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A little study on parenting

I picked up a few parenting books at the library, one which was recommended by Everyday Reading

It’s called Ignore It! By Catherine Pearlman. I picked up some good tips for getting your kids to behave, and also some ways to inspire positive change. I’m taking some notes, mostly for me look back on and remember… because most things that go into my brain go right back out! 😬

The main concept is that parents can eliminate bad behavior by ignoring it and not giving it attention. There’s positive reinforcement (encouraging behavior by offering something desirable like food, attention, or toys) and negative attention (encouraging behavior by simply taking away something undesirable). For instance if a child is screaming in a restaurant and you give them an ice cream sundae to make them pipe down, that’s positive reinforcement that will teach the child they’ll be rewarded for their bad behavior. Negative attention might be giving in to a whining child who is resisting doing their chores and not making them do it. The child wins in both scenarios, not the parent, and the bad behavior continues because he child knows it will work!

The 4 steps of Ignore it!

1. Ignore —ignore the bad behavior

2. Listen —listen from a distance and observe cues from the child without interacting

3. Reengage —when the bad behavior stops, reward the child by reengaging and communicate with them about actions

4. Repair — help the child repair any damage they have done/apologize

I’m also really enjoying Gentle Discipline by Sarah Ockwell-Smith.

Note to self :

Rose is motivated, ambitious, determined, and tenacious! Finn is a free thinker, brave, and resilient. Berrett is resourceful and eager to learn!

I really like this concept of reworking what traits might seem negative about your child into a positive.

The book doesn’t let parents off the hook. It was interesting to read what I can do better. Good discipline is about flexibility and humility. As a parent, my role of student or teacher might flip throughout the day. What are my children teaching me? What can I teach them?

Discipline is simply teaching and learning

I loved this breakdown of the word discipline back to the Latin, and how it’s root is connected to disciple. Disciples of Christ were humble followers, and constantly being taught. I also like thinking of discipline in the context of different disciplines, as in avenues of learning. What a good reminder.

“Gentle parenting is not about settling the scores, being right, or maintaining the ‘upper hand.’ Gentle discipline is about conscious, mindful decisions. Whatever situation you find yourself in, it is imperative that your actions are performed mindfully.”

She also suggests to watch for children’s triggers (hungry, tired, too much screen time, even possibly events at school such as with friends). I definitely notice a big difference in my kids behavior sometimes based on these little things.

I’m enjoying the chapter in Ignore it! on rewards/ encouraging behavior. I think this is something we can do more of in our home because we’re always harping on our kids for so many things, and they need that uplift from their parents. Kids get a lot of instruction and criticism all day long at school and at home so I hope I can be better at reinforcing what they are doing right.

We have done tons of sticker charts and reward systems. Here are some ideas and categories that help me make sense of how to acknowledge the kids for doing something good

Also interesting is that she said don’t ever take away a reward the child has already earned. I’m totally guilty of that and Raimo totally is. He always jumps to taking something away. She suggests a sort of system with point (or stickers) and a few points get a small reward like a few chocolate chips or a lego, and a large amount of points gets them a big reward like dinner at their favorite place or a new toy they’ve been wanting. I liked the point idea.

The other book I’ve been reading is called Gentle Discipline, but I haven’t gotten very far.

I am wanting to be a better teacher to my children. I loved this introduction.

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