'Get real' when talking to teenagers
Teens impact families in exciting and challenging ways. While many of us envision conflict and rebellious behavior when we think of teenagers, that isn't necessarily the norm. Parents can strengthen the parent-teen relationship and build healthier families through improved communication and decision-making skills.
University of Minnesota Extension's newly-revised fact-sheet series, "Teen Talk: A Survival Guide for Parents of Teenagers," provides practical and useful discussion guides for engaging teens about tough topics. The research-based series helps parents talk with their teens about relevant issues, including sports ("Winning Isn't Everything"), employment, bullying, school success, parties, dating, alcohol and marijuana use, to name a few.
The full set of fact sheets sells for $4, plus shipping. Purchase it online at shop.extension.umn.edu (search for item 08478).
You can review samples of selected fact sheets and additional parenting resources at Families with Teens.
Balancing winning and losing in organized sports
Teens learn important skills and values from organized sports by observing the ways adult role models, parents and coaches behave in relation to the players and the sport. In addition to being aware of the lessons your behavior is teaching, here are some other ways you can make the most out of your teen's participation:
- Discuss the role competition plays in the lives of family members.
- Encourage the idea that everyone who achieves their goal receives rewards.
- Develop in your child a lifelong commitment to an active lifestyle and physical fitness.
- Encourage your child to play because he or she enjoys it.
- Focus on teaching life skills and allow your child to be involved in the decision making about sports participation. Reinforce and support your child's decisions.
Want to know more? See www.parenting.umn.edu