Reply Hey Mom! Learn more about the Gerber Life Insurance Grow-Up Plan!
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 09-09-2010, 12:04 PM   #1
NorahsMom's Avatar
NorahsMom
Registered Users
seller
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 1,769
How to motivate a 3-year-old?

I am at a complete loss with my dd. Nothing seems to motivate her. For example, a few weeks ago I was finally fed up with the constant messiness of the playroom and her utter refusal to clean it up (I always help her because her attention span is zero and the mess is overwhelming for her but she still refuses, even when I make it into a game). I finally told her that I was going to pick up every toy on the floor and put it in a box in my closet. She didn't care. So I started loading up the box and she just watched. I assumed she didn't understand what I was doing. So I asked her and she explained it perfectly, that I was taking her toys away and she wouldn't be able to play with them anymore. She just didn't care.

I eventually gave them back the other day because I was the one suffering. Without toys, she was just getting into all sorts of other things and causing trouble.

Anyway, once I realized this motivation issue, I linked it to our potty training issues, which have been ongoing for several months. In the beginning, she was the one who wanted to learn to use the potty and she responded very well to stickers. After about a week, that wore off so we switched to chocolate chips, which worked for about a week as well. Long story short, we've been through various reinforcers, all of which work for a little while and then she just doesn't care anymore and she starts wetting her pants all over the place.

The only thing that seems to work is time out. When she won't clean up her messes, I put her in time out without a time limit--she can get up whenever she's ready to cooperate. But I don't like the idea of time out as a one-size-fits-all consequence. Unfortunately, logical consequences, like "if you can't care for your toys properly then you can't play with your toys" don't seem to be working.

And obviously we can't use time out to punish her when she wets her pants.

Basically, I just don't know how to get this kid to do anything. If she doesn't want to do it, she just won't.

Advertisement

__________________
Adrienne, wife and lover to Andrew Mama to Simon (2/21/06 - 2/26/06), Norah (6/28/07), Ezra (5/11/10), and Phoebe (6/14/12).
NorahsMom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2010, 12:51 PM   #2
smashncakes's Avatar
smashncakes
Registered Users
Formerly: bren***this
seller
seller
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: southern Illinois
Posts: 5,220
My Mood:
Re: How to motivate a 3-year-old?

I feel you on this one--DS is 4.5 and is the same way--drives.me.crazy. He just doesn't care about anything. He'll say he really wants a certain toy and we'll set up a reward chart and he's lost interest within a few hours. Bribery doesn't work. Yelling, whispering, timeouts, losing toys, being sent to his room, losing movie/tv/computer privileges...NOTHING works with him. With potty training, we just gave up and stopped pressuring him about it, made him clean it up (with help if needed) and he eventually just stopped fighting and did it. He knew HOW to do it, he just didn't want to because I wanted him to--he would tell me he didn't have to pee, then stand there and pee his pants and smirk at me the entire time, then say "oh, look. I peed" then walk off. When I stopped pushing it and started acting like I didn't care, the game wasn't fun for him anymore. Our biggest issue right now is trying to get him to get out of our bed and sleep in his own room.
__________________
Brenna, all around AP'ing, trying to be crunchier, stay at home mama to Ash, Bryn, and our little Rebel Journey, wife to Nate
Come swag with me!! I've earned $75 in FREE Amazon gift cards just by searching
smashncakes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2010, 01:05 PM   #3
NorahsMom's Avatar
NorahsMom
Registered Users
seller
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 1,769
Re: How to motivate a 3-year-old?

We've tried "not caring" about potty messes (I won't call them accidents because they aren't that--she knows how to use the potty). My problem is that we rent and I can't have someone constantly peeing on the carpet. I've thought about making her clean it up,but what do I do when she refuses, as with everything else?
__________________
Adrienne, wife and lover to Andrew Mama to Simon (2/21/06 - 2/26/06), Norah (6/28/07), Ezra (5/11/10), and Phoebe (6/14/12).
NorahsMom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2010, 01:25 PM   #4
RJmomof4's Avatar
RJmomof4
Registered Users
Formerly: RJmomof2
seller
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Fairport, NY
Posts: 2,945
My Mood:
Re: How to motivate a 3-year-old?

<~~~ SAME BOAT :"-(

I have a 4 year old and a 3 year old and I have tried to take away toys and they dont care I even lied and said Id throw them out or give them to a child that would appreciate them. Doesnt work.

My 4 year old is very good with the potty BUT my 3 year old who has been potty trained for a year and a half will pee on the floor like once or twice a day and my rugs smell sooo bad and I cant afford a friggen rug shampooer atm. SO I dont know man I hope to get some advice here as well.
__________________
♥Rachael♥
RJmomof4 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Copyright 2005 - 2014 Escalate Media. All Rights Reserved.