Tools For Learning

Inspiration for Parents & Educators

When Kids Are Disrespectful – 7 Easy Steps

on September 11, 2013

When kids are disrespectful try these 7 Easy Steps

1. Calm down before you respond. Give your child time to cool off, too.

2. Say: “It hurts me when you speak to me that way. We need to talk things over. Let me know when you’re ready.”

3. Listen, really listen, to what your young one has to say. Keep the communication lines open and accessible. Be open to the ideas voiced by your child, and by all means, explain yours.

4. Look for underlying causes for the behavior. This step is important. Try to get to the root of the problem.

5. Give a big hug to reassure your young one. Say that you want things to change, that you love him/her, but in no uncertain terms, that you do not like the actions that were presented.

6. Make a plan with your child to avert this type of negative behavior in the future. Present Alternatives – a very important step! Consider how “we” can solve the problem together. Ask the question: “How do we keep from hurting one another?”

7. Lay out some ground rules and consequences, if needed, when rules are broken.

In the future, when a disagreement arises, remember you are the boss but you can be flexible and listen to what your child has to say without interrupting. Stay cool, calm, and collected, and promote this rationality in your young one. At all cost, avoid reacting defensively. In using long explanations, you’ll loose your child’s attention. Avoid the mistake of trying to get your young one to understand, or convince him/her that you are being “fair”. It is a waste of time! Your young one is just not there yet – in that place – in his/her development to fully appreciate what you are trying to say and do. Children can’t even imagine yet that the actions you are taking are in their best interest. Remember to keep your concerns short and sweet, and your dealings with your young one will change dramatically over time. There will be some setbacks. Be patient. Stay on course. You’ll be glad that you did!

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