KATE Middleton is often hailed as being an excellent, hands-on mum to Prince George, seven, Princess Charlotte, five, and two-year-old Prince Louis.
The adorable young royals are often very well-behaved when out in public, a body language expert claims Kate mimics Princess Diana’s own warm parenting methods with William and Harry.
Judi James told Fabulous how there are a number of subtle ways Kate has a similar parenting style to her late mother-in-law.
Judi said: “It is clear from Kate and Diana’s almost identical-looking parenting techniques that both women had an inherent understanding of the powerful influence of touch and body positioning on a small child’s mood and behaviour.
“Royal tradition has often meant a hands-off approach with royal kids in public, but both Diana and Kate have shown they place attentive parenting above tradition, maintaining their very tactile and hands-on rituals no matter what the occasion.”
Here’s how Diana’s tactile parenting methods are now being passed to George, Charlotte and Louis from Kate….
1. Down at their eye-level
It’s understandable that George and Charlotte may sometimes feel overwhelmed with the eyes of the world on them during public events.
However, Kate has a very personal tactic for making them feel comfortable, and likes to bend down so she is at the same eye level as them.
Judi said: “Face-closeness techniques that both Kate and Diana are using here can offer a sense of security and trust as well as allowing the child to read their parent’s facial expression while they are being spoken to.
“Both mothers seem to use it as the ultimate act of reassurance by confirming undivided attention and active listening as well as close communication.
“It can also be helping with self-esteem, as being on the same level can promote a sense of status equality.”
2. Firm but fair discipline
Both Diana and Kate knew that firmness is a necessary trait too as their children would be growing up in the camera eye as royals and would therefore be expected to behave themselves.
The body language expert said: “Both also show signs of wanting to balance restrictions with a sense of freedom to enjoy a ‘normal’ childhood though, and it seems touch is the gesture they use to signal their moments of quiet discipline.
“Gentle tie-signs like this will often say more than actual words as they can be used to stop behaviour via a calm approach.
“The gesture looks calming but firm and could signal who is ultimately in charge.”
3. Silly with their kids and know when to have fun
In the past we’ve seen both Kate and Diana having a lot of laughter and fun with their children, and Judi said this helped them develop a strong bond.
She said: “Both Kate and Diana have always placed a lot of emphasis on sharing moments of fun with their children and even acting like a child themselves.
“It can be easy for some parents to adopt different roles in their children’s lives and there was a tradition of ‘fun’ being the dad’s role.
“When Diana and Kate show their ‘silly’ side like this though, the bonding between themselves and their children could only be strengthened as this fun-bonding can be a trait that continues throughout their lives.
“Shared play that the parent seems to be enjoying as much as the kids, like Diana and Kate here, shows empathy and help create a sense of friendship as well as parental love.”
4. Pick up their kids for comfort
Royal appearances and press-calls can bring out the shy side of royal children and both Diana and Kate tend to respond to this by picking the child up.
Judi explained: “This raising or lifting will again create head proximity that they both seem to use to help the child to learn to cope by mirroring their mother’s body language.
“Smiling helps to reassure them that all is well and the actual way they both hold their children suggests gentle encouragement to come out of their shell and enjoy the attention, rather than just sympathy.”
5. The reassuring arm
We’ve seen dedicated mums Kate and Diana reassure their kids with a friendly arm squeeze.
Judi said: “Part cuddle, but part an encouraging urge forward, Diana and Kate’s subtle and understated reassuring arm around the back of their children shows that they genuinely do have their backs.
“It’s a sign of support that also helps to usher them gently into the grown-up world.”
6. Playful piggybacks
Judi said that Diana giving her boys’ piggybacks was a “rather ground-breaking ritual at a time when it might have been more usual to stick a child on daddy’s back or shoulders.”
And we’ve also seen Kate adopt the playful pose in the garden of her family’s Norfolk home, Anmer Hall.
Judi said: “It shows the desire to play, but it also places the child at the same level and facing the same way as the parent, giving them a glimpse of life as a grown-up.
“It is a great sharing gesture that also includes the kind of fun, safe-fear that kids can enjoy, once the parent starts running and bouncing about to make them giggle.”
We shared how Meghan Markle’s a ‘Lawnmower Mum’ while Kate Middleton’s a ‘Lighthouse’.
Meanwhile, Kate chatted to new mums this week about vital parenting supporting – but Prince Louis was too noisy to bring along.