Thursday, March 10, 2011

Training Littles

"Judah, come here please. Judah! Come here! JOOO DUHHH COME HERE!! Does Mommy need to come over there? Don't make me come and get you!!"

My son is 2. Two is a great age, despite the reported horrors of the 'terrible twos'. In fact, my husband and I love two year olds and find them far easier to deal with than threes.

But there are challenges. Right now one of our tough spots with our 2 year old is getting him to come when we call him. So today we started playing the 'Come Here Game'.

I'll stand a few feet from Judah and say "Judah, come here!" in a sweet voice. He runs to me and gets rewarded with "Yay Judah!!" and a toss up in the air. Then he moves to the other side of the room and we do it again. And again. And again. And again.

Throughout the day I'll keep doing this during different activities. In a week or so we should have him trained to come running any time he hears me call.

A few tips to make this work:

Use the same sing-song voice every time you call your child. Kids are much more attuned to tones than words.

Be consistent. Do this at least 30 times the first day, and continue to reinforce for several days. Do refreshers any time you feel the unwanted behavior returning.

Don't forget the reward! Often our best parenting tricks fail because we forget to follow through.

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