Saturday, December 30, 2006

The pain of re-structuring

For Christmas I got a book that I have been wanting to gain tips from over a year. Its called On Becoming Toddlerwise. I followed the babywise formula and it worked great for Jaxon. Now as he builds his personality, and we have been battling wills, I need all the help I can get. I just read a chapter called Structure your day. Its based on the premise that the mom of a toddler is exhausted because their day has no structure and therefore chaos ensues. Since I was identifying with the tired talk, I thought I would try it out. Yesterday was our first "planned" day. It went great. Jaxon seemed to take to it well. The only part we struggled with was what the book calls "blanket or room time." That is basically when the toddler plays alone in his room or sits on a blanket and plays for up to 30 minutes. Its meant to teach self-entertainment. Jaxon is ok playing alone but he didn't want to stay alone for too long. Today is day 2. The morning went well, as far as I could tell, until it became my turn to choose the activity. I chose puzzles. He went with it for a few minutes but then he was done. One thing this book suggests is not letting your child just roam from toy to toy to toy, instead teach them how to focus on something for longer periods of time. So I kept having to return him to the puzzles and that didn't go over too well. This focus idea is new to him. He is struggling with it. After time was up, he finally gave in and finished the puzzles. Then came blanket or room time and that is where we are now. He is not liking this. I'm starting him out on 15 minutes and going to work up to 30 from there. He is making a fuss in the other room but much like getting rid of his pacifier, I have to tell myself, this too shall pass and the behavior on the other end of this training will be well worth the struggle.

All that to say, there is a lot of spiritual application in teaching my child good behavior and morals. Its painful, its a struggle, and a lot of times I don't like the process of it all. But like I said, the outcome is good and long term. Such are the matters of eternal significance.

2 comments:

TulipGirl said...

I have found ideas about structure and routine from Montessori to be really helpful. Barbara Curtis has some great articles on Montessori on her website.
http://mommylife.net/
http://www.mommylife.net/archives/montessori/

We used ideas from Todderwise with our oldest two, and then later ditched it. We found that the 'wise books led to more parent/child antagonism than was good for our family.

Anonymous said...

The mommylife.net/ blog is great! I had studied Montessori years ago, along with other ways that children learn and grow. I had forgotten all the great things about that philosphy. This is a wonderful blogsite/information on raising children and guiding learning.

I wish that I had had some of Barbara's books to refer to when my kids were small. Sometimes, as adults, we set goals on how many books to read per month for enjoyment, information, or growth in various areas. This is a good thing. But, as parents, when raising our children, how many books per month do we read to find the best, old and new techniques, etc. to find what will work best for our children and family? I had only Dr. Spock's book and refered to it constantly-not much more out there at that time! In today's world, it's not about adopting just one philosphy or book to refer to, as the only means for guiding and raising our children, but what works for each child. Barbara's early blog about moving the dishes to a lower level and pans higher-I'm not sure about, or the idea of teaching a two year old to use a knife! I'd have to read more about that!

Anyway, moms today should have bookshelves full of books on raising children, child development milestones, etc. to read, reread, and refer to as their children grow. And, of course, add the great blogsites such as Barbara's to find out what other moms are doing. I enjoyed reading through Barbara's blogs and the comments that other moms had to say. Thanks tulipgirl for the website address!

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