Give ’em Enough Rope …

(A lame justification for playing a Clash song. But lame justifications are all that are needed)

I have to admit. I kinda like yelling at my kids. I know it’s counter productive. I know it creates a toxic atmosphere at home. I know that my children never respond well to it. But I can’t help it. It’s like some kind of quick-fix parenting. Sometimes I’m tired. Sometimes I’m just lazy. But sometimes it just feels good to explode and give them a good rollicking. I’ve even found myself yelling at my kids to stop yelling. And I always regret it after. I’m an idiot.

Discipline has become the cause célèbre of arguments in our house. It’s hard – really hard. Between a stubborn six and a terrible two year old, maintaining discipline (and how to maintain it) is something I struggle with.  As a teacher, I hear a lot about student autonomy as a way to improve motivation. By allowing students to be more involved with decision making in the classroom, teachers can enjoy higher levels of motivation … in theory.

On the way home from a gruelling day with unmotivated and undisciplined students, I thought about whether I could better involve my kids in decision making and establishing rules at home.

I sat down with my son and discussed what he thought were important house rules, and why such rules were important. I then asked him if he wanted to make some signs which explain the rules to everyone. He agreed, drew some pictures and wrote the rules underneath.

IMG_5542

Now, if any rules are broken, I can just point to the relevant sign and give him a Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson-esque raised eyebrow, and he has to relent. What can he do? He wrote the rules! Tee hee!

Give ’em enough rope.

 

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