Do you think we can MAKE children behave ? I am sure there are ways to get children to comply to being quiet or other things as adults we expect but is the way we are doing it at the expense of their spirit or their heart ?
I invite you to visit us. There are no voices raised. There is no quiet scary voice. ( Whew.. those can be as scary as a yeller ! ) We help children make good choices. Here are some examples :
A child is running through the house – instead of STOP running before you get sent to time out you would hear ” You make walk softly from one room to the other or you may march . Which do you chose ?”
A child is refusing to pick up the block room – instead of hearing PICK UP NOW or you miss time outside . You will hear ” You can pick up the long blocks or the short blocks first. Which do you choose ?”
Each time you give the child two positive choices. Both choices indicate what you need done.
What if the child doesn’t choose ?
You parrot or repeat yourself. Then you might grab the short blocks and say ” Here, I will help you. I will do the short blocks and you can do the long.”
Does this always work ? No. What then ? We will explore consequences on a later blog.
Today we read ” Shuberts Choices ” one the Conscious Discipline books. Shubert was having a hard time getting dressed for school. Mom said ” Do you want the red shirt or the blue short ? Do you want the long socks or the short socks ? Do you want the jeans with the front pockets or the back? This might sound a little exhausting but so much less exhausting than a melt down and a power struggle. In the end.. we just want them dressed right ?
The kids did notice that the teacher in the book wears an apron… just like me. 🙂