• We Feel and Then We Think

    Posted by Todd Bloomquist on 3/3/2020

    I can remember it like it was yesterday. My daughter was very upset. She stomped into the kitchen, blurted out that she no longer required our services, and stomped down the hall to her room, making sure to slam the door extra hard. 

    Ever been faced with a parenting situation like that? I think it is pretty safe to say most of us have had some kind of a kid experience like this one. At that moment, of all of the words we might say as parents, what is the child most likely to hear? Honestly, not much. When any of us are stressed (heart rate above 100 beats per minute, tension in our necks, raised voices, etc.), our brains move to the fight, flight, or freeze part of our brains, also known as our survival brain. This is very far away from our thinking brain. 

    Feel, Then Think

    The parenting tip for all of us is that we feel and then we think, not the other way around. How we feel significantly changes the way in which we think. Making good decisions, following parent directions, even doing well on homework assignments is all dependant on how we feel. 

    The New 3 Rs

    For the brain to function at it’s best, it has to have two conditions going on. The first is that the brain and the body need to be regulated or calm. Once the brain is feeling safe and calm, then it has to be in relationship with the adults around it. This is about familiarity, safety, and trust. This causes the brain to be ready for the most functional part which is reason or thinking. Regulate, Relate, Reason. 

    For my daughter to respond well to my parenting instruction, I need her to be regulated and relating to me. Only then can she reason. After all, isn’t that what we want for our children? To be reasonable? I think I will give her 10 to 15 minutes before I knock on her door - I need to make sure I am feeling calm so I can help her out. 

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  • Five Tips for Student Success

    Posted by Todd Bloomquist on 11/1/2019

    It is hard to believe November is already here. As the fall leaves are quickly blowing away, here are five tips that help kids be successful in school and in life. Give them a try and see how things go for your children. 

    1. Eat dinner together
    2. Encourage your kids to sleep (8-10 hours a night)
    3. Limit screen time (45-minute doses or one movie; no phone by the bed at night)
    4. Practice boundaries by sharing your expectations (and stick with them)
    5. Expect them to be at school every day (but not if feverish or throwing up)

    To read about the evidence behind these five tips and why they work, please click here

    What’s important to you? 

    Our survey to find out what parenting issues are important to you will continue to be open for suggestions from you. If you haven’t responded yet, we would love it if you could tell us what you are needing help with or would like to know more about. We are working to find resources to help us all with parenting issues, but we only want to find resources for what you need. Some of the many suggestions coming in so far include internet safety, academic support, anxiety, finding balance, creating boundaries, picky eaters, communicating with my teen, health, social media, and distractibility. If you have topics that you would like support on, please consider letting us know by clicking here.

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  • Where's the Training Manual?

    Posted by Todd Bloomquist on 9/23/2019

    New for 2019 is our focus on partnering with parents. In thinking about parenting, I find it strange that we had to study, practice, take (and pass!) a test in order to get a driver's license, but no one really told us how to be a parent, let alone a good parent. 

    We are putting together materials and supports for families, but we need your help for how best to do that. What works best for you? When works best for you? How about these:

    • Quick tips done through text?
    • Blogs?
    • Online learning?
    • Podcast? 

    We want to support parents in ways that make the most sense. As a parent, I know that parenting can be exhausting–at any age! So, if nothing else, it would be great to know how some parents are getting a good night's sleep? Or, when was the last time you heard a "please" and "thank you?"  

    Tell us your ideas by clicking here. And, thanks for sharing your insights. 

    As we hear from you, we will be add to this Parenting Blog and post new information on the Parent Page on our website. Stay tuned for more ways to help your child be a success. 


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