When kids aren’t responding well to discipline or even conversation with us, it can be because we’ve lost the connection—that vital conduit in which we show them love, acceptance, honesty and kindness. “Children need positive connections with others if they are to develop a healthy social/emotional self,” said Julie A. Polanco, author of God Schooling: How God Intended Children to Learn. “Positive connections help young people be more resilient and confident.”
“Parent interactions (or caregiver) are what shapes the child’s personality,” pointed out Alise McGregor, founder of Little Newtons, a small chain of childcare centers. “Research from the University of Pittsburgh shows that negative interactions changes their brains and reinforces ‘bad behavior,’ which ultimately is not the desired result from the frustrated parent.”
Connection means more than occupying the same house. “Connecting with kids means that we are passing down our values and our impressions of the world, and teaching them how to behave. We are our children’s ultimate role models—our flaws often become their flaws. By connecting with our kids, we teach them how to deal with their flaws and how to make the best out of this crazy thing called life,” said Arna van Goch, founder/owner of Horizons21.