Tuesday, May 25, 2010

rewarding positive behaviour?

it's totally true.
the good kids don't get (barely any) attention.
example (i remembered this today):

a couple of years ago i was browsing in a posh toy store with my 2yo and 4yo and also in the store was a mama with her son who was playing at a table that had Thomas the Tank Engine tracks set up on it.
i hear the mama working up to leaving the shop:
...ok, a couple more minutes cupcake then we need to go...(nervous smile)
(five minutes later)...ok, sweetie pie, one more minute then we need to go...(tip toe, tip toe)
(another 5 mintues)...come on then, let's go...*SCREEAAMM*..
...no, no, we need to use our *inside* voices...*ROAR, BELLOW, SCREEAAAM*..
..oh, come on dumpling, be a good boy, i'll buy you a [insert your heart's desire here]...
(by now the shop assistant has also joined in trying to help prise the kid's sticky fists off of the train table while trying to avoid kicks and screams)
to cut a long (and painful) story short, this scene continued for another 10 mintues or so until eventually the shop assistant promised to give the kid a lolly pop if he left the store when his mother asked him to.
the kid grabs the lolly pop and prepares to leave the store with his mother.

and you shoulda seen the ceremony!
i'm talking marching band, streamers, back-flipping gymnasts...the works!!
...oh! you're such a good boy! wow, good boy for coming when mummy asked you! (hok?! that's me choking out loud from the back of the store!) ....ad nauseum....

i picked my jaw up off floor and said to the kids: ...come on guys, lets go...
we leave.

where's the lolly-pop for my kids? (who *did* actually leave the store when asked!)
where's the marching band? and streamers? and back-flipping gymnasts?

sheesh. you kids need to act up a bit more. might get some perks in life...


  1. tell me about it! I get the heebie jeebies when I see parents like that, I mean, okay I only have a 7month old so I can't really talk, but I have no intention of ever becoming such a parent...

  2. Maybe this is the teacher in me talkin', but BOY does that grind my gears! I wish she'd offered it to YOUR kids and excluded the other as a motivator instead of her chosen path. ARGH!

  3. In my experience that is the way life is... the ones that bellow and wail get what they want. Whereas the ones who do as they are told and get on with the job get diddly squat! I am one of those that get on with the job and I pat myself on the back because no one else is going to...

    My son is four and he has said a few times (even before I have time to say good boy) 'you must be proud of me doing that nicely' and I tell him 'I sure am' with a big smile.

  4. I find that kids do what you expect them to do. That mother said one more minute, then stayed for 10 more. If she had left when she'd said she might have avoided some of the scene. If she'd expected him to come when asked instead of allowing him to stay, he would have. Grow a backbone! Your child won't hate you forever, won't cry forever, and you're stronger and faster. They want to be with you and won't let themselves be left behind.
    I love the juxtaposition of your kids to the other one! I'm sure you know all of this already!
    (Mother of a 1 yo and 3 yo. Glad to be out of the terrible two's!)


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