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5 ways to teach sportsmanship to children

There is a little 8-year old boy on my son’s soccer team who throws a tantrum each time the team loses or he doesn’t get a chance to play as long as he wants. Another boy in that same son’s basketball team would throw a fit and cry if he got taken out of the game. 
Teaching a child to be a good sport can be challenging especially for younger children. Take a look at these tips Supernanny.com asked us to share to give you ideas on how to handle it:

  1. Teach him that there is no I in TEAM. This saying is still popular among coaches because it’s so true. Kids, by nature, are self-focused. It’s natural, especially at a young age, for them to think about themselves more than their teammates. They want to be the one to kick the ball in for a goal or hit the home run and win the game. Teach your child that no matter how great he is, he’s part of a team, and everyone on that team is a valuable player. Talk about how each person has something to contribute and should be given the chance to play. These ideas can be especially hard to get across to your child if he’s skilled and is considered a star of the team. When others set him apart because of his talent, it’s easy for him to fall into the trap of feeling like he can get things done all by himself. But he can’t. Even the star needs the support and help of his teammates to shine.
  2. Let him know mistakes are a part of everything in life. No one is perfect, and mistakes are just part of the game in sports. That’s easy to say, but often kids don’t take mistakes with a great attitude. A missed ball or an out of bounds throw can cause anything from a few minutes of pouting to a full-blown meltdown. Take those opportunities to talk with your child about his feelings about the mistake. Remind him that no one on the team, not even the star player, gets it right every time. Help him remember a time when other team members made mistakes and it turned out OK. Helping him realize that his mistake isn’t fatal will help put things in perspective. Off the field or court, give your child lots of opportunities to try new things. Learning how to bounce back from mistakes in everyday life will help him do the same in the game.
  3. Show her how to win. One of the hardest things to teach your child is the lesson of humility. It’s her natural instinct to enthusiastically celebrate her team’s wins, and there’s nothing wrong with that. She and her teammates worked hard and they deserve to celebrate! They should be proud of themselves and enjoy the payoff of all their hard work and dedication. The key is to show kindness and respect to the other team while enjoying the win. That balance is hard to achieve, even for some adults. Remind your child what’s it’s like to be on the losing team. How would she like the winning team to treat her in those situations? What could they do or say that would make the loss easier to handle? By helping her see things from the losing team’s perspective, she’ll be much better prepared to show humility when she wins.
  4. Show him how to lose. The old adage “there’s nothing worse than a sore loser” still rings true today. Teaching your child to show humility when he wins is hard. Teaching him to show grace when he loses is even harder. His natural reaction is more likely to be anger and resentment towards the other team. Use these opportunities to talk about the importance of being proud of his efforts, even when they don’t result in a win. Books and films are filled with examples of good sportsmanship and can be discussion starters for you.
  5. Give her practice in being part of a team outside of sports. There are lots of opportunities in your child’s everyday life for her to learn and practice good team skills. Anytime she has to work with another person to accomplish a task will help her build up the skill set she needs to be a great team player. This can happen in free play with neighborhood kids when they come together to build a backyard fort or develop a new game. It can happen when she’s working with her siblings to get the Saturday chores done. Allow your child to learn from those situations and she’ll reap the rewards both on and off the field.
Good luck parents and caregivers!

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How to create a toxin free nursery

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Mothers and fathers take pride in bringing their little one home to a cozy, beautiful and safe nursery. The flurry around creating the perfect nursery can overwhelm everything else. Babies are quite delicate and super sensitive to their new surroundings, so we want to try our very best to take every precaution to protect our treasured little bundle from harmful agents.
Outside the protection of the home, there is not much you can control. You can’t control how the air smells, or the exhaust from car that drives down the road, or the particular person nearby who is sick. You make every attempt to keep your baby away from hazards, but you take a chance each time baby is outside. At home however you can keep your baby’s nursery safe, sanitary and totally free from dangerous toxins.
Keeping your nursery clean is essential to providing a safe environment for your baby. 
Make sure you regularly clean your carpets using a vacuum cleaner that has a HEPA filter. The filter will help eliminate the majority of harmful pathogens, allergies, dust particles, pet dander and more. 
According to a 2002 U.S. Geological Survey, 80% of cleaning products leave behind a residue that may include antibiotics, synthetic hormones, pesticides, etc. That is a poor exchange for germ-free surfaces! These chemical substances can be very harmful if ingested or inhaled and can affect the development of your baby’s immune system. 
Go to the store and find cleaning products that are ‘non-toxic.’ They are just as effective as their toxic counterparts and smell significantly better. You can also try home remedy cleaning solutions that are tremendously less costly and totally free of poisonous residue. 
Crib Bedding
Your crib bedding is the last thing your baby sees before bedtime and the first thing your newborn sees when he/she wakes up. Your newborn will spend about two-thirds of their day in the crib, so selecting safe baby crib sets and taking appropriate care of it should be one of your top priorities. 

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