Negative Attention is Better than None!
A child craves adult attention, approval, and guidance. It's painful to be ignored -- experience indifference.
When parents respond to kids only when they misbehave, a powerful message is sent: the way to get my attention is by acting out. Whoa, then kids act ugly for attention! Even yelling and punishment is, to a child, better than being ignored. I guarantee you, kids repeat the behaviors that they get attention for.
Daily discipline must include responding to the good things kids do - when they act right, cooperate, show patience, are considerate, speak in a soft voice, walk instead of run, don't slam the door, chew with their mouth closed, pick up toys, etc. Send kids the message; you get attention for appropriate behaviors.
When do you give your kids attention? Is it when they misbehave? That's what they'll repeat. Comment on the good they do, and that's what they'll repeat.
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