"Why do children misbehave?" is one of the chapters in "Redirecting Children's Behavior" book written by Kathryn J. Kvols.
I borrowed this book from the Tutu and Me preschool. They have nice selection of great books we can borrow and read. I picked this book because of the title. It sounded very interesting because I'm so much into my kids behavior ! I try to understand what Eaton and Nathaniel want and need through their daily behavior and conversations. But, even though you can understand your kids, doesn't mean you know how to react back or behave and be in control of the situation.
So, Kathryn's book "Redirecting Children's Behavior" is like a tutorial. It tells you the problem (parenting problem, misbehaving children..etc) and step by step solution to it.
I'm really skeptical about so many things in life and especially parenting books. Our generations change so much and old written books about parenting do not apply to our life anymore. But because I read one great book previously I thought I would give this book a chance too.
So OK. Here is the example: Redirecting the goal of attention.
You probably had a situation when you talk with someone (another adult) and suddenly your baby starts to be cranky, annoying, starts to whine or scream.. etc..
How to behave and what to do if you want to continue conversation with that person but also you realized that baby needs your attention? And because that conversation lasted a little bit longer, your baby started to feel lack of you.
What did you do so far? What I usually did was: I said to a person I had conversation with: "Sorry, please give me a second" and then I talked to my baby. I had eye contact with my baby and in simple sentence explained the situation. "Honey, please give me few more minutes with that lady. We want to talk about....". That was my type of handling a situation. It worked sometimes, sometimes it didn't.
Kathryn gives 4 important steps to handling that situation:
1) Make no eye contact with the child who is misbehaving.
2) Do not talk to the child.
3) Do something physical to make the child feel loved (rub his/her back or stroke his/her hair)
4) Take action immediately, do not wait.
And... today I had a chance to apply that method at Eaton friend's party. I was talking with one lady about homeschooling and Eaton started to be cranky and acted the way he wanted me to himself. I immediately took action and applied steps described above. I didn't have eye contact with Eaton, I was still talking to the lady. I touched Eaton shoulder and I was rubbing it for about 10 seconds.Then, Eaton was still talking to me but in low voice and after that he walked away. Eaton went to other kids that were playing with a sand (the party was close to the beach).
I was really happy that this method worked 100 %. TRY IT if you didn't know it! I would love to hear stories like that from you:)
Early Learning is all about giving our children the environment that they can grow with a feel of love and parent's attention.
Until next time...