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It's no question that it's a confusing, complicated world out there.
And part of our job as parents is to teach our kids how to navigate it.
And we're not just talking about how to teach
our children to move through the world.
But our biggest problem as parents is to make sure that by the time
they spring from the nest that they are confident and independent people,
but also considerate and charitable people.
And that is something that we grapple with a lot.
So as part of our My Baby, Me, & My World Series that we're doing Pampers,
we thought that we would take some of things that we're using
and some ideas that we got from our viewers, talk about teaching our kids
positive values from the very beginning.
One of the biggest issues is sharing.
If you're going to have a play date with young kids,
and say the play date is at your house and your child
has a favorite toy that they maybe wouldn't want to share,
that you tell the child before this other playmate comes over, let's
just put that toy away.
So you don't have to share that.
But I really feel if you have a play date at your house
and you've got toys on the floor, everything's fair game.
So what do you do if they both want to share and they're fighting over it?
Well, I think one of the biggest tools that I used was the timer on the oven.
Because then the timer is the bad guy.
So you set the timer for three minutes.
It's not some arbitrary reason.
It's very concrete.
You set the timer for 3 minutes.
You say, OK, for three minutes you get to play with this toy.
When the timer goes off, you have to let the other person have it.
And you use the timer.
Have you heard your kids-- it's interesting.
They can call each other names, and anything in front of the word "head"
is like the worst insult ever.
Like a poophead.
It could be something totally silly.
Oh, he hurt me, called me chairhead.
It's like when they get the control over their language,
about the same time they're getting control over the potty training thing.
So it seems like the words and the toilet humor kind of converge
at the same time.
And there's a lot of trying out name calling with these words.
I'm a big believer that you don't name call.
You can identify behavior.
But I don't think you name-- So I've had my kids be like, he's being a jerk.
No, she's being a jerk.
And I'm like, no, we don't call each other names in this house.
If she kicked you, or if she hit you--
Yeah, you describe it.
You describe the behavior, you don't just tell me.
Use your words.
Use your words rather than hit.
Use your words rather than scream.
Explain the situation.
And maybe that's one of the reasons why my kids never really got
into that, because the verbal-- they were always
taught to describe the situation and then to talk it out.
So I tell them when they get those fights--
you know how they say for every negative thing,
you have to have five or 10 positives?
I will make them sit down and think of five nice things
to say about the other person.
Now that I have done when they fought.
You put them on the stairs, where they have
to sit really close together side by side.
And they can't get off the stairs until they've
each said five nice things to each other.
And there have been times when they've spent hours on the stairs.
That's so frustrating, because I know they're just being stubborn.
That's a good thing, where you kind of say,
OK, yeah I'm really mad at this person.
But this person isn't totally bad.
They say charity begins at home.
And when I was a kid-- well, my sister was born when I was 4.
Two days after I turned 4, my sister was born.
And my mom, she was brilliant.
And I don't even know if she meant to do this,
or if she even knew what she was doing when she did this.
But I actually remember her coming from the hospital with my sister
and sitting me down on the couch and saying, here's your new baby.
Ever since then, I felt a responsibility to care for my little sister.
And I tried to do the exact same thing with my kids.
And they have a feeling of stewardship over their younger siblings.
And I do have them-- Sam is 16, and he's probably
changed more diapers than most fathers.
I think also one of the things that's really important to teach is manners.
You know, what's happening to manners?
I think clearly it starts at home.
It starts with how you conduct yourself.
Are you polite to your child?
It's using the pleases and the thank yous in every single thing you do.
But it really does take the parent getting into the groove of it.
If the parent isn't consistent, then the child won't be consistent.
But if you are there all the time, doing that all the time,
then they will pick it up.
I know that our viewers probably have a lot of things
that they can contribute to the conversation.
And we'd love to hear your tips and ideas and things
that have worked for you.
So if you could go to MommyCast.com and leave a comment,
or especially go to our Facebook page and write on our wall
and tell us the different things that have worked for you,
that would be terrific.
I remember one time when Matt and Avery were playing,
Avery comes running up the stairs at my house.
And he's all upset, huffing and puffing.
And I'm like, what's going on?
And he's like, Matt called me a big fancy baby.
And Matt comes running up behind him, and he goes, well, you are.
You're a big fancy baby.
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