Wednesday, March 25, 2009

I Can Do it Myself

Recently my hubby and I have found ourselves almost daily in a battle of wits with our 2 1/2 year old. Star is very bright and also VERY determined. When she decides something, then it's final. She has been trying to do a lot more on her own recently, which is fine except when she really isn't able to do it on her own, or so we think. Also she is not quite able to communicate to us exactly what she wants or what the problem is. This has led to a lot of frustration, tears, acting out and time outs. Frankly this is not what I want my house filled with. It can be easy to say, "well, that's the terrible two's", but I don't want to accept that. There has to be a better way to bring peace and joy to this house. Then I saw this video on another blog I've been reading and it made me think. As parents it is our responsibility to teach and train our children and not just in faith but in how to live their lives. This is something that should start from birth, so why do I find myself waiting for some magic age to start instructing Star in different tasks and allowing her to do more for herself whether she can do it to full completion on her own or not.
I had a chance to test this all out today. We have been potty training for over a month now. Everything was going great until a week ago. Suddenly Star didn't want to go on the potty any more and we couldn't figure out why. After watching this video ,last night and watching my daughters behavior today I determined that the problem was that she didn't want any help, but wasn't sure how to do it on her own. Now, while we are not a Montessori home, occasionally I come across different things that will work well in my home. I believe that this is one of those instances, so I tested my theory. While I was nursing Butterbean, I noticed that Star probably had to go. Instead of interrupting Butterbean like I usually do, I instructed Star to go into the bathroom and turn the light on by moving the step stool. I then walked her through the entire process by calling from the couch. Amazingly, she did it, well...almost. Once she had flushed she was so excited at what she had done she came running naked out into the living room yelling "I peed in the potty!". Ahh, the simple joys of toddlerhood. After a little help we got redressed and hands washed and I sat down to do some serious thinking. Is there more in this house that Star really wants to do, is capable of doing and is frustrated with us because we won't allow it? Hmmm, I have to think a little more and post again with what I come up with.

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