Climbing Down Anger Mountain #Bloom FREE PRINTABLE

Anger Mountain Sept 2013Sometimes children have feelings they experience intensely, but do not understand.  You can help your child learn to modulate their feelings better if you take the step to help them identify how they feel, when and why. More on feelings and the brain can be found in Chapter 8 The Caveman and The Thinker in my first book, The Family Coach Method.

In my practice, I use anger mountain to help children delineate what happened, how they felt about the experience, what they thought about the event and what they could have done to calm down, not escalate.

HOW IT WORKS

Imagine that a child climbs anger (this can also be energy or anxiety) mountain when things do not go their way.  Some children escalate very quickly.  Other children can self-regulate and walk down the mountain without letting their anger become uncontrolled. Some children hang out near the top of Anger Mountain, feeling agitated, frustrated, anxious and annoyed. In fact, I have known children who climb up anger mountain, scream and yell and just simply fall apart and then are calm for days afterward (it’s like a neurobiological reset flooding the body with endorphins).

Managing one’s intense feelings is learned. Separating out what causes one to escalate (the event) and what they think or feel about the event (it’s what we think and feel that makes us climb) is useful throughout a lifetime.

On the printable above, we have three columns.  On the left we have triggers that made us escalate, in the middle we have colored boxes where the child can write key words for calming down and on the right we have the activities or actions we can do to experience calm (breathe, do yoga, walk backwards, ask for help).  So literally we are writing what made us climb anger mountain on the left side and what helped us calm down on the right. 

On the left side of the mountain we write down experiences that make us go from a sense of calm (blue) to agitated annoyed or frustrated. Labeling different feelings and experiences as colors helps kids understand and communicate how they feel. “I feel happy and live in blue when I am playing with my friends or reading with dad.” “I feel bugged and green when mom says stop what you are doing and come eat dinner.” “I feel pink or a bit red when I get a sandwich I hate for lunch,” and so on.

On the right side of the mountain we write down calming “skills” that could help us climb back down Anger Mountain before we explode.  “When I feel orange because my mom told me I cannot go outside, I can play with my trains or go ride my bike.”  The middle colored area is where we put key words like “Don’t take it personally.” “Let my mind be flexible.” “Choose another activity.” “How I feel is my choice.” These are like little rescue sentences for the child’s brain to hold on to instead of escalating.

With younger children, I tell them that their feelings are like a choo-choo train.  Their train is happiest when it is “in the station.”  When their train is in the station, they feel calm, they enjoy playing, they have fun in family activities and they enjoy their friends.  But, sometimes things happen that take our trains out of the station.  A friend breaks our sand castle, or our mom says we have to put away our toys, or our sister calls our artwork “dumb.”  This makes our train rev up and zoom out of the station and up the mountain.

It doesn’t have to about trains in a station…it could be flowers in the garden, fishies in the ocean. Any metaphor that suits your family will do. What you are doing for your child is giving him the thoughts, words and actions he can’t find on his own. Try this at home or in school, make it your own! Let us know how it goes @drlynnekenney on twitter or PINTEREST.

Back To School: An Organized Home Sets Your Family Up For Success! #Bloom

With the plethora of valuable websites now a days, all one has to do it type “back to school tips” in the google search bar and your off and running. As a pediatric Psychologist who works in the homes of wonderful families with challenging children, I wish to help you clean out your home before school begins. WHAT? You may be saying, “I have clothing and supplies to purchase, back to school night and more.” But I promise you, if you take a day or two to get your home in order, your school year will go so much smoother! For more in-depth exploration of establishing a home environment in which your child can thrive check out #Bloom.

Start the year off with a fresh clean well-organized home.  It’s quite difficult for children to clear the summer cobwebs out of their brains and dive into the school-year ready-to-learn if they live in a messy home.  If your home is a mess there’s likely a good reason, it may be that you live in overwhelm with ADHD, you may resist throwing things away due to a touch of OCD or you may just have other things you’d rather do, like write parenting articles. Hmm, who’s like that?

Organizing the #Bloom Way ~ HERE WE GO!

Step 1:  Visually scan your space. Right now, from where you are sitting simply look around. Where does it feel organized? What feels cluttered? Is your home a setting in which you feel your family finds peace and can thrive?

Step 2:  Consider what changes you would like in the space. What do you see with your own eyes that you’d like to change? If you are doing the ten minute at a time method, that’s where you start. Each day. Super simple, eh?

