19 answers

Behavior - Green Bay,WI

I have a 5 year old that seems to have issues with listening and behavior at times...he is very intelligent and knows what he is doing when he does it. What kind of disciplining are other parents doing? Taking toys and favorite things away has not helped.

What can I do next?

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K.,
I also have a five year old and a new baby. She is usually a really good kid but she started misbehaving around the time I had the baby. Nothing seemed to work as far as time outs, taking away toys, and privilages until we started giving her more attention. I think it's easy to forget the older and easier child when you have other little ones to worry about. My husband started to hang out with her every night before bed to just let her talk about anything she wanted until she got sleepy. I also would talk to her about why she would act out and what she thought would help her not need to do that. She also likes to draw a lot which seems to help her express herself in a possitive way. This I think is very important to this age group. We also took away most of the toys except the few favorites to simplify play time. Then when she was extra good I would let her go choose one toy to take out of storage. This gave me the chance to look for and focus on her good behavior instead of only on bad behavior.

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I know that maybe this is because I'm in the military so maybe it seems more normal to me, but I had a hard time for a while with my son. He too is 5yrs and is very smart. It seemed like everything I would try he just seemed to not care. I don't really agree with spanking or segrigating so I was left to think "outside the box". I learned that excercises worked the best. I didn't feel bad because in the end he was learning a lesson as well as building endurance. I have always believed in having a one on one with him either during or after his punishment so this worked out well. When he is in trouble I have him "sit" on the wall. This consists of putting his back against the wall, bending his knees, and holding his arms straight out. While he is in that position I sit down in front of him and talk to him about whatever it was that he is in trouble for. When he tries to through a fit and stand up or drop his arms I just let him know that his time will start when he is doing it correctly. Once we're done talking (usually about 2 to 4 minutes) he's done and it's all over with no hard feelings. My son like to show off how strong he is so I usually have him "knock out 10" (do ten push-ups) then he's off. This seems to work really well for the both of us. I get my point accross, he isn't being belittled or physically hurt, he is building physical endurance, and when it's over it's over. Another good thing is that there will be walls just about everywhere you go.

4 moms found this helpful

My daughter is almost 5 and she is very strong willed, stubborn, and also appears to be highly intelligent. That being said...what has worked for her are a few things. First and foremost...I have read a book called "The 5 Love Languages of Children" and it is truly a helpful, inspiring book. Basically it is about finding out the way your child "most" feels loved. Often times the way they best receive love is how they give it themselves. It has helped my relationship with my daughter. Also however, when she gets "sassy" with me...I give her 1 warning, if she's sassy again, she gets a time out for 4 minutes until she's 5 then of course it'll be 5 minutes. I also refuse to give her what she wants until she changes her attitude. She knows that when I say no I mean it and that trying to negotiate or cop an attitude will ensure that the answer will remain no. I have changed my mind spontaneously simply because she didn't argue. I've always told her that she won't always get what she wants, but she will get more of what she wants when she makes good choices.

It has also been helpful to give her a choice when she is not listening...I'll tell her that she can either do as I ask or the TV gets turned off, time out, etc...it depends on what we're doing at the time. I just have to make sure that I can and do follow through with the consequence.

Kids act like they don't care because often times they can wait you out..if it seems like they don't care, then most likely you'll give up. The problem is parents are affected negatively as much as the kids are. When you are disciplining your child...you are also reaping negative consequences as well dealing with the temper tantrum that is likely to ensue. We just have to be more stubborn than they are which is no easy task.

I wish you luck...raising children is the hardest job of all.

4 moms found this helpful

My youngest daughter just turned 6 yrs old. We've found that being consistent, consistent, consistent with rules and consequences works best. We have some rules that cover all the bases of unacceptable behavior.

1. Be kind.
2. Be respectful.
3. If you're not sure about something, ask first.
4. If you're not at home, follow the rules of the place you're a guest in.
5. Sharing is always a good thing.
6. Be courteous.
7. Listen to others speak and take turns in conversations.

If you notice, I try not to create "no" rules. I try to create positive rules. The reason for that is that my eldest daughter is ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder) and my middle daughter has Autism and if you present "no screaming, no running, no hitting/biting/kicking" as rules then you've pretty much given them ideas for behavior for them to engage in that will push buttons. If you present positive rules there's a better starting point for what's acceptable and more chances to praise for following the rules.

