Friday, June 11, 2010
Yet Another Milestone Reached by Buddy
We were having dinner and I was trying out a new parenting technique* I learned the night before from a class I attended. It was highly effective, by the way. As I was following through with my new strategy, I could literally see a lightbulb go off in is head and he said, "Where are you getting this stuff? Who taught you this? Because I don't like it!"
A simple question. But so loaded. So yep-he caught on that we have no clue how to be parents. I'm pretty sure I was about 23 when I realized that about my parents.
*The strategy is, reward good behavior rather than punishing bad behavior. Novel idea, right!
We've been trying to get him to sit in his chair and eat his dinner with a fork. He uses his hands, jumps out of his chair, talks incessantly and generally makes a huge mess at every meal. We've tried EVERYTHING to get him to relax at mealtime. But we've never rewarded him for using his fork. So we tried it! Every time we caught him using his fork he got a point and when he got 10 points, he earned a treat. So simple. So effective. The theory by the way, is that if your boss told you that if you did a bad job (made a mess, used your hands, did arm farts at the table) you wouldn't get paid (you'd lose your treat), you wouldn't be motivated in the least to perform well at work. If you knew there was a chance you'd fail, you wouldn't even try. But if your boss said he'll pay you for a job well done (eating with a fork), you'll perform well every time.
Go ahead and try it! And let me know when your child catches on that it wasn't your idea.