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Thread: Help! 2yr with a little attitude *a little long*

  1. #1
    morgan78 Guest

    Unhappy Help! 2yr with a little attitude *a little long*

    Ok so Alex is generally a well behaved 2yr and tantrums only happen when he is tired but.............
    He is refusing to tidy up his toys at the end of the day

    I only ask him to do this once a day and that is before DP comes home so that the house is tidy & Alex can go out and play with dad before dinner etc. Initially np 2.30pm would rock around and i would give him a 5 min warning and then he would tidy up cause he wanted to watch the ABC from 3pm and he would be given a star for his chart for being good. Then he decided that he wouldn't do it so he was told no TV unless he cleaned up so he would , then he decided he didn't care if TV was out, so then i tried the tack of Daddy doesn't want to come home to a messy house and Mummy is tidying up too (which i was), worked for a while then didn't care. Yesterday was not going to do it and told me i could throw his toys in the bin (courtesy of Step Grandfather IDIOT OF A MAN). I told him that wasn't going to happen but i would take his toys away from him - he cleaned up.
    Today nothing worked, i ended up putting him in his old cot with nothing - not even a pillow - packed all his toys up and put them away - he watched me doing it and no reaction at all.
    When i got him back up he just looked around the house, kinda shrugged his shoulders and just started running around playing some game by himself.
    WHAT DO I DO - he only has to put them back into drawers/boxes in the lounge area so its not a huge task .



  2. #2

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    I have on an occasion or 100 taken my 3yr old by the hand and gently but firmly led her to each toy that needed to be picked up. We'd pick it up together and then take it to wear it 'lives'. Yes it's a long process but my thought process is that I am going to teach her that tidying up is a non-negotiable and the other non-negotiable is that she is going to be part of the tidying up, through tears and everything (we also began the cleaning up process/routine in her first year so its not a new thing to her, she's just being a toddler )
    Last edited by Charlyfrog; March 11th, 2008 at 08:36 PM.

  3. #3
    RobynG Guest

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    I say relax it sounds like your doing a great job at teaching him to clean up. He is probably just trying to test the boundry and find out how serious you are about it. I'm just starting to get into the habit of teaching my DS to clean up after he is finished playing. Not easy. How old was yours when you started?

  4. #4
    morgan78 Guest

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    RobynG - I started getting him to help with tidying up his toys around 12 months so its not like this is new to him.

    I know its just being a toddler, but he is point blank refusing even being led to each one and told to pick it up isn't working. kinda frustrated with it but i know if i dont enforce this he thinks hes "won" and i believe if he can make the mess he can clean it up as well.

  5. #5
    paradise lost Guest

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    If it were me i'd follow through on the threat. Tomorrow you tell him if mummy has to tidy up then he won't get to play with them the next day. If he won't tidy up you put them all in a binliner and shove it in your room and wait and see how long he "doesn't care" when he's got NO toys all day. I would also avoid getting into a discussion about it. Tell him to tidy up. Tell him if he doesn't you will do it and the toys will be gone for a day. If he still doesn't then do as you said you would, don't re-threaten, it lets them know you're reluctant to follow through. Keep the toys away for a day no matter WHAT and the next day put them back and don't mention it.

    When he DOES tody them up, even though he's been doing it for a year, make a massive fuss about it and make sure you tell DH when he gets in, while DS can hear, and have DH ham it up about how great he is too. If he doesn't do it just take the toys away, don't mention it or talk about it. That way negative behaviour begets no results.

    It is hard, my DD is 2 in 2 weeks and she is constantly pushing the limits too. Today she refused to get in the buggy and as a result she had to walk all the way too and from the pool (about 2.5k). About 700m in she turned to me with her arms out "up mumma" and i said "No, if you won't get in the buggy you have to walk" and walk she did. Yes, it took about a YEAR to get home again, with her throwing wobblies every few yards and me saying "if you have energy to stamp your feet and yell, you have energy to walk, come on." but we made it and even if she's not more cooperative tomorrow, you know what, she had a 90minute nap and was falling asleep during her bedtime story - more peace for mummy!

    Hang in there, it's a testing time!

    Bx
    Last edited by paradise lost; March 27th, 2008 at 11:14 PM.

  6. #6
    morgan78 Guest

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    Hoobley - thats what i was thinking of doing - the toys are currently stuffed in the spare room and i was thinking of only giving them back one at a time as reward for good behaviour!

  7. #7
    paradise lost Guest

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    Good on you for following through! I know how hard it is when you think of how them being disciplined will affect your day too (like the possibility of me having to carry DD home, which i would have if she'd genuinely not been able to make it herself).

    I'm not sure i'd give them back for good behaviour, in case it confuses the issue, kwim? Like is it about generally being naughty or not putting your toys away? Will he know they got taken away because he didn't tidy them, and if he does will it make sense that he has to be good to get them back? I think i'd just keep it really simple - don't tidy toys = don't get toys tomorrow. No complicating rules or factors, just that.

    Not sure i'd mix it up at this stage, though you COULD implement a rule that anything he tidies up he gets tomorrow, so if he only puts one toy and one teddy away that's all there is tomorrow. That way how much effort he puts in DIRECTLY affects how many toys he has. Also did you tell him today that you would take them away for a day? If you told him and then you do it that teaches "mummy means what she says" but if you didn't warn him it might teach "mummy can be unpredictable"...?

    Bx

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    I think it is a big task for a 2 year old! They learn by imitation and I think it is a bit much to expect a 2yr old to be responsible and clean up his toys. He does not understand cause/effect and actions and consequences. So taking his toys away the next day or even a few hours later is not going to 'teach' him anything- he won't even know why he doesn't have his toys anymore or why mummy has put them somewhere and he is in his cot. His actions (not reacting, shrugging shoulders, not caring) is proof of this. If he was 4 and wouldn't help, that would be different, but he is 2!! You are punishing him for something that he doesn't know is wrong. (If not putting toys away is considered 'wrong'!).

  9. #9

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    I think I might have to disagree with that one Deidre I come from the angle that train now and reap the rewards later I think we tend to not give little ones enough credit! I think it is completely possible for a 2yr old to be trained in the concepts of cause and effect and imo it is a necessary thing to avoid a bigger, potentially more frustrating training ground in the future. Why not mould them now when they are a tad more pliable if that makes sense and then just deal with the normal growing up stages of toddler life as they come, knowing full well that a solid foundation has already been installed??

    In this instance I think it might be more useful to overlook whether the putting of toys away is right or wrong and consider that it is another training moment for a child to learn routine, obedience, tidyness and respect for toys and instructions. Again, why not take the opportunity now rather than having to retrain unwanted habits in the years to come?

    Anywhos, just my opinion.....

  10. #10
    morgan78 Guest

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    I was going to say something very similar charlyfrog
    I believe if he is capable of opening drawers/boxes etc and pulling everything out and making the mess then he is able to put it back - with guidance.
    I am thinking that this is more a boundary pushing issue more than anything as it is only in the last couple of weeks we have had problems and also he has been playing with the same toys over & over so boredom is probably kicking in a bit.
    I have removed the *offending* toys and yesterday he played with toys from his room that haven't seen the light of day for ages and np with tidying up.
    But a huge thank you to everyone for their input it has all been appreciated.

  11. #11

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    2 yr olds know... thats why they are pushing the limits in the first place.

    I have a 3 yr old & 5 yr old & they are made to pick up 10 toys each. They make a game of counting them as they go. Maybe you could try something like that.
    Ask him if he would like to play a counting game with you when its time to pack up. You pick up 5 & he picks up 5 counting as you go. Make it fun to tidy up.

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