Sunday, May 2, 2010
Asking instead of telling invites children to develop their own thinking.
1) “What do you need to do to be ready for school on time?”
2) “Oops! What do you need to do to clean up the spilled milk?”
3) “How can you and your brother solve this problem?”
4) “What do you need to take if you don’t want to be cold outside?
5) “What is your plan for getting your homework done?”
I am the crowned king of "Telling" instead of "Asking". My tendency is to tell my kids what happened, what caused it to happen, how they should feel and what they should do about it. So all I need to do this week is the opposite of what I normally would do. This is basically the George Costanza of tool cards. For one week I will resist my instincts and do the opposite. When I am tempted to tell my children what to do, I will ask them instead.
For those of you unfamiliar with the George Costanza system...you can watch the following YouTube clip.
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My almost 5 year old gets distracted very easily. I will ask him what do you need to do next,or what are you working on? Then he yells and gets upset mom you don't need to tell me I know what to do. What do you do when you ask questions and they are off task and then proceed to blow up? I have tried to discuss and have him come up with solutions but he just doesn't come up with any so we end up doing it my way.
I like the idea of this. I don't know how successful it will be with my 6 year old, but I think it's worth a try!
Anonymous...my son was the same way. He could spend 10 minutes distracted by the carpet fibers. I think it is important for us to remember that we are not striving for perfection. We can try asking instead of telling and if that doesn't work and there are time pressures, we can tell them what needs to be done and try again next time.
Thanks I have been setting a timer the past couple of days. I know am a perfectionist and need to let go.
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