Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Cherish the moments with Daddy

Was one of your baby’s first words “dada” and not “mama”?  Don’t worry moms, first of all, because forming the “da” sound is more likely to be formed before “ma” in young infants.  Check out our post for more on language development. Secondly, dad's play a very important role in children's development, and just maybe, an infant saying "dada" first, may be an expression of understanding this principle.

As I was talking with my dad he other day, I thought about the impact my relationship with him has had on my life.  As a young child, I remember many nights falling asleep to bedtime stories he created, and as a youth I spent almost every Saturday with him in the backyard or at the ballpark.

 Research shows the importance of fatherhood involvement especially in the lives of young children in areas of higher language skills and higher academic achievement. Children also learn the importance of play and exploration in unique ways when their father is present

Today we've highlighted some hints for dads, found in the Welcome Baby manual, to help them cherish this relationship and to become more involved with their growing children.

If you're a dad, what kinds of activities do you try to make happen with your kids? Or what does your husband, or father do with your children to cherish precious moments?

"A father’s role is different but just as important in the development
of healthy children in today’s world."

Hints for Daddys
  • Be involved in your child’s care and life. Give them time!
  • Most babies will cry a lot. Keep your cool and NEVER shake a baby!
  • Dance, rock, or gently bounce your baby to calm and soothe him.
  • Wrapping a baby snugly in a blanket is soothing. (Remember to leave arms and hands free).
  • Take a walk or drive to calm your baby.
  • Read and talk to your baby. Children love the sound of your voice.
  • Pay attention to mom and find ways to compromise about child care.
  • Learn to communicate your feelings and listen. Understanding is a must.
  • Remember that parenting is a partnership, you both are responsible for your baby.
  • Get comfortable with all aspects of caring for your child, even changing dirty diapers. You will develop a closeness with your baby and ease the burden of your partner.
  • Remember to take time for mom and dad to be together. Wait until the baby is asleep and spend some time together.
  • Taking care of the baby is just as stressful as a day in the office. Relieve mom when you come home.
  • Try to stay on your child’s timetable, he will respond much better.
  • Play with your baby. Your baby needs your special insight and full attention.
  • The greatest thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.

Just as a reminder, Partners for Infants and Children offers a Conscious Fathering class for soon-tobe/new fathers every other month. Our next meeting is March 30th. Click here to register.

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