Can a young child’s social interactions predict future success in life?  Experts say, “Yes.”

In a 2015 study, researchers found that prosocial behaviors such as cooperation and empathy are “significantly and uniquely predictive” of a child’s likelihood to graduate from high school and college, and to maintain stable employment thereafter. 

These findings offer compelling evidence that “non-cognitive” skills are a necessary part of a child’s upbringing.  However, the question remains…

Why would social behavior be prognostic of academic success, more so than reading, math or any other childhood ability?

McRaven noted that audiences were frequently surprised by this answer, but reaffirmed his stance. 

“Pre-K through 12” is the greatest threat to America’s national security, he said again. 

Not North Korea. 

Not Iran. 

Preschoolers are active, curious and trusting – that’s what makes them so wonderful!  Those same characteristics, however, can inadvertently put a child in harm’s way. 

At Kid Spa Austin, we begin teaching toddlers and preschoolers how to make safe and healthy choices.  But, of course, we know that classroom instruction isn’t enough.  Children need clear and consistent messaging from their parents, family and community members as well. 

The good news is that safety lessons don’t have to be taught in a formal setting.  In fact, everyday life is the best place for children to practice making safe choices! 

Ready to learn how?  Well then, let’s begin…

Communicating with our children seems to become more difficult as they get older, but there are some basic communication skills that parents can use with their children that always seem to break down the communication barrier between adults and children.

Communication with children is no easy task as it involves exchanging information while getting the child to cooperate. Our hope is that each time we communicate with our children, they learn from us how to express their feelings in socially acceptable ways and that we build a good parent-child bond while talking.

As children move through the preschool years, it is not uncommon for parents to become concerned that their child seems to be becoming more fearful than when they were younger. The preschool brain is growing at an amazing speed and with this the child’s imagination is beginning to emerge. Although a child’s imagination is wonderful during waking hours, that same imagination can play havoc on a child’s fears.

No matter how much we love our children, their behaviors can be challenging at times. It takes a lot of energy to be a good parent. It is rarely an easy job, but children with difficult or hard-to-manage temperaments make the job an even bigger one. A child’s temperament, or style of behavior, is present at birth and rarely changes as a child moves into adulthood.

Kindergarten is not quite the same as when we as parents attended. Expectations are higher, there are state and national standards that kindergarten teachers are responsible for, which means that Kindergarten is no longer just playing and learning to share.

Most parents will agree that their number one parenting concern is how to discipline young children. Parents receive mountains of advice from extended family members, parenting books and videos and it is sometimes hard to sort out how to respond to misbehavior. On top of the external advice parents may receive, two parent families bring their own childhood history on how to parent.