Kids are going to fight and argue. So what do we do when the fighting is in full force? Here is a step-by-step script to help.
Review the limit.
This is the time to remind your children what the rules are in the house. This is a sample of what you could say when you come upon the situation.
“The rule in our house is that we don’t hit. Are you hitting? Let’s sit down and talk about it. Take a deep breath, one at a time, and tell me what is happening and how you feel.”
Ask the right questions.
Now it’s time to make sure that your children feel heard and listened to. It gives your children the opportunity to reflect so they understand how they got in the situation in the first place. It also lets them hear the other side of the story, learn to control their emotions, and develop empathy. This is a really important step. The questions you ask would be the following…
“What happened”? (Listen to both sides. Alternate between kids, allowing each child a chance to explain first, each new altercation.)
“How did YOU feel when ______ happened”?
“How do you think YOUR SIBLING felt”?
“What can you do to help your sibling feel better”? (The last two questions help develop empathy.)
The first few times you run through this it will take a little longer. Don’t get discouraged. It won’t take long for you to have it down. Knowing what to say in the situation is half the battle. It is empowering for you as a parent as well as for your kids. It won’t take very long and your kids will argue less and start solving their own disagreements when they do arise.
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