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Kids vs. Cooperation: Four Ways to Get Them to Listen to You!
Home Family Parenting
By: Renee Heiss Email Article
Word Count: 402 Digg it | it | Google it | StumbleUpon it


How many instances have you remarked, "Don't do that" only to have your child continue rocking back on the kitchen chair? There are four problems with that statement. Let's think about each suggestion individually.

1.Be Positive - If you want your children to cooperate, you need to inform them specifically what you want them to do, as opposed to what you don't want them to do. Don't and can't are invisible commands. Kids only hear what comes after. Consequently, they translate "Don't rock back on the chair" into "Rock back on the chair."

2.Be Specific - When you said, "Don't do that," your youngster doesn't understand what you want by "that." It could mean rocking on the chair, chewing his gum, or bothering his brother. When you want to stop inappropriate conduct, you must let the children know precisely what form of behavior you want. Here's a positive alternative with precise instructions: "Set your chair down so all four legs remain on the floor." Now junior knows what you want.

3.Add a reason - Sure, he understands what you want, but he doesn't know why it's in his best interest to comply. To a child, a parental request seems like a dictatorship. Unless you provide a reason, your youngster will continue to misbehave. Add this sentence to your request: "So you don't crack your head open when you fall."

4.Add humor - Up to now, you've told your youngster what to do in a certain manner while giving a reason to obey. When you add humor, your child laughs, and the happy endorphins generate a message in his head that says your request is reasonable to him. Add the last part of the sentence: "So you don't crack your noggin open when you fall like Humpty Dumpty."

So there you've got it, an effective way to get your children to cooperate. It's no secret that when kids understand what you want and why you want it, told in a pleasant manner, they don't have any option but to comply! (Well, almost always!)

As a child development teacher, Renee Heiss knows what children need and how parents can effectively care for their children. She has several books that help children become better family members: Helping Kids Help and Somebody Cares!

To find more ways to raise cooperative, responsible children, go to and www.reneeheiss.somebodycares.html

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