Child upbringing in Norway
Child-upbringing consists of improved interaction with children, and is summarized with eight themes
“Better interaction with children – Eight themes
Are you wondering how to get the best possible contact with your child? Parental guidance program has developed eight themes with good advice to parents of young children. Here is how to establish a good interaction and communication with your child.
Show positive emotions – show that you love your child
It is important for the child’s assurance that you show that you love it, caresse it and show the joy and enthusiasm. Young children who still can not understand normal speech,still can perceive love and rejection, joy and sorrow. There are many ways to do this, and the way will obviously vary with the child’s age:
- smile and laugh together
- embrace, clamp
- positive contact
- joke and laugh together
- talk with gentle, loving voice
- say that you love your child when appropriate
Adjust yourself to your child and follow its initiatives
When you are with your child, it is important that you are aware of what your child wants, what it does and what it feels, so you live yourself into how the child has it and that you are trying to adapt to the child and follow up the child’s concern.This enables the child to feel that you care about it.
Everyone – children and adults – need to be seen and understood. It is important for the child’s development that, within certain limits,follow their own ideas instead of being imposed on activities of others. Make sure you do not go too fast and override the child. Give it time to come up with its own initiatives. This does not mean that it is the child who will control you!
- Respond to inquiries from the child.
- Follow your child’s activity and actions.
- See what your child is doing, what it wants.
- Interpret the child’s body language.
- Guess what your child wants and feels.
- Answers to what the child wants and feels.
- Customize your actions to your child’s condition.
- Show interest in what your child is doing.
Talk with your child about things that obsess him/her
Even shortly after birth, it is possible to initiate an emotional conversation with eye contact, smile and exchange of gestures and joyful utterances. You can comment positively about what the child is doing or is concerned. The child responds with joyful utterances.
This “conversation” is important for your child to associate with you, for it to learn to be with others, and to develop good language. Older children also need intimate contact through personal conversations where one can confide in and talk about personal things together.
- intimate conversation
- Close Encounters
- Confidences and secrets
- Eye contact
- Rhythmic interaction through body language
- Imitation and exchanging positive movements
- Conversation with the mutual exchange of thoughts, words and feelings
Give praise and show recognition for what the child manages to do
For a child to develop confidence in themselves and the courage to try something new, it’s important that you get your child to feel that it is worth something and that it achieves something. This occurs when you respond positively when your child does something good, give it praise, saying what was good and why it was good. It is important that your child gets a sense of being seen that way. Then the child will develop a realistic confidence.
- See the child.
- Maintain eye contact.
- Meet your child with smile and greeting.
- Give positive touch response.
- Give verbal confirmation.
- Give praise and recognition:
- Say: “That’s good, fine,” “That’s good, because when you do so, then …” with an explanation as to why it’s good.
Collect mutual focus of shared experiences
Children often need help to focus their attention. This can be done by invoking and directing the child’s attention to what is around you. You can say “Look here …” and show to what you want your child to experience or see, or you can adapt yourself to what the child is concerned about, so that you are concerned about the same thing. Often we see that the child is concerned about one thing and parents on something else. Without common attention of things in the environment it is difficult to speak or do anything together. It is a prerequisite for good contact and communication.
- Focusing and mutual attention by monitoring what your child is concerned about, what it does and is interested in.
- Focusing by calling the child’s attention and direct it towards things, details and characteristics of common interest, “Look!” “Come!”.
Give opinion by describing experiences with emotions and enthusiasm
By putting words on, name giving and show how things work, while showing feelings for what you experience together, makes the experience something that your child remembers as important and meaningful. For a child to understand what is happening around and experience it as meaningful and interesting, it needs an adult to put words to experiences.At the same time the child feels assured by this. In this way he learns, for example, language, and working together with others. This happens most often automatically already from birth: “Look, now we will change the diaper,are you sore on the buttoms?”
- Talk with your child about what you experience together.
- Name and describe what you see.
- Show how things work.
- Show enthusiasm and commitment for what you experience together.
Elaborate and give explanations of common experiences
For a child to understand more of the world around, it is important that you give explanations or tell stories about why things happen. In younger children, comparing what you experience together in the moment with something the child has experienced before can expand your child’s experience and understanding.
“Do you remember when we visited …? Then we saw … ”
With an older child, you can tell stories, give explanations, ask questions, find similarities and differences, etc. In this way, we go beyond what the child is experiencing at the moment. All this is important for the child’s intellectual development.
- Give explanations, find and tell the reason why something happens.
- Compare the similarities and differences in relation to a different experience.
- Find connections to the past and the future.
- Create and tell stories about what you experience together.
- Draw, look at pictures and make theater out of what you experience.
Plan together and set limits in a positive way
Children need help to control themselves and to plan. This happens largely when adults in a positive way lead the child without taking over the child’s initiative. When children behave recklessly, become selfish and break rules of being with other children and adults, it is important that adults intervene and set limits in a positive way. The child must be explained why certain things are not allowed. Instead of constantly trying to come up with a ban, saying “no” to your child, it is important to lead it in a positive way, to show what is allowed to do be with the child. Often it is positive attention from parents that the child is seeking when it behaves naughtily.
- Regulate by arranging conditions for the child’s activities, for example by clearing away objects he is afraid when the children was younger.
- Lead the child’s activity by proposing, pointing and saying what can be done.
- Help your child to plan step by step.
- Provide support depending on the child’s need for help – retreat when she/he is successful, so that he/she thinks that it managed the task on its own.
- Challenge your child by giving tasks which requires use of all of their skills.
- Set clear limits to what is allowed in a positive way. Explain what is allowed to do and what is not allowed.
- Give explanations when prohibiting child something. Guide your child when it’s “wrong” by pointing out alternative activities. “
There are a number of information materials about child upbringing in Norway which has been translated in several languages. This information is available via the following link in Children, Youth and Family Affairs (Bufetat) : http://bestill.bufdir.no/pub/familievern/foreldreveiledning/8-tema-for-godt-samspill