Monthly Archives

September 2016

Time Outs: How to Make Them a Positive Strategy

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This is the second and final post in a pair of posts on time outs. In the previous posts we discussed why time outs might be less than effective as strategies for dealing with challenging behaviour. Here we will go over some ways to adjust the time out, or as the article we are sourcing from suggests, convert them into a “time-in”.

In order to help children see time-outs as an opportunity to process emotions, their behaviours and how to carry out restitution, consider giving the a “child-directed time-in” in the following way:

Here are the 5 Ws of a child-directed time-in

  • WHEN: consider allowing the child to decide when they are prepared to re-enter a group situation that was previously too emotional. Ask them to remove themselves and tell them to come back when the feel they have calmed down
  • WHY: keep in mind that this strategy should be used as a way to teach your child to calm down and regulate their emotions in a constructive way, not as a punishment.
  • WHERE/WHAT: allow children to choose the location of their time-in, as long as it is away from the situation that was causing escalating behaviour
  • WHO: know whether your child will need support in the time in (by having someone to talk to right away) or if your child’s time in is better spent independently
  • HOW: be sure to explain to your child the purpose of the time in. Also, allow them to help create the criteria for the time in

Lastly, allow the time-in to give you an opportunity to get your emotions together as well if necessary. When both parties are calm it will be easier to return to the situation that was the source of the problem and discuss what was going on, how to fix it and avoid it for next time.

Source: Canadian Association of Family Resource Programs


Time Outs: The Trouble with Time Outs

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This is the first post in a pair of posts on time outs.

Most parents and teachers who have tried the strategy of time-outs for misbehaviour know that it can often result in a power struggle. Your reasons for using the time out are valid: your child needs time to calm down or reflect on their behaviour and how to carry out restitution. However the time may not be achieving the goals you are hoping for, because children often need support in figuring out how to calm down and talk through their emotions. They need a “time-in” with parents.

Problems with Time Outs

  • Children are unaware of why they are in time out: this is problematic because how they are supposed to problem solve, calm down and reflect if they do not even know what they are supposed to be reflecting on.
  • Power Struggles: if children resist a time-out punishment, this can result in a parent and child power struggle wherein parents are telling their child to remain in their time out area and children are disobeying. This is obviously not constructive for either party involved.
  • Opposition to Time Outs with Age: as children get older they become less and less likely to willingly except a time out. This renders the time out virtually ineffective and takes us back to the issue of power struggle.
  • Modelling power instead of peace: time outs very clearly assert authority when it is better to model communication and collaboration when situations get difficult.
  • Only dealing with the behaviour: lastly, time outs only get at the behavioural display. They punish the behaviour without fully acknowledging the underlying cause of the behaviour, which can be largely social or emotional in nature.

So here, we have discussed the problems with time outs. In our next post we will be going through potential ways to make time outs more effective and how to alter this parenting strategy.

Source: Canadian Association of Family Resource Programs


Benefits of Dance for Kids

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In our preschool we will be introducing dance classes to our program. So we thought we would discuss some of the potential benefits of dance class for kids.

  1. Improvement of physical health: dance in inherently physical in nature. Furthermore, it focuses on development of motor skills throughout the whole body, which is great for children who are still learning gross motor and fine motor control.
  2. Socialization Opportunities: dance classes require group work and cooperation with peers. Therefore, dance classes can help shy children practice essential social skills and all children learn how to collaborate with others in a constructive way.
  3. Self-expression: the individuality aspect of dance allows for a different level of self-expression compared to other forms of physical activity. It allows children to learn how to explore their emotions and display them in alternative, healthy ways.
  4. Education and Discipline: like music classes, dance classes require practice, attention and focus in order to master skills. This is great skills for children to practice and take with them throughout their entire lives
  5. Self-Esteem: like mastering any other artistic skill, acquiring dance skills helps children build confidence in their abilities and who they are. It helps them feel capable and they will carry this into other aspects of learning.



Benefits of Yoga for Kids

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Currently in our preschool program we are trying to introduce yoga as a specialized class. So, we thought we would discuss some of the benefits of yoga for children.

  1. Flexibility: yoga helps children development muscle strength and range of movement.
  2. Balance and Coordination: yoga helps children develop skills of balance and coordination which essential especially during their younger years when they are still learning fine motor and gross motor control.
  3. Focus and concentration: yoga contributes to children’s ability to focus on one task without being distracted
  4. Self-esteem and confidence: like learning any kind of skill, learning yoga can help children feel more confident in their abilities. This contributes to elevating their self-esteem, which they will carry with them into various tasks throughout daily and learning lives.
  5. Mind-body connection: this refers to the ability yoga has to calm the mind through the exercise of the body. It is extremely helpful for some of those busier children who may have trouble focusing throughout the day. It helps children center themselves and re-focus their energy in a positive way.

Of course, like anything, the benefits of yoga really depend on the individual child, their personality and their interest in the class. However, the above list are some reasons to give yoga a try!



Featured Book: “Only One You”

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Our featured book for this week is the children’s book “Only One You” by Linda Kranz.

This book is a great read for teaching children the importance of being themselves na dhow they have the power to make the world a better place.

With its whimsical pictures and straightforward words of wisdom it is a great read.

For a video reading of the book visit:


Why Music is Beneficial in Education

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At Parkland Players we love to try to incorporate music classes into our programming. And for that reason we really like this article form on the 10 ways music can be beneficial to children. So here’s a recap.

  1. “It will boost their brain power”: music stimulates the brain not only in the ways related to music but also in many other cognitive areas. Exposure to music is correlated with greater success in a school setting
  2. “It will improve memory”: this ties into the point above. Music stimulates memory and learning abilities, which contributes to these skills outside of the realm of music as well.
  3. “It helps them socially”: getting involved in a musical group or class can help children practice essential social skills that will they will carry with them throughout their lives
  4. “It’s a confidence builder”: mastering a difficult task such as learning how to play an instrument makes you feel good about yourself, need we say more?
  5. “It teachers patience”: the slow process of learning an instrument or practicing a piece of music forces children to experience delayed gratificiation.
  6. “It can help them connect”: basically, it is fun, and it can be a healthy outlet for negative emotions.
  7. “It’s constant learning”: and learning is great!
  8. It’s a great form of expression”: music can inform children of a different way to communicate their thoughts and feelings.
  9. “It teaches discipline”: practicing music can be very self-driven for kids. You will only get out of it what you put into it. This is a great skill for children to learn
  10. “It fosters creativity”: lastly, it contributes to creativity, which is essential in many aspects of life and easy to lose as we get older.

So there it is, ten, but not all, of the benefits of music for children!

Source: written by: Sarah W. Caron


Featured Book: “The Book with No Pictures”

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This week our featured book is “The Book with No Pictures” by B.J. Novak.

This book is a goofy, silly, funny story. And as the title suggests there are no pictures! If you want to have a laugh reading aloud with your children, this is a great book choice!

For a video reading of the book visit (but we suggest reading it in person for the full effect):