4 Tips for Encouraging Young Children to Behave Properly


Some days with kids are crazier than others. Maybe you literally feel like one day your kids will listen to everything that you say and mind you more carefully and then other days they just don’t give a flying care in the world about anything you have to tell them. This is true of all ages but this article will focus mainly on younger children. Toddlers and young children are just starting to find their way in this world. They are figuring out their personalities and beginning to be able to make choices and decisions about things. They also might be feeling physical pain because of how much they grow during this time. Keeping all those things in mind, being disrespectful and not obeying their parents still needs to be dealt with but delicately, with balance. Here are a few tips that might help you to get your kids attention a little better.

Play With Them
If you feel like your child is throwing a particularly large amount of fits or is constantly underfoot more than normal, it might be that they just simply want your attention. Try taking 10 or 15 minutes to sit and play with them or read to them or otherwise give them your undivided attention. Now, there is a balance to this. There have been studies done that show a link between a child’s ability to imagine and make decisions and the amount of their parents do for them. There’s a difference between playing with them and letting them run your life. You can’t stop your entire life for your child. This does them no favors because no one in the real world is going to do this for them. However, you can’t afford not to pause your life for awhile and pay attention to your kids. After all, you are never going to get these moments back.

Give Them Incentives
For example, in the morning lay out a few ice cream spoons in their room. Each time that they obey a command or listen to you, put one of the ice cream spoons in the kitchen. When all the ice cream spoons are gone from their room, they can be rewarded with a bowl of ice cream for frozen yogurt cups or whatever they particularly like. It’s a great way to remind them that if they want ice cream, they need to behave. Even further, if the child does something naughty, you can return one of the colored spoons to their room.

Designate an Unhappy Area
This is different from time out. An unhappy area isn’t really punishment. It’s simply a small area of the house where the child has to go when they are whining or complaining or generally unhappy. You can let them know that they will stay there until they are happy and pleasant to be around again. The isolation from you and from their toys may be enough to change their mood quickly.

Limit Their Toys
Your child may have so many toys that they are simply overwhelmed. It has been noted that the less amount of toys that children have, the more they appreciate what is actually there. Try leaving out just a few toys and see what happens.

Keep in mind that all children are very different and there’s no telling if something is going to work better for one child than another. If your kid hides their ice cream spoons, has no interest in their toys or won’t stay in the unhappy place, don’t lose hope. There are many other ideas of things that you can try. Your child may love the outdoors and that’s the one thing that is going to be able to calm them. The point is, you know your child better than anyone else so no article is going to be able to tell you how to raise your child. You can merely glean things here and there and put them all together to make a comprehensive list of things specific to your child. Not to be discouraging but don’t be surprised if even the things that work at first end up back firing a few days later. Kids are like that. They keep us on our toes.

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