Step by Step eCourse Module 2

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    • #10137

      Hey everyone, I know lots of you are currently working your way through the Step by Step eCourse. Hopefully Module 1 has allowed you to get all set up to dig into the learning and schedule some appointments with yourself in your diary. Over the years we consistently have seen that those who work their way through this eCourse find that the pieces of the puzzle all come together as they progress through.

      The first unit in Module 2 has three videos; discipline without punishment, plus Parts I and II Peaceful Parenting toolkit. In Module 2, we start to really delve into the peaceful parenting tools and approaches. This module gives an overview of Peaceful Parenting including an introduction to the tools we can use.This may bring up questions or thoughts. We’d love for you to make use of the eCourse forum to share your thoughts or ask any questions your reading, watching or listening evokes for you.

      The questions don’t need to just be about the course material. If you have a current parenting challenge you want advice or guidance with, post a question in the eCourse forum, we mentors are happy to help with those.

      Module 2 – Peaceful Parenting Toolkit

    • #10930
      Victoria Maus

      I’m on Unit 4: Putting it into Action. I found this a really useful worksheet to go through. I’ve realised that what they doing is looking for the connection that we have with each other during the day, where I do want them to tell me about things and show me what they’re doing. I’ve come away from this exercise feeling very grateful that they get excited and want to share things with me, instead of feeling annoyed!

      Recurring problem or conflict

      Eleanor (9) and Phoebe (7) keep on coming up and down the stairs in the evening when they are meant to stay in their room for the hour or so before bed. Their reason is usually to ask us to come and look at something they’ve built (LEGO, wooden blocks, etc) or see something they’ve drawn or written. A couple of nights ago they’d decided to write little letters for us so they were delivering them to the living room door and running away again!

      For context, they go up and get ready for bed at around 7:30 (no issues). They have a bedtime story read to them for at least 20-30 minutes (read by Daddy) and then they have time to play for a while or watch TV.

      [The TV is actually a computer monitor with time-controlled access to Netflix/Prime. It’s a recent addition and was put into their bedroom during the first UK lockdown when we all needed our own space a little more. We have no issues with the TV but felt like I should clarify!]

      How do I feel when this happens?
      * Frustrated

      What do I need?
      * Independence

      What information would help?
      What do other families do at bedtime with similarly aged children?

      Does this remind me of my own childhood? How would my parents have handled this?
      I was not allowed to come downstairs once I had been sent up to bed. I was expected to watch TV/read until 9pm and then go straight to sleep. I would not have come out of my room unless going to the toilet, or feeling ill. If I had come downstairs I would have been told off (shouted at if repeat offence) and it’s fairly likely I’d have had something taken off me until I stopped doing it; probably the time given to watch TV/read.

      * Breathe

      How does my child feel?
      * Excited

      What does my child need?
      * Connection
      * Acceptance
      * Love

      What information does my child need?
      * What we expect from our bedtime routine
      * Why we grown ups need some time without children

      * Quality time

      How might we try to solve this?
      *Loving limit: Remind the girls our our agreement for bedtime; that they can play or watch TV before settling down for about an hour but that they are supposed to stay upstairs. Empathise that they do sometimes get excited about something they’ve drawn/built/watched/etc. but that it’s not the right time to share that. Acknowledge that we love them and are interested in what they do but that we also need time together to decompress from a day of home education.
      * Problem solve: Ask the girls what they think we should do if there is something they want to share with us during the evening. Maybe we could spend ten minutes chatting just before they get into bed? This would give them plenty of time to tell us about their game, or show us what they’ve built, etc. This would honour the connection they seek whilst respecting our boundaries.

      * Loving limits
      * “I” messages

    • #10957
      Sarah Fuller

      I want to share my response for Unit 4: Putting it all together, for feedback. This is a really big struggle for us and we are not sure how to handle it. This behavior reflection worksheet incredibly helpful and insightful. I am hoping to find some ideas on specific actions we can take ahead of time. I do notice a decrease in the behaviors when I am centered, but they do continue to be a problem.

      My 2-year-old has a hard time with keeping safe behavior during bath time. It seems largely sensory-related. She really likes water play and can have trouble with handling limits around water. Additionally, she gets overly excited in the bathtub, which results in in unsafe behaviors. She stomps excitedly, starts to spin, holds her head up while laughing, and will allow her body to go limp (for context we are on the waitlist for ASD testing). These behaviors often come up after she has shampoo in her hair, when pouring water over her hair to get the shampoo out, so we cannot just end bath in the moment. Unfortunately, our shower is wonky, so offering a shower instead of a bath is not really a good option right now. As I am thinking through this question, I feel at a loss, but I gave it a try below. I do feel like I have a bit of a plan now, but would love more guidance/specific advise.

