Friday, February 11, 2011

Bringin' Back Sittin' Time

I know I've talked about this before, but it still amazes me every time! 

I was recently rudely awakened to the fact that I was slacking in the training of Lillian and Rhodes.  Specifically, training them to sit still when I tell them to.  I'm a true believer that you can't expect a behavior from a child out in public if it is not something that you PRACTICE and expect at HOME! 

When we were at Olivia's birthday blessing at school followed soon by her baptism up at the church, Lillian thought it was just A okay to wander around up and down the aisles of the theater.  I have to admit I was slightly embarrassed that I couldn't quite get her under the control I wanted.  She wasn't making a spectacle or throwing a fit, she was just resisting me (and testing me) more that I wanted.  Robert had Rhodes and he was just a typical 17 month old wanting to run around. 

Anyways, the next day it was BACK TO SIT TIMES!  Oh yeah!

I pulled out the trusty ole blankets, spread some books and toys and set the timer.  Lillian knew exactly what was going on.  She knows about sit times...I had just slacked off with her in being consistent!  But this was Rhodes' first time.  He sat great for the first several minutes.  Then decided to wander off to get another toy.  One swift swat to the bottom, quickly returning him to the blanket, making eye contact with him and explaining 'why' we aren't getting off the blanket - we were back on track.  

And y'all, he got it.  He cried a little bit, but he wasn't.going.anywhere.

It always amazed me how much that actually DO understand!

Then immediately after the timer goes off, I go went over to him and praised him for sitting still with lots of hugs, kisses and at-a-boys!

Sooooo, this past Wednesday I got a chance to practice in public what we'd been working on at home.  My main focus was Lillian because she is definitely old enough to hear, understand, and obey. 

We went into school for Landon's birthday blessing.  I pulled up a little chair next to me and said, "Lillian, we are going to do a sit time here just like we do at home.  You are going to stay in this chair like a big girl until this is over. Yes ma'am?"   "Yes ma'am."

And y'all, she DID it!  The whole time.  That little bottom didn't come off that chair. 

I didn't sit Rhodes in a chair this time.  I believe he needs some more training at home before I expect it out in public.  BUT, he did settle a little better than the time before and I didn't have to get up and chase him or walk around with him. 

Progress people!  Such a huge payoff for such a simple task!

Do y'all have any little training tips or techniques that you like???


  1. I am SO glad you posted this!! Sandner and I have really struggled with ML in this department - we literally almost dread taking her to church because she WILL NOT be still. Not only that, but she thinks it's playtime and she can just run around and be loud the whole time. I never even thought about trying to work on it at home. She's a flower girl in a wedding in April and I JUST said to Sandner this morning "Think about how bad she is in church now, and apply it to a wedding ceremony at in FRONT of everyone we know." I'm going to try out your sitting time trick! THanks!

  2. When did you start the other kids? Like what age do you try and start a sit time?

  3. @tarheelmom

    I would sat you could start as early as 9 months. But I think I started with Olivia around 1 or so! Lillian was like 13 monthe when she 'understood'!

  4. I haven't heard of sit time before, but it makes SO MUCH sense. I am TOTALLY going to do this. Can you please keep posting parenting tips? Or just emailing them to me? Because I'll totally need them :)

  5. You are amazing and I love these parenting tips....we are about to start with all of this stuff so I love reading about it. We need to get together and catch up now that Caroline is older (9 months - can you believe it?!) and would love to play with your kiddos.

    Hope you have a great weekend!

  6. Thanks! I just LOVE this idea. I wanted to tell a few parents about it myself at a Y basketball game the other day. There were kids running all around in front of others and so forth! That drives me crazy when kids are allowed to run and a parent just sits there going, "Sit down, please", but doesn't enforce or the kid throws a fit.

  7. This is an EXCELLENT idea! Can't wait to try it. I alos love your rug. :)

  8. Our little girl is 2 and we need all the parenting tips we can get! : ) Thanks for sharing!!

  9. How long do you set the timer for? What do you say as your "why"? It looks like they're allowed books...anything else?

    I'm totally intrigued by this. It makes sense to practice sitting still at home.


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