During an “Empowering Family” session this weekend, a parent shared a tip with and I want to share the tip with you. She has a 17 month-old. During those moments when her daughter might be using her feet to
kick the back of the seat, the mom has found that she can say, “You can dance with your feet. You can walk with your feet. You can move with your feet. You can run with your feet” and her daughter is often so intrigued by what she is saying and describing that the kicking behavior will stop. Kids need to know WHAT to
DO so by telling them, the behaviors often decrease. Here are some more examples: Your child is hitting, you can say, “Hands go down.” Your child is running, you can say, “Walk.” Your child is yelling, you can say, “Mouth is closed.” If your child is jumping on the bed, you can say, “Feet go on the floor.” Think of the action you want your child to do instead and try telling them. It could make a big difference in how long the behavior continues.
~Marena Mitchell, Speech-Language Pathologist
Daily tips, activities, and suggestions on how to naturally embed speech, language, play, fine motor, gross motor, and cognitive skills into your child's day, often using the materials already found in your home environment.
Marena Mitchell is a speech-language pathologist
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