Creativity expert, professor, father and former day care provider Rustin Wolfe writes a weekly MinnMoms parenting advice column that uses creative punishments to put a positive spin on negative behavior.
Here's one of his creative solutions:
CAP AND TRADE
Question: You know that scene in "E.T." where they're hiding among the stuffed animals? Sometimes, I can't even find my daughter in her bed. How can I get her to cut down a bit?
Behavior: Too many stuffed animals in bed.
Problem: Hazard: no room left for her.
Solution: Have her add rather than subtract.
Activity: Instead of asking her to remove some stuffed animals, take them all out and lay them on the floor. Then, give her a number she's allowed to put back in. Feel free to exempt her woobie if she has one. Encourage her to choose thoughtfully. Once she's made her selections, she can arrange them in her bed. Of course, she can choose different ones the next night, so she doesn't have to say a permanent farewell to those who don't make the cut.
-- Want Rustin's solution for your child's challenging behavior? Send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
-- Read the Naughty Column archive at minnmoms.com/naughtycolumn.