Thursday, February 02, 2006

time outs have officially begun

When I picked up Spencer from school yesterday, his teacher took a little extra time to talk with me and share that Spencer had gone to the "think about it table" for time out a few times that day. The offense: shrieking inside during line time. She said last week he had been getting warnings, but his lack of adherence led to a zero tolerance policy. Good. We talked a little more about how we handle his behavior at home, and while we have recently halted any fun activities when unacceptable behavior occurs, we had not set up a designated location for time out... until last night.

I think toddlers, by nature, go around doing things that are generally unpleasant to their parents, but they can't spend every waking moment in time out. So we're taking a look at different behaviors we don't particularly care for and starting to develop some "house rules" as Super Nanny would say.
No Shrieking: Highly unpleasant, painful, inappropriate, and Jim's pet peeve. This is definitely on the list of rules that earn time out.
No Hitting: Ah, the hitting phase has returned from about a year ago. Fortunately only Jim and I are on the receiving end (he's not hitting teachers or friends.) This is definitely one of The Rules, and violations will earn a trip to time out.
No Throwing Toys: While this isn't good behavior, I don't think we will put it on The Rules.
I think we've got a good start - immediately stop whatever is happening, explain why that behavior is bad and why he has to go to time out, and when time out ends ask him to explain why he had to be there.

On a silly note, last night Jim was blowing bubbles and Spencer was naming them as planets according to their relative size! "That's a Jupiter! That's a Pluto!" It was really fun and funny, right up until he shrieked and the bubbles were put away and he went to time out. Sigh.

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