Let’s consider planning for longer-term organization.  When you think about improving the organization of your home, which rooms come to mind? Are you thinking kitchen, laundry room, and kid’s rooms? What about drawers, study areas and that old garage.

Step 3:  Make a plan. Getting organized is about getting out of thinking, ruminating, worrying and procrastinating and into taking action. Consider www.listplanit.com to help you with your organizing needs.

  1. Make a list of areas you want to work on in priority order
  2. Start with the areas that bother you the most
  3. Write down exactly what you’d like to be better about the specific room
  4. List major areas of change for each room
  5. Draw out placement of large items
  6. Do a quick survey of storage items that you may wish to bring into your environment
  7. Write down which spaces you will work on which day
  8. Create a checklist for each room so that you’ll be able to monitor and celebrate your success
  9. Keep your notes in ONE binder
  10. Keep notes of all that you do, so you can maintain your success over time

Step 4:  Engage the Tribe.

  • Get help: Friends, family, neighbors, your kids
  • Make it a family game or activity, assign one room to each kid, play “Trading Spaces”
  • Designate family relationship rewards – When we finish a room we will go for a bike ride, or paint a picture or have a BAR-B-Q
  • Take note of every 10-minute block you and your friends work to re-engineer your home (you’ll be amazed at what you can do!)
  • Finish one project before starting another

Step 5: You have to discard stuff you don’t use to clear out the clutter.  I know it’s hard.

HARD TO THROW IT AWAY? ASK YOURSELF:

  • When did I use this last?
  • When will I use it again?
  • Do I really need more then one of certain items?
  • Do I know someone who will get better use out of it?
  • Does it work? Is it worth repairing?
  • Does it fit RIGHT NOW?
  • If I am going to keep it, does it belong where I found it?
  • How hard would it be to replace it in the future if I needed it?

Step 6: Use storage items you already own to group by category and item.

  • Use baby food jars for nuts, screws, paper clips, loose change, etc.
  • Use film canisters for pins, buttons, tacks, etc.
  • Use old Tupperware
  • Use extra silverware trays
  • Use hooks
  • Use tape
  • Use old shoe boxes
  • Use clean pasta sauce jars
  • Use hat boxes
  • Use jewelry boxes
  • Line bathroom drawers with hand towels for easy clean-up

Step 7: Enjoy newly organized spaces.

So happy to see you taking charge of your living space. You’ll love your newly organized home and your school year will be off to a much brighter start!

If you’re motivated for more visit www.listplanit.com, orgjunkie.com and read Meryl Starr’s The Home Organizing Workbook and The Personal Organizing Workbook.

More Back To School Resources Can Be Found On:

www.schoolfamily.com

www.famzoo.com

www.myjobchart.com

www.listplanit.com

www.additudemag.com

Play Math Camp September 5-7, 2013 #Phoenix

A few parents have asked me to repeat our Play Math Camp September 5-6-7 in Phoenix (Desert Ridge Area) as those are no school days. If you have a 3rd, 4th or 5th grader who is having difficulty with multiplication and division facts email me and if we have enough interest we’ll do a morning camp thefamilycoach@gmail.com. We play with blocks, balls and marker boards kids love it! So do I:).

Play Math Method

#EF Homework Success: It’s all in the discrete tasks

Today, a twitter colleague looked at the #EF Daily Homework Planner and said, @karenlovestew “I wonder what are discrete parts of the assignment what would go in this slot for example?”

Karen, thank you, this indeed needed more elaboration.

We all know that project management can be difficult. It takes seeing the BIG picture, knowing what parts of the task are to be done when, and managing one’s time to project completion.

Daily Planner Page jpeg

The overall purpose of the #EF Daily Homework Sheet is to enhance children’s abilities to PREVIEW an entire task, separate it into SEQUENTIAL parts and experience success by completing one part of an assignment at a time. There is no one way to use these, I adapt them with each child with whom I work. Just helping a child with the critical thinking process of “What do you need to do?” “When?” “What is your plan?” is a huge help for many children.

Now to answer your thoughtful question:

Under the project management section of our #EF Daily Homework Sheet, the discrete tasks on this page are separated into three.  For some projects you may need more pages, in fact. Like if a project were, “Go to the science center, attend the healthy heart exhibit, write down three facts from the exhibit, make a poster with pictures representing the facts and do a poster presentation for the class one week from today.” This project, while common for many 4th-8th graders, has many parts. Just the act of writing the sequence of activities properly is difficult for many children.

