Need advice about one of my daycare kids...

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by fuzzykitten99, Oct 12, 2006.

  1. fuzzykitten99
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    fuzzykitten99 Senior Member

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    I was gonna email Said1 only, but I thought I would like more variety in responses-more than one opinion. Warning, this is long.

    Ok, Grace is the 4yo sister of Paul. I watch them both, and they get along fairly well with Nathan. Grace goes to preschool 2x a week for a few hours in the morning, then comes here on the bus.

    But I feel like I am constantly telling Grace to stop doing this, and stop doing that etc. I know that a 4yo has no common sense or anything, so I know it is mostly her age. But I don't have to do this with Nathan OR Paul. Both are younger-Paul is 2, and Nathan is 3.

    Example:
    Earlier today Nathan was playing with a ribbon he found. She wanted to play with it, too. I told her that Nathan was playing with it first, but she could play with it after he is done or she could just ask him. She sat for about 2 seconds before she went and tried to gently take it from him WHILE asking. He said no, ran and she chased him, tackled him, grabbed it and ran. He started crying. I asked her what happened, even though I already knew-but she didn't know I did. She said Nathan wouldn't give her the ribbon. I asked how she got it (again, I already knew) and she said she didn't know. I told her that I saw her take it from Nathan, so she needed to give it back because she didn't ask first before taking it. I told her she knows how to ask, and that she needs to wait for a yes or no, and if it is a yes, she needs to wait for it to be handed to her. If it is a no, then that doesn't mean take it anyway, and just because she asks, doesn't mean she'll get a yes every time. I told her if she took a toy from Paul or Nathan like that again, she would be in the 'time-out/thinking chair'. I asked if she understood, and she said yes. What happens not even 5 minutes later, she does it again. So, in time out she went. She bawls and says she wants to call her mom. I tell her she can, but mom isn't going to say anything different. We call mom, and like I said-she told her the same thing.

    Then there's the whole thing of trying to get Nathan in trouble so she can play with what he's playing with. There are 2 trikes to ride on in the backyard, and Paul is usually on one, and Nathan on the other. Grace doesn't really have an interest in one until Nathan gets on it. I have seen her push Nathan and even taunt him, so that he retaliates and she yells "Nathan hit/pushed me!" because she knows that will get him a time-out, which of course frees up the trike. Nathan doesn't hit for no reason, he has to be provoked. I know it still doesn't make it ok, but I know it isn't something he starts. I was believing her straight out when I wasn't witnessing the whole thing, but then I noticed the pattern of her taking over whatever toy he had when he was on time-out.

    Another time she had a string of play beads and Nathan liked them, and asked what they were. She told him, and he indicated he wanted to see them. She said no, he kinda got a hurt look on his face, but he went on playing with his hotwheels with Paul. She dangled the thing in front of him, when he went to reach for it, she snatched it away. She did it again, but this time Nathan was too quick. She ran to me and started screaming that Nathan took her beads from her. I asked her if she teased him with it, and she said no, then I told her I saw the whole thing, and that what she did was wrong plus the lying. Next time would be a time-out. She did it again, and it is a timeout she got.

    Then I have told her at least 3-4 times a day, every day since day one, to stop poking at Ben's face, to leave him be when he's napping, to quit stopping his swing and holding it in place because it can burn the motor out, etc.

    She asks me every 5 minutes during nap/quiet time if it is time to play/get up yet. Being as she's older and doesn't really take naps, she can play with dolls, draw/color, or read during this time. But of course that only keeps her occupied for about 5 minutes at a time. I tell her that I will say when it is time, and to stop asking, because my answer will be the same, and to go sit down and read or whatever. She'll go, but 5 minutes later she's back "is it time to get up yet?" :bang3: I tell her we do the same thing every day, and I tell her the same thing, and she needs to stop asking, because my answer will not change. She isn't allowed to play with dolls or color until Paul falls asleep because then he will want to, but he falls asleep w/in 10 minutes of laying him down.

    When I am making lunch, and using my griddle or other high-heated item, she seems to space out that the gate up means do not enter the kitchen. She'll open it (she figured out how the 3rd day here) and walk in "is lunch ready yet?". I tell her no, and to leave the kitchen because she knows she's not allowed in the kitchen when I have the gate up. It basically goes just like the nap/quiet time issue-back 5 minutes later asking the same question.

    Again, I know she's only 4, and I have been very patient. I haven't yelled, but I have elevated my voice a little when she pokes at Ben or is playing with something she's not supposed to. I am just getting tired of the whole thing and need ideas on what to do. I don't want her to be miserable and unhappy and complain to mom that she always seems to be doing something wrong, but if she wouldn't do some of these things, I wouldn't have to say anything. It almost seems like it is getting worse. I try to do fun things with all of them together and individually, and a few times we would do girl things while the boys played outside. But her attention span is so short, by the time I finish setting up whatever it is we will do, she wants to do something else.

    She knows that they are not allowed to go out and play until Nathan goes to school because I don't want him getting dirty before he goes. Yet she comes and asks anyway, Nathan hears it and wants to go out, then throws a fit when I tell him no. Not a fun thing to go through every day or every other day before he goes to school.

