Friday, October 9, 2009

1-2-3 Magic!

The parenting class last night was worthwhile! We were introduced to the “1-2-3 Magic” technique developed by Dr. Thomas Phelan. In a nutshell the technique involves remaining calm and unemotional when your kids misbehave. Instead you give them simple warnings in the form of counting from one to three. If their inappropriate behavior continues to the count of three, then the child gets a timeout alone in his or her room. The recommended length of the timeout is about one minute for every year of age. And the timeout “timer” does not begin until the negative behavior has stopped, so if a seven year old throws a tantrum for 30 minutes, then the total length of the timeout will be 37 minutes.

Dr. Phelan claims that about 50% of kids will respond positively right away, after only one or two timeout experiences. The other 50% will continue to test your parental resolve, even ratcheting up their negative behavior for some period. But in the end, if you are consistent and stick with it, the child will back down.

If you’re interested in knowing more about this parenting technique, click HERE to view Dr. Phelan’s web site.