Time out. It’s not a thing we do in our household, but I have been thinking of creative ways of managing and modifying the children’s behavior. There’s the no dessert route, the five minutes before bed to catch a show on Netflix route, and the no weekend playdate route. What I have been doing, along with my partner, is rewarding the children on an individual basis when they do as we expect them to. Rewards, I’m learning are quick ways to get the kids to try harder and push harder. I find they don’t do what we want them to just because – it’s never that simple.
They have to copy behavior and actions that create routine, and structure. I don’t know about your kids, but our kids LOVE to eat! I do not know where the food goes. Where do the groceries disappear to? I can whip up a smoothie or guacamole in an instant, and I know there are foods they just behave better with. Like, seriously if there are certain dishes that I make, they will eat, sing, be merry and do all of their chores with no protest. To circumvent this recently, I hatched a plan and told no one.
My plan was simple: do all the fun things this weekend, very little ‘hard line’ discipline, and laying down the intentions, expectations from early… sit back and watch. Wow! Did the kids respond. Homework completed early, chores done without me hassling them, and general merriment was had by all. Family movie night still took place, and there was home made vegan pizza, lots of healthy and fun foods. I wasn’t going to let their possible bad behavior sink the entire weekend ship… after all, I would like some peace and quiet too. So, I just observed and man oh man… they surely were good. Of course they were not perfect, but still I moved the needle a bit. They were cooperative and for that I will institute fun weekends more often.