Five to Thrive blocks

Being a parent is an amazing job but it’s not an easy one. There are moments of great enjoyment and also times where parenthood is challenging.

Every family is different and each can face different challenges, but what unites you as parents and caregivers is your desire for your children to grow up happy, learning new skills and feeling supported in their emotional wellbeing.

Parenting support

Here are some key parenting messages which will help support your child to grow into confident, emotionally resilient and independent young people.

If you would like more information on parenting support offered in Salford then please contact your local family hub.

To find out more about more about topic expand the boxes below.

Helping with frustrations

Parents and carers can use play to help their children learn to beat frustration and complete difficult tasks.

By noticing and commenting when your child is concentrating, focusing or dealing with something calmly you are supporting them to recognise what they are doing well. This can help children to learn that it can be normal to find somethings difficult to accomplish.

Persistence coaching video

In this clip see how mum is encouraging her 18 month old to keep trying with the activity. What effect does it have?

Persistence coaching video transcript:

Mum: Shall we have a go at your jigsaw?
Can you take the pieces out? The yellow one. (Gasps) the blue ones.
You are doing it very gently.
Ok, shall we try and put them back in? Where does it go? Up there?
Where does the head go?
(Gasps) you want to give it to me? And that one?
(Gasps) where shall we put this one? Put it in. What about that one?
Yay! Well done.
You are doing it very calmly.
Can you try turning it?
Do you want to try this one? Ok.
Well done!
You keep trying it. Try it in different ways.
Ok, what about the last one?
(Gasps) Jigsaw done? Yay (claps)

Here is a video which shows how a school are using these ideas to help children persist with trying activities.

Encouraging social and emotional skills

Children have a range of emotions just as we have as adults; although it can harder for children to manage or understand those emotions. When we as adults feel anger for example we can turn and say to people: "I'm feeling angry I need some space, I'm going for a walk".

Children may not have the skills to do that and so resort to behaviours such as shouting, throwing or even having a tantrum. Developmentally this is normal and we want to be able to give our children the skills to manage and understand their emotions so that they will be able to manage their emotions better.

It’s ok that your child feels emotions such as anger or upset – we all do – what is not ok is the negative response or actions we can sometimes experience with these emotions.

The following BBC article discusses how talking to your child is something that happens every day, but there are some simple ways of communicating which can encourage children to express their feelings, listen and co-operate.

Thoughts, feelings and behaviour

The way we think affects the way we feel & then in turn affects how we behave. It’s really natural during stressful times to think about things negatively.

When we have the ability to change the way we think, we can learn how to have control of our feelings and actions.

It can help to practice being positive; what 3 things have happened today to make you smile or feel grateful?

Watch the following video which explains in more detail the thoughts, feelings, behaviour cycle.

If you can't hear the video or don't have sound on your device you can turn on the captions option in YouTube.

Benefits of child led play

Playing is so important for children’s physical, emotional and academic development as it helps them understand their world and their place within it. This then supports their self-confidence.

Child led play supports your child to have ideas and be in control of their exploration and learning. This allows them to experience independence & may allow them to extend new ideas.

You still play an important role in child led play however by providing a safe environment for your child to explore and test new ideas.
What play have you noticed your child leading in?

Child led play video

In the clip below see how mum lets her 4 year old lead the play. What effect does that have?

If you can't hear the video or don't have sound on your device you can turn on the captions option in YouTube.

