How to talk to your children?

  1. Meet your child at their eye level before talking to them, do not call them from far away.
  2. Be firm but calm when you are giving instructions, keep the instructions short and avoid using questions. For example, instead of “Can you go wash your hands please?”, You should say, “Go wash your hands now.”
  3. Wait for 5 seconds in between instructions for your child to process.
  4. Observe your child’s behaviors when they are playing, merely describe what your child is doing, for example, “You are making a tower with the blocks”!
  5. Help your child to express themselves by naming their emotions. For example, “You are ANGRY because the toy car is broken!”
  6. Describe what you like about your child’s behavior. For example “I like when you sit nicely on your chair!”


How to communicate with your child without using words?

  1. Show affection to your child with touching, hugging, tickling and kissing.
  2. Smile to your child, frequently!
  3. Make use of gestures, for example, give them a thumbs up when they are behaving well.


How to play with your child?

  1. Be creative, make use of items at home to create fun games. For example, blow cotton balls across the table with your child and compete who is faster.
  2. Be nurturing and collaborative when you are playing with your child. For example, take turns to do puzzles, take turns to put lotion onto each other when you are talking with him/her.
  3. Talk to your children on a regular basis, give them time to share.
  4. Limit screen time, keep electronic devices out of reach when they are not in use.


General tips for parents:

  1. Prioritise your schedule, take time to take care of yourself alongside your practice as parents. Spend time with yourself away from your child from time to time. For example, go exercise, spend time outdoor, learn something new, write journal, etc.
  2. Look for support from other parents. Join peer support groups where you can meet other parents, express your parental stress and learn coping skills and relaxation techniques.
  3. Build a positive and secure parent-child relationship, by talking and playing, with your child before using any behavioral strategies, these strategies will not be effective if your relationship with your child is bad.
  4. Use tools to assist your parenting journey. For example, use behavioural charts to help you to monitor your child’s behaviours, keep a praise card in your wallet to remind yourself how to appreciate your child.
  5. Engage yourself in role play with other parents to practice how to talk/play with your child, practice makes progress!