Well, positive reinforcement for little kid worked yesterday but the magic seems to have worn off already.
Yesterday morning I told him if he got 5 "strikes" he wasn't allowed to ride his Jeep around the neighborhood. He struggled with it all day long, but managed to only get 3 strikes. I made a big deal out of his good behavior, called daddy with the good news, told him how much fun he was when he was a good boy, all kinds of ass kissing. He had the Jeep ride, everyone was happy. That night though, he wiped toothpaste in Big Kid's hair and I told him he just used one of tomorrow's strikes, and that now he had only 4 strikes for the whole day or he wasn't riding the Jeep. He spit on the floor. 2nd strike and go straight to bed. Everyone was sad.
Before breakfast this morning, he lost his remaining 3 strikes for the day.
I try not to take them either, he usually gets 2-3 chances to straighten up before the strike which is pretty ridiculous, because that means he gets like 15 chances at bad behavior a day if you combine the strikes and the "serious warnings". That's not acceptable.
He was a good boy most of the morning, so I told him I would give him one more try to be a good enough boy to ride the Jeep tonight. Then he snuck out to the garage (I thought he was playing with the magnetic responsibility chart in the laundry room) and covered his arms and face in a red stamp he found. I was even going to try to let this slide, but he refused to come out of the garage, resulting in a strike.
He's not riding the Jeep tonight and now he's pissed. I also think he's realizing that once you've lost the opportunity, that you're free for the rest of the day to act how you please. That's not true, but it does mean I'm forced back into ineffective time-outs and taking stuff away and being mean all day long.
Do they have those wilderness camps for 3-year-olds?? Toddler boot camp? Preschool boarding school? If not, they should. Strait Jackets should be standard issue and perfectly acceptable.
I'm hoping the red stamp body art comes off easily because we have Big Kid's school conference today. It's a "student led" conference. Yeah. I love their liberal, laid back, modern approach to things but I try having a "student led" conference every day on the walk home from the bus stop and it is full of big fat fail. My student has led me to believe that they play all day long and that the only new thing he's learned this year is that he wants to be a farmer when he grows up. A freaking farmer.
I have nothing against farmers, but Big Kid as a farmer? Come on. He hates dirt and germs and aspires to live in a swanky studio apartment. He's happy when it rains and they can't go outside for recess because it's too hot out there and sand gets in his shoes. The sight of potatoes makes him gag. I'm not seeing a farming career in his future.
It's also early dismissal day AGAIN today meaning they get out at 11:45 and I think that's just absurd. Collect all these half days and make them full days off. Half days just feel like more effort than they're worth.
Other than that, I really love his school. I just hope they're learning something.