Listening to Children Through Play Newsletter October 2014 - What's Up and What's On in Parenting by Connection. Fears, laughter, courses and resources.  So our messages don't get caught in your spam filter
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What's Up and What's On: Parenting by Connection Newsletter
Madeleine Scott Winter, smiling!
Dear hardworking parents,

Welcome to our October Newsletter. Do you worry that your child is fearful?  Would you like to help them become more confident? Read on for a story about how a mother did just that.  Plus links to some free resources to help your parenting, and some classes and groups you can attend, in person or by phone.

$75 off the Parenting by Connection Starter Class

Get help for your parenting without even leaving home.  This class is delivered through an online classroom and phone based conference call with a small group of other parents.  I still have places in my class starting on Sunday October 12, 9:00 a.m. (Sydney time) and I would love you to join me.  This discounted offer is available until 8th October, so get in quick if you are interested.  Click here to register and pay.
Mother carries delighted boy
Building Confidence
Through Play

How many times have you tried to talk your child into doing something they were afraid to do?  How frustrated do you feel when they won't try something that seems to you to be so straightforward? 
My young friend is scared of dogs, and I can't tell you how many times well-meaning dog owners try to tell her that their dogs are really very harmless.  But to Lucy, the presence of a dog just overwhelms her with fear.  She simply cannot absorb what they are telling her.

What I have learned over time is that laughter can be a surprisingly fast way to overcome fears and timidities.  Laughter releases fears, and laughter-filled play can help children overcome all sorts of fears - of separation, of trying new things, of sleeping, of dogs. 

Sometimes, hard on the heels of playtimes like these, come tears and upsets.  The play opens the way, creating safety for children to work on deeper hurts.

Parenting by Connection can provide you with reliable ways to tackle your children's fears and worries.  Here's a story from a mother who came to one of my courses earlier in the year.  And below you will find some free resources - on helping clingy children, and building children's confidence through play.  

boy singingSinging Up A Storm
A mother came to a talk earlier this year on "Helping Children With Their Fears". Later, she told me this story:
“My son, who is 9, is a good singer, had gone through an audition process and been selected to sing a solo part in a choral concert at the Opera House.  He was extremely anxious about this.  He is really smart, but tends to be very sensitive.  Before the concert, he developed a tic in his eye and was having bad dreams at night, waking up screaming.
Madeleine suggested we do some roughhousing – physical play which focuses on laughter and allows the children to be the strongest, swiftest and to win any contest that might happen.
My husband and I went to the park several times (maybe 4 or 5 times) with both our children, and played lots of games where the children were the winners.  Throwing the ball – we would fumble and try to catch it; playing chasing – we would just get close enough to hang on to their shirts, but they would get away.  They got to laugh a lot.  We played some games from my country, Peru, where people need to be crafty and to run in order to save their own lives.  Everyone always laughs a lot.
A few weeks after we started playing like this, the tic stopped, he was sleeping well, and he got up in front of thousands of people at the Opera House and sang beautifully.
Afterwards everyone congratulated him and he was very pleased with himself.  But the next evening, when we were playing together, he fell over and slightly sprained his ankle.  It really was not bad, but he cried hard for over an hour.  I just listened, and did not try to stop him.
The next time he performed, also, was similar.  The following day, he spilled some milk on the table – it really was not a problem but he got very, very upset.  My husband did not understand why he was so upset.  But I realised that it was connected with the performance he had given the day before.  He was getting rid of the tension.
I was so glad that I had learned at Madeleine's talk that children do this – that they will find small things, pretexts, to get upset about.  But it is often about some other, much bigger tension.  Madeleine calls it the “coat-hanger effect” – he was finding a coat-hanger to hang his big, difficult feelings left over from doing such a challenging thing as singing in front of thousands of people.”

Specials and stuff for free!
 Have you checked out the Hand in Hand Parenting web site recently?
Here's some of the help you might find there for free: every month or so, Hand in Hand Parenting record a teleseminar on popular parenting topics.  Here are a couple that are currently on the web site - for a limited time only, so if you are interested, listen soon.
“Building Your Child’s Confidence Through Play”:   Dr. Laura Kauffman joins Hand in Hand founder Patty Wipfler to discuss tools for boosting your child’s self-esteem now, and for a lifetime. It’s easy to dismiss play as unimportant, but Laura outlines the many benefits for children, and she and Patty talk about how you can use it strategically to build your relationship with your child and address problems.  There's a great discussion of what to do when your child is doing something during Special Time that worries you, or that you don't approve of them doing (eating sweets, watching screens...). And Patty gives useful examples of how to use Playlistening to help children with their fears, and addresses the issue of tickling.
"Clingy Children, Frustrated Parents": Certified Parenting by Connection Instructors Lyra L’Estrange and Otilier Mantelers explain that children’s feelings about separation are normal, and how you can address them so that comings and goings are easy. They outline why children become clingy, and how to help them through laughter filled play and limit setting.

Coming Up

PARENTING BY CONNECTION STARTER CLASS:  PHONE BASED AND ONLINE.  Get in early for the discounted price - $75 off.  This course is delivered through Hand in Hand Parenting by phone and through an online classroom. 
  • Starts 12th October, 9:00-10:30, for 6 meetings (finishes on 23 Nov).  You will be given dial-in instructions (Skype and phone based) and immediate access to the online classroom when you register and pay.  For more info:
GOT QUESTIONS?: Would you like to know more about the Parenting by Connection approach?  Have you been wondering how to make the Listening Tools work in your household?  Do you have questions you would like to ask?  Join me in this (roughly) monthly Parenting by Connection conference call.
PARENT RESOURCE GROUPMeet with me and a small group of parents to give and get support as you tell your story and think through parenting challenges.   
WONDERING HOW TO APPLY THIS IN YOUR FAMILY? Contact Madeleine to discuss a one-on-one consultation.
Please keep in touch!  I'd love to have you with us for one of these groups, but feel free to check out our facebook page, or email us with your stories and questions.

Madeleine Scott Winter
Listening to Children Through Play
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You are receiving this email because you have attended, inquired about or referred families to our courses and workshops, or you work with families in your local area.  For information about upcoming courses and workshops, please go to .  If you would like to know more about Parenting by Connection, visit or watch this short video