« Time Out Tips: Step 2 - Hone your technique! | Main | Family Dinners: The new anti-drug? »


Liz Ditz

I'm a Love&Logic facilitator. There are a couple of things you can do to add a success factor to the getting the kid to the room manouever.

One is the "Better Practice" technique.

Here's how it works: If you have a partner, pick a time (plan a time) when you both will be home, and you can reasonably expect that both you & your partner will be in a relatively good mood, and your 5 year old won't be too crabby, tired, or overwhelmed. A weekend morning might be a good choice.

The drill is this: first, you decide how many times in a row you want your son to go to his room (you might start with five). You put 5 objects (I used poker chips, cause we had lots of them) on his desk or his dresser. Then you and your partner sit down in the kitchen, and call your son to you. Your partner says, with the sweetest possible voices, "Sonny, you've been having trouble going to your room when Mom tells you to go. This tells us you need some practice. So we are going to practice right now. Go to your room, get exactly one poker chip, and bring it back to Mom. Off you go!"

Usually, if you time it right, even the most resistant kid will scoot off, if you present it as more of a game than a punishment.

Then if he brings all five pieces back, you have something to praise him for and enjoy as a family.

"Oh, Sonny, you were really moving fast to get to your room!" And, "Oh, Sonny, you were so co-operative. Thanks!"

This brings me to the next piece, Specific Noticing.

Specific Noticing is both parents' job (assuming there are two parental figures in the house).

Specific Noticing works like this: as often as possible when Sonny does something that is pleasant and co-operative, the parent comments on it. "Thanks for bringing me the fork. That's co-operation." Or, "You got ready for school on time" (said in a warm voice, with a smile).

Note that this is not praise -- you don't say, "good boy". You are just noticing the behavior, out loud, labeling it ("co-operation") or expressing your approval through your tone of voice.

See how many times a day you can do Specific Noticing. One mom kept track of the positive and negative things she said to her child, and was shocked that the negative occurred three times as much as the positive.

See if you can work in three or four Specific Notices a day, and observe any change in your child's resistant or disrespectful behaviors.

You might be thinking, "but he's just doing what he is supposed to do!" Well, yes -- but appreciation for the mundane tasks of the day makes those tasks easier to do.


thanks for giving me an idea. i prefer positive reinforcement, but what you highlighted in your post simply sounds logical.

The Mentor Mom

Glad you like the idea, nymfa!

The comments to this entry are closed.

Powered by TypePad
The Design-her Gal image in the banner has been sent for the exclusive use on The Mentor Mom. Any other use, edit or reproduction of this artwork without the express consent of Design-her Gals, LLC and Design-her Gals, Inc. would be in violation of its use rights.