it hurts me more

on the last day of school before thanksgiving break, i received a phone call from joshua's teacher. she was calling to let me know that joshua was coming home with a note from her about some poor choices he had been making at school.

without going into full detail of the choices he made, i will just say that they all revolved around him not showing self control over his actions and words which led to being disrespectful. josh has been given the gift of making other people laugh and he will take that too far. he will also use his intelligence to say something that may make others feel less intelligent. neither are good things when a teacher is trying to teach a class full of kids and this interrupts that.

as a parent, i am never happy to receive a phone call or a note from our teachers about this kind of behavior. i expect my kids to demonstrate self control and respect towards others. all of the time! when they can not do this, and if the teacher has to take time out of her day to call me, i am not too happy about it! and neither is their daddy!

with it being a long weekend, i knew he had to have a lot of restrictions. he couldn't spend the five day weekend, living it up playing video games and watching tv. so he lost a lot of his privileges and had to do a lot of extra chores and work around the house. basically, he was my personal assistant. being a holiday weekend, i didn't want him to miss out on the family things we did. so we did allow him to have some fun but we kept it in perspective. i really wanted his punishment to make him think about his choices. knowing if he kept up this behavior, he would end up in the principal's office. none of us wanted that.

in addition to the restrictions and the extra chores, i created a notebook with special assignments in it. in the notebook, he had to write out five definitions of self control. he also had to read 10 bible scriptures i found having to do with self control. about 6 of those he had to write out five times each. he had to write one out on a card and memorize. then he had to write 10 sentences using the word self control. he also had to write a creative story about his character showing self control. and he had to write a letter to me and his dad and his teacher about his poor choices.

i must say that he worked really hard on this. i think that he was able to grasp the concept of what we wanted him to learn. i hope when he is at school and out around others this lesson will come back to him and the scriptures too! i have a really hard time with being consistent in my discipline techniques, but i think this one i will continue to use. i think learning about their poor behavior and learning about what God says about it is a great technique! it can't get any better than that!

on thanksgiving night we were at our friend's house and josh really wanted to have a sleepover with one of their boys. jamil and i had no problem with it. and we were about to say yes until we remembered that he was suppose to be "punished" this weekend. so we had to say no. it was such a hard thing for me to do. really hard. i wanted to say yes so bad. i love when my kids have the opportunity to cultivate friendships, but we had to say no. josh was sooo upset. i felt bad, but i know i was making the best choice for him.

it hurts to see my kids disappointment. it hurst so have to say no. it hurts to have to take away things they like to do. it is really hard. i know i have to be consistent because the last thing i want is to raise kids who are disrespectful and out of control.

i love to hear and learn about different and creative ways to discipline. { which reminds me, has anyone read creative corrections by lisa whelchel? that is a great book. i think i may have to pull that out again for this season of parenting!} so what about you, do you have any creative or effective discipline techniques? it's all about what works for you and your kids! please share what works for you!


Robin said...

We're of course not at this stage quite yet but we have the focus on the family cds and Kevin Leman has a segment on there for a book of his. http://www.haveanewkidbyfriday.com/default.aspx Biblical, practical, effective. Check it out.

The Aspenberg Family said...

Dawn, I'm going to keep all the things in mind , thanks for sharing this! I'm sorry you had to go through this but I thought/think you guys handled it awesome! What neat ideas of ways to make him think! What an awesome witness you were to him through all of this! Hope you having a good week! We need to catch up soon!!

Melanie said...

This is a great post & one I can totally relate to. We have the self-control battle also quite often with our oldest. I love your ideas & agree that Scripture speaks to it better than anything! We also want our son to understand that he can't do it alone, that self-control is a fruit of the Spirit & he needs to ask for the help of the Holy Spirit to truly gain self-control. I like your ideas though of having them write things in a journal, I think I'm going to use that.
You are also right, it hurts the whole family when a child loses privileges...I just hate that. One evening when Jeff & I had planned to have a date-night & had lined up our 14 yo niece to babysit. Well Jack was awful that afternoon & the consequence was he had to spend the rest of the evening in his room...but I knew it would be unfair to ask our niece to enforce that, so we canceled our plans to stay home. It was no fun for us, or for the younger kids who were looking forward to playing with their cousin...we try to teach that the consequences of our actions hurt not only ourselves, but others, too. At times like that I have to try to remember Galatians 6:9.
Wow, this is a long comment (sorry!) but yes, I do love Creative Correction & refer back to it often! We are also studying Chip Ingram's Effective Parenting in a Defective World in our SS class & it is really good.
Keep up the good work! You will reap a reward if you do not give up!

Terri said...

You handled this well, I think. I am sure you left an impression that will be long remembered. I have struggled with using Bible verses in discipline. I hesitate because I don't want my kids to remember the Bible as punishment. But the Word does say it is for admonishment and reproof. And truly, you have armed your child with God's word through this experience, which will help him when he is tempted in the future. That is great! My first grade Sunday school class has several little boys who could use a lesson on self-control.... Blessings!