how can displine a 3-4 years old? my kid is piicky eater.how can i get him to eat more?

Jessica - posted on 12/06/2011 ( 24 moms have responded )

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i don't know what to do. i really need help.How can i discipline my kid? how can i stop him from hitting me and kicking me? he hurts me all time.i yell all time.i even give him time out at one time..he does not listen well.He is out of control child

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Jodi - posted on 12/06/2011

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You gave him time out at ONE time? That's not going to work. Time out (any discipline) is something you need to be consistent with. So when you put him in time out, if he won't stay, you need to keep putting him back until his time is up. And you need to do this EVERY time he displays the undesired behaviour.

However, I have always found that reward charts for the desired behaviour work a treat. Give him a sticker for his chart every time he displays the behaviour you want him to display. So if normally you are in a situation and he doesn't kick or hit you on that occasion, tell him how wonderfully behaved he has been and reward him with a sticker for his chart. You can set up a chart so that once he fills it, you will take him out to the park, or to the zoo, or something that is special to him. Focus on the positives of his behaviour, and you will see that he will be keen to get more positive attention.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 12/07/2011

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No matter which method you use, you HAVE to be consistent. Of course Time Out didn't work, if you didn't enforce it.

Then again, spanking won't work if you aren't consistent about what is a behavior violation. Neither will yelling, or anything else. The key is consistency. Your child will scream, cry, hit, hold his breath, anything to get out of punishment. But you MUST stand firm.

This applies to anything regarding discipline, whether it's not eating meals, not listening, hitting, kicking, etc.

My recommendation if he is truly hitting/kicking is to hug him. It's a control hold that they teach for young children. Hug so that their arms are confined, and legs aren't able to move much. Then tell him when that you'll let him sit with you when he calms himself, but that you cannot allow hitting/kicking to continue.

You MUST explain yourself to your child. Even if he isn't old enough to really understand what you are saying, if you are trying to discipline, you MUST explain what you are doing. Children don't understand unless they are told. If you are punishing without telling why, you cannot expect behavior to improve.

Leigha - posted on 12/19/2011

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Yelling does not help the situation. I know, I myself am a yeller and working very hard to change my own behavior. This only teaches them to yell also. Speak loud and firm. Be consistent. If he hits you put him in time out right away. If he is 4 set the timer for 4 minutes. Do not play into the crying and screaming. Ignore it. When the timer goes off it is time to tell him exactly why he is in time out and what he needs to do differently to not get put in time out again.

Gillian - posted on 12/11/2011

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the old saying "you can lead a horse to water, but you cant force it to drink". my son is also very picky.
you need to be consistant. dont make any special food for him, offer the same as you are eating. if he doesnt eat it, he goes without until the next meal.
for a snack offer only 1 piece of fruit or veggies. AGAIN if he doesnt eat it dont offer anythin else.
Make sure you sit down together at meal times. Turn off the tv and get rid of any distractions.
The important thing to remember is that a child WON'T starve. you are offering healthy nutritious food, it is his choice wheather or not he eats it.
My son will still CHOOSE to go to bed with an empty tummy sometimes but he is getting better!!!!
BE STRONG AND DON'T GIVE IN TO HIS DEMANDS!!!!
GOOD LUCK! XX

Amanda - posted on 12/10/2011

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My son just turned 2 and I sympathize! He also hits and kicks me when he doesn't get his way (or if I am changing his pull-ups) It hurts as he is a solid little boy that weighs close to 35 lbs. I'm hoping he grows out of it. He does go to time out when I tell him to, so it's not horrible, but.... Just stick to your guns, be firm, be consistant. Don't let him run over you, if time outs aren't working after a good amount of time, try something else. Maybe showing him how it feels to be hit! Good luck!

