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Parent Tips

Ways to Show Children You Care

Notice them
Smile a lot
Acknowledge them
Ask them about themselves
Look in their eyes when you talk to them
Listen to them
Play with them
Read aloud together
Giggle together
Be nice
Be honest
Be yourself
Listen to their stories
Hug them
Suggest better behaviors when they act out
Delight in their discoveries
Share their excitement
Laugh at their jokes
Be relaxed
Kneel, squat, or sit so you’re at their eye level
Answer their questions
Tell them how terrific they are
Hold hands during a walk
Listen to their favorite music with them
Display their artwork
Thank them
Point out what you like about them
Give them lots of compliments
Catch them doing something right
Encourage win-win solutions
Give them your attention

Ask for their opinion

Have fun together
Be curious with them
Let them tell you how they feel

Help them become an expert at something
Praise more; criticize lessBe consistent
Marvel at what they can do
Tell them how proud you are of them
Be happy
Ask them to help you
Support them
Applaud their successes
Believe in them
Be flexible
Delight in their uniqueness
Notice when they grow
Respect them
Join in their adventures
Help them learn something new
Be understanding when they have a difficult day
Give them good choices
Inspire their creativity
Accept them as they are
Appreciate their individuality
Talk openly with them
Tolerate their interruptions
Create a safe, open environment
Be available
Cheer their accomplishments
Encourage them to help others
Tackle new tasks together
Believe what they say
Build something together
Encourage them to think big
Help them learn from mistakes
Be sincere
Tell them what you expect of them
Introduce them to new experiences
Expect their best; don’t expect perfection
Empower them to help them be themselves
Love them no matter what

Positive Communication with Children


  1. Do give the child plenty of time to practice. (He will speak his best when he does not feel hurried.)

  2. Do give the child appropriate feedback to what he says. (How else will he know when he was right?)

  3. Do listen attentively. (Then the child won’t be distracted by your wandering attention.)

  4. Do react to “what” the child says rather than “how” he says it. (You don’t want him to feel that his manner is more important than his ideas.)

  5. Do let him know when he has done exceptionally well. (After all, success in an endeavor breeds more success.)

  6. Do give him plenty of time to process what you say to him. (The ability to listen creatively is something that must grow.)

  7. Do let him know you are proud to be with him. (Then he will be proud to be with you and will do his best.)

  8. Do make communication necessary for him. (If he has something to say, he will feel a need to communicate.)

  9. Do make communication possible for him. (The lack of ability to communicate his needs can be very frustrating to any person.)

  10. Do make communication effective for him. (This will keep him struggling along the road to improved language and speech.)

  11. Do make communication fun for him. (In this way, you build motivation for creative language.)

  12. Do speak as nicely to the child as you do to friends in your home. (We all learn our communication style from the models of those close to us.)

  13. Do give the child the chance to “bloom” in an environment as free from criticism as possible. (Creativity and the joy of interacting with others grow best in this way.)

  14. Remember that when we overhear negative things about ourselves, we can be deeply hurt, but when we overhear positive things about ourselves, we can be enriched in all we do.


  1. Don’t label the child. (The label may become much too important and may actually hide the child.)

  2. Don’t characterize the child negatively when you talk about him. (He may come to accept a negative view of himself.)

  3. Don’t joke about a child in his hearing. (He may be deeply hurt by the laughter.)

  4. Don’t laugh at a child. (His attempts at communication are not funny to him.)

  5. Don’t interrupt the child when he is talking. (He doesn’t like it any better than you do.)

  6. Don’t assume the child understands everything you say. (Take the time to be sure he heard and understood.)

  7. Don’t expect the child’s speech to be completely fluent. (No one speaks completely fluently.)

  8. Don’t nag children. (They also appreciate a chance to learn without nagging.)

  9. Don’t compare one child with another in their presence. (Both children are likely to misunderstand your meaning.)

  10. Don’t talk about children’s problems in their presence. (What one overhears and misunderstands can often do lasting damage.)

  11. Don’t threaten children. (They will feel they have to find out if you really mean it.)

  12. Don’t feel you have to do all the talking. (The child needs the opportunity to practice.)

  13. Don’t bury a kernel of an idea in a paragraph of words. (The main idea is hard for the child to find when it’s surrounded by extra words.)

  14. Don’t talk over unnecessary background noise. (It only makes the child learn to “tune out” sound in his environment.)

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