The 1,2,3 Magic program is very straight forward but it took watching the video before I really understood how to do it correctly, even though I had previously read the book. I eventually realized that it isn’t a process of just counting your kid’s behavior, it is actually a system designed to warn your child of a consequence about to happen. This is just one more thing we tried that was semi-effective and not super expensive to implement so I am happy to share our experiences about it.
So if my child is having a hard time being polite to me the conversation may go like this:
Her: What’s for dinner?
Her: I hate salad, whhhhy do I have to eat that, I wannnt chicken nuggets.
Me: That’s 1
Her: buuuuuuuuut you NEVER let me choose dinner.
Me: That’s 2.
Her: I hate you, you always make me eat stuff I don’t want.
Me: Time-out 5 minutes in your room.
If she doesn’t go, I let her know if I need to help her get to her room it will be 5 minutes plus an additional 5 minutes for ignoring my first request. 95% of the time my daughter leaves, goes to her room and comes out 5 minutes later with a big smile and acting like nothing has happened. She calms down, and we all eat dinner.
Sounds really simplistic and it actually is for my girl but it is absolutely not as effective with my son. The fact that it works so well most of the time with my daughter keeps me using it. Now, after many months I usually only have to get to 1, or raise my finger in the sign of a 1 and she will actually stop what she is doing, mostly whining. For my son, I always get to the time-out, and I almost always have to help him to his room and invariably it takes longer than 10 minutes. There are those times though when it actually works for him too, he is just not as consistent. Having an effective method of working with my daughter at least takes the pressure off some of the chaos in the house, and for that, in my opinion, this can be a very effective tool to use.