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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>Another Napping Issue...Sorry
Hunni Bee 05:38 PM 09-20-2011
It seems like every third question on the board lately is about naptime! None of them match my issue, though...

I have a 3-year-old, who has some behavior problems. I don't think there's any organic reason to why he misbehaves...he just simply refuses to do what he is asked until he is made to. No consequences, no taking away of privileges, no talking to Mom has helped.

Anyway, my problem is not getting him to sleep. He plays on his cot for about 5 minutes and then falls dead asleep for at least 2 hours every day.

Its the behavior right before naptime. When we come in from outside for lunch, he goes into orbit. Its one thing after another...he runs up the stairs and knocks everyone over, he yells, he climbs under the table, he plays in the sink, he's gross with his food, he takes his clothing off, he jumps on other people's mats....just anything he can think of.

Its not a huge deal, but its just a chore daily to keep him from getting everyone else out of wack right before nap. He usually ends up eating by himself after excessive bathroom talk at the table, or being gross with the food...which I do not tolerate and he knows it, yet he does it almost everyday.

What I can do to minimize the "fun-ness' of misbehaving at naptime? He only does it because it's fun to him, I know. He doesn't get a rise out of me, but the other kids always react (saying ewwww! if he says/does something gross, etc.)

blessedmess8 08:12 AM 09-21-2011
I feel bad that no one has answered you and I've been trying to think of solutions for you. I guess the only thing that comes to mind is maybe to be proactive? Like, really do some movement activities outside before lunch and pay a lot of attention to him? Maybe have him help you with the meal? Maybe do lunch/nap earlier? It sounds like maybe he is really tired. Sounds off, I know, but I've known kids who get really worked up when they are tired.
Blackcat31 08:40 AM 09-21-2011
Is there anyway he can eat by himself BEFORE he begins the naughty talk. Maybe make him 'earn' his way back to the table with everyone else. If he can go 5 days without the bathroom talk then he can sit with everyone. As soon as he starts with the potty mouth, he leaves the community table and starts doing his 5 days of eating alone again. Rinse and repeat.

Same goes for coming in and getting ready for lunch. Is there any way he can go in ahead of everyone else so he has no audience? It seems that he has figured out that being naughty gets him attention (negative, but he cannot decipher between positive or negative attention at his age yet) and he is giving an Emmy winning show for everyone and loving every second of it.

I don't know if that suggestion would work or not but from what you have described, he has definitely figure out he has an audience and the only solution is to remove his audience so has no "fans" to perform for.....kwim? and build from there.
Lilbutterflie 08:41 AM 09-21-2011
You could try doing lunch earlier, and then more relaxing or low key activities leading up to nap. Such as eat, time for cleanup (by cleanup I mean they clean up the mess they've made during the morning hours), then story time, then nap. This was my routine when I had all preschoolers (I have babies now with the exception of my own 3 yr old). He wouldn't have too much of a chance to misbehave during cleanup and story time. Then off to nap he goes!

I also use to give them incentives to encourage a good cleanup time, too. Like setting the timer and if they all beat the timer they get a sticker, little sugar free candy, or if they've beat it all week they might get a treasure from the treasure chest. If they still are misbehaving during cleanup, I find a little one who IS doing a good job and offer praise praise praise. That usually gets all of the others on the cleanup bandwagon! During story time, if they were talking or misbehaving, they had to miss story time and go sit on their nap mats and wait for us to join them.

Oh, I just had another idea for lunch time, too. If I found excessive silliness or potty talk during lunchtime, I used to call for the "Quiet Game". There are two variations, the first is just to say "One, Two, Three... ssshhhhh." and whoever talks after that is "out". The last one left wins. The second variation is to start it the same way with "One, Two, Three, sssshhh" and then pick the one who you think is being the most quiet. Then they get to start again, and that child gets to pick who they think is the quietest. Anyway, they started loving the quiet game so much that they voluntarily played every lunch time. It's a good way to redirect any silliness or craziness that happens during lunch!
tbutler 08:51 AM 09-21-2011
At this point, I would start to ignore his behavior as well as teach the other children to ignore him as well. As long as he isn't harming himself or the other children and you can actually see him and what he's doing. Once no one is watching the "show", eventually he'll stop. Also, you can start to praise the children that are behaving correctly. "I like how Mandy is sitting nicely and eating her lunch" or "It really makes me happy when we all sit nicely to wait our turn for the bathroom". Let me know if try any of these things and if they help.
laundrymom 09:01 AM 09-21-2011
He would be my best pal. Right beside me every day. No freedom.
Hunni Bee 05:54 PM 09-21-2011
Thanks so much, ladies.

I really wish I could have have him do everything earlier, but there's just me and 9 or 10 kids. My variation of this is to have him eat alone, clean up/potty and go straight to nap from there. Then his audience is cut off for the most part. We clean up before we go outside, so in the kind of low-key (boring) mood before nap, he's the most interesting thing and he knows it.

His peak times of misbehaving is when he sees I'm busy or occupied with someone/something else. Circle time, art/project time, lunch and getting ready for nap...are all times when I'm least likely to stop and deal with his behavior immediately, thus he acts up.

I think I'll do what you suggested, Blackcat. Maybe while everyone else reads, etc...he can get ready for lunch, go to his private table and start eating, then everyone else can go. Let you know how it works after a few days...thanks!!
Hunni Bee 09:54 PM 10-01-2011

For a few days, right when he came in from outside, I had him immediately wash hands and go to his private table. He started to cry and beg to go to the other table, and I just said "You're eating in here today". He ate his lunch, he had book time at his table while everyone else had book time and went potty. After everyone finished, he went potty and to bed.

The Lunchtime Show and bad table manners have decreased to almost none, and he's been allowed back at the community lunch. The first episode will land him back at his own table.

The bad news is someone else has filled his spot, except instead of silly antics...we have screaming tantrums!! Same consequences, except he doesn't take it very well .

Thanks ladies.
Tags:behavior problems, misbehave, nap issues, obeying, stubborn child
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