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How do you get as much experience with child behavior as possible as a young teen at a young age

I would love to be a child psychologist and make a good impact on the child's mental help

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To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you

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Dr. Conni’s Answer

I agree with the answers above. Places like the Boys or Girls Club, teaching a skill like swimming or art would be great starts.
An important thing to remember is that when you work with children in therapy-you will spend a great deal of time working with their parents. So it is very important to be able to work with families not just the child. Children are affected a great deal with the environment they live in and many times that is what needs to be modified.
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Katherine’s Answer

Read some great books to learn more about working with kids and recognizing what the books are teaching from your own experience as a kid. You can look at books like Relational Parenting or How to Really Love Your Child, How to Really Love Your Teenager, and other books by Ross Campbell; books like The Five Love Languages of Children by Gary Chapman; or Scattered by Gabor Mate. And then you can look into podcasts with episodes or parts of episodes that relate to kids and parenting like The John Delony Show.

The more time you spend just thinking about and learning about family systems theory and having a good relationship between parents and kids, or good parenting, the more you'll be equipped to work with kids whether they are your own children or not, and help parents when they need hints or a nudge in a good direction in their own interactions with their kids, whether you end up becoming licensed or educated or having a career with kids, or you just spend time joining social media groups with crowds of parents who are asking for help.
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Jerome’s Answer

There are non-profits in your town that are always looking for volunteers. I would inquire and see if you can volunteer to learn and help. You’ll get firsthand practical experience and do something good for your community.
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mark’s Answer

HI Faye,

Your question led me to think of several possible ways you can gain experience working with children. I agree with Jerome that non-profit agencies are a great way to go as they usually are in need of volunteers and are interested in helping young people find opportunities. You might also pursue child care centers, pre-school programs, or even child sitting in order to gain experience.

Being able to find one or more people to mentor you is also an idea to consider. This can be done through volunteer opportunities and sometimes through school. Taking classes in school that focus on child development and psychology if they are available at your school can also be a great way to learn and gain experience.

I hope some of these ideas help. Good luck!!

Mark V.
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