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Saturday, February 9, 2013

Preschool Pointers - 25: Schedule the Hour


Your kid is demanding. She needs to know what's going on, why it's going on, what you're going to do that day and whether or not it will be superawesomefun times. But if she doesn't like even one thing on the list, she'll try to manipulate you to get something else, or whine about the chores she has to do, or nitpick or whatever. Basically, she wants to know what's going on and you don't feel like wasting 45 minutes of your life telling her.


Take it in pieces. She wants to know (and afterward, argue) because she wants to feel like she has some control over her own damn life, mom, gawd! The less you give her to work with, the fewer complaints you'll receive. I go by the hour. The girls get up. "What are we going to do today?" I'll tell them, well, first we have to do morning stuff, like get dressed and eat breakfast. After that you can watch a video if you want while I clean up, then we'll go to the park." END.

They'll think about complaining about having to get dressed and eat, but, hey, if they do that, there's a video in it for them! Plus, I've told them what I will be doing during that time (my kids apparently assume I sit on my butt all day, which is never the case) and if they know I'm cleaning, well, they're not going to come bother me because I'll make them help.

Before it's time to go to the park, I re-familiarize them with the plan, adding new steps. "Okay, so we'll bring a picnic lunch to the park, and you can eat it there. We'll play with your friends, but when we come home, you'll have to have a nap."

They won't want a nap, but they'll agree to it if they get a picnic and the park first! Great! Now it's nap time. When they wake up, I'll plan out the afternoon in the same fashion, hopefully avoiding fights and complaints all around.



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