Despite our best efforts, inappropriate behaviors are going to happen. When they do, our response can be IDEAL!
I – Immediate
Delayed correction doesn’t change behavior. To effectively change behavior, we need to catch it in the moment before it has a chance to escalate. If we catch it before it spirals out of control we can stop the wrong behavior and ask for a redo. (Try again the right way).
D – Direct
We want to go directly to the child, engaging as many senses as possible. When we try to correct from across the room we engage less senses and are less likely to stop or correct the behavior. Go to the child, use gentle eye contact (visual) give healthy touch if possible (hand on shoulder or ask to hold hands) (tactile) then begin to make the correction (auditory).
E – Efficient
Only use as much correction/redirection as needed. Try to avoid overreaction and over correction. This is much easier if behavior is caught immediately before escalation
A – Action based
Researchers believe it takes 400 verbal repetitions to create a new connection in the brain, but only about 20 repetitions if actively involved. Using a “re-do” or a “try it again” gives an active involvement in changing the behavior.
L – Leveled at the behavior not the child
Correction should be simply about the incorrect behavior not aimed at the child’s character or self-esteem. When finished with correction our child should feel more precious, more loved and more connected to you.