As parents and educators, it is our role then to provide an environment that has consistent boundaries and expectations, as there is nothing quite so frustrating to these “young scientists” as experiments that provide different results with each trial.
With consistency in place, there are some key phrases that can help to ease the initial push-back that is sure to ensue when your toddler is met with a task they are less than eager to attend to. It’s important to never ask a question that offers an unacceptable answer.
- Instead of, “Do you want peas?”
- Try, “Do you want one spoon of peas or two?”
- Instead of, “It’s time to leave, okay?”
- Try, “We will be leaving in 5 minutes, so you have time to go on the slide three more times!”
- Instead of, “No, you can’t have candy”.
- Try, “We are not buying candy today, but should we have strawberries or popsicles for dessert tonight?
- Instead of, “It’s time for bed. Let’s go brush your teeth”
- Try, “It’s time for bed. Should we brush teeth or put pajamas on first?”
- Instead of, “Stop crying. You have to clean up before playing.”
- Try, “I understand you don’t want to clean up. You can go play as soon as you put your toys away.”