Corrective action

Elizabeth Mwelwa - posted on 05/22/2012 ( 9 moms have responded )




My 5 yr old won't eat as much as i think she needs, she was doing extremely well in her school work last term but has suddenly developed lazy tendencies towards her work and she wont listen when you talk to her. i was forced to spank her a little yesterday but i know even this wont help, what should i do to get her to start doing the things i want her to do including small punishments like sitting in her room for some time. iam drained and desperately need your help


Ann - posted on 05/22/2012




At the age of 5 she needs to know her boundaries. My suggestion would be to use a naughty chair, Make sure it is out in the open and there are no toys. Bedrooms don't work, there are toys and activities to do, so what's the point. Firmly ask the child to stop, if they do not, send them to the naughty chair. If they do not go, simply pick them up and put them there - do not speak to them at all or acknowledge. If they get up, again do not say anything, but pick them up and put them back. This may go on for awhile, but in the long run it will stop. Once the child calms down and has spent their time there, you need to reiterate what they did to get there, have them look at you and then they need to apologize. This is repetitive, but it DOES work. i have adult children now and have been a nanny for years. The child is testing you right now and she knows she is getting attention from it, so why quit? The hardest part is not saying anything, not acknowledging them and following through again and again, because this method will be tested. This will work, I've use this technique for over 20 years.

Jenni - posted on 05/29/2012




I try my best to develop a logical consequence for a behaviour. It's not always easy and takes a little creative thought but I find a logical consequence followed up with a discussion to be very effective with my children (age 2, 4, 5). A logical consequence is a consequence with the intention to teach a lesson about a specific behaviour.

ex: if you do not clean your room, any toys I find on the floor will be put away in my room for the week.

You could still use timeouts with her but I find once children are old enough to understand logical consequences there is little need for TOs. I generally only use them for runaway emotions (ex: lashing out because they are angry) as a time to cool down before addressing the problem and providing them with tools to vent their frustration in a healthy way in the future. I really have little need for them now for my older two because they learned to "take a break" now when they get angry.

I personally wouldn't worry about the eating; children go through phases of growth when they will eat a ton and other times they eat like birds. I think this is fairly normal. Just make sure you're providing light, healthy in between meal snacks.

For listening, I'd try 1,2,3 magic or a variation of that technique. For my son he gets to earn the special treat of playing educational games on the computer when my youngest is taking her nap for an hour a day. If he doesn't listen or misbehaves, he gets a 1. Next time a 2, next time a 3. On 3 he loses the privilege.

To encourage good behaviour you could do a rewards chart. This can include short-term weekly rewards and a long term monthly reward. For example; you could have her earn marbles for good behaviour (list behaviours she will earn a marble for) if she reaches a certain amount of marbles by the end of the week or fills a jar up to a certain line, she gets a dollar to buy herself a treat from the dollar store. Her monthly reward could be earning a special day with mom or dad; going to the zoo, a play land, the beach, a sleepover.

Charlotte - posted on 05/27/2012




Choose you battles. If she is not eating much, only give her healthy food to eat, and let her eat as much as she wants, sometimes they are not growing so fast and don't need as much food, forcing them to eat can only lead to food issues later. For things like work I find rewards work better than punishment. She will only work better if there is gain from it. As far as punishment goes, i just don't know, this seems to be different from child to child ( i have 3 and they are all different)

Kristin - posted on 05/24/2012




I agree with you Heather. With kids of any age you have to pick your battles, and I think they all go through the not listening stage. I found that a reward system works for me when my children dont want to do something. For example i say to my 6 year old if you want to go to the park or a bike ride after supper you have to do your school work and mommy will sit with you. He feels great when i sit and help him and now loves to show me all the accomplishments he has made. My 6 year old is also a very picky eater so i cut out snacks for after school and i give him a small amount of food for supper and it doesnt overwhelm him. I do not force him to eat things he doesnt like but i do encourage him to at least try new foods. I have taken to hiding things in food i will mix veggies in meat so he cant see it and that helps. However, children will always eat when they are hungry and I wouldnt worry about the amounts she eats as loong as she is eating something. Sometimes I as an adult have days where i do not feel like eating and I wouldnt like someone forcing me to eat so why should we force our kids to eat? Put her on pediasure and a multivitamin to make sure she get all her vitamins and im sure she will be fine. Keep positive and stay calm and communicate with your child ask them why they dont want to listen or eat etc. You may be surprised at what they tell you.

Heather - posted on 05/23/2012




She is ONLY 5 years old. Try time outs, don't send her to her room, that's not the right thing to do. Try picking your battles. 5 year olds aren't going to eat that much food, it's like with a toddler, some days they eat a lot, and some days they don't.

NEVER force her to sit and eat everything on her plate. Try only serving her half of what you would normally give her, then slowly work your way up with a few more bites of food per dish that you are serving. She probably isn't that hungry. Especially if you make her drink a BIG glass of milk like my aunt used to make my sisters and I do when we were little. Does she eat anything after about 2pm? Snacks, etc.? If so, then she's probably not hungry to eat dinner at 5 or 6pm.

I have been taking care of children since I was 12 years old, and I am now pregnant with my 3rd child, and I have learned to pick my battles. She is only 5 years old, she isn't 8 or 10. She was just 4 years old, and basically a toddler, last year. Give her a break Mama.


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Amy - posted on 05/22/2012




If my 6 year old gets mouthy he gets a warning, the second time I ask him if he wants to go to his room, the third time I have to speak to him he is sent to his room till he has a better attitude. Usually he apologizes and promises to be better, if he isn't better he does go to his room.

My son doesn't like to do school work either so we give him some time when he gets home from school to unwind. It's kind of like me coming home from work I need to relax before I start doing more work like cleaning. We give him an hour or so and then we work on the school work. I personally don't spank and wouldn't spank for not doing school work I don't want him to develop a negative attitude towards school. My son for the most part is pretty good and just gets mouthy with me and his father, I also still you distraction to get him focused on something else, and if I'm his target I walk away from him since he hates to be alone.

Kathryn - posted on 05/22/2012




I do chares, any time my son is disrespectful or talks back he gets a chore. Nothing too harsh, but things like picking up the trash outside or helping separate laundry. Also bad behavior equals to clear conciquences. I typically take his favorite activity away for 1 week (my son is 4) and stick to it. There was one time my son acted up at a restraunt. Everyone else got to have food while he had to wait until we got home to eat. Kids need to feel the "sting" sometimes, in our case we choose a figurative one. Be tough but show her you care.

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