Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Parenting approaches – What questions should we be asking?

I always ask the following questions when reviewing a particular ' parenting approach '.

 Is it a ' working with ' approach with children focusing on relationship and with problems solved in a collaborative way or a 'doing to' approach focusing enhancing parenting authority and control using behavior modification techniques and extrinsic motivation.

 I also ask whether the child's needs for autonomy, competence and relatedness are met with the particular approach.

 The starting point of each approach may be different.  Collaborative Problem solving originated out of a need to help challenging kids where traditional parenting and behavior modification techniques were failing them because their problems were lagging skills and not motivation. The CPS mantra is children do well if they can and not children do well if they want to. Kids would prefer to be successful, adaptable and flexible. While CPS does not use extrinsic motivation, intrinsic motivation of the child is being supported because the needs of autonomy, competence and relatedness are being met.? Other working with approaches like Alfie Kohn's Unconditional Parenting start out with an ' attachment –relationship ' approach to parenting and focus on relationship and the academic-socio-moral growth of the child. CPS is very much the HOW of the 'working with 'parenting approaches.

 Parents will obviously benefit from knowledge of various working with approaches as they complement each other.

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