Child led play transcript

Child: This is my remote control car.
Child & Mum (make vrooming sounds)
Child: Hey, you know what this guy can do?
Mum: What can that guy do Ellis? (Gasps) Oh somersaults!
Child: Yeah and he can do this (demonstrates action off camera)
Mum: He’s a clever guy isn’t he, he’s standing on his head.
Child: Yeah because he’s a mechanic.
Mum: Is he a mechanic?
Child: Yeah “I’m ok”
Mum: And he’s just jumped off the jeep
Child: Yeah and he’s ok.
Mum: Oh, that’s good news.
Child: Because mechanics can never hurt themselves (vrooming noises)
Mum: Can they not? Oh wow, the mechanics doing somersaults! And he’s landing on the Army Jeep. Its really cool Ellis. Yeah, well cool.
Child: Cool right? He just went (demonstrates action off camera) Oh, how cool is that?
Mum: That is so cool.
Child: (Inaudible) He’s really cool.
Mum: Really cool and he’s on the front of the car now isn’t he? Let’s see. Whoah, more twists & turns! He’s such a good acrobat isn’t he?
Child: Yeah, you know. Nice right?
Mum: Wow he’s just flipped right into the seat!
Child: Yeah he’s just flipped like into the wing down.
Mum: Into the wing down.
Child: (inaudible) instead of sitting down.
Mum: Right so he’s changing gear isn’t he?
Mum: Wow.
Child: (Vrooms)
Mum: Wow!

Here are some great activity ideas for 0 to 12 month old babies.

Learning through play

Parents have been telling us they are finding it difficult to teach their children. This can be extremely frustrating at times.

Play time can be a great opportunity to support your child’s learning by using different types of language to support their play meaning that your children are learning new things via their play time with you. An example might be to describe the different colours shapes and sizes of toys.

What kind of things could you comment on to help your children learn through play?

Academic coaching video

In the clip below see how mum is using different language to describe things to her 4 year old. Think about the effect that could have:

Academic coaching transcript

Child: I’ve took (sic) one of my figures away to be a baddy.
Mum: Ok, so you’ve got the transformer baddy.
Child: Yeah
Mum: And I’ve got…
Child: That’s (inaudible - name of character)
Mum: A goody. And this is Chase’s blue car, isn’t it?
Child: Yeah, that’s going to be his car.
Mum: So I’m going to put my blue goody in my blue Chase’s car. And I’ve got a red dinosaur.

This finger painting video is a lovely clip from BBC tiny happy people website that shows parents using a finger painting activity as an opportunity to teach their children by commenting on things such as colour, objects etc and discussing how it feels or looks. Notice how calm they are.

Parenting programmes

Our parenting offer has five key programmes to support parents and carers in Salford. These are evidence based parenting programmes which show that parents and carers who take part become more competent and comfortable in their parenting role, have strengthened relationships with their children and their overall family wellbeing increases.

Parents develop skills to enhance their child’s social, emotional and academic competency and learn strategies to deal with misbehaviour in consistent, non-punitive ways.

The Solihull Approach

An online parenting programme for parents of children aged 0-19. There are three main courses:

  • Antenatal
  • Understanding your baby
  • Understanding your child up to 19 years

There's also a short course on ‘Understanding your teenager’s brain’.

The main courses all have a voiceover for people with low literacy levels or who have an auditory learning style.

Empowering Parents, Empowering Communities (EPEC)

EPEC parenting courses are led by local parent facilitators who have completed accredited EPEC training and receive ongoing training, supervision and support from parenting specialists based in a local EPEC Hub.

The Being a Parent course is for parents of children aged 2 to 11 where parents learn a range of positive parenting skills, better understand children’s feelings, value effective parent-child communication and build better, more resilient family relationships.

Incredible Years

A series of connected evidence based programmes which aim to prevent child behaviour problems and support children’s social, emotional and academic learning. Courses include:

  • Baby Incredible Years (0-6 months)
  • Toddler (1-3 years)
  • Basic (3-7 years)
  • School Age (7-12 years)

Teen Triple P Positive Parenting Programme

A group programme for parents of children aged 12 to 16 years with behavioural difficulties and/or an interest in learning more about positive parenting skills that can be adapted to a wide range of parenting situations.

Support for parents of children with a diagnosis of ADHD or ASD

Our colleagues in Salford CAMHS run targeted courses and groups to support these parents including Triple P groups and Post Diagnostic Autism Groups.

Who to contact

If you would like more information on parenting support offered in Salford then please contact your local family hub.

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