“Toddler Tip Tuesday” is my new weekly series I have started for 2012. I am in no way a toddler expert but since I am going through the joys of toddler hood right now, I will bring you tips that will hopefully make your life a bit easier!
While completing my master’s degree in early childhood education, I learned many more positive ways to deal with discipline rather than the “old school” way of just saying, “No!”. Although that word does come our of my mouth sometimes, I rely on other sayings and tools, and almost always get a better result with the more positive ones. Here are a few of my favorite:
- When/Then: Instead of telling Will, “No you may not play with your trains at the dinner table”, I say “When you finish eating, then you may play with the trains”.
- Redirect: Instead of telling Zack, “No, we don’t throw our food”. We say, “Food is for eating”.
- Refer to a posted or known rule: We have a handprint chart at our dinner table with proper table manners listed. Instead of telling Will “No” when he stands on his chair, we simple ask him, “What does the green hand say?”
- Offer choices: When Will wants to play ball in the house I offer him 2 other choices instead of saying no such as “Would you like to play puzzles or color a picture?”. He often forgets about his original request!