommend The 10 Basic Principles of Good Parenting by Laurence Steinberg.

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