Teachers speak in paragraphs, not lists, and the child has to possess the executive function skills to listen to the instructions, identify the salient parts, write down the instructions in sequential order and then execute the task.

So on DAY 1: The discrete task may include, gather your lined notebook paper, highlighters and pens and be prepared to take notes at the exhibit.”

DAY 2: Might be, “Attend the exhibit with your class, write down three facts you learn.”

DAY 3: Might be, “Transfer your facts to a poster board.” “Choose photos from magazines that represent the facts you learned.” “Cut them out.” “Paste the photos or pictures on the poster board.” “Review the poster board with a parent for accuracy.”

DAY 4: May have no related tasks.

DAY 5: Might be, “Practice a five minute presentation with your poster board at home with a parent.” “Practice your verbal presentation until it is fluid and easy for you to remember.”

DAY 6-8: “Wait until it is your turn to present to the class.” “While waiting your turn, focus on the student speakers, take notes on what they say.”

Karen, your question also caused me to go through my 6 hr brain talk for the slides on what discrete tasks look like. I knew I had written it out so voila, I really hope this helps:). Print em out, change em up, use them as is helpful to you. CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE AND PRINT. Thank you again, have a lovely day.

Skills Blank Aug 2013

Skills Reading Aug 2013

Skills Math Aug 2013

Got Social Skills? Social Adventures Can Help!

It’s Expert MONDAY!  Meghan Graham MS CCC-SLP, Karen Head MS CCC-SLP and Jill Perry MHA MS OTR/L are with us today to talk about how to teach children social skills. I had the opportunity to ask Meghan, Karen and Jill questions parents often pose when I make a referral for language therapy, social skills enhancement, social competency training or occupational therapy. You may be wondering as well…

  • What does a speech pathologist do to help our children?
  • How does an occupational therapist enhance our children’s skill sets?
  • What is social competency?
  • How do children learn social skills?
  • What social skills do children often have difficulty with and why?
  • What is Social Adventures?
  • How can parents/kids/teachers use it and how?
  • What ideas do you have for parents when their children miss social cues, are emotionally dysregulated and more…

LISTEN IN LIVE or on REPLAY as Meghan, Karen and Jill help us understand the ins and outs of enhancing our children’s social skills, emotional regulation, social relationships, anxiety, anger, bullying and more.

CLICK FOR SOCIAL ADVENTURES APP

Guest Post written by Meghan Graham MS CCC-SLP, Karen Head MS CCC-SLP and Jill Perry MHA MS OTR/L

Over the past several years, educator, therapists and parents have become increasingly focused upon supporting positive social skills development in young children. Perhaps this has been in response to increased understanding of a number of developmental diagnoses; such as, autism spectrum disorders, nonverbal learning disorders and attentional disorders and the impact they have on a child’s social functioning.

As treating therapists, we have worked with hundreds of children with social challenges over the years through the Social Adventures Program at Children’s Therapy Associates in Natick, MA. We typically see children between the ages of 4 and 9 and at these ages we have found that children learn best through doing rather than talking about social rules. In fact, we have found that many, if not most of the children in our program are often able to articulate a social rule and even recognize when someone else is doing something “wrong”, but they aren’t able to access and effectively use that knowledge “in the moment”. Therefore, we have adopted an approach to teaching social skills which includes 3 critical components:

The first is to “boil down” appropriate social behavior into easy-to-remember Social Catch Phrases. Some examples of these include: “Let Them Know” which helps kids remember to be active listeners and let their friend know they heard them and are interested.

“No Thanks, How ‘Bout” provides a reminder that if they don’t want to do a friend’s idea, they need to offer an alternative. We have found that the most effective means of introducing the power of these catch phrases is through role play. Kids love it! We have also developed cartoon illustrations of the phrases that we use for prompting “in the moment.” We particularly like our “I Need My Space” cartoon.

The second component of our program involves attention to the sensory and motor aspects of social interaction. We recognize that inefficient processing of movement, muscle sense, and touch information leads to balance, spatial awareness, self-regulatory, and motor coordination challenges; all of which play a huge role in managing relationships. The structure of our program is based in the understanding that young children need to move to learn and thus incorporates direct teaching and practice with regard to body/space awareness, understanding body language, and self-regulation.

The final critical component of our program is to provide the kids with opportunities to use new skills during highly-motivating activities. These activities vary from table top collaborative projects to active playground games depending upon the skills being targeted. Using fun, often familiar activities to practice new skills is a powerful tool for promoting generalization.

