Friday, March 16, 2012
Lip Gloss & Legalism
Our little girl was going through a state of disequilibrium about two weeks ago. It was getting to be a bit challenging. I was finding my self wondering how to manage each child--and with what strategy. Jed need a quick explanation of "no" and very fast redirection such as snagging the scissors out of his hand and pushing a car into them. Elias usually just needs to be told "no" and some effort at getting his body under control. But, Addie was just a conundrum. She can be openly defiant. Simple tasks like getting dressed and putting shoes on can be a major power struggle.
I was sharing this with a friend and she said that I needed to become Adelaide's biggest ally. Teach her that I want her to succeed, while at the same time making her responsible for the choices she makes. So, an example would be to say, "Addie I really want you to be able to go to school, so let's get your shoes on now." If she doesn't follow-through, then she doesn't get to go to school. But, not emphasize that in a punitive way, but rather, "Oh, I see you didn't get your shoes on. It's too bad you can't go to school today." So, I've been trying this and using a chart which she is enjoying.
For each request--again, short, simple, direct, and not a question--if she responds on the first asking, she got to fill in a smiley face. After, receiving a full week of smiley faces, Addie and I had brainstormed together something she could earn for co-operating. She chose lip gloss and I concurred. The picture below is of her showing off the two lip glosses that she picked out.
I'm not sure if the chart or my attitude towards her has made the difference. But, I can resoundingly report that she has been so much more fun to be around--more compliant, more generous, more kind and yesterday, on my birthday, she told me she was going to be nice to me all day. I must say that I have been able to enjoy her over the past few weeks, rather than endure her.