New York Times Investigates Results of Saying “No” to Children

In a recent opinion editorial published by the New York Times, a New Jersey author, Scott Sonenshein, discussed some positive effectives of saying, “no,” to a child. Despite the frequent attempts to vilify negative affirmations from parents to children, several new studies show what common sense already tells most parents. To build character in children, they must be refused on a regular and consistent basis.

Soneshein points out in his article that most parents, throughout the history of the world, have understood children as a group of individuals who are growing and learning. Because of the immature nature of a child, it is important to correct behavior on a consistent basis if the child is to develop into a responsible, productive member of society. Saying no to a child does not have to be a negative experience. By teaching children that all humans are eventually given negative answers in life, parents enforce the idea that challenges can be overcome and that negative answers can actually be positive and beneficial. If a toddler asks for cake for every meal of the day, for instance, the parents answer should explain why this is a poor choice that will ultimately lead to illness in the child. In this case, a negative answer is the loving answer and a positive one would be considered neglectful.

Soneshein also sites a study where children are asked to construct a new object from the ones they are given. In this study, younger children were shown to be more resilient than older ones and more adaptable to negative answers. Soneshein relayed the message that parents should not always be in the habit of purchasing every item children ask for. Not only does this create spoiled and entitled children, but it limits a child’s ability to become resourceful when they lack something they believe they need. We have all heard the stories about how our grandparents didn’t have fancy toys so they got creative with dirt and a box. Much like this example, children learn extremely resourcefulness when they are given negative answers.

How to Explain the Results of an Election to your Children

The topic of the latest presidential campaigns was running in every news headline in our television sets and print media. People held discussions on the presidential candidate of their choice. In this year’s election, children engaged their parents more on the campaigns than in the previous years. Therefore, they all had a candidate of their choice who they expected to win. Most parents who supported a Hillary Clinton candidature experienced a hard time trying to explain to their kids about the election results. The following is a guideline on how to talk to your children about the results


  1. Take your time and collect your feelings


Children look up to their parents on how to behave in any given situation. It is important to deal with your feelings, especially anger and frustration, before talking to your children. This prevents the possibility of major emotional outbursts or anything that would render the results catastrophic. Remind them that we have had different presidents with different values, principles, and style of governance.


  1. Explain to the kids the important aspect of democracy.


If the kids are old enough, help them understand that people hold different beliefs on various issues. Remind them that the nation is a system with citizens who do not agree on all matters. Remember to explain to them the electoral process in the country. Providing them with this information gives a better understanding of how one candidate won and the other lost. For the younger ones, remind them that it is not right to call anyone nasty.


  1. Teach the children the art of winning and losing gracefully


Parents should inform their kids that in every competition, there are winners and losers. Therefore, the winning party should be sensitive to the feelings and the disappointment of the other party. Get your children involved in spreading the love and kindness message among their peers and schoolmate


  1. Give them hope of the future.


Give them hope for a better future. If they are young girls who hoped for the first female president, remind them that the fight is not over. Read them stories that reinforce your values and beliefs. However, do not make unnecessary jokes or promises, for example, a joke to move to another country or state.


Why Your Vote Matter To Your Kids

Its turns out that when it comes to elections, we are all a little biased, even down to the decision of whether to not vote. Studies show that voting is nothing more than a habit, equal to brushing your teeth twice a day. Just like all habits, it is learned behavior. Behavior we learn from, you guessed it, our parents. In fact if you vote in the first three elections you are eligible too, I’m talking everything from mayoral to presidential, then you are likely to be a life long voter. Not only that but so are your kids.

The influence that our voting has on our kids during election time goes much further than whether they end up in the ballot box, we also sway them on which they will vote. We are responsible for teaching our children a moral system including our opinions on different ethical issues, so it only makes sense that has adults they would vote along the same lines as the way they were raised. Kids are naturally curious (I dare you to show me a five year old who favorite word isn’t why) and in our explanations of the world and its politics we can either voluntarily or involuntarily influence their future thoughts on matters. Quite frankly no one was born a racist or sexist, someone had to teach them that behavior.

So how do we encourage our kids to vote but to also think for themselves? According an article in the New York Tines on the subject,, it’s best to proceed with caution and to be aware of the little listening ears. As American parents, we need to teach and encourage involvement in the diplomatic system. The best way to do this is by example, i.e. by voting ourselves. Make a big deal out of election by taking the kids with you and stressing that its an adults duty and responsibility to vote. Be careful though when it comes to talking about he candidates or declaring a party. As Dr. Mark Franklin of Trinity College puts it, treating voting like taking them to church. Its alright to educate them on your beliefs and why you feel that way but you should also encourage them to make their own decisions and draw their own conclusions.



New Jersey Parents Get Ready for Fall Sports Season

Late September marks several different important times on the calendar. The leaves begin to change from that Summer green color to the myriad colors of the Autumn season. The sweltering head of the summer finally begins to break as temperatures become more bearable. The kids return to school excited to see their friends again while not at all looking forward to the return of homework. It also marks the time of many different sports taking place as parents decide what to sign their kids up for.

For those children in middle and high school, the fall represents the peak time for football. The NFL is also in full swing, as the New York Jets struggle mightily and the New York Giants get off to a fast start. Parents everywhere are wondering if they should sign their kids up for football. Football is a fast paced and physical game, and parents everywhere discuss concerns about whether their kids can keep up; however, parents shouldn’t worry. There is a spot on the football field for every child. A unique sport due to the size of school football teams, kids can play positions anywhere from the offensive and defensive line to the kicker and punter. With a variety of positions, everyone can find a spot to enjoy this sport and learn skills such as discipline and commitment.

In addition, the MLB season is also coming to a close as the playoffs approach on the calendar. It is also a time for those kids who love baseball to sign up for fall ball. Kids will enjoy traveling to tournaments all over the New Jersey area just as the New York Mets fight for a playoff birth. New Jersey parents everywhere are rushing to sign their kids up for fall baseball. Parents point towards the safety of baseball compared to other sports. As a non contact sport, the risk of injury is low. Because of the relatively low injury risk, kids also get to play a large number of games, ensuring that everyone gets a chance to play. Baseball teaches patience while working on hand eye coordination. Parents have been signing their children up for America’s pastime for years, and this year appears no different.

With so many different sports to choose from, parents can something for kids of all ages.