Letting your child “get away with it”

photo by Michael Bentley via Flickr

photo by Michael Bentley via Flickr

Probably the most frequent question I get from parents¬†usually ends with “I can’t just let her get away with it, can I?”

This is a hard question to answer without looking deeper into the situation each of these parents is facing, so I want to take a second to go over what I really mean when I tell them…”well, it depends on what she is getting away with.” Continue reading

Advertisements

Are rules meant to be broken?

Photo by JunCTionS via Flickr

Photo by JunCTionS via Flickr

I’m sitting in a plane trying to stretch my legs and figure out if there is any way these seats could be more uncomfortable and the flight attendant comes over the speaker, “Due to the turbulence,¬†the captain has turned on the seatbelt sign. Please return to your seats and remain seated until the seatbelt sign is no longer illuminated.”

No kidding, within two minutes, three different people got up from their seats and bounced their way back to the bathroom. It was almost as if they waited for the opportunity when everyone else was going to be seated to go to the bathroom.

Didn’t you just hear the lady??? Its freakin’ dangerous to be walking around in the plane like this, and if you knock over my drink on me…Even if you aren’t moved by the fact that this plane is bouncing around like crazy and you might hurt yourself or, God forbid, someone else, it’s the darn rule!

Of course, being the lame rule-follower I tend to be in these situations, I look up to see the flight attendant immersed in Fifty Shades of something, not paying a bit of attention to the rule-breakers. Really? If it is not that big of a deal, why turn on the light anyway? Let us roam around and use the bathroom if you are not convinced enough there is actual danger that you will be willing to follow through.

Alright, so where is the behavior/parenting part of this? Continue reading

Are you begging your child to cooperate?

Photo by Tobyotter via Flickr

Photo by Tobyotter via Flickr

We all want our kids to behave well. We want them to do what they should and when they should do it. We want them to earn the spoils of behaving properly. We create some of these “spoils” ourselves in the form of sticker charts, trips to the ice cream shop or dollar bills.

But, are there situations when we try too hard to get our kids to earn what we have arranged? I think so. Continue reading

Your kid’s “RED day” at school and what it means

photo by USAG-Humphreys via Flickr

photo by USAG-Humphreys via Flickr

One of the most common classroom behavior management systems I see in elementary schools is the traffic light level system wherein students “on green” have shown good behavior and those with not-so-good behavior are either “on yellow” or have the dreaded “red day” if the behavior is bad enough. Some teachers might still use the smiley face system (e.g., smiley, straight face, frowny face), might have more than three colors, or might use the school mascot (e.g., “a green fox day”), but they are all based on the same idea. However, they are used incredibly differently across teachers, so:

Here are some things to ask your child’s teacher and why it matters Continue reading

What is your child escaping?

photo by dadblunders via Flickr

photo by dadblunders via Flickr

The reason your kid does everything in his power to not clean his room is the same reason you do everything you can to not do the dishes. It’s true. So let’s think about “escape” or “avoidance” behavior and what to do about it. Continue reading

Your “map” to better behavior

the map

Knowing where you are going and when you are going to get there always makes a trip go easier. What does this have to do with your child’s behavior?

I have talked a lot on BehaviorBandAid about the value of predictability, being prepared and having a plan. There is no substitution for having a proactive plan and preventing behavior problems before they arise.

I never thought, though, that a valuable behavior lesson would come from a bi-lingual cartoon named Dora, but you take what you can get. Continue reading

3 Reasons behavior plans fail and what to do about it.

photo by Matt Erasmus via Flickr

photo by Matt Erasmus via Flickr

Sometimes parents tell me their behavior plan or reward system worked for a little while, but then stopped working. “He just didn’t care about it anymore,” they often say.

I always try to figure out why these things “fail” so I can help the next plan be more likely to succeed. Here is my list of the three reasons behavior plans fail: Continue reading