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Stphanie - posted on 01/04/2012

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for your first question put the child in a place where he or she cannot see any fun activity etc and if they get up put them back each time that they get up until they understand that they may not get up till the time out is finished and after the time out is finished explain to them whey they were put there and repeat steps each time this happens eventually they will get it my 5 yr old now puts himself in time out when he knows he has done wrong all we have to do is point. also try the reward system with him. if that doesnot help id have him seen by a dr it may be his diet that is keeping him from getting under control etc my son was recently diagnosed with add and odd we found this out after seeing several specialists good luck

Christine - posted on 01/04/2012

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i also have a 3 year old she will be four soon what you can try is offer different foods at meals that might work but my kids usually eat what i give them except the 10 year old

Meghan - posted on 12/18/2011

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I went to extent of taking my much older child to therapy sessions for similar behavior. Time outs were the suggestion. But the key trick that worked is setting a timer. Every time that they act out or hit while in the time out, you reset the timer. It gives them accountability. They realize that their actions are what is causing the time out last longer. This method really worked for my 7 year old. She had been violent since the age of 3, only with me. I realized that nothing was working and sought out child psychiatry for help. Good luck and remember that violence only causes more violence. Be patient and know that if you spank or hit them back, they will learn from your example and probably lash out more

Gillian - posted on 12/15/2011

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so many people have posted about 1.2.3. magic. i just checked out a copy from my library yesterday. highly recomended.

Kelli - posted on 12/13/2011

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I have found that the book called the Magic of 123 is the best recipe for this for this madness. I was once in your boat and you feel defeated and hopeless. I highly recommend it. Good Luck and patience and overall consisitency.

Larissa - posted on 12/12/2011

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I find time out on the bed works. Ie if he hits you don't say anything just pick him up and put him on his bed.. If my daughter does not stay there I put her back and close the door with instruction that she can stay there for 5 minutes and think about why I am upset with her. Reward charts work a treat we have a 3 strikes policy similar to discipline used in primary schools. On the kitchen whiteboard we have her name and each time we get cross at her, or she refuses to listen to what we have asked she gets a line next to her name. More than 3 lines is a naughty day 3 or less and in the evening she can have a gift out of the prize bag ( made up of small cheep gifts like stickers and girls things like fancy hair clips and small toys under $2) it only took about 4 days for her to really get it. We use the prize bag as well for eating- if you try this and eat 2 whole pieces/ mouthfulls

Jill - posted on 12/11/2011

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the best advice i've ever gotten as a parent? "They'll eat when they're hungry, they'll sleep when they're tired." but sometimes, that's easier said than done!

consistency is key. my kids eat whatever i make for dinner. if they dont like it, they sit there until they eat or no snacks until they eat their meal. many times they end up eating their meal for their snack b/c i wont budge about it. Sometimes, we all have to eat things we dont want to.

I do compromise at times. my kids love to help make their own food. i will make a fun meal at times and have them help me. there's always a way to hide veggies. try this article for ideas: http://voices.yahoo.com/how-picky-eater-...

as for the hitting, 3/4year olds can go in timeout. if you dont have a timeout corner or "naughty chair", make one and show him what it is and what will happen if he hits again. he will sit in that chair for 2 minutes. make sure it's a very un-fun place to be. you may have to be near him to be sure he stays. every time he gets out before 2 minutes is up, walk him back to the chair and tell him to stay until you say he can get up. keep doing it until he stays. it may take a million times for him to "get it" that you set up a rule and you're sticking to it. dont talk to him while he's in timeout. just make him stay. he will learn that hitting is going to end him up in that timeout and he's not going to like it. be consistent about it. just remember, this is probably a phase and it too shall pass.

do you do any organized activities with your son? maybe doing a craft, game or puzzle for a few minutes with him will give him enough attention for a while. maybe this is his way of trying to get your attention? if you find yourself busy with a task, tell him that when you're done, you will do such and such with him and make sure you get the task done quickly enough and follow through. this will also help get him to be patient. if he yells or hits, he has to wait longer to do the activity with you. it would give him something to look forward to as well.

