elevating child care

RIE Parenting – A Respectful Debate

Infant expert Magda Gerber never shied away from controversy.  She knew that her child care approach was an uncommon one, often misinterpreted. In fact, she invited conflicting opinions, would even inquire, “What do you disagree with?” She’d then argue her point of view with spirited enthusiasm, a gleam in her eyes and (always) respect for her challenger. I was reminded of Magda’s appreciation of a good...

Going Against A Toddler’s Will (A Tough Pill To Swallow)

Hi Janet, I wrote to you last fall with a question about my then-1-year-old and our issues with bath time. Your advice was great, and we got over that hurdle, but I’m hoping you can share your experience and insight with me in another area. My daughter is now close to 2 and a half, and a daily vitamin has always been a part of our routine without any problems. For the past few months, she refuses to take the...

I Can’t Part With These Books

As I was packing up mountains of ‘baby’ books from the shelves in my 9 year old son’s room recently, his 14 year old sister and I had a revelation. Several of these books (moved to his room years ago when both big sisters grew out of them) have become much, much more than just books to us. They’re part of our family lore. And they’re not going anywhere. We’re saving them for the precious memories…and...

Respectful Discipline In Action (Seeing Is Believing)

Do toddlers like to learn rules and follow directions? Are they capable of restraint, making decisions, self-discipline, patience, even unsolicited acts of kindness? Seeing is believing. In this brief video, not just one, but five extraordinary 14 to 18 month old toddlers demonstrate these things and more… (No actors were hired!) This is the first few minutes of snack time (traditionally consisting of bananas and...

Baby-Led Adventures – 5 Reasons Babies Need To Lead

Babies are born adventurers. If we give them our full attention and a completely safe, reasonably interesting place in which they are free to move, they’re on their way. Even the youngest infant can lead us on play adventures if we watch closely and use our imagination, because long before a baby has motor abilities, the wheels are turning. He’s seeing, hearing, feeling and thinking. He’s never “just lying...

I Miss You, And That’s OK (Toddlers And Separation)

In a child’s perfect world, the people he’s closest to would be available 24/7. But separations are a necessary and inevitable part of life. Whether it’s for work, exercise, chores, errands, time to reconnect with a spouse or friends, or just to save one’s sanity, parents (and other beloved caregivers) need to leave. The person who remains with the infant, toddler or preschooler is then left to handle what...

What To Do When Toddlers Say NO

Hi Janet, I am at a bit of a loss as to how to move forward with my son. He is 26 months and has recently started saying ‘no’ to all of my requests, regardless of what they are. My husband and I try very hard to pose our responses positively, avoiding ‘no’ as much as possible.  Rather than ‘no throwing food’, we would say ‘please leave your food on your plate’. So, we...

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