my 5 yr old son doesnt want to obey and follow direction how should i teach him to obey

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Llana - posted on 06/10/2009

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This is how to get a toddler or child to listen to you.

(Just posted this to a different question. I hope it helps you out too!)



Its critical to remember that a child not listening is more than an annoyance. In a life or death situation, a child listening or not could determine their very survival. That is how serious parents should take this business of listening... as if their child's life depended on it. That means listening not just in an emergency, but in mundane settings as well.



My children listen well. I taught them from the beginning and if these sort of issues arose, I handled them promptly. The older a child gets the more difficult this is to correct. Anything under 6 should be fairly easy to correct though. You simply need to be strict and consistent.



My basic formula is that they are asked twice. Plainly the first time. The second time comes with a warning. For example, "if you don't come here now, I will have to make you come here." If ignored, I would gently but somewhat uncomfortably pull the child from point A to point B. Carrying would be too comfy. I do NOT hurt the child. But bringing them in an ungainly manner is uncomfortable, and also offends their I-can-do-it-myself mentality at this age. They get upset. I reinforce that if they want to walk on their own, they'd better listen.



In a circumstance where they are asked to put away a toy sort of example, I do the same. Ask once, the second time comes with a warning, we don't get to a third time because the warning is carried out. If I say to put the toy away, or stop banging it on the table, and I am ignored, I likely will take the toy away and put it in a place they cannot reach it. I do this so they can see it and can't have it. They lost their toy by not listening. If the behavior happens again within the same day or two, you may be more drastic by throwing the toy in the trash or out the front door. This looks dramatic, but it makes the impression on the child that their things can be lost forever if they don't listen. Make good on it too. The toy may not come back. If you falter and don't deliver the warning, you are telling your child that you are unreliable and don't need to be taken seriously.



The final side of this, is that if they DO listen, they get showered with positive attention. Kisses, love, praise, maybe even a treat or gift (immediately, not later on). Instant reward is a powerful tool. Tell them how proud you are! Lots of smiles! This is the kind of interaction that children truly long for. They should get it frequently. As a parent you should be on vigilant look out for all the wonderful things your kids do. It requires a lot of attention. The reward to the family in general, your sanity, and richness of your child's life is huge!



And that is how to get your toddlers and kids to listen and continue to listen as they grow up.



P.S. Any crying during the corrections is ignored. It is important not to reinforce crying by giving it attention. Instead be waiting to give attention when the crying STOPS and no sooner. At first, this could take a while, but it is very important and helps solve other behavioral problems like screaming to get their way.



Also, no further explanation to the child is warranted beyond the initial request and warning. Even if you have to make good on the warning and carry out the punishment, the child is smart and will learn what is going on. Explanations buy them time and leave you open to be manipulated. They are children, not colleagues. If at a later time, they ask about it, then explaining the whys and wherefores is fine.

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Mary Lynn - posted 5 days ago

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I am from the old school I am busy all time I do not have the patience to play games
I am the parent he is the child his duty and obligation is to obey me when I ask him to do something I want it done within a very short time-- so what I will do is to grab his arm pull him from the auto or etc and together we will march to do what I requested him to do.i am not going to cry, beg, or whine, I am also not rigid nor a hell banger but if he does not obey me at age 5 then he will not obey me at age 16 either and if he does not there is going to be conquences such as a nice healthy swat on the butt, now go to bed and stay there until I tell you that you may get up--- I am not going to monkey around with these young mothers whose children are disobedient , spoiled and calling the shots
not on my watch am I abusive hell no I am a mother who wants her child to obey the rules and regulations I am not going to bribe him a toy, give him a cookie and get on my knees and beg him what I told him to do with no bs involved peroid

Rachel - posted on 06/11/2009

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I have a 5 year old son also - it is the age of testing for sure...what we have learned to do that works, is to take away a privilege, or something he likes for a few hours, the day or whatever works. He is very strong minded, so this is all that has really worked so far. I try timeouts, and it is hard to get him to stay where he is supposed to, and I don't want to hold him down. So, first I tell him he has to have a 5 minute (or whatever is appropriate) time out, and when he tells me he won't go, then I tell him he is going to lose something. He usually then goes and has his timeout...but if he doesn't, he knows he will lose t.v. or one of his dinosaurs for the day or however long...maybe that will help!

Coury - posted on 06/11/2009

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my children and i moved from oklahoma city where we had plenty of room to roam to brooklyn,ny where there are more streets cars and safety issues. for instance our house is on a second level i have child proof bars that are about a foot and a half high. my children thought it would be a good idea to play by the windows. i actually ended up having to tell them they could die if they fell out of the window. when it comes to the streets that we walk daily i also tell them that they could die if they get into the street with the cars. my son thinks he is spider man sometimes and told me he will just jump over the cars. when it IS a matter of life or death i tell them so. every single time we go to the grocery store or somplace i tell them they must stay by me or someone could take them from me and they will never see me again. some may think this is harsh but when you live in a big city that is so fast pace and people are not worried about who is crossing the street and kids are almost invisible this is huge in my life. fortunately i do live in a great community where i know nost of my neighbors and people who work and own businesses people know that my children belong to me. i had an incident once where my mother in law was watching my kids while i went to do laundry.......well my daughter snuck out of the house,she was two at the time. i am in the laundromat and i see my neighbor and elderly man coming in with my daughter. this was right after we moved her mind you. i totally freaked out i couldn't believe it!! but because i knew him and i saw him on my way he new exactly what to do. could you imagine?! that is why i believe it be so important for children to listen cause it could effect their lives!! it takes constant reminders!! like i say before we go anywhere i explain our rules......it is just so worth it. my children for the most part are very well behaved!! good luck just remember consistancy consitancy consitancy!!

Julie - posted on 06/11/2009

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It's a serious question, not ment to be condensending. If you have spent the last 5 years training your child to obey and this is a totally new behavior than I would suggest completely different consequences. But if Obedience is a new concept for him than I would stick to my original post.

Shanna - posted on 06/10/2009

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To the comments below, I have the following comments of my own: In response to Julie, I think you weren't very helpful; in fact seemed a bit condescending. To Llana, THANK YOU! This was the kind of answer I was hoping to read when I read this post. In fact, your ideas seem most encouraging to my own problems with my 5yr old. So, keep up the good work, thanks again :)

April - posted on 06/10/2009

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I had a similar issue with my daughter,who is now six. I explained to her that the reason I ask her to do something, is because I love her, I want her to grow into a young lady that is well respected, and I don't want her to get hurt. This helped but when there is a problem, she looses privledges, or now that she's learning to write, I'll make her write a few sentences, as to why she should follow directions. I hope this helps, I konw every child is diffrent.

Julie - posted on 06/10/2009

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Have you ever tought him to obey or are you just tired of fighting him on every subject and want to make an immediate change in his behavior? Their are lots of reasons 5 years olds don't want to obey. If you have never instilled in him the importance of obedience it's late in the game to start now but not impossible. Talk with him about how upset and frustrated it makes you when he doesn't obey. Tell him it has to stop hand he has to listen to you and your going to enforce it now. Take away priviledges, games, play time, special snacks, anything he really enjoys that isn't necessary. Tell him he can earn them back through obedience. Make sure he has chances everyday to make some of his own choices that you already approve of such as what to wear or what to eat for lunch, PB and J or tuna salad. Let him choose when he can. But when you have made your decission it's final. Enforce the consequences of arguing or failing to obey.

Good Luck!

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