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1. My children are so competitive with each other! It drives me mad. They even have to race to the door to beat each other to let people in to the house! They complain whenever they see the other as getting some advantage. Why are they so ungenerous?
2. I have a daughter who is nearly 10 yrs old. I ask her to do something & she says wait or she says have patience. What should I be saying to her when I want her to do something like have a bath?
3. My older son's behaviour (he's 12 and quite behind emotionally and academically) had been awful recently. He had been extremely rude, swearing, kicking, breaking things, ordering us about, refusing to go to bed, shouting etc. We started using the pasta jar to acknowledge his good behaviour and it’s having a great effect with lots more cooperation. However... my younger son (9) who is very bright and wise for his years, is getting jealous. We have been rewarding my older son with pasta when he has been doing something that the younger one does routinely. What should we do?
4. When I was a kid my parents gave us ‘what for’ if we stepped out of line. I didn’t dare put a foot wrong. How do I get my child to respect me the way I respected them?
In this article Elaine Halligan talks about her own experiences with her son Sam, the various SEN diagnoses he had and how she dealt with them
Elaine Halligan in conversation with Zoe Blaskey (38 min long)
Melissa Hood responds to parents' questions:
1. I don’t want my son to talk about his feelings all the time. Men don’t want their friends to go on about how they feel. He needs to man up and just get on with it.
2. My 12 year old has tried smoking at school. I’ve told him all the reasons why it’s a bad idea but I think he’s still doing it. How do I stop him smoking?
3. My son is deceitful. He turns on the computer when I’ve said he can’t. No matter how much I tell him off or what punishment I give he still does it. I think he needs a more severe punishment that he’ll take notice of.
4. My seven year old daughter is being really uncooperative about swimming lessons. I feel it’s hugely important that all children learn how to swim and she just sits on the side of the pool and won’t do anything the teacher asks. He’s getting really fed up I can see. What bothers me is that she just won’t try. And I worry that she’s like that in other areas of her life too.
Melissa Hood responds to parents's questions:
1. My children fight all the time about who gets what and how much of it. Even the last biscuit must be split exactly in half. How can I teach them to let some things go even when they are ‘not fair’.
2. My daughter no longer wants to go to school. When I ask her she says “its boring’. I feel that something else may be going on. How can I get her to open up?
3. I am struggling with giving consequences to my 14 year old. She has lied about staying back at school but was seen hanging out at the shopping mall with some friends. I have always trusted her and I feel very angry and betrayed.
Melissa Hood reponds to parents' questions:
1. My five-year-old daughter dissolves into tears when even the littlest thing doesn't go her way. How can I make her more resilient - and stop all this crying?!
2. My seven-year-old son acts badly whenever his grandparents come over and it's creating tension - they don't get to see what a sweet boy he can be. Could there be a reason why he acts up whenever they come over? And how can I make him change his behaviour?
3. Sometimes kids just have to do what they’re told. If my child is making a huge fuss and refusing to go to bed surely I’ll just be rewarding misbehaviour if I cuddle her and placate her?
4. Getting ready to leave the house in the mornings is a complete nightmare in our house. Both my children are so unhelpful and I end up yelling at them which is a horrible start to our day. What can I do to have a calmer beginning to the day?
Melissa Hood writes about how to bring a growth mindset to raising children.
Melissa Hood responds to parents' questions:
1. My 8-year-old will not pick up his things no matter how much I tell him he has to. What do you suggest?
2. I can't get my teenager up in the morning, we are always fighting about getting to school on time. He uses his computer games till all hours. Can you help?
3. When my mother-in-law comes over she shouts all the time to my daughter to do things and she takes no notice what can I do?
Here's what really works to get a difficult kid to behave.
By Elaine Halligan
Elaine Halligan is interviewed by Paul Dicks of Pivotal Education and discusses her experiences of raising her son, Sam, diagnosed at an early age with a range of learning difficulties, and about her book 'My Child's Different'.
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