My four-year-old daughter is driving