Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Busting the Bickering

I know should have posted this two weeks ago, or even a week ago, but my brain was so overloaded I couldn't think. Brandon's principal actually played an excerpt of the Hallelujah Chorus at the end of the day on the last day before the break. While it was funny and (very accurately!) conveyed the feeling of the school staff, I think parents probably heard the Psycho EH-EH-EH music in their heads.

I love my children. Dearly. But having them in the house, bored, and underfoot for two weeks is extremely grating on my nerves. The wanted to watch TV all day. When I nixed that and told them to play, it worked.

For precisely 3.2 seconds. Then the bickering would start.
"You don't do it like that!"
"I don't want to play that!"
"No, you can't have that!"

Here's a typical conversation from the holidays at my house:

"That's mine!"
"No it's not. It's mine!"

Then everybody gets sent to their room with the warning that they can come out on pain of death. Of course, the death threat didn't stop them from coming out every minute and a half asking if they could come out, but you know, those 90-second intervals were bliss.

Since locking the children in their rooms indefinitely isn't exactly a child-friendly option, I thought I'd ask those more experienced than me before Spring Break rolls around.

How do you stop your kids from bickering nonstop?

1 comment:

Pocahontis said...

Oh, my goodness ... that's a loaded question! As a mother of 7 children (3 of those step-kids who are with us part-time) I, too, dread Spring Break. You know what I dread even more? SUMMER!!! It's a cuss word to me!You can always pray the weather will be decent and you'll be able to send them outside and lock the doors (j/k!) I try to have a few things set up for the week to keep them motivated to behave. $1 movie theaters are great. The bribe of an ice cream cone seems to work ... even with my older ones. Maybe entice them with a trip to a park. I think it helps for the kids to have something to look forward to. For example, "If you all find something to do and keep quiet today, we'll go to the park this evening and afterwards get an ice cream cone. If you're good for 3 days, we'll all go see a movie."Also, every afternoon we have quiet/naptime after lunch. The younger ones go down for a nap ... the older ones have quiet time. The older ones have to find a book to read, a movie to watch, or something to keep them quietly occupied while the younger ones sleep. This also gives me a chance to unwind (which, believe me, is essential.) If they aren't quiet, I start taking privileges away such as computer time, TV time or radio. Also if the older ones don't stay quiet during quiet time, I make them take a nap the following day. Hey, I didn't earn the term "meany" for being a nice guy!!! :o)I hope that helps. There's no surefire way to keep them from arguing, but these might be some ideas to keep them motivated to at least try a little harder not to!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...