We hear a lot about “time outs” as an effective disciplinary tool for young children. But just as important is “Time-in.” This is regular, uninterrupted time that a parent spends with a child - a time when you can interact without being judgmental. Time-in should be given to every child, every day regardless of the child’s behavior. Call it special time, our time, together time or whatever you and your child decide. Let your child choose the activity you’ll share, as long as it’s within reason. Choose a time that is most appropriate for you and your child. But make it a consistent, predetermined amount of time, depending on your child’s age and interest. Ten to thirty minutes is usually a good start. Setting aside a “Time-in” is a great way to let your child know - every day - just how special she is.
The above script is part of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) radio series 'A Minute for Kids,' which airs weekdays on WBBM-AM in Chicago, IL.