babysitting 4yr old who wont listen help!!!

Sherry - posted on 11/09/2010 ( 5 moms have responded )




she runs off on me. last night she took off and would't stop. i caught her just in time for a car to pass. she has to be center of attention all the time. lies, and bullys the other kids. she is not bad when one on one. i have tried time out and having my girls show her how to do things. sometimes at the end of the day i think ok i got thru to her today but when she comes back i have to start all over again. i have had her for three months now and i still have to explain the rule to her everytime she comes. does anyone have any ideas? her mom has nowhere else to take her. no one has the patience for her. PLEASE HELP me help her mom.


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Michelle - posted on 11/14/2010




This won't be what her mom wants to hear but I would suggest she have checked out for any of the following issues. First allergies as they can cause children to act out in this way. 2nd ADHD she sounds like she has serious impulse control issues which my son has and it was linked to ADHD. Many children who have ADHD also have something called ODD which is oppositional defiance disorder. Both the ODD and ADHD can be googled so you can check out the symptoms. My son has both of these and used to be exactly like how you are describing this little girl good luck to you and her mom.

Dara - posted on 11/11/2010




I like Cassidy's idea of the treasure box. Positive reinforcement can go a long way with this age. It sounds like maybe her mom isn't enforcing the same rules at home, so it's sabotaging what you do with her. Maybe talk to mom and make sure you are both on the same page discipline wise?

My advice is to be consistent and stay the course. It sounds like you're doing the right thing with her. Time outs for 4 year olds are appropriate, and when used properly, usually work. If she is craving attention, the reward for three good days will be great for her because she is being recognized for a good thing instead of a bad thing. You could also try using a chart every day with stickers. Every time she does something you ask her to, or doesn't run away etc, she gets to put a sticker in the box for that day. It's important for her to be a part of this and put the sticker on herself. Then you could clap for her, and maybe even have the other kids clap too so that she's being recognized for doing as she is told instead of for doing crazy things like running into the street.

This sounds incredibly frustrating. I wish you luck!

Katherine - posted on 11/11/2010




Reward chart for sure. That works so well. It worked with so many children I have babysat and with my own.

Courtney - posted on 11/11/2010




Just stop taking her places if she won't stay with you. I think a reward chart of some kind might help too. Have you tried time out? Maybe if you stop giving her attention when she is acting out she will stop doing it as much. Sometimes kids do that because they feel they need more attention. My son used to act like that and has improved a lot since starting to go to pre school where they keep him very busy. She could just be bored. I hope this helps a little. Good luck :)

Cassidy - posted on 11/11/2010




HMMM, well first I'm so sorry. I have been in the child care field for 13 years so I know how frustrating it gets. My 2.5 yr old loves to take off. We bought one of those monkey backpacks that have a harness. He likes it but whats to hold the rope while he walks. For the most part he has to be held, hold our hand, or is in the stroller. We give him a chance but when he doesn't do what he should that is when we take the privilege away.
She is 4 so she knows better. Make her hold your hand when ever you go anywhere. Even do this inside. Like going to the table for lunch or the bathroom (if she needs help). Let her know that you are practicing walking nicely. You may even make a treasure box. She can pick out a treasure when she has had 3 good days. Once she is doing well with that then move it to 5 days. And just keep adding more days.
I hope some of this helps.

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