Supporting siblings in their different skill sets

Janis Keyser, MA Early Childhood Education Specialist, shares advice for parents on how to best support their kids in their different skill sets
Parenting Tips | Supporting Siblings In Their Different Skill Sets
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Supporting siblings in their different skill sets

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Some of us, as parents, discover that one of our children is easy at doing things, successful at something in particular; and the other child doesn't have that same skill and feels less than because they are not as good as their older sibling. Our dream for our siblings is that they have a mutually supportive relationship, that they support each other in their accomplishments. I think parents can play a strong role in that happening. One of the things we need to do is look far and wide at all of the different skills that people bring to the table. Sometimes somebody who is good at dance or good at skating or who is a good runner, it is easy to see their skills. Sometimes someone who is really good at listening and remembers what other people say, who remembers thing in nature, like when a butterfly moves. Those are the skills that we sometimes have trouble noticing. As parents, we need to have a dialogue with our children. What are the things you really like to do? I've noticed that you are really good at that. I've noticed that you are the one that is always pointing those things out. You bring that skill to our family and you help your sister with it. Our job is to help each child discover the many things they are good at, not just the things that the world notices they are good at. When one child is coming to the other's event and cheering them on. We may need to set up a situation for the child who is more successful in the world, to cheer on the other sibling when they are doing the many things that they are good at.

Janis Keyser, MA Early Childhood Education Specialist, shares advice for parents on how to best support their kids in their different skill sets

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Janis Keyser, MA

Early Childhood Education Specialist & Author

Janis Keyser currently works as a site director for a child development program in Mountain View, California. She was a full-time faculty member in the Early Childhood Education Department at Cabrillo College in Aptos, California for 30 years, teaching children, teachers and parents and coordinating a state demonstration infant toddler program. She has written a resource book for parents and one for teachers; and is a nationally recognized speaker at parenting, family and child development conferences, and has conducted workshops nationally and internationally for parents and teachers for over 35 years. She enjoys swimming, kayaking, photography, family games and cooking with friends of all ages.

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