Friday, January 2, 2009

Positive Redirection

Earlier today I asked my Twitter friends what I should write about and @MomofFaith was the only person to respond. She stated to write about children because we can always use more advice when it comes to children.

Discipline and children....what I like to call positive redirection. There is no solid way to discipline your child and with so many techniques out there it's so hard to find which one will work with your child.

Children not only learn from watching adults around them, they learn from how we handle tough situations. All children are apt to test you, this is their way of learning about their new found freedom. Usually once a child learns to walk or maybe even as early as crawling they have figured out they can explore new areas of their home. This is an exciting time for child and stressful time for parents. I am sure most of you can recall the first time your child started moving on their own, they were into everything and going in every direction!

I am not a spanking mother, I feel that it is misleading to spank your child then turn around and tell them it's wrong for them to hit others. If you were to step into your child's shoes you may see how this would be a confusing concept for your child. I am not saying I haven't ever tapped my child on the butt, or tapped their hand when in a dangerous situation, as with all discipline methods there are areas of "gray" that may require adjusting your normal discipline techniques.

Positive redirection has worked very well in my home and is a real simple technique that even dog trainers use! Basically this term means that when a child is getting into something they should not or doing something that is not allowed to be done you redirect them to something they can be doing.

Let's put this technique into an example:

Child - loudly banging pots and pans in kitchen while you are getting a meal ready.

Parent - express to child that although you love their wonderful music they need to be in their play area.

Child - states they love to play music with your pots and pans and says no to going into play area.

Parent - find your child's favorite musical type toy from play area and bring to child. So child how fun and wonderful this toy would be over the loud pots and pans in kitchen. Express that it may be dangerous if you trip over them while making their meal.

Child - agrees to check out musical toy but wants parent to play with them in play area.

- if possible take a short minute to play a quick beat on your child's musical instrument and slowly remove yourself back to making your meal.

I have done this similar approach and it works wonders! I hope you will give positive redirection a try and comment back with how it works. Understand that if you are just starting to implement this discipline method that it will take time, quite possibly up to 2 weeks, before it will work for your family. Keep plugging away and move forward - remember YOU are the parent and only YOU can teach your child dedication and motivation!