Category: Behavior, Discipline & Sleep

Toilet choosing vs. toilet training: What’s the difference?


There are countless decisions parents have to make in order to raise happy and competent children. But, thanks to a process called “toilet choosing,” there is one decision that parents don’t need to make—when their child learns to use the toilet!

What is toilet choosing?
Toilet choosing allows your child to choose to use the toilet when she is ready to do so instead of training her according to a set timetable.

All children naturally...

Posted on April 17, 2017 at 10:27 AM by Kelly Perez

Signs of undiagnosed ADHD, anxiety & learning disorders in kids

Many parents have questions about their child’s behaviors, feelings, thoughts and academic progress. You may have asked yourself many times, Is this normal? Will my child just grow out of it? Children have robust and complex emotional worlds and they can suffer from emotional and neurodevelopmental illnesses just like adults. Here is a list of a few things to pay attention to if you are concerned about your child:   

Your gut feeling
The most significant, reliable and valid warning si...

Posted on April 05, 2017 at 7:00 AM by Matthew Hefferon

5 simple ways to help your picky eater become more adventurous

When my eldest, Jack, was a toddler, I thought I had it all figured out. He was (and is) curious, easy going and eager to please. Naturally, these temperamental qualities translate to him being a good and adventurous eater.

As a dietitian, I gave myself a big ol’ pat on the back. Surely, his good eating skills were because of me, right?

Well—go figure—kid No. 2 had different ideas in mind. My girl, Caitlin, is sweet, observant and smart, but she’s stubborn as all get-out. Plus, she ...

Posted on September 13, 2016 at 12:49 PM by Laura Hoover

Limit screen time for a happier, healthier kid

Photo credit: Zach Frailey/Flickr

Recently, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) changed its rules for screen time for children to meet more modern times. Much has changed since I had my first child in 2007, back when iPhones had just come out and iPads did not exist. Establishing healthy screen time boundaries has been a priority for me from the beginning.

As a health educator, I have read up on the studies about too much screen time. It can lead to attention problems, sleep di...

Posted on June 13, 2016 at 2:59 PM by Jasmine Jafferali

I feel no guilt about my kids' screen time

Photo credit: Rafiq Sarlie/Flickr

More than 30 percent of children in the United States play with mobile devices while still in diapers.

You may have seen older news reports in which the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommended that children under two shouldn’t have any screen time, and older children and teens should be limited to no more than two hours of screen time a day. Just months ago, the AAP changed what it considers its “outdated” policies.

I’ve never been guilt...

Posted on June 13, 2016 at 2:38 PM by Eirene Heidelberger

How I got my toddler to eat like a normal human

Photo: David Goehring/Flickr

My daughter Sophia, now 5, is one of the strongest willed people I have ever met. So when toddlerhood hit, boy, did she dig in her heels, especially around food. As a health coach, having her subsist on noodles alone wasn’t really an option for me. I was determined to help her get over her pickiness and tried a lot of different things to get her to expand her palate. I employed these tips and can happily say that she and her 3-year-old brother Sam now reque...

Posted on June 07, 2016 at 10:32 AM by Carrie Rubin

5 strategies for winning toddler sleep battles

Toddler sleep antics are akin to playing the game of Survivor: Who can outwit, outlast, outplay? We know who usually wins! As a physician and certified pediatric sleep specialist who has helped more than 1,000 toddlers and their families sleep better, I can assure you, if you have ever been the loser in your child’s survivor games, you are not alone. The good news is, you can win with a few helpful tips — if you are patient and consistent.

1. Don’t ditch the crib too soon. Wait until a...

Posted on May 31, 2016 at 10:45 AM by Rebecca Kempton

How I deal with my toddler's meltdowns

Photo credit: Emily/Flickr

We call them “slow motion meltdowns” in our house. I am a mom of a 20-month-old spirited boy. He wants what he wants, when he wants it. Don’t we all? My son knows how much it hurts to throw himself on the ground when I can’t catch him. So instead, he has perfected a slow-motion fall backward that ends with him crying, looking up at the sky.

When talking to other moms, including my own, the common advice seems to be: “Just leave him there, and he will come ...

Posted on May 18, 2016 at 9:25 AM by Crystal Clair

Mine, mine mine! How to mediate playspace tiffs


Photo credit: Sabine75/Flickr

“What do I do when my baby reaches over and grabs another baby’s hair?” It's a common question at the playgroup I lead. 

As a teacher of young children—birth to three years—I see lots of exploration, curiosity and expression of wants that affect other children, as well as parents and caregivers. What is the best way to guide young hearts, hands and minds in a group setting?

It’s important to remember the age of the child. I have seen two babies,...

Posted on April 14, 2016 at 12:20 PM by Laurie Empen

When your kid isn't invited to a birthday party |

Photo credit: Brian Geltner/Flickr

When your kid is one of the few kids in her class who didn't get invited to a classmate's birthday party, the exclusion stings in many ways. You hurt for your kid, you are annoyed at the birthday boy's parents and it may even dredge up some old, long-forgotten hurt feelings from your own childhood. What's the best way to handle this slight and the emotions that come with it? That's one of the many topics NPN members are weighing in on today on th...

Posted on February 19, 2016 at 2:27 PM by Laura Baginski