My sons are pretty persistent when they want something to eat, but I try to keep snack time in between breakfast & lunch and lunch & dinner. I don’t like giving extra food, but AJ seems to especially love eating all day long. I finally got fed up with informing AJ that it is not okay to hit Mama and pull me or attempt to pick me up just because you don’t like the answer I am giving you.
What do you do when a child is acting up and you are getting frustrated? Well I must admit that lately I’ve been having a tough time being my normal self with redirection or placing AJ in the corner. AJ is one of those type of kids you see on SuperNanny who is being placed back in the corner for 45 minutes or 2 hours until finally they stay … yeah that’s my kid! Since I have AJ and Baby K alone most of the day I have yet to figure out the best resolution to time out consistency while still keeping Baby K attended to and out of trouble.
So my answer yesterday was this: use a timer in between meals so that the children will hear the timer go off and realize it’s either snack time or meal time. They will be so excited setting the timer by themselves (with a little assistance from a parent) and waiting to hear that alarm! At least my AJ was super excited! Here’s what I did …
Here is AJ posing so that I can get a picture beside my microwave which is what I have been using as a timer. I started this the other day as a way to make waiting fun for a hyper boy and give Mama less of a headache. I also decided to make this a learning experience for AJ. Instead of setting the timer myself, I actually asked him to press specific numbers – so let’s say it was 30 minutes until snack time – I would ask him to find and press the 3, then 0 and then 0 again. He would then ask if that was all? I would reply yes and tell him he could hit the start button. The timer began. Works great for AJ because he feels he is doing a big boy thing by using the microwave as a timer and I am proud because he’s learning his numbers in the process, but apparently he already knows his numbers.
The first day he was looking at the microwave he informed me that one of the numbers was an upside down number …. he pointed to the number 9 and informed me it was an upside down 6. Mind you I didn’t even know the kid knew what a 6 was so I was impressed! I informed him that the upside down number is actually the number 9 and ever since then he informs everyone that the number 9 is an upside down 6. Not only am I proud that this timer has worked for snack and meal time but it has helped encourage learning numbers with AJ.
Question for thought: What have you done to help alleviate a headache during the day or a frustration with your children that also encouraged learning?