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  1. #1

    Unhappy My Child's Behavior

    Hi,

    My son is already 4 years old but starting the age of 2, I noticed that he seems to be fidgeting around most of the time. I want to know if it has something to do with his food intake. Do I have to do something about it or is it just normal?

    Thanks,
    Keith
    Last edited by ashkenaz2008; 27th May 2012 at 03:36 AM.

  2. #2
    Hello Keith,

    What a child eats and how much quality sleep he gets will definitely affect how restless he is during the day. Be sure he is eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, some high quality protein like eggs, meat, fish, nuts, beans, and a little complex carbohydrates like brown rice and whole grain breads.

    Most children don't eat enough fresh fruits and vegetables, so a great way to help them eat more is by serving them green smoothies made with bananas, orange juice, pineapple and a handful of deep leafy green lettuce.

    Here's another post entitled "Eating Habits of a 4 Year Old". You may want to take a look at it to see if it gives you some ideas.

    You will definitely want to reduce or eliminate any sugar intake, refined foods like muffins, cakes, white bread, white rice and pasta, and definitely watch the ingredients that are in prepared foods from the store. If you see any food coloring or high fructose corn syrup in the ingredients list, avoid it. Vaccinations can also cause unusual restlessness in some children so be sure you do your research on each vaccination you consider giving to your child so you can make the best decision for him.

    I'm curious to know what you think is not normal activity for your son. You say "fidgeting" - can he sit quietly while he watches a TV program for 30 minutes can he sit still at the dinner table for 15 minutes?

    Warm regards,

    Kate

  3. #3
    Hi,

    I noticed that my 14 month old baby is very active and I think I might have spoiled her this early. She cries whenever she doesn't get what she wants and I'm afraid that I might not be able to correct this. She likes electronic stuff like a mobile phone, camera, ipad, etc and I don't like her playing with those but she just cries. I try to give her normal toys but she just doesn't take much of an interest with them. Any tips?

    Thanks

    Jersey1210

  4. #4
    Hi Jersey1210,

    It sounds like you may have already created an "appetite" in your 14 month old for TV, Videos and computer games. These devices are created to catch and hold the attention of children with lots of color, rapid changes in movement and scenes, and music. It's not necessarily a good thing, as you've guessed.

    Think about this. We get more visual stimulus in one day than a person did in their entire life only 100 years ago. When you think about it in this way, you will quickly realize why your daughter does not seem satisfied with dolls, pots and pans, and toys that children used to play with 100 years ago.

    TV and videos and computer programs are created to entertain children (and adults). But if you think about it, what you really want is for your child to teach herself how to entertain herself by using her imagination. With a doll, she would need to make the doll's arms move, or she would pretend that she's a mum, and would wrap the doll in a blanket and then lay the doll in a special place for it's nap. I know she's a little young for dolls, yet, but I give this example because there may come a day when you'll want her to entertain herself with a doll rather than demand that she be entertained (by you, or an inanimate object like TV or iPad).

    Here's something to really consider. You can develop your child's appetite in every area and whatever appetite you give her is the appetite she will want satisfied. If you give her biscuits and sweets often, she will naturally develop an appetite for these things and will not want to eat the healthy broccoli or spinach you serve her. Alternatively, if you don't give her biscuits and sweets (except for the occasional treat) but instead, you offer her freshly steamed, bright green broccoli, and freshly steamed, bright green spinach (or spinach smoothies) she will be eager to have those things when you serve them.

    The same holds true for entertainment. If you give in to her demands/tantrums/crying, and give her things to entertain her, you will be developing that appetite and she will want these things, rejecting anything else you may offer that you know is better for her. This will carry over into her school years, when you may want her to really enjoy reading good books, but instead, because she has been trained to be entertained, she may resist reading and gravitate to the iPad instead of to the books on the bookshelves.

