Teaching Children Obedience Part 3
You know that feeling when nothing you try seems to be working. You feel stressed about it, cross and frustrated. Kinda common mother feeling.
In fact, pretty much anything the child does annoys you
because you are already annoyed over the previous
problem. Here's another sign to put on your fridge:
"Be a guide, not a critic."
That's where the other two parts of discipline come in-
Play and Loving attention. Drop everything and work
on these so that the problem shrinks, the child feels
your love, is having fun with you, instead of having you
cross with him. More on this- the fun part of mothering-
It works so much better if you approach a problem with
You are the most wonderful, darling little person, and
I am your number 1 fan. There's just one little thing we
need to work on.
When you need to correct a child, have a plan of what
you will do. This reduces your frustration and puts you in control.
For little ones, I like to have the child sit on a chair.
It is discreet. You can correct the child without anyone noticing, without causing a scene or embarrassing the child, without giving negative attention. (Lavish open praise, quiet atomatic discipline)
It can be done anywhere, eg at a park they sit on the ground beside you.
It removes the child from the source of conflict and gives them a time to control their feelings.
All this while they are safe beside you. They don't feel anger from you, just correction.
After sitting beside you for a while, when you feel they are calm again say,
"OK, do you think you can play nicely now? Off you go."
They do this if you have trained them to do it. It is worth the effort because there is a way to deal with a problem no matter where it arises.
You train a child to sit on a chair by kneeling beside a little one and holding her there while counting to ten. Then say "Good girl!" And let her hop down.
Do this a few times a day and after a few days increase the time to 15 then 20 seconds. You can slowly increase the time until it is the age of the child. For example, a 2 year old sits for 2 minites, a 4 year old for 4 minutes. This is long enough to get the message across. Then they can try again. Even the training is practising obedience.
Plan on it taking a few months.
An extension of this is the 'repenting bench'. When a child has broken a rule or had a fight with another, they have to sit on the bench until they can tell you what THEY did wrong. They can always tell you what their brother or sister did, but it is much harder to recognise their own fault.
Teach the scripture story of the beam and the mote. Matthew 7:3
Make a Family Rules Chart.
Let the child help you decorate some poster board with a title. Then together, come up with some family rules. (Only 2 or 3, you can't teach everything at once.) And a consequence to go with each rule.
Put it on your fridge and use it.
The child breaks a rule.
You: "Uh oh, what's on our chart?" (You're not mad, you knew it was going to happen- alot.)
And calmly carry out the consequence.
A Family Rules chart reduces the amount of bossing you do and is like a game for the children, while teaching obedience.
There needs to be a bottom line- you know, like your bank account where you rarely get to the bottom line.......?
Your child knows there is a point where he cannot pass. You rarely go there, but it is there.
We spank rarely, never in anger, leaving them to think about it afterwards , then showing an increase in love. D&C 121:43.
This is for behaviours which must not be repeated even one more time. For example physical danger or character danger such as outright defiance.