Originally Posted by cmb123
So does sitting in a chair for 3 minutes work? Once one of the kids has sat in the chair for 3 minutes because of a certain behavior or whathaveyou, do they never do that again because sitting there has made them see the light?
I've never used time outs- not because I think they make the child "suffer" in anyway, but because I don't see what children learn from them.
My kids are I think over "time out" age at this point anyway, and not old enough for the "your grounded" thing. I know so far we've done fine without punishments, but I wouldn't swear that I would never ground a teen if I felt it were a matter of thier safety.
I am right there with you. My ds had reached 2 1/2 and I had never tried time out and I was seriously doubtful as to how effective it would be. I do not believe time out is a good teaching tool.
I had eliminated that behavior (and others as well) through gentle guidance and no punishment up until that point.
However when it returned and he knew he wasnt supposed to throw food, and he was able to refrain from doing so (having proved it for many months) I tried these very same techniques for a couple of months to no avail.
It was only when I finally decided that nothing was working that I tried the time out I described.
After 3 2 minute time outs he almost entirely stopped throwing food.
It went from somethign that occurred at every meal to somethign that occurred maybe once a week.
I can't say why it worked.
After mulling it over I still think time out is not a good tool to educate as to what behavior is appropriate. But I now believe it can be effective to remind children that have already mastered a behavior or skill that it is expected that they use it. THat mom really means it when she says "no".
I still dont use it often at all. I simply do not need it.
I also don't think that every child will respond the way mine did.
I don't think it is the ultimate answer to everybody's behavior issues or a one size fits all approach.
But for my oldest son, it was surprisingly effective. As well as gentle.
My youngest two are only 22 months and I havent used time out (except if that means to separate them when being violent, but not really the same thing) so I cant say whether or not it will be effective.
As for the "you're grounded" thing. I dont like that either for any age. I really think that if punishment is used it ought to fit the crime.
One of my favorite things is to make my responses to them occasionally conditional on their cooperation.
For example. "I asked you to pick up the floor. YOu did not do it so I had to. NOw I am too tired to play trains." or "When you argue with me like that it makes me feel tired and angry. Because I feel tired and angry I cannot drive you to the movies."
It isnt "natural" consequences, but perhaps these things would fall into "logical" consequences. WHich by most definitions are punishments.
My oldest does get a full "grounding" occasionally but this is mostly to remove her from dangerous influences when she is making terribly poor choices. WE dont do it often because it is does not really motivate good behavior. The only benefit is that it is protective against further bad behavior or danger in the immediate future. (which to me is somethign that can be very important under some circumstances)
Anyway CMB I really appreciated your post because I also feld that "time out" wouldnt work. But after 2 months of scraping yogurt off of the walls, I was willing to try it.