hang in there. this phase can't last forever. :)

Michelle - posted on 12/08/2011

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Jessica - have you talked with the school? If he behaves there perhaps they have some techniques you could try. I think though you really just need to pick a technique and stick to it. My daughter did battle royale on time outs at first. I had to place her back in the time out corner several times the first few times, restarting the time each time and it does make you want to tear out your hair and give in out of sheer tired exasperation! But once she saw I meant business EVERY TIME she complied and her behavior improved.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 12/07/2011

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ok, it sounds more like an age adjustment then. Have you tried telling that he needs to eat at home like he does at school?

Jessica - posted on 12/07/2011

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Thank you ladies..i will have to get creative with him..he is just too picky.i worried he does not eat or not enough in his stomach.

Jessica - posted on 12/07/2011

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Theresa, i tried to give him different food..i even get him to eat hotdog or corn dog and hamburger or cheese burger or Mexican and all types Asian food.

Jessica - posted on 12/07/2011

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we all sit on chair and eat at dinner time all time..he still would not do it..Lunch time he is at school.school taught him eat by sit chair.he did it.maybe i am not firm enough.i yell at him to do simple task.i even bribed him..

Jessica - posted on 12/07/2011

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Shawn, i always tell him to set down and eat properly..he did it when he was very young suddenly he stop.He did tried to eat one bite food..he does not trusted it and that why he did not tried.

Anne - posted on 12/07/2011

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I have one of those kids. I decided to feed him what he likes and get creative with the rest. He loves rice and beans, so he gets rice with different beans 3x per week: BBQ beans, kidney beans, white beans, black beans, etc.
He also loves pasta, but not with sauce! So I serve it with bits of cooked ham and scambled eggs. He will also eat raw veggies, not cooked. Fine, so that's what he gets. He will eat that. I gave up with the food fights at the dinner table. It causes more stress in our family than it's worth.
He has started to be more adventurous though and I do make him try at least one bite of everything I normally serve for dinner.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 12/07/2011

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Jessica, I guess my question would be this: Is there no structured meal area in your home? It is better (especially when they're young) to have a dining area. Even if it's a table in the middle of a teeny tiny kitchen. Each child should be taught from the time that they are old enough to sit at the table what the proper behavior is.

Not knowing how structured your household is, this is a difficult question. We never really had to address this, because both of our children were taught from the time that they started eating solids, so their behavior has never been lacking in that area.

To start now will require a certain amount of firmness on your part. Your angel now needs to learn how to eat what is presented to him, how to not complain about it, and how to sit still and do that at the proper time.

If he refuses to sit still, he may have the option of time out. If he continues to refuse, he may have the option of not eating. He'll get hungry soon enough. When he does, you should present him with his previously untouched plate. If he refuses, you tell him that "This is what Momma fixed, and this is what the rest of us ate." No options.

If you have not gotten him to try new foods, this is going to be difficult. Our rule is, you must have a bite of each new food. Then, you must have a 2nd bite. You may decide not to like it, but you must have at least 3 bites (chewed and swallowed) to make that choice.

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Depends on the 3 year old. My 3 year old eats just about everything that his sisters and I eat. I don't have any experience w/ food battles, but I do w/ different behaviors.

What do you do when he gets up from his seat? I'd give him one warning and then I'd end the meal. Offer a variety of healthy foods at each meal and snack time and let him choose how much or what he eats. French fries should definitely not be a daily food.

Jessica - posted on 12/07/2011

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Thank you everyone..i will take your advice..Now i wonder how can i get him to eat in chair and not run around.He is not eat properly in place.He is picky as well.certain food he is eating and some he won't tried.What do 3 years old eat? he only eat french fries.

Michelle - posted on 12/06/2011

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It seems silly, but watch Supernanny. She stresses the importance of consistency in whatever you do and you'll see that many kids are defiant and out of control but can be brought into line with consistency.

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