Whether you’re going on vacation or doing a stay-cation, kids can get very dysregulated, whiny, and out-of-control, especially when there is a lack of structure.
What makes it even more upsetting is when parents make elaborate plans so that their child should have an enjoyable time, but the child complains and is ungrateful.
Here are a few tips:
- Make a daily visual schedule so that the child knows what to expect each day. Follow the schedule throughout the day.
- Teach (don’t preach!) your child the Red and Green of “Showing Appreciation vs. Complaining.” Practice both the red and green, and praise/reward your child for showing appreciation.
3.Use Advance Notice to prepare kids for special activities. This way, they’ll know what to expect and how to behave for the duration of the special activity. For example, “We’re going snowtubing today. We’ll get dressed warmly and drive approximately 2 hours to get to the snowtubing place. In the car, we’ll keep our hands to ourselves and use kind words with our siblings. I have a snack and drink for everyone and we’ll eat neatly so that we don’t make a mess in the car. We’ll take turns choosing music during the drive and we’ll remember that even if we don’t like some of the songs that someone else chooses, that’s ok. Everyone will get to choose a song they like, too. Then…”
Do you want more ideas for creating visual schedules? Not sure how to teach the Reds and Greens? Watch the video clips using the links above. Each video is super clear, and gives you great ideas that you can implement immediately.
Have a warm week!