Friday, November 18, 2016

Project Connect - Talking Openly with Kids

...facing today's tough issues.

This booklet is part of the Project Connect series from Lutheran Hour Ministries. It is filled with valuable insights that can guide parents to have positive conversations with their pre-teen or teenage children. This is the intro on the back cover...

"There are scores of books for new parents or parents of toddlers, but none of these will prepare you for communicating with your pre-teen on the issues of peer pressure, sex, drugs, violence and death. Recognizing the signs of trouble in your children as well as understanding your own nonverbal messages are two areas necessary for establishing effective communication patterns.This booklet offers practical advice on how and when to address these subjects with your children."

Our community of Little Falls, Minnesota has a drug free communities coalition called StandUp4U. One of the primary initiatives is to encourage parents to talk to their children about the dangers of using drugs and alcohol. The campaign is called "Parents, Talk to Us." Statistics have shown that children whose parents talk them about their expectations concerning drug and alcohol use are less likely to use drugs or alcohol as minors.

This booklet can help parents have those conversations. The booklet lists 13 essential rules of thumb for talking with kids about anything.

  1. Create an open environment.
  2. Consider your child's temperament.
  3. Respect your child's feelings.
  4. Understand the question.
  5. Always be honest.
  6. If you don't know something, admit it.
  7. Don't leave big gaps.
  8. Use age-appropriate language.
  9. Get feedback.
  10. Be patient.
  11. Say it again and again.
  12. Give them your undivided attention.
  13. Speak separately to kids of different ages.
The booklet expands on these and many more specific topics. I will highlight those in future blogs and add my two cents. 

To download your copy of the booklet go to Project Connect Booklets - Talking Openly with Kids. This booklet is distributed by Lutheran Hour Ministries, 660 Mason Ridge Center Dr., St. Louis, Missouri 63141-8557 

Parents, talk early - talk often! Your children want to know that you care!

DCO Peter 

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