Saturday, August 7, 2010

Calm down time

We have several wonderful libraries close to us. Each one has their own toddler story time and, during the school year, Michael and Spencer go on Tuesday when I'm at work. Spencer likes to pick books out of the big baskets after story time. Some of his favorites are the "time" books by Elizabeth Verdick. We get at least one of her books every week. I can't even estimate how many different times in the last year we have read these books.

Here's a good example of how these books are written (from Listening Time):
Sit criss cross applesauce,
hands on knees please.
Put away the wiggles.
Put away the giggles.
Listening works better when your body is calm and still.

(and yes. That is from memory. I can recite the whole book)
I sometimes feel like Spencer believes we are crazy when we tell him some of the stuff we tell him- like he has to take a nap or he has to pick up his toys when he dumps them all over the living room. It's like we're telling him to stuff green lizards into his ears. It's really helpful to have a book with the same messages so he can learn, in his own 2-year-old way, that every kid has to do the same things we make him do.

Spencer and Michael brought home a new, never before seen "time" book this week. It could not have come at a more opportune time.
I think all of my readers know that Spencer was a DIFFICULT newborn and he was a pretty intense infant. He has grown into a pretty great kid though. He's still stubborn and he can be shy, but luckily he can be bargained with. Lately he has been FREAKING OUT and having the hugest meltdowns about lots of things. They're not even temper tantrums. They are meltdowns. For example, my mom recently gave him a bar of soap with a little soap frog in it. The bar broke in half in the tub a few nights ago and Spencer absolutely lost it. He was sobbing and screaming and he could barely breath. It took at least 5 minutes to calm him down. The same thing happened when he dropped a little bit of his food on the floor and Ginger ate it.

Anyway. We are going to be implementing a calm down time procedure. It will be different than time out. Time outs happen on his bed. I'm going to have him help me pick a new place for calm down and then we'll put some items there (books, stuffed animal, etc) that can help him CALM DOWN. Then maybe, just maybe, he won't grow up to star in a reality show (ahem: Jersey Shore) and go around punching people in the face and getting arrested because he never learned the fine art of CALM THE HELL DOWN.

1 comment:

chelsea said...

The fine art of CALM THE HELL DOWN.

You. Crack. Me. Up.