    I have never met a kid like her in all my years of babysitting my siblings, cousins, and neighbors. It seems she only has something against Nathan, and never does anything to Paul, at least not yet or that I have seen.
     
  2. Said1
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    Said1 VIP Member

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    I had one little guy who used to frustrate me to no end. Explaining ANYTHING to him was like an episode of 'Who's on first'. The memory game helped him quite a bit, even though we started with 12 cards and worked our way up to the full pack, then he went on to other consentration games. He was not quite 4 when he started with me.

    I had another little girl who serious developmental problems (would eat salt off the road in the winter after being told not too 1000000x and agreeing that it was indeed, yucky etc, etc) and here parents were too cheap to take her for testing ($60). And so on.

    Children also act out in strange ways when their in a new environment. Children who seem to adjust quickly might start peeing their pants after 3-4 weeks OR start having tantrums seemingly out of no where. And that happened with me often. I know it's driving you crazy, but be patient and consistent, she'll soon figure out what's acceptable and what isn't. She could be acting the way she is because she's stressed? If you try to change behavior too quickly you may find yourself embroiled in a major power struggle. :laugh: She's testing you, she's unsure etc, etc. I always found that telling them about my experiences with babysitters and how I felt when my mother left me there helped them find a way to voice their feelings. It was helpful when there were other children to join in the conversation, but that's not always possible.

    Also, keep in mind that children know when they're not exactly your favorite, this can cause them to act out in negative ways in order to get your attention or this is normal at home too. I had one little girl that ALWAYS got on my nerves and fought with me no matter what 'technique' I tried. Good luck! :laugh:

    I should also add I had the same problem with one child and Amanda. This little guy was my shadow for quite awhile. He went where I went (accept for the bathroom), which was worse than a time out. He wanted my attention, and he got it. It didn't take long until he was promising to be good and he was. But still, it could be worse, ALOT worse. :laugh:
     
  3. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    Hang her.

    Seriously, though, the only thing that I could see that looked out of place was that you allowed Grace to call her mom while she's at daycare. That totally takes away from your authority. If it's at all possible, I'd find a way to end that - sooner rather than later.

    Otherwise, I don't know what to say, except that I hope she likes the time-out corner.
     
  4. Mr. P
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    Mr. P Senior Member

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    Do what everyone does now days, get her on Ritalin!
    Hey she's 4, it's time!
     
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  5. fuzzykitten99
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    fuzzykitten99 Senior Member

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    i don't want her to think that she can't talk to mom when she wants, but mom backs me up on the time-outs and discipline.

    i don't let her call right away, as i try to get her refocused on something else to avoid it. but today she wouldn't budge.

    Said1, I thought this might be because I might be favoring Nathan unintentionally, but he gets the same discipline as she does, and the same treatment when they are here. Tim has the late shift at work, so he is here until 10:30am and sees the same things I do, and he said he does notice that I give each kid the same treatment as far as their behavior, so I know i am not favoring.

    is there something that I could do to help her remember certain things, like stop asking me every 5 minutes at nap time, or asking to go outside before nathan goes to school?
     
  6. Said1
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    Said1 VIP Member

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    She still knows your his mommy and Nathan gets to stay with his mommy. I came to the conclusion with many who acted out that they felt I was reason they were no long at home with their mother or away from a different caregiver that they were used to. They really thought all the toys were Amanda's and I think they resented that. I only had trouble with 2 acting overly aggressive towards Amanda, the rest acted out with me. Aside from keeping one of them with me at all times until I could trust him I also explained to both them infront of their parents that if they continued to act like that, they couldn't come to my house anymore.

    Again, I would say this is nervousness and/or attention seeking. I used to say things like "you can only ask me one more question today so the next one better be important' or "I already told you the answer". If they asked again I would say "what did I just say 2 seconds ago?' Most of the time they would remember! Another one that worked was "don't bug me unless someone needs a doctor, fireman etc, etc'. When they came back in I'd say "do you need me to call 911? Does someone need stiches?" They'd say no and leave the room. They begin to judge what's urgent and what isn't "Amanda opened her diaper and there's poo on the floor'. :laugh:

    Another things that helps their short term memory is asking THEM questions ie "what did you have for breakfast, where's your shoes, what's mommies favorite treat, what's that book about? etc, etc'. Do this as often as possible for long as they can stand it, it really works.
     
  7. fuzzykitten99
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    fuzzykitten99 Senior Member

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    i thought about saying this stuff to her, but i thought it sounded like i was being mean. I will definitely try these techniques though--it will probably just take time for her to get used to it. I just don't want her to dread coming here, because I really do like her-she's super cute when she's being good. I think that because she's the big sister to Paul, she's got the bossy streak.

    what is really weird is it started just in the last 2 weeks as far as trying to get nathan in trouble. The other stuff has been since day one (9/12).
     
  8. The ClayTaurus
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    The ClayTaurus Senior Member

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    That would be funnier if it wasn't so true :(
     
  9. Said1
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    Said1 VIP Member

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    You can be curt and nice at the same time. You'll figure it out as you go. You can even make a game out of it or use some type of timer if you want - something that dings. :D

    It's funny, 2 weeks seems to be a crucial time for them meaning odd behaviors tend to pop up around the 2 week mark. At least it's something to expect in the future.
     

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