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Through the course of my one year experience with my son, I have developed several theories such as the 4N and Power of No to better help me raise my son.
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Barack Levin

Author: Barack Levin

Fun with the Simple Things in Life

Posted by Barack Levin on 7th December 2011

Many parents ask me: “How can I engage my kids? What can I talk to them about? They never want to tell me anything any way”. My answer is very simple: engage them in the simplest everyday things. Make benign things a fun and mind blowing experiences for them.

I was going to visit a friend who lives in a gated community. The kids were with me at the car. Before reaching his gate and keying the entry code, I had a great idea.

“Kids” I turn back.

“Yes” they answer

“We are approaching his house but we need to key in his gate code to enter the community. I do not remember the code but I know it is 5 digit long. Do you mind trying to guess what it is?”

I can see how their eyes sparkle. Dad needs their help. They consult with each other for a few seconds and come up with a series of 5 digits.

“Ok” I reply as we stop by the keypad “Let’s try. Give me the numbers” and they do. I hear behind me: “3, 2, 7, 8” a little commotion and the last number comes in as well “5”.

I reach the keypad and key in the right code given to me by my friend but say out loud the numbers they just gave me, asking them to repeat them one more time but slowly.

“3, 2, 7, 8 and 5” I call out loud as the keypad beeps my entries.

To my kids’ utter amazement, their imaginary “code” works and the gate opens.

This small incident was the talk of the day. They could not believe how smart they were to guess the code.

It is the simple things in life that ignite our kids’ imagination. No need for cumbersome and elaborate electronic toys or video games.

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Painting on the walls

Posted by Barack Levin on 2nd January 2011

My little girl (5) was invited to a friend of hers for a play date. I took her over and as the 2 girls started to play had a short chat with the mom. Obviously, we were talking about our kids and during this short conversation she mentioned that she locks the crayons in her house because her daughter still paints on the wall. I was very surprised at this behavior, after all, her girl is also 5 years old. She is a young kid who understands more than just basic things in life. I just could not understand how she managed to potty train her but not uproot this behavior. At this age, unlike younger ages, it is simple enough to tell the kid No and insist on it. There are also many more disciplining methods to use at this age to make your threat more effective.

But bothered me the most is how the mom can tolerate such behavior. After all, it is not something minor. It results in damage to the property and the mom and dad working to repair something that should not have been done in the first place. Moreover, locking the crayons leaves the child with one less plaything to have and at this age, I believe that drawing and using your imagination is extremely important so by not treating this behavior, the mom limits her child’s imagination and feeling her time with something else to do but watch TV.

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