Ever wondered how parents manage to get their kids to simply do as they are told – the first time? It is easy. Yes, really. You CAN do it!
Here is how:
Both parents have to agree.
Both parents have to follow through and be consistent:
1. Explain to your child what is expected of him.
2. Make him practice it.
3. Praise him when he is doing it right.
4. Have a consequence and tell him what it will be (Write it down if necessary)
5. When he does it wrong, this is what you do
- Get down to his level and make him look at you. Hold his hands.
- Speak in a low but firm voice.
- Tell him the right way to do it.
- Tell him he did not follow your wishes and that he will now get the consequence – whatever it was you told him in the first place.
- Do not plead, do not give a second chance, and DO NOT give in
- Do not tolerate a tantrum.
- Carry out the consequence.
- Evaluate the situation at the end of the consequence and tell him that if he does not behave as expected, a worse consequence will follow next time. (Explain what it will be).
- Keep your word
Here is an example:
4-year-old Jonnie has a problem with throwing toys. You explain to Jonnie how to look after his toys and that he might hurt someone if he throws them around. You tell him that if he throws a toy again, he will have it taken away from him along with 2/3rd the rest of his toys. You tell him that when he can look after those and not throw them, he can have some of the others back. You speak quietly but firmly. You praise him when he is playing as you expect him to. If Jonnie throws a toy, you get down to his level and make him look at you. Hold his hands. Tell him quietly and firmly what he did wrong and that you now have to take the other agreed toys away until he shows you he will not do that again. Stick to your word.
11 year old Madison is a sports nut. She loves to skate and play softball. She leaves her stuff all over the back yard and sometimes her skates get left out in the rain. She was told, when she first got the gear, how she needed to look after it and where she needed to store it. She hasn’t done it. The consequence was that you would take the gear away for a month. Just do it. Don’t give in to her pleading and begging. You gave the boundaries. She made the choice.
Need any help? Ask Brian or Sally Burgess. www.forefrontfamilies.org
Reprinted with the permission of Forefront Families. ©2006-2008 Forefront Families. All Rights Reserved.
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