How to discipline my 3 year old son without spanking?
I'm a single mom of a 3 year old boy, he is super active and will not listen to me. The only person he listen to is his grandfather and uncle. It's like when I tell him to do anything he doesn't care. I've tried everything I can think of for time out to the reward system. I'm at my wits end but I don't want to spank him. HELP!
Discipline is a whole system of teaching a child to function within the family and later the society.
First, all adults involved in the child's care need to agree on what behaviors are acceptable and which are not and what consequences will be enforced for unacceptable behaviors.
Second, be consistent with enforcing those consequences! If a child knows what is expected of him, he will be more likely to behave, although he will still test his limits, don't get me wrong!
Time out work very well for 3 year olds, one minute per year of life. Time out should not be administered in a child's room where there are toys and other things to play with. A chair in the middle of a living room would work best. If your son escapes, you sit in the time out with him (with him in your lap). Set the timer for 3 minutes and tell him that you will let him go when the timer goes off (whether he fights or not!).
Third, be more positive than negative! Focus on the positive behaviors by providing praise for specific behaviors that you approve of and show your son your love.
Have you tried giving him extra attention? More hugs, kisses and I love yous, though out the day. Praise him when he does good things. Or do a fun activity with him, just him and you. My suggestion is if he has siblings, put them to bed, or get a babysitter ever so often before spending time together. One on one with Daddy can mean a lot to a little boy. If that is an option or have him spend time with a great male role model. The activities don't have to cost anything. Example maybe he would love to read books with you, play a game, watch his favorite movie with a treat and talk about what he liked about the movie. Tear an old appliance/ radio or something apart to see how it works. I have a five year old son. He is a lot like that, but I realize when I take the time to show he's special and I love him, our days go so much better. Good luck, It's not always easy to find something that works, but maybe something like this will.
3 year olds can be very trying and yes, one does want to pull out one's hair most times. It is okay for him to listen to the males, but it is very important that he listens to you. There is a time to slap his backside or the back of his hand when the need arises. This is not abuse - this is at the right time discipline. You need to make him aware of your authority. Three warnings to the naughty chair and then the slap on his backside! This will give him a shock but it is effective as he did not expect it. He will listen after that. This slap is not a habit - it's a once off scare.