    You are home to raise your little one. This means that your focus needs to be on her as much as possible. If you take time to focus on her, you'll be able to control what she is exposed to. Don't let the TV be on during the day and if it has to be on at some point (due to your other daughter or your husband wanting to watch) try to distract your baby in another room so that she doesn't watch.

    Your daughter is young enough that you should be able to break any habit she has within a week, and at that time, you could allow your daughter to sit on your lap while you watch a 30 minute show (that is age appropriate for her). But after that show is over, you redirect her focus to other areas so that she doesn't throw a tantrum because you turned the TV off.

    Your child will emulate what she sees and hears. If you don't want your child to be defiant or rebellious, don't allow her to see shows with characters that are self centered, defiant or rebellious.

    Instead, get some books from the library each week and read to her. Some of the best books are what I call "living books", with stories about real people or about real situations. Little House on the Prairie is an example of a living book. Again, your child is very young, so you won't be reading Little House on the Prairie to her, but there are books along the Little House line that are more age appropriate for little ones and you could read those to her. You will want to help her learn to sit still while you're reading because this will help her to sit still in church or for other people, and eventually it will help her to sit still so she can color or do a craft.

    I hope this gives you some good ideas and encourages you to help curb your daughter's desire to be entertained. If you do this, she will learn to entertain herself. I knew a little boy who would pull the lids to the pans out of the cupboard when he was 2 years old, and spin the lids. He kept himself entertained this way for quite awhile. My children would pull the pots out of the cupboard and I would give them a wooden spoon and they would bang on the pots to keep themselves entertained.

    Weaning children off of electronic gadgets is a good thing and I'm glad you're concerned and want to help your daughter.

    Warm Regards,

    Kate

  5. #5
    Hi Kate,

    You just gave me a whole new perspective and now realize what I need to change. Thank you so much for all these great suggestions

    Jersey1210

  6. #6
    You are most welcome Please post back and let us know how it's going and if something's not working and you want more ideas just let us know and we'll give you more suggestions.

    Warmly,

    Kate

  7. #7
    Hi Kate,

    I'm happy to inform you that I have now banned the iPad from my baby and we have started reading to her more. At first, she didn't seem interested but I'm seeing an improvement now. I think at one point she even pointed at the duck when I asked her "Where is the duck?" haha but then again that could just be my imagination. Either way, I feel happier that I'm on my way to teaching her more of the good stuff.

    Thanks again!

    Jersey1210

  8. #8
    Hi Jersey1210,

    I'm glad you've started reading to your daughter more and you persist with it even when she doesn't show much interest. As you've noticed, she will continue to show more interest as you take the glitzy things away and replace them with other things.

    You definitely are on your way to teaching her more of the "good stuff" - it's wonderful

    Warm Regards,

    Kate

  9. #9
    Hello!

    My daughter turned 2 this November, but she has only very few words that she could pronounce clearly. I'm a bit worried that her language development is kinda delayed. I'd like to know at what age should a child start talking? I need advise.

    Thanks!

    Bellisimum

  10. #10
    Hello!
    Is it too early to start disciplining a child at 2 years of age? My daughter seems to show some signs of being stubborn. Sometimes she would suddenly have tantrums whenever sheís not able to get what she wanted. And I donít know how I could discipline or correct that attitude. Or should I just let her be because itís too early to discipline her? Need Advice.

    Thanks!
    Bellisimum

  11. #11
    Hi Kate,

    Thanks and you are absolutely right

    jersey1210

  12. #12
    Hello Bellisimum,

    I, too, was concerned when my first child did not have many words at the age of 2. So I had her assessed and learned that her cognitive skills were very good even if she didn't have many words. She understood the difference between "smooth" and "rough" and she had her own words for certain things. So cognitively she was above where most 2 year olds are.

    Her vocabulary came, and by the time she was 3 she had a very wide vocabulary.

    If your daughter has some words and can communicate well, her vocabulary will probably widen in the next year. Here's a list of words that a 2 year old will routinely hear and use.

