Raising young toddlers can be tough for a single father. Nothing is worse than experiencing food in the face or a spoon to the eye. Young toddlers have a tendency to throw anything from their high chairs that shouldn’t be thrown. To teach your toddler how to have some manners during meal times, here are a methods you can use.
The first method shows your toddler that inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated during meal times. This method involves ending meal times when your toddler begins throwing food. The minute your toddler throws food at your or the wall, immediately announce “Lunch time is for eating, and it is not play time.” Then, you can take away the food from your toddler. Of course, this method should not be used repeatedly and should only be used for one meal. If the toddler continues to act this way after you have used this method, then you can set a different punishment for the behavior.
Other punishments that you can use for throwing food are sending a child to his or her room. Take the child away from the scene of the dinner table. If the child is old enough, you should have the child focus on the reasons for why his or her behavior is poor manners. You should have the child write out a list of these reasons and post them on the fridge. This way, you can show the document to your child if he or she acts up again. You can show the child that he or she knows why his or her behavior is wrong and yet continues to act in that way.
Another punishment that may work for your child is taking away play time. You may have to cancel a play date in order to show a child why his or her behavior is unacceptable. This will also show that you are serious about ending the child’s poor behavior habits at the dinner table. Children will have respect for you when they see that you are serious about instilling proper dinner manners within them.
One of the major reasons that single parents fail to have an effect on the behavior of their children is because children do not take the parent seriously. The child thinks that the parent is just joking about getting him or her to stop throwing food around the kitchen. When a parent yells at the child, it provides the child with the satisfaction of getting the parent’s attention. That is all the child typically wants. A parent can avoid the trap of constantly yelling at the child and providing him or her with attention by taking action. Being proactive in taking action to curb this behavior is essential. Parents can be the most effective when they follow through on punishing children. A parent will regain confidence in his or her parenting skills when he or she is able to punish children in this manner as well.
A parent can also use this opportunity as an educational moment with a child. A single father can explain to the child that there are some people who do not have food to eat. A single father may want to show a child pictures of children in other parts of the world who do not receive proper nutrition. This may actually make a young toddler more conscious of his or her behavior at the table. This method has been proven to work in helping some young toddlers to avoid throwing food around the table.
Any parent can easily learn how to “survive the spoon.” Single fathers can use the punishment method in order to get their children to start behaving more appropriately at the dinner table. A single father may be able to once again take a child to a restaurant without fear that food will end up splattered on the walls or all over the table.