by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish
Chapter 1: Helping Children Deal with Their Feelings
- Listen with full attention
- Acknowledge their feelings with a word – “Oh…” “Mmm . . .” “I see.”
- Give their feelings a name. (You are angry!)
- Give them their wishes in fantasy (I wish I had that right now, too)
Chapter 2: Engaging Cooperation
- Describe what you see and the problem. (The milk has spilled and is just all over the counter where it will get sticky and smelly.)
- Give information. (The dog poo collects and then smells when it’s not picked up.)
- Say it with a word. (Pajamas!)
- Talk about your feelings. (It bothers me when the door’s left open because the dogs can run away.)
- Write a note. (Leave it somewhere to remind them. Make it neutral – about the thing (like, “Love, Towel”)
Chapter 3: Alternatives to Punishment
- Point out ways to be helpful (redirect the behavior)
- Express strong disapproval – without attacking character (I don’t like this because . . .)
- State expectations.
- Show the child how to make amends
- Give a choice. (No running – you can walk or you can sit in the cart. You decide.)
- Take action. (Kid ran, then you make the decision and say that she is the one that made the decision)
- Allow the child to experience the consequences of his misbehavior (Follow through and explain why)
Chapter 4: Encouraging Autonomy
- Let children makes choices. (Grey or red pants?)
- Show respect for a child’s struggle. (A jar can be hard to open, knocking it on the counter can help.)
- Don’t ask too many questions. (Let them have their life.)
- Don’t rush to answer questions. (Let them work it out – “Why does it rain?” “Why do YOU think it rains?”
- Encourage children to use sources outside the home. (You research the guitar teachers!)
- Don’t take away hope. (Acknowledge dreams, even if impossible.)
Chapter 5: Praise
- Acknowledge achievement and give it a name. (You worked hard to memorize things, that takes perseverence!)
- Instead of eavaluating, describe!
- Describe what you see (Wow, this room is so clean, smooth floor, organized books)
- Describe what you feel (It is such a pleasure to walk into this room)
- Sum up the child’s praiseworthy behavior with a word (That’s what I call ORGANIZATION!)
- Cautions about Praise
- Make sure your praise is appropriate to your child’s age and level of ability.
- Avoid praise that hints at past weakness or failure.
- Be aware that excessive enthusiasm can interfere with a child’s desire to accomplish for herself.
- Be prepared for a lot of repetition of the same activity when you describe what the child is doing appreciatively.
Chapter 6: Freeing Children from Playing Roles
- Look for opportunities to show the child a new picture of himself or herself. (Take away “destructive” by pointing out how long a toy’s been well cared for)
- Put children in situations where they can see themselves differently. (Scatterbrain? Give them opportunities to focus on organization. Ask them to do things dextrously if they’ve previously been clumsy.)
- Let children overhear you can say something positive about them. (Brag)
- Model the behavior you’d like to see. (Verbalize choices to exhibit good behavior.)
- Be a storehouse for your child’s speical moments. (Remind them when other people diminish them that they have proofs against that.)
- When your child acts according to the old label, state your feelings and/or your expectations. (I don’t like the way you phrased that. Can you say it another way?)