I’ve written a number of times about in my articles about my young son, Nathan. He’s a little Tasmanian devil. He’s developed the ability to destroy everything I care about, but doing it with a smile on his face and an “I love you, daddy” on his lips. Children have an effect on us that we seldom take the time to acknowledge.
One of the most difficult situations to deal with in regards to young children is the noise. And I’ll totally admit that I’ve been guilty this myself, but it feels as though I’m always telling my kid to shut up! Have any of you experienced this?
It often becomes easy to forget that children are simply little people with BIG people emotions. I know for a fact that more often than not, my son feels the need to be the loudest sound in the room. At times when he’s quiet, he’ll suddenly become raucous the moment I pay attention to his mother or anything other than him
So, what does one do? Shushing your child only gets you so far. My wife works from home and for a short period, I was able to get away with telling Nathan “You need to stay quiet! Mommy’s working!” But that unfortunately no longer works and often falls on deaf ears.
Many experts agree that there are some easy ways to help quiet your child when they get too loud. First and foremost, they indicate that you should stop what you’re doing. Children are incredibly sensitive to their environment and will recognize the fact that you’re busy checking Facebook on your phone when you were supposed to be playing with them.
The next thing experts tend to agree on is to bring yourself down to your child’s height. Looming over them can be intimidating and make instruction difficult to deal with. Children will feel more connected and appreciated with parents who are able to bring themselves to their child’s level. Take a knee. It WILL make a difference.
It’s important to model the behaviour you’d like to see in your children. For example, even though you’d love to shut your kid up by placing a hand over their mouths, this is likely the worst thing you could do. Experts believe that this not only shows the child that they are incapable of quieting themselves without the strength of an external source, children live by example. This is chilling, because it teaches the child that they are free to exert their strength against younger and weaker children. This becomes especially important if the child is to become a big brother to a younger sibling and is a bad habit they can carry with them into preschool and kindergarten.
According to an illuminating article on wehavekids.com, there are a number of things that can help.
Whispering. Whispering make children curious. They want to know if something secret is going on. Whispering is likely to get their attention more than yelling.
Prepare ahead of time. When planning any outing, whether at a restaurant or any other public place, be sure to bring snacks and activities for your child to ensure that you can manage their hunger and boredom while you wait for your meal. It’s unrealistic to expect that your child will understand that waiting is necessary.
Give them a loud voice outlet. This one actually makes sense to me. I spend so much time telling Nathan to be quiet… During the morning routine, during the trip to preschool, when I pick him up from preschool and during the evenings leading up to bedtime… When does he get a chance to vent that excess energy? I think we often forget that children have the same amount of energy as we do, just in smaller container. This is why they always seem hyper and full of energy. Make sure you provide them with an outlet. Take then outside where they can be as loud as they want.
Remember that they are still children. I have the most problem with this one. I’m often guilty of losing my shit and tossing Nathan into his room as a punishment for making too much noise. The reality is that even the most disciplined child will only be able to stay quiet for so long. If you expect four straight hours of quiet time in the living room every morning, you’re in for a big surprise.
The article written by wehavekids.com can be read here: https://wehavekids.com/parenting/Help-for-Parents-Getting-Noisy-Kids-to-be-Quiet
Children learn by example. If we get angry and lose our minds every time they get noisy, they’ll not only keep getting noisy but they’ll only learn that anger is an appropriate response when dealing with others. Some of these tips may help. But ultimately, you’ll need to learn how your specific child deals with their energy and their noise. As parents, we need to adapt to these trends and teach our kids along the way. ☯