When a rule is broken and someone has been unkind or disrespectful, I get down face to face with them but not intimidating and tell them in Mommy voice that Specific Behavior is unacceptable because it's not (whatever rule they broke) and that they're getting a warning about which rule they've broken and a chance to correct that behavior. They're also warned that if they repeat the behavior/break the rule again (within a short period of time) then they're going to have a consequence (like a time out). If they choose not to correct the behavior then they're removed from the situation and they get a "time out" or "cool off thinking time." After the cool off time is over, which is always the age of the child in minutes, we have a quick, "Do you know why you were in time out?" "kid gives explanation" "Okay, I'd like an apology." "kid apologizes" then hugs all around. Lather, rinse, repeat until they get it.

If you don't use time outs, such as with my older daughter as time outs aren't always a good enough incentive, we've found that losing a privilege is good incentive. We've also found that if she loses a privilege that earning it back is also good incentive. It's far more effective than groundings and she always has something to work toward.

In any situation, keep the conversation short and simple. No arguing. don't drag it out. Kids think that the more you argue the more chance they have of "winning." I always listen to their side, let them know I understand and when they have a valid point, but once my mind is made up and a consequence is given then the discussion is over and I stop engaging.

3 moms found this helpful

I read in someones response to another moms question that they made a chore list put in a protective sheet and posted it up.. I have done this with 4 simple chores age appropriate to his ability to do them-wipe the kitchen table, vaccum the living room floor, pick up toys, make his bed... I started an allowance with him also $5 every week if he does all of his chores. If he misbehaves in anyway talking back throwing things etc i take away twenty five cents each time from the five dollars at the end of the week..i have gave in a lil bit cause this is the actual first week his chore chart and allowance..so far so good he has been doing his chores everyday so far and is doing really well with it..in fact he has earned a lil extra money for chores not asked of him..emptying the bathroom trash can, clean his bathroom sink, etc..My son still has his moments were he tries my patience and even pushes me..He is also very intellegent and also very manipulative..He was diagmosed with ADD about 5 or 6 months ago and i see improvment in what I am trying with him now..hopes this helps..let me know how it goes :) As hard as it is (BELIEVE ME I KNOW) focus on the positive rather than the negative..lots of praise when he does well, encouragment etc..good luck.

2 moms found this helpful

I have a two part answer and I'm going to start with part two.

I've had the same question from a client. By five years old, a child is developmentally able to listen and follow directions the first time given. And, yes, I'm sure your son knows exactly what he's doing when he is doing it. I told my client that her son would do what she told him to do. When she protested saying that he would not, I insisted that he would. Then I explained that he didn't do what she told him because she wasn't telling him what to do. I explained it this way: Today's parents don't tell their children what to do. Today's parents ask, beg, bargain, plead, etc. I told my client to take the word "okay?" out of her vocabulary because she used it at the end of every instruction to her son. "Don't give a command then ask permission from your child if it's "okay." Just give the command."

But, more importantly (and this is part one) is that as parents we act as LEADERS for our children. Leadership comes first, then comes discipline. Plan A is always effective leadership and Plan B is discipline. So, I challenge you to ask yourself "Am I leading my child?"

Good luck (but effective leaders don't really need luck),

S.

1 mom found this helpful

Find out what his currency is and us it against him... Maybe no tv time... No toys...Extra chores..maybe making him write sentences...Try several different things and if they dont work use combinations. You can even try taking all the toys out of his room or something like that.I know a mom that took away her sons milk at night... That really hurt his feelings.

Rest assured...it's not just your 5 year old. Mine is going to be 5 in two months...and he has those same issues...not listening and other behavior problems. He also talks back a lot lately. For that, he'll get hot sauce if he talks back or says naughty words more than a few times...he gets a few warnings. It seems to work pretty well...of course he gets cheese or water right away and our "hot sauce" is not really hot anyways. As far as listening...I started with time outs, they did nothing. So now he gets "grounded" from things. About two weeks ago he was really misbehaving badly for hours, so he got all of his favorite things taken away...video games, movies, computer...and the next was going to be his cars. Fortunately he shaped up and didn't lose the cars too. He ended up earning the stuff back with good behavoir and listening...but it worked wonders.

I'm having trouble with my 7 1/2 yr old son also, the same way. I asked his Dr. if he could be ADHD. She gave me a number to call. I think that he has it. I've spoke to him about the way he feels and ask him if we cld try a med, he said yes as long that it doesn't put him like a zombie. So I'm calling today. This Dr remembers me speaking to her when he was abt 3. My son is also very smart. Is it worth the try?

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