Monday, June 18, 2012

Act Without Words

 This week we focused on the parenting tool - Act Without Words.  Honestly, this is something I have forgotten all about.  I say way too much when dealing with my children.  I find myself talking and talking and talking as they walk away and have moved on from the incident.  How silly.  What a waste of breath and happy times when I drag things out longer than need be.  I remember when my daughter was around two years old.  It was clear that long explanations were not only not productive, but really not beneficial in any way.  As she got older, and her language awareness and vocabulary has increased immensely, I began using more and more words to explain things to her.  This is a good thing when she is asking "why it rains" or "where bacon comes from", but when she needs to stop climbing on the arm of the couch it isn't always necessary to explain what is inside the couch and what it is designed for and why it is called the arm of the couch, etc...

Sometimes a clear request of what I would like her to do is all that she needs to hear.  I think this is especially helpful to a little girl who is very sensitive to being told to stop doing something or even to be careful while doing something.  Sometimes my explanation goes on for so long that she actually tells me, "I know, I know, why are you still telling me?", hahaha!  I should take a clue from that I guess.

Jane Nelson reminds us that you can only use little or no words at all once your child knows what is expected of her/him.  She gives the example of siblings fighting in the car frequently.  At a moment of calm before they go in the car she explains to them that when they fight in the car it is really hard for her to drives safely.  She warns them before that she will bring a book along on their next trip and simply pull over if they begin to fight.  She says she will not drive again until they are both clam enough to tell her that they are finished fighting and ready to drive quietly.  When they begin fighting in the car on the next drive, she pulls over and silently starts to read her book.  She does not say a word and quickly the children realize what is happening and stop fighting and agree to ride in peace.  I have told my story of using this technique with my daughter in my Natural Consequences post.  Read it if you are up for a chuckle.

Less is more when it comes to words with children.  That should be easier too.  I will work on it!

Next week we will work on Understanding The Brain, yippee!  It will be fun, I promise!

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