Hearing your kids bicker and fight, back and forth, can wear anyone down. When “She took my toy!” or “I’m telling!” rings down the hallways of your home, your first instinct is to bury your head. The tension that builds up due to bickering is relentless and it will certainly derail your day in an instant. If you are fed up watching your kids fight take a look at these tips and tricks that I have compiled for you. Turn bickering moments into opportunities to teach your kids how to handle difficult situations.
10 Tips and Tricks to END Sibling Rivalry
- Lay down the rules
If you have yet to lay down the rules with your kids, take a few minutes to establish the rules of your family. Explain to your kids what the rules are and why it is important for them to be followed.
- Stick to the rules
Do not bend, adjust, or change the rules. Stick to them so everyone takes them seriously. Set a good example for your kids and follow through with discipline when the rules are broken.
- Discipline with style
Every family disciplines their kids in their own unique way. The key to finding effective discipline is essential. The two discipline styles I have found to be most effective is to either take something away, such as a favorite toy or video game, or you could create a Fun Box. Write down chores on slips of paper and place them in a box. When one of your kids break a rule have them pick a chore to complete. Discipline techniques will also change as your kids get older. Time outs may work wonders for a 3 year old but it would have no effect on a 10 year old.
- Let them work it out
When your kids start to argue do not be so quick to jump in and play referee. Encourage them to use their words, take turns talking, and use indoor voices to work things out between each other. Helping them identify a solution to the disagreements they experience with their siblings will establish great problem resolving tools. Stay close by just in case you need to intervene if your kids start verbally or physically fighting with each other.
- Rewards system
Reward your kids for getting along. Good behavior should be praised and rewarded. Take an extra trip to the park or make a pit stop at the ice cream shop on your way home from school. Make sure your kids know why they are being rewarded. Have them earn that extra reward.
- Do not compare your kids
Comparing your kids to each other can cause them to feel insufficient. Instead of comparing them, point out what they excel at. Praise your kid’s good behavior to other people, point out how nice they were for helping bring in the groceries. Concentrate on the good things your kids bring to the table.
- Treat your kids fairly
It is important to not play favorites with your kids. Treat them fairly. This will help your kids create trust in a system you have created.
- Spend one on one time with each kid
Life can get hectic. Slot out a time each and every day to spend just a few minutes one on one with every one of your kids. This gives them the opportunity to get the attention they need from you.
- Teach teamwork
Instead of teaching your kids to compete with each other, try teaching them to be a team and work together. Set up relay races where the adults vs. the kids to help them work together.
- Listen to your kids
When your kids have a problem or need to share something with you, listen. Give them your undivided attention for a few minutes while they express their thoughts and feelings.
One of the most important things to remember is to keep calm while taming sibling rivalry. If we show our kids how to behave by setting good examples, they will follow in your foot-steps. Lay down the foundation now so they can have an amazing life long relationship with their siblings.
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