Teach Your Child about Tattling (5-8-14)

Today’s Parenting Tip:

DECIDE:  To help your child avoid tattletale behavior.

PRACTICE:    Today, play “What If” with your child about tattling.

Take turns asking whether situations are tattling or not. Examples: “What if a neighbor friend tells Josie’s mom that Josie is hitting her little brother? Would the friend be tattling?”

Or, “What if Lance runs to his babysitter to report that his sister is using bad words? Would Lance be tattling?”

Don’t make your child part of the situation. He will have an easier time answering the question, if it is not about him.

After your child responds, tell him what you think. Examples: “Josie’s mom is glad to know about the hitting because she doesn’t want to see the brother get hurt. This is not tattling.”

Or, “Lance seems to be trying to get his sister in trouble. This is unnecessary tattletale behavior.”

Also give your child a chance to give a What If situation and ask you whether it is tattling.

Go two or three rounds. More examples will help your child learn what tattling is so he can avoid that behavior.

Today’s Decide and Practice daily parenting tip was inspired by our featured picture book, PHOEBE & DIGGER.  Read the book to a child in your life each day as a reminder of what you are deciding and practicing that day.

Come back each day for another good parenting decision and how to practice it. (Each day’s activity will also be posted on the Daily Parenting Tips page for easy access.)

Read the whole story at Making Children Feel Safe and Important, Part 2.