Encouraging good behavior on play dates

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Encouraging good behavior on play dates

Play dates are a time when kids get to test out all kinds of behavior and as parents, you have to be really on top of those situations, because this is the time the foundation where you're going to make sure that your child knows how to play and can build social relationships and what we call pro-social behavior. Bullying is opposite pro-social behavior. So if you see that your child is getting aggressive with their play dates, or even their siblings, you want to jump in immediately and say, "Hey, you're playing so beautifully, but right then when you started getting mean or hurtful, that's not working for us. Let's try a different way." That gives kids the understanding that that negative behavior is going to be monitored and that you're going to jump in when they're not doing it right. And then you're going to show them something better, which is rewarding the kind of inclusive behavior and empathetic behavior towards others that builds the foundations skills that we want all our children to have.

View Joel Haber, PhD's video on Encouraging good behavior on play dates...


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Joel Haber, PhD

Psychologist, Bullying & Parenting Expert, Author

Dr. Joel Haber is a Clinical Psychologist and internationally recognized bully prevention and parenting expert. He was selected as a webinar leader and a speaker for the Obama Administration Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention initiative.  He was also an invited participant to the Second Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention Summit in 2011. His recent book, Bullyproof Your Child for Life: Protect Your Child from Teasing, Taunting and Bullying for Good set the bullying standard for schools, camps, sports, organizations and families dealing with bully prevention and intervention. He recently published The Resilience Formula: A Guide to Proactive, Not Reactive Parenting.  He is a consultant and expert to the American Camp Association, and to LG Electronics as a member of (LGTextEd.com), providing cyberbullying and mobile harassment expertise to parents and families. He is an advisor to Cartoon Network’s anti-bully campaign: Stop Bullying: Speak Up.  He is an expert for No Snap Judgments: The Addams Family Broadway Show- National Campaign to promote acceptance and tolerance amongst our youth. He is also co-founder of Tool Kits for Kids (toolkitsforkids.com), recipient of five national parenting awards for helping parents and kids develop the tools and emotional life skills to overcome worry, build confidence and develop resilience. He has written and published extensively, speaking each year to thousands of parents and educators to help make children’s lives, safer and better. 

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