      How do I feel? I feel scared, anxious, and overwhelmed.
      What do I need? Connection, cooperation, and emotional release
      What information would help? ???
      Does this in any way remind me of my own childhood? How would this have been
      handled when I was a kid? No, I do not recall having any similar issue. I imagine that if this was an issue, my parents would have used some form of yelling/threat to control the situation.
      Tools: Deep Breathing, self-care before bath time to make sure I am fully centered before bath.

      How might my child feel? Excited/overstimulated
      What does my child need? Connection, cooperation, a way to meet her sensory needs in a safe manner
      What information does my child need? Water/bath safety, but she is not old enough to grasp concepts of safety.
      Tools: Sensory play before bath time?

      How can we solve this?
      Tools: loving limits in the moment and planning ahead for prevention
      I think we need to plan ahead and offer her some type of sensory play before bath. If she is not soaped up at the time, we can set loving limits and end bath time when these behaviors begin to emerge. I need to focus more on centering myself before starting bath. I know my angst feeds into her behavior in this situation. Perhaps play before bath can be a good chance to center ourselves and be connected beforehand.

    • #11009

      Sarah would you like to bring this issue into one of our zoom meetings tomorrow? Are you able to make either of them? Good to hear that you’re finding the behaviour reflection worksheet helpful. Very interesting that you see the difference when you are more centered. I can well imagine how anxious you get when she gets over excited and starts to stomp or spin, going limp and all these nerve-wrecking actions! It’ll be so interesting to get the assessment done and gain more information. And tricky that you can’t just shift the hair rinsing to the shower at those times.

      Sounds very wise (in your self-care section) to focus on managing and lowering your stress to ensure that you have the capacity for bath time. I love your thoughts of allowing for sensory play before bath time, do you have an area where she can have some water play outside or even in a garage, deck, patio or garden area, do you have a water tray of some kind that she can play in with some toys? Does she enjoy playing with water based paints?

      When you shampoo and rinse her hair, do you let her hold a cloth over her face to ensure that any liquid doesn’t go into her eyes?
      Do you sometimes have a bath with her and if/when you do, do you feel more or less in control/ able to manage the situation?

      Have you stumbled across this thread with some SPD resources in it:

      • #11038
        Sarah Fuller

        Genevieve, thank you so much for your feedback. I unfortunately did not see this until after our supervision call. We have no idea how long it will be until we are able to have ASD testing. It will probably be at least several more months. There is a significant shortage in testing availability in our area. Since posting this, my dear husband bought a new shower head which is making the world of difference. While it is much better, we are still struggling with the hair washing. I am working to introduce the idea of covering her eyes, but she has not caught on yet. Hopefully once she gets the hang of it we will be in a better place with hair washing. Thank you for sharing the SPD articles also. I am so grateful for all of this information and support.

    • #11011

      Toria thank you also for sharing your process with this bedtime issue with the girls. I wonder also if you’d like to bring it in to one of our zoom meetings? Will you be joining one of them tomorrow? (maybe today by the time you see this).

      I’m happy to respond to it here if you’d prefer, and it would be great to hear from others about what works best in their homes around balancing all these important needs in the evenings, do please share.

      And I’m wondering if you’ve tuned in to listening to the Bedtime Struggles audio? It’s in the resource library and it might spur some thoughts, I would say come back to what you’ve put together here and read before/ after listening to the audio and do a bit of journalling around it as ideas often come in when we journal, and/ or then talk through with Alex.

    • #11017
      Victoria Maus

      I’ve only just seen your reply Genevieve. To be honest I think this issue has pretty well resolved itself, at least most nights. The girls are fairly happy that they can chat to us when we come up to say goodnight at 9pm (and show us what they’ve been doing) and we’ve been spending more time together with them so that now they have about an hour together upstairs after their story.

      I will definitely check out the Bedtime Struggles audio though, thank you for pointing it out 🙂

    • #11527
      Grace Koelma

      Just on the first video in Module 2, Discipline without Punishment and Genevieve is talking about a slide presentation on her screen. I can’t see those slides though, the video doesn’t show them. Is there a download to visualise what she’s reading out? Thanks 🙂

      • #11533

        Hi Grace, I’ve just been through that first video of Module 2 of the Step by Step Course and I’ve now inserted my Stress Cycle model that I talk through from 14 minutes on, which will hopefully help you to visualise what I’m describing from that point on. Up until that was largely explaining how the PP approach relies on the parent being willing, able and wise enough to know that their stress levels are not only influencing whether or not their child listens and how they respond, but is actually the most important aspect of all these daily communications. I hope that helps.

        Module 2 – Peaceful Parenting Toolkit

    • #11528

      Hi Grace ah yes I’ll pull out those slides and share them. Thank you for the suggestion!

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