Tag Archives: child

7 Ways to Get Your Child to Clean His Room: What Supernanny forgot to tell the Phelps

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Wondering how to get your child to clean his room? Here are a few tips Supernanny forgot, at least in this one episode.

On ABC’s Supernanny episode with the Phelps family (Season 6: Episode 3) plenty made me cringe. However, one scene stuck in my head for days.

In that scene, the mom repeatedly asked her child to clean up his toys. In a video shot of the floor, it looked as if every toy he owned covered it. Most moms can identify with that: Lego® blocks, mixed with action figures, mixed with who-knows-what. Aaack!

When the boy didn’t comply, Mom became enraged. Yelling and spanking didn’t work. Supernanny Jo’s suggestions, including the infamous Time Out (until the boy agreed to pick up his toys), plus anger management for Mom, helped some. Indeed, Mom had to handle her anger differently. (See Kathy Collard Miller for inspiration for Christian moms with anger issues.)  And I’m all for time-outs, although effectiveness varies according to personalities.

Yet critically missing from Supernanny’s advice were tips on how to prevent the problem in the first place.

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Time and Energy Limits: Do you have time to play with your child?

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In The Power of Parent-Child Play, I focus on how barriers to play can be broken into four different categories: time and energy limits, uncertainty about behavior or activities, lack of motivation, and family stress.

As we start this discussion, consider time and energy barriers. Do any of the following get in your way at the present time?  Which have presented real struggles for  you in the past?

  • Hectic work schedules and demands (working at home or outside employment)
  • Caring for your home and your family’s basic needs
  • High-need children (including colicky babies, or children with special needs)
  • A new baby
  • A busy toddler or preschooler
  • Volunteer activities
  • Illness or injury in extended family
  • Child related activities

Many of these busy activities are good and/or necessary. But do any of them interfere in some way with parent-child play and the intimacy it can bring?

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