30 June 2010

Anya, You Have the Power

From the back files of my mind...

The set-up: Anya has just had a fight with Callum because he was being naughty and physically pestering her.

The usual answer: I force Callum to say sorry to Anya, and I force Anya to gracefully accept his apology and hug (not what she wants at all!)

Theory: Making them say sorry and hug should either (1) teach them manners and/or (2) avoid annoying each other, so they don’t have to go through the apology dance.

New approach: Afterwards, I take Anya aside and try to lay things out for her. First, I say, “Look, you know you’re like a little mother to Callum.” She looks sulky but agreeable to this idea. (Later we notice her “giving him a little mothering.”) Next I say, “So, you have the POWER.” She looks intrigued. I continue, “When he is naughty, you can tell him how to behave better. Instead of shrieking about what he did, you can say calmly, ‘Callum, that’s wrong.’ And he’ll listen to you.” Anya likes this idea, I can tell. Last, I shake my finger for emphasis, “But, you have to use your power for good and not evil.” She laughs.

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