Positive Discipline Parenting Blog

Sproutable’s Positive Discipline blog for nannies, au pairs and babysitters of children toddler to elementary school.

Real tips. Real talk. Read & grow.

Latest post

Connecting with Early Elementary Schoolers

A huge tenet of Positive Discipline is building & nurturing the relationship between you and the child(ren) you care for.  We call this connection.  Some connection-building is instant and easy: you’ll end up bonding with[...]

By Danielle Taylor

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Connecting with Early Elementary Schoolers

A huge tenet of Positive Discipline is building & nurturing the relationship between you and the child(ren) you care for. We call this connection. Some connection-building is instant and easy: you’ll end up bonding with just about any child in your circle, but if you find yourself in power struggles or asking “why aren’t they listening to me?” then it’s time to focus on building connection.

By Danielle Taylor

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Promoting Flexibility in Children

Something we’re always coming back to in Positive Discipline are the long-term goals and the traits we hope to see in the kiddos we care for once they reach adulthood. One life skill that I choose to focus on is being flexible. I’m not always the most flexible person in the room, and on occasion, I can miss out on something fun because I wasn’t being flexible enough. The good news for me, though, is that working with children gives me lots of opportunities to model, practice, and grow my own flexibility muscles.

By Danielle Taylor

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Kids are SO Brave

I went down a slide last week and ended up having a huge realization that I haven’t stopped thinking about since. I was with my two nanny kiddos at a trampoline park, and we were having a total blast. Unlike me, they’re both natural athletes and love being at the trampoline park. I was following them, watching them do all kinds of crazy flips & jumps, and snapping pics to send to their parents when they started asking me if I wanted to go down the big slide.

By Danielle Taylor

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Three Time-Tested Positive Discipline Tools for Nannies

One of my all-time favorite Positive Discipline books is “Positive Discipline Parenting Tools” which Dr. Jane Nelsen wrote with two of her adult children, Mary Tamborski & Brad Ainge. This book breaks down each of the 49 unique tools that we use in Positive Discipline with stories & examples. While this book is written with parents in mind, the content and all of the tools are relevant and applicable to nannies & other caregivers too.

By Danielle Taylor

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Liar, Liar:  Why I Don’t Stress When my Nanny Kids Fib

Something I see pop up occasionally in online nannying groups is concern & frustration over nanny kiddos telling lies. I totally get it; nobody likes being lied to! I see suggestions of taking things away, lecturing & punishing, forced apologies, and even trying to scare kids out of lying. In fact, I remember being told “you’ll go to hell if you tell a lie” when I was a young child, and it was terrifying! I’ll offer you a different solution: let it go.

By Danielle Taylor

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3 tips for teaching kids to be a good sport

“That’s not fair” “You cheated!” “I never win!” Sound familiar?  Most kids have a tough time navigating games where there is a clear winner, or when they feel a sense of unfairness. This is because they are still learning! Getting comfortable with losing, being flexible with not going first or getting the color game piece they want, and having patience taking turns all takes LOTS of practice. It is still cognitively challenging for young children to see “fairness” because they are still growing into their capacity for perspective taking, which is why it is important to start now!

By Julietta Skoog

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Catch Us at the Library

I’ve been nannying for about eight years now, and though kids & families may change, one very consistent part of my nanny routine is visiting the library. I recently found myself considering what’s still so engaging to me and my nanny kids about the library after literally hundreds of visits. Why are libraries so helpful in supporting young children?

By Danielle Taylor

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Moving from praise to encouragement

I’ve been soaking up everything I can about Positive Discipline for the last five years or so, and most of it has come fairly easily to me. It takes patience, intention, consistency, and effort, but most of the tools and strategies have always “clicked” for me. That being said, I am still, every day, working on moving from praise to encouragement with my nanny kids. This has been so challenging for me!

By Danielle Taylor

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Getting comfortable with messy play

I’ve been working with kids for over 15 years, and I’ve cleaned up a fair share of messes in that time. I wasn’t someone who initially leaned into messy play because it can be gross, stressful, overwhelming, and because I could always come up with something else that’s fun to do instead. However, the longer I’ve been doing this, the more I’ve gotten not only comfortable, but actually have started enjoying, inviting, celebrating, and really leaning into messy play time! Here’s my why, my how, and some tips I’ve learned along the way.

By Danielle Taylor

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Why I teach my nanny kids how to do things for themselves

If we want our nanny charges to learn life skills, we start by explicitly teaching those skills. Nobody just knows how to do laundry or scramble an egg - even basic life skills need to be taught clearly and explicitly with step-by-step training. Typically, the best way to do this is to model and narrate, then move into doing the task together, then the child does it while you supervise, and eventually the child is ready to do that task on their own. Think about making your bed, it seems pretty simple, right? Well, maybe not

By Danielle Taylor

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