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Why I never manage behavior by saying, “I’m going to count to three…”

Date: August 22nd, 2013
By: Polly Bath

Watch this video [1:14] to learn why threatening to count to three does NOT work as a behavior management tool.

When I’m in Walmart I often hear a parent say, “Don’t touch that. Now I mean it! I’m going to count to three. ONE, TWO…”

Well, as a behavior consultant, whenever I hear that, I have to sit on my hands! Because, think about it, if a child knows that she has until three, why the heck would she stop at one or two?

Counting to three as a behavior management tool is akin to setting your clock ahead 10 minutes. When the alarm goes off, you know you really don’t have to get up. It’s the same thing with counting to three; kids figure it out PRETTY quickly.

Here’s my advice. Say it. Mean it. Do it. And then follow through.

As always, follow through with dignity and respect for both you and the child.
Click on my video above for more.