5.4 Cooperation Summary & Practice
134 The Parent’s Toolshop
PLAN AHEAD ☆☆☆☆
OFFER CHOICES ☆☆☆☆
choices for when and how it can happen.
DON’T SAY “DON’T” ☆☆☆☆
Describe what they can do.
NO NO’S ☆☆☆☆
Offer an alternative. State a reason.
Recognize feelings. Use wishes and fantasy.
Save “no” for dangerous issues or emergencies.
USE HUMOR ☆☆☆☆
MAKE IT CHILD-FRIENDLY
BE POLITE, BUT DON’T PLEAD
FOLLOW RULES FOR SETTING RULES
Permission for reader to reprint this page for personal use only granted by author, Jody Johnston Pawel, LSW, The Parent’s Toolshop, © 2000.
(Possible answers are at the end of the chapter.)
A. Choices. Find a way to offer choices within limits in these situations.
- Your toddler wants to play in the sand box in his good clothes.
- Your preschooler resists having her hair washed.
- Your elementary school-aged child needs to work on a book report.
- Your preteen wants to plan a party.
- Your teenager is trying to decide where to apply for jobs.
B. Don’t Say “Don’t.” Flip these negative orders into positive requests.
- “Can we go out to eat tonight?” (You don’t have the time or money.)
- “Can I borrow the car?” (The last time the car was returned with an empty gas tank.)
- “Can I go to the park with Tom and John?” (You are concerned about three 10-year-old boys walking through the woods to the park.)
- “Can you take me to the library to do research for my book report? It’s due tomorrow.” (You don’t have time tonight, but would have, had you known sooner.)
- “Can I have this toy?” (You are in the toy store shopping for someone else.)
E. Personal Application. List three things your child might ask for and to which you would say “no.” Now, word your refusal with positive words instead.
Activity for the Week
Practice using these tools at home for one week. Then list a situation (or more, if applicable) where you are having difficulty in getting your child to cooperate. Now review the summary page to see if there are any tools you could use in that situation.
The following answers are just one possible response. Different answers are not wrong answers. See if your answers also fit the guidelines for using the Cooperation Toolset.
136 The Parent’s Toolshop
B. Don’t Say “Don’t”
Use the Cooperation Toolset everyday to prevent the struggles most parents face. We will refer to them often when we get to the Parent Problem Toolbox and learn how to redirect children’s intentional misbehavior and reveal discipline.
In Chapter 6, “Independence Toolset,“ we talk more about balancing parental limits—as it relates to children’s independence. We discuss ways to develop responsibility, teach skills (such as tasks, behaviors, and values), and dozens of other ideas to prepare your child for self-sufficient adulthood.
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