As this program has developed over the years, we have been asked by parents and other professionals if there was a way to publish the program so that it could be more easily shared. We considered publishing a book but wanted a medium which would allow for easy updates with new activities, cartoons and other meaningful additions. We were stumped until the advent of the iPad and iPhone apps. Once we realized the flexibility that apps provide, we decided it was time to share the Social Adventures program. In April, 2011 we founded all4mychild and in October, 2011 we published our first version of the Social Adventure app which includes over 40 activities, parent tips, a Sample 8-week Program, cartoon illustrations of our 9 most commonly used Social Catch Phrases and an interactive game, the Bag Game. In February of this year, we published the Bag Game as a separate app.  Please contact us if we may help you, your students and children with social skill development.

Questions or Comments?  Send them along to info@all4mychild.com  Follow us on Twitter:  @all4mychild, @SLPmeg, @airborneOT, and @speechNinja 

Meghan Gallahan Graham, MS, CCC-SLP  graduated from Ithaca College in 2004 with a Bachelor of Science  degree in Teachers of Students with Speech and Hearing Disabilities. She then went on to Boston University where she received her Masters of Science degree in Speech and Language Pathology. Meghan then was hired by Children’s Therapy Associates in Natick, MA, a pediatric multi-disciplinary clinic where she serves a range of children with various communication profiles.

Jill Perry, MHA, MS, OTR/L graduated in 1978 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Special Education.  While teaching and working in a community health center, she developed a social pragmatics group with a speech-language pathologist and there fell in love with the idea that two (or more) frames of reference were better than one. Jill went on to earn a Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy from Boston University in 1985 and became certified in administering the Southern California Sensory Integration Test; the original Sensory Integration test developed by Dr. Jean Ayres.

Karen Samstad Head, MS, CCC-SLP graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry in 1984.  While she enjoyed the intellectual challenge of a career in pure science, she found that she craved more “people” time and soon found herself volunteering with a variety of agencies, including teaching English as a Second Language and providing respit for caretakers in a group home for children in the foster system.  Through these experiences, Karen learned of the field of Speech Language Pathology and soon entered the Master’s Program at Emerson College, where she received a degree in 1991.

To Teach New #EF #Social-Emotional Skills: Collaborate

Recently Dr. David Nowell tweeted The Think Kids: Thinking Skills Inventory created by Dr. Ross Greene and Dr. Stuart Ablon at Massachusetts General Hospital. These doctors have made huge advances in the assessment of social-emotional and behavioral skills. Their approach to data-based skills planning to improve collaborative problem solving is just what schools and families need.

1. Here is a sample page. The pdf is #FREE, another thing I really appreciate about Drs. Greene and Ablon. Download it, print it, and apply it in your home or school.

2. A few of you also asked for my most recent #EF #ADHD Workshop Slides they are here. (Please note the attributions page, many wonderful clinicians have contributed their knowledge and skills to this talk.)

3. For Dr. Greene’s books CLICK here.

Happy collaboration to you!

Raise Children For a Kind not Cruel World with L.R. Knost

In an era where some parents focus more on consequences than parenting, the world needs L. R. Knost, author, mother and promoter of kindness in parenting. It is time to raise children with love in their hearts, who feel whole and nurtured. Read Whispers Through Time, absorb it, live with a “listening heart,” your children will thank you for it.

“Many people believe that gentle parenting is a form of unparenting, but nothing could be further from the truth. Gentle parenting is involved parenting ~interactive, engaged, active parenting. It takes focused attention, planning, participation, research, and so much more to be an empathetic, responsive parent who is in tune with their child’s needs and who is prepared to make whatever sacrifices are necessary to meet those needs. That said, in any home, like in any civilized society, boundaries are necessary for everyone’s safety and comfort. It is in the choosing and enforcing of those boundaries that gentle parenting distinguishes itself. In a gently parented home, boundaries are focused on guiding rather than controlling children and are enforced through empathetic and creative resolutions rather than harsh punitive consequences.” L.R. Knost.

12 Steps To Gentle Parenting CLICK HERE FOR MORE

Best-selling parenting and children’s book author, L.R.Knost, is an independent child development researcher and founder and director of the advocacy and consulting group, Little Hearts/Gentle Parenting Resources. A mother of six, her children range from 25- years down to 25-months-old. Two Thousand Kisses a Day: Gentle Parenting Through the Ages and Stages and Whispers Through Time: Communication Through the Ages and Stages of Childhood are the first in her Little Hearts Handbooks series of parenting guides.

