#DearTrainer: Conflicts, Focus & Adventure
Some parents who attended our Triple P® Level 2 Primary Positive Parenting Webinar sent in some questions, so we answer them here for all to benefit:
1. Dear Trainer, How can I help my child resolve conflicts with friends? — Mediating Mummy
Dear Mediating Mummy,
I know that conflicts with friends isn’t a nice situation to get in the middle of, but I understand your concern to help your child keep their friends. Try to check in with your child on the details of the conflict to make sure you get a clearer picture.
You could do a role-play of the conflict scene and go over what could be done during the scene.
It is important to set aside “one-on-one” time to communicate and let your child know that you are there to support and coach him/ her if needed.
2. Dear Trainer, How do I help my child focus on studies? She spends most of her time playing. She listens when I ask her to study, but she always argues and tells me to wait for her to play first.. — Concerned Parent
Dear Concerned Parent,
I understand what you’re going through. Children tend to prefer playing to “boring” homework and studies— boys and girls alike. I would recommend setting aside some time to have a discussion with your daughter on your expectations of appropriate study behaviour.
You could also come up with a timetable of her daily routine, planning time for both study and play. Ensure that your daughter’s input in the matter is also considered. Bear in mind to always set study before play time; this helps your daughter get into the right frame of mind and focus on studying, and play comes as a positive consequence after studying.
Reward your daughter if she is able to follow the timetable, and use appropriate consequences when she does not.
3. Dear Trainer, How to help my daughter to be more brave to explore and try things without first asking for permission? She is in P1 currently. I understand that there is a balance between safety and diving straight in without thinking, but I was wondering if we can let her be a bit bolder in exploring unknowns? — Brave Papa
Dear Brave Papa,
Ah, the wonders and thrills of exploring a big new world! You can discuss with your daughter on how you would like her to behave. Let her know about the things she can try to explore without getting permission. You should choose up to a maximum of five things that she can try first before moving on to more, so that she doesn’t feel overwhelmed, but safe within a comfortable range.
You could also give your daughter some tips or steps on how to make the decision to explore the things she decides to try, like researching about it online, reading up in a library book, or watching a documentary to ease into exploring the new things.
4. Dear Trainer, Our daughter is a single child and we are a very closed family with few relatives or family friends. We also have almost zero TV time at home so the home environment is relatively rather quiet. We think that this has resulted in her being more easily distracted by events surrounding her, including during her time in class. How can we build up a stronger degree of concentration of what she is doing? Thanks. — Focused Parent
Dear Focused Parent,
That’s a great question. It looks like you understand your child well at home and in school. For a start, you could discuss with your daughter and encourage her to identify the distractors for her in the classroom. Brainstorm with her on the different ways to block out these distractions.
Then, reward her if she is able to follow the suggested ways to block out these distractors, and use appropriate consequences when she does not.
You can also try to play concentration games with your daughter over the weekend, like a card-matching game or building a jigsaw puzzle— this could double up as a fun bonding time for the family.
Thank you, all, for asking. I hope these answers will help you improve the situation in your home and bring your family closer together!
Family Wellness Trainer, Morning Star Community Services
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Learn more about our Triple P® Programme for parents of primary school-going children here. Find more parenting programmes here.