Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them. ~ James Baldwin
Toddlers would be referring to the age of 1-3 years old . This is the time when they learn so fast but yet still could not really express fully and clearly what they want or need. The following are the usual 3 situations where most parents would find it hard to handle their toddlers.
If your child whines when she wants something, encourage her to stop whining and ask nicely. “Mavis, stop whining for a drink, ask nicely.”
Show her how to ask properly. “Mavis, tell mummy….’mummy, can I have a drink, please?’”
Use a pleasant voice and praise your child when she has done what you have requested. “Well done, Mavis. You have asked very nicely. Yes, you can have the drink.”
2 Going Shopping
Before you go into the shop with your child, remind her of the rules you would like her to follow.
“Stay close to mummy and daddy.” “Ask mummy and daddy first before you touch anything.” “Walk when you are in the shop.”
Suggest rewards if your child follows the rules.”When you do what mummy and daddy tell you, we will bring you to the playground after we leave the shop.”
Remember, always praise your child when she did well.
3 Resisting the seat belt
Many toddlers strongly object to being confined in a car seat, especially if they are physically active.
The best time to start using a car seat is when your child is still a baby and to put your child in a car seat every time, without exception, she travels in a car.
Make “belting up” a habit, instead of an instruction. This would come naturally if the habit started when she is a baby and she can see that you, her role model, belt up too.
If the habit was not established since young, then you will need to tell your child that she could climb into the seat herself, or you will put her in. Follow through and put her in the car seat if she doesn’t climb in herself.
Look for good behaviour and offer praise when your child cooperates. “Great job, Mavis, good girl. You can climb into your seat yourself.”
Reward good behaviour. Say in a pleasant voice, “When you’re in your car seat, you may have a sticker.”
Empower your child. Let your child choose a favourite “car toy” to take in the car. Make sure the toy is safe and soft so that it does not hurt anyone if you stop the car suddenly.
Children learn by modelling. Show her how you put your seat belt on.
Toddlers respond best to the tone of your voice, not the words you say. So practice to manage your own emotions, take control of your tone.