The next book in the series, The Gentle Parent: Positive, Practical, Effective Discipline is due to be released November 2013. Other works by this award-winning author include the children’s picture books A Walk in the Clouds, Petey’s Listening Ears, and the soon-to-be-released Grumpykins series for ages 2 to 6, which are humorous and engaging tools for parents, teachers, and caregivers to use in implementing gentle parenting techniques in their homes and schools.

#EF #ADHD #SPD #PLAY Brain-Based Interventions ~ AZ

It’s my pleasure to be speaking with my friends and colleagues for three days in three cities in Arizona.  Here I provide some resources for attendees, parents and teachers who may wish to delve deeper.

My brain-interventions slide show for this event is here. CLICK TO VIEW.

The story-telling method I mention is described in detail here. CLICK TO VIEW.

Printable Whole Foods Grocery List CLICK TO VIEW and PRINT.

Information on fats and protein CLICK HERE.

Recipes, Resources & Printables you can use in your classroom, family or practice are downloadable for free on pinterest.

On Nutrition: What we feed our children really matters.

“If it doesn’t rot or sprout, do without.”

Christy Wilson RD reminds us:

  1. Shop in-season
  2. Avoid the name brand stuff
  3. Remember, fresh is always best
  4. Only buy what you need for the week
  5. Buy from your farmer’s market–it’s cheaper and better (quality)

Kid Kritics approved grocery list

Where to shop online for whole food

Neurotransmitter research

Nordic Naturals Omega -3s

Country Health for Vitalosates Vitamins (775) 827-4202

Michelle Dudash Cookbook

Today I Ate A Rainbow

Little Jots

Nourish Interactive

Enjoy!

 

 

Help Children Develop Positive Thinking #Free Printables

Recently I was talking with a mum who said her child is “persistently negative” in his thinking. “He tells me the teacher hates him, his friends are mean to him and he is in a lot of pain. How can I help him?” Getting at the heart of what pains your child involves helping exploring how your child thinks, feels and behaves. Some children are born more optimistic than others, but we can build optimism with practice.

How to talk with your children about what they think and feel in a manner that helps them open up and not close down is a big discussion that is addressed in The Family Coach Method. The key is to develop trust with your children so that they know you will explore their life experiences with introspection and solution-generation not judgement.

One specific aspect of helping children feel better about themselves is to aide them in developing positive thinking. How we perceive and think about life experiences impacts how we feel as well as our health. If your child’s brain goes naturally to the negative, you’ll need to open up new neuronal pathways for more positive thinking. This takes, writing, talking, movement, drawing and more.

The best way I think to help your child to think more positively is to get a playground ball and bounce it back and forth between the two of you. Talk in a slow and easy manner about  your child’s concerns. Ask open-ended questions. If your child cannot put the experiences into words, offer your ideas and ask, “Am I getting this right?”

“It seems like something is on your mind.”

“Shall we talk about it?”

“How are the kids treating one another at school?”

“What do the kids do that is kind to one another?”

“What do you see when people being mean.”

“How would you like things to be different?”

As your child starts to explore his thoughts and feelings ask him if he’s open to “drawing it out.” Sit down at your kitchen table and begin with a simple exercise.

1. Draw a line down the middle of one 8.5 x 11 in piece of paper.

2. On the left-hand side write Negative Thoughts.

3. On the right-hand side write Positive Thoughts.

4. Tell your son, how we think about what happens to us impacts how we feel.

5. Ask him to write (or you write) the negative thoughts on the left, then transform the thoughts into positive thoughts, often including how to take action on the right.

6. Then, make a plan to take action on just one negative thought. “What will you do about…” “What’s our plan for…” “What will you say to your teacher today?” “How will you choose and approach a new friend?”

Try not to argue with your child about his thoughts, he has a right to them. Just help him see that he is in control of what he thinks and he can see things with more hope when he knows how to improve difficult social and academic situations.  Here are two #FREE printables. Click on them to enlarge and print.

Positive Thinking #1Positive Thinking #2

Share these with your school, counselors, family and more. Together we can help children develop the positive thinking skills needed to enhance their lives. The work of Dr. Martin Seligman and Dr. Robert Brooks are also worth a peek. For more on developing skill sets get The Complete Parenting Package ~ 2 digital books Bloom and The Family Coach Method, 75 pages of printables and 7 audios.

Helping Kids Do Daily Tasks: See It Say It and Draw It Before You Do It #Bloom

See It Say It and Draw It Before You Do It (Here is an excerpt from #Bloom.)

