The Parent-Teacher-Child Connection: Cooperation - It's the Name of the Parenting Game!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Cooperation - It's the Name of the Parenting Game!

If you've followed my blog for the past few months, you've realized that I strongly support offering children choices for two reasons: (1) To give them practice for when their decisions are life-threatening, and (2) To gain their cooperation.  However, sometimes that cooperation does not come even when you offer good choices.  Here are some other strategies you can use to get kids to do what's good for them and to gain their cooperation:
  • Use When/Then statements (When you clean up your toys, then we can go to the playground.)
  • Use a sequence of events (First get dressed, second have breakfast, third you can play with the puppy.)
  • Offer reasons for your request (We need to clean up because Grandma will be here soon.)
  • Be firm after an initial warning or choice (I said it's bedtime now.)
Children are master manipulators and they love to see just how far they can push the system.  With a little kindness, understanding, choices, and firmness, your life with kids can be more organized and sane than if you didn't use these parenting methods.   They will also appreciate your efforts as a parent more, too!  By the way, these strategies work for children from 3 to 18 and beyond!

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