May 3, 2012

Terrible Twos...For Real!

When I was a first grade teacher, discipline was one of my strengths. I'm not a yeller...never have been, never will be...but was a big believer in logical consequences, being fair and consistent, and keeping children from privileges as opposed to delivering a punishment in order to prove my point. Generally, I got results and figured disciplining my own children would be pretty straight-forward if I stuck to the same principles.
Now that my little Colton has officially become a 2 year old, there must be an alarm in his head that went off saying it is now officially time to start pushing boundaries and limits. For the most part, he is still a very sweet and even-tempered tot, but there are little things here and there that need a little reigning in...throwing Chipper's dog food all over the kitchen (throwing anything and everything for that matter), stabbing his fork repeatedly into the kitchen table, swinging the blinds back and forth. There also seems to be a rough playing problem growing. Just this week, I was told that he tackled a little boy in the babysitting room at the gym (with a big smile on his face!), hit a little boy in his class (with a big smile on his face!), and kicked his baby brother while trying to play on the floor with him (with a big smile on his we see a trend here?). And then there was the most troubling of all...I went to the bathroom the other morning...when I left, Levi was sitting in his bouncy seat on the floor and Colton was near him...when I returned about a minute later, Levi was face first on the carpet...hmmm. I sincerely believe that Colton is not trying to be mean with his antics (and his teachers, babysitting room ladies agreed), but he clearly needs to know that these things are not acceptable.
he can be nice to his baby brother...we just need it to be more regular!

And that's where I seem to be struggling because no matter what approach I have taken, all of my reprimands are met with a big ole grin. I've used a sharp "no" and a calm but firm "no." I've tried redirecting. We've used the timeout chair, which at least does seem to stop him from continuing a behavior like throwing dog food, but does not do much good when he's playing too rough.
I'm sure there is no magical fix, and that many will say that as long as I keep being consistent, he will eventually get the message. BUT...veteran parents, or teachers, or anyone with some you have any suggestions? Some out of the box type things that maybe worked well for you/someone else? Anything would be greatly appreciated!

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