Are Group Punishments OK? How About Group Consequences?

Dear Kid Whisperer,

I am the parent of a fifth grade student. His teacher and I are having a disagreement and I was wondering what you thought on the matter. One method that she uses to control her class is to punish the entire class if one or two kids act out. For instance, two kids apparently were arguing with her and giving her a hard time, so she made everyone put their heads down and then kept everyone in from recess. I told her that my son should not have to suffer because other kids are messing around. What do you think? -Yvette, Cincinnati, Ohio

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How to Get Kids to Solve Their Own Problems

Dear Kid Whisperer,
I am the mother of four kids: two boys and two girls. I don’t know what is going on, but for the last month or so, they have been testing my patience by becoming really helpless and needy. Three of the four have become less mature this summer. They can’t do anything for themselves. I am tired of doing things for them. If I refuse, they whine and I end up doing whatever it is for them. My boys keep wanting me to settle their constant disagreements. I reached my limit last night when my eight year old suddenly lost the ability to wash her own hair. I need help. -Molly S.

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How to Start Your Love and Logic(R) Year

Dear Kid Whisperer,

Think back to when you were a first grade teacher……what are your best Love and Logic tips when beginning the school year with this age group? Thanks! -Natalie

Hi Natalie. Thanks for the timely question. As you know, this is a crazy time of year for teachers, especially for those of us who are switching classrooms and grade levels! I will now have to think waaaaay back to when I was a first grade teacher- all of three months ago. 🙂

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Yeah but…

The following was posted on Facebook as a response to my post “How to Neutralize Arguing”. It eloquently expresses the feelings that many parents have when reading parenting advice in column and website form. The post’s author has graciously allowed me to reproduce her post here. It also appears as a comment for the aforementioned post.

The problem for me with an article like that is that it makes me feel like a failure when it doesn’t work for me. I have used these steps for the past 4 years or so, and they actually created more of a brat problem.

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How to Neutralize Arguing

Dear Kid Whisperer,

I have a seven year old daughter. I love her very much but she is driving me crazy. Any time things don’t go exactly her way, she argues with me and asks why things aren’t exactly the way she wants them to be. I feel like I spend a majority of our time together arguing with her. We used to have fun together and now it seems like we are at each other’s throats all of the time. Is there a way that I can stop the arguing so that I can have my life back? –Annette

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