Growing Up Adopted: Parenting Preschoolers


Practical advice for parenting adopted preschoolers, from ages 3 through 5.

Two preschool girls engaging in make-believe

The Tales They Tell

The Tales They Tell

Preschoolers love stories. Listen carefully and you might learn a thing or two.

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behavioral expectations

Setting Appropriate Behavioral Expectations

When younger children misbehave, they may not really know that they are misbehaving, and can be easily distracted or physically moved. But by age three to five, a child should be more aware of inappropriate behavior.

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The Power of Projective Play

“Come Play with Me!”

Projective play can help kids work out complex feelings about adoption. So, the next time your child says, "Come play with me!" Make sure you say, "Yes!"

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A mother preparing her adopted daughter for questions about racial differences

Question Confidence

Other kids are going to ask about it — so prepare your preschooler for questions about adoption.

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Toddler boy and his new sibling

New Kid on the Block

Adding to your family again? Ease the transition for your preschooler by being prepared for new-sibling anxiety.

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Preschooler's questions can be tough

Understanding Your Preschooler’s Questions — “I Want That, Too!”

Your preschooler may ask you for all kinds of things. But what is he really saying?

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Disciplining your adopted child

Real Parents Provide Discipline

Setting limits can be tough for parents–but it's important to discipline our children anyway.

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Create an adoption storybook for your child.

Creating a Personal Adoption Storybook for Your Preschooler

Telling your child's story in book form can cement his sense of belonging in your family and boost his self-esteem.

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Preschoolers will need to answer a lot of questions about adoption

When the Questions Begin

Your preschooler is curious — and so are his peers. Help him get ready for inquiring young minds.

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Setting limits is best for your preschooler

Why Preschoolers Need Limits

Many of us want to indulge our children with gifts and leniency. But that's not what kids need.

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A young girl engages in pretend play

The Land of Make-Believe

Fantasy play is your preschooler's safe arena to learn about life — and work things out.

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Children can recover from a regression phase

Ready, Set, Regress

Some children need a little extra babying before they're ready to get on with growing up.

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Religion can bring your family closer together

Finding Strength in Your Family’s Faith

If you identify with a religion, it can be another source of support and belonging for your child.

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