After responding to the woman who teaches Primary at church with my initial, general tips on how to use self-government principles in the classroom she wrote me back the following:
Some 10 years ago, my four-year-old son was standing on the back porchone afternoon,talkingto his sister.They weretrying to make each other laugh by doing funny things.This is a common game with the two of them.All of the sudden I heard a loud BANG on thewindow located right nextto the porch.I ran to the door and saw my four year old standing there holding a garden shovel, smiling and laughing with his sister.
Years ago I was participating in a sewing activity at my church. Many women had gathered at the church with their sewing machines. At this activity, there was a four-year-old girl that kept touching the knobs on the sewing machines. Her mother tried to keep her in control and punished her by putting her into time-out when she touched the machines. She didn’t stop trying to touch the machines —even though this girl was punished each time .
We got home late. My four year old fell asleep on the way home. After waking up, he came in to go potty, get dressed and go to bed. From the bathroom I heard crying. He was in there for a long time. He was in the bathroom trying to clean up a mess that he had made in his pants.It was very stressful and disturbing to him to find a dirty pants problem. This stress along with his extreme tiredness made him very sad and he just couldn’t help crying.
My son happened to lose his hat in the Air and Space Museum in DC. We didn’t find out that he had lost the NEW hat until we had been kicked out of the museum at closing time. It took me 30 minutes to find a guard that would break the rules and let me in to retrieve the hat. Luckily my daughter said that she knew exactly where he put it. After successfully tracking down the hat, at dinner time, in flaming heat. My husband seemed a little upset about the matter. He looked put out.
Nicholeen, I have a 9-year old boy. He is a typical 9-year old boy, I believe, in that his mind (and mouth) is constantly going 200 miles an hour. His siblings are always waiting for him to stop talking so they can get a word in edgewise. He is full of ideas and loves to take things apart. We are having a problem with bedtime. He goes to bed just fine, but once there, he won’t go to sleep. We let him read for about 15-30 minutes once he’s in bed, then we come down and turn the lights out (for him and his younger brother who is 4).