Use Humor And A Change Of Setting To Help Regulate Your Child’s Behavior
There’s nothing like Mother Nature to help calm down your child. Being outdoors can help change your child’s pace and mood. Learn to laugh with your child too. It takes away the tension from a potentially charged situation.
A change of place is always a good thing to try when the situation starts heating up or getting out of hand. And for young tykes, the outdoors is the best spot to cool down. Once you change venue, you bring about a change in emotional space and can expect a change in mood as well.
The Great Outdoors Editha Buluran, infant and toddler educator and preschool owner of Kinder Garten’s Learning Center, describes how children have the natural interest and tolerance for the great outdoors. “They experience a signifi cant level of independence when they are outside,” Buluran explains.
“They go on to expand their physical skills as they run, jump, climb, and crawl in the open space.” This sense of autonomy, she continues, provides kids with not only a good source of interesting and new stimuli, but also with a change of pace and mood.
The gentle whiff of the wind on their face, or the wide space that welcomes their sight as they step outside, will more likely help diminish a misbehaving tot’s mischievous streak, if not expunge it altogether.
Laughter is the best medicine Laughter is still the best way to smooth out tension. Crack a joke or two and giggle with your child to gently relieve the tension when you see it building up. Using humor to redirect misbehavior is guaranteed to de-escalate a knobby situation without making it into a “heavy” scene.
Replace negative situations with productive alternatives Rowena Matti, program director of Galileo Enrichment Learning Program, Inc., explains that redirection is an effective preventive discipline strategy that requires close observation. It involves anticipating problems before it blows out of reasonable proportion. When your tyke starts eating sand in the playground, offer him a banana or pick up a toy and hand it over to him; sing a familiar action song when he starts toppling down the blocks your other child was playing with. The rule of thumb to remember is, if you take away an object from a child, you have to make sure you replace this with something productive.
SOURCES: • Rowena Matti, program director, Galileo Enrichment Learning Program, Inc. • Editha Buluran, early childhood educator and owner, Kinder Garten’s Learning Center, Malolos, Bulacan • Infant and Toddler Development, by Kay Albrecht and Linda Miller