    Mommy
    Daddy
    baby
    milk
    juice
    hello
    bye-bye
    yes
    no
    dog
    cat
    ball
    nose
    eye
    banana
    cookie
    car
    hot
    thank-you
    bath
    shoe
    hat
    book
    more
    all gone


    You'll want to be sure you are regularly reading books to your daughter so that she is hearing lots of words and starts to recognize the letters. As you do this, her vocabulary should grow larger.

    Do you think your daughter recognizes most of the words above (i.e. if you say, "where's my nose?" does your daughter point to your nose? And can she say the words when you ask her to say them?

    Warm Regards,

    Kate

  13. #13
    Hello Bellisimum,

    It is not too early to start disciplining your child. Most children can be effectively disciplined starting around 18 or 19 months.

    Throwing a tantrum is definitely not okay and your daughter needs to know this. If you allow her to throw a tantrum without correcting her, she will think it's okay to do whenever she is unhappy or doesn't get what she wants. This could lead to tantrums when you are in a store or at a friend's house, which then can cause you embarrassment.

    So how do you stop a 2 year old from throwing a tantrum?

    What has worked very effectively for me is to immediately go to the child, get down at their level, look into their eyes and say, in a stern but loving voice, "I will not let you do this." or "I will not let you throw a tantrum." "This is not okay."

    Often this will get the child's attention right away, and they will go from being angry (tantrum) to being sad (you'll notice the difference in their cry).

    If your child continues with the tantrum, you can pick the child up and hold them in a way so that they cannot hurt you with flailing arms or legs, and let them know that when they calm down, you will let them go.

    Alternatively you can take them to their room and let them know that they can come out when they can have a happy face. One problem with putting them in their room is that there are often times toys and fun things to play with which they could view as a good thing ("when I throw a tantrum, I get to play with toys"). If you have a room where there are no toys (i.e. a guest room), this can be a quiet place for your child until she calms down.

    Once the child is calm, you can then give her direction. "Let's go wash your hands now." or "Let's put your shoes on now." or "let's pick up your toys now". Whatever it was that triggered the tantrum should be able to be done after you have corrected the behavior.

    If you are consistent in correcting a tantrum each time it happens you will find that the tantrums will not last as long and will likely resolve themselves in a week. But you must be focused on your child for that week, consistently correcting the poor behavior each time it happens.

    If you find that your child is behaving poorly but is not throwing a tantrum (i.e. yelling, hitting, etc.) then you can give her a time out so she realizes that this kind of behavior makes it so that she doesn't get to do anything fun. When giving a time out, have her sit on a step or a chair for 2 minutes. When she is 3, you can extend this to 3 minutes and when she is 4, it can be 4 minutes. The age of the child determines the number of minutes she will sit in time out.

    If your child gets up off the step or off the chair during time out, you should replace the child firmly back in the chair, and give the direction again. "You need to sit in the chair until the timer goes off." or "You need to sit in the chair until I say you can get up."

    It takes training, but if you catch the poor behavior every single time, and correct it, you'll find that your daughter becomes happier and chooses to please you rather than throwing a fit. Children thrive on routine and they also do very well when they know their boundaries. Allowing a child to have a tantrum sets no boundaries and the child can feel very much out of control, which is not a secure feeling for them.

    Please post back with any specific instances you may have that you'd like specific guidance with.

    Warm Regards,

    Kate

  14. #14
    Hi Kate!

    Thanks for your reply. May I know to whom can i have my child be assessed? What i mean is to what kind of doctor? Actually, my daughter can already say some of the words you mentioned above. She could also point colors, some objects and animals if you ask her. Sometimes, she would repeat the word i say but not all the time. She could also solve 4-pcs puzzle. How can i encourage my daughter to speak more often?
    Thanks again. Your informations and suggestions are very helpful.

    Warm regards,

    Bellisimum

  15. #15
    Hi Kate!

    Thanks for your wonderful advice. I will try this when my daughter throws again some tantrums. I'll update you for the results. Thanks again!!!

    Warm regards,

    Bellisimum

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