Most of us think of tasks of everyday living like cleaning the dishes, folding the laundry or cleaning ones room,  in order from beginning to end. First, we do “this.” Then next we do “that.” This is helpful for children who think linearly, are able to remember and execute tasks in order and for those children who are supported by visual and verbal cuing (picture schedules, routine lists, and helpful parents).

But for many children developing routines with “The End In Mind,” as Stephen Covey says, is more effective. Covey explains in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, that many people need to see or visualize what task completion looks like before they can execute it. “It is based on the principle that all things are created twice. There is a mental (first) creation, and a physical (second) creation. The physical creation follows the mental, just as a building follows a blueprint.”

National speaker and speech therapist Sarah Ward, M.S. CCC-SLP echoed this sentiment, “Non-verbal memory, precedes verbal memory, so often children need to imagine what they will do before they can talk about it, then execute the vision.” (Presentation Lexis Preparatory School, Scottsdale, Arizona January 17, 2013)

This is why we use story telling, drawing and verbalizing to help children imagine, talk about, plan and execute routines.

For more on developing skill sets see our NEW BOOK Bloom. Get your KINDLE version HERE.

We call the simple technique we use with children, “Draw It Out.” This is a planning technique that involves drawing three boxes (horizontally) and telling the story of the activity, task or routine. The three boxes represent the beginning, middle and end of any task or activity. Then we talk with the children about what they “imagine” or “see” they will need to do to get from “Here” (the beginning) to “There” (the end). CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE AND PRINT.

Draw it out

If you have the children label the drawing something like “Clean My Room,” you can then start drawing in box three (the end) using the following conversation starters to get the child thinking.

“What will we see, when your room is clean?”

“What does a clean room look like?”

“What will the bed be like?”

“What will the floor look like?”

“What will someone see when they walk into the room?”

“Where will all the books be?”

“Where will your clothing be?”

“What will be on the chair?”

“What will be on the dresser?”

“What will be sitting on the floor?”

“What will be hanging in the closets?”

“How will we know when the room is clean?”

Once the child has a label for the activity and three boxes in front of them to draw about and imagine what it will take to do the activity, in this example, clean one’s room, the child, tween or teen has more opportunity for success.  He can see it, say it, imagine it, plan it and do it.

Remember, for many of our children tackling something like the morning routine, homework or tasks of daily living like cleaning your room feel HUGE and overwhelming. When we break down those tasks into parts (chunks) and we imagine what it will look and feel like (what will you see, how will you feel) to accomplish the task, kids feel less defensive, afraid, frustrated or angry.

You can help your child, tween or teen develop an image of what they are trying to attain, by exploring the “Who, What, When, Where and How” of what is needed to “Get There.”

WHO

“Who will help you clean your room?”

“Will you do it on your own?”

“Do you want me to help?”

“Do you want Victoria (child’s friend) to help?”

WHAT

“What will you need to get from here to there?”

“What cleaning supplies will you need to clean your room?”

“What will you need to hang your clothes up in your closet?”

“What will you put where?”

“What is your plan for keeping your room clean?”

WHEN

“When will you clean your room?”

“What time and day will you tackle what parts of cleaning your room?”

“Will you break-down cleaning your room into chunks? Like throwing away old wrappers, food and things you no longer need first?”

“When choosing a home for each item, decide where everything lives.”

“Your perfume goes on your dresser, your socks go in the top left drawer, your volleyball shoes go on the bottom shelf in your closet etc.”

WHERE

“Every object needs a home, where will each item’s home be?”

“Where will you put your shoes?”

“Where will you hang your pants?”

HOW

“Let’s draw out, what the beginning, middle and end are for the story, “This is how I clean my room.”

“How will you begin cleaning your room?”

“How will you choose what to keep and what to throw away?”

“How often will you straighten up your room?”

“How will you maintain a clean room?”

When we “back-into” routines, keeping the end in mind, children are able to plan, initiate and execute with more success. Don’t leave your teens out of the process, we know that many college students do not know how to plan and execute a strategy. So this can help the young and old a like. Task accomplishment feels great! Planning, preparing, visualizing, verbalizing, drawing and writing really help. Once your child has the technique down, he/she can make doing any task, “routine.”

You can use the “Draw It Out” technique for any activity or task, homework, job interviews, or buying a new car.  It’s all in the visualizing. This enhances the planning and execution. Happy drawing to you!

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Copyright © 2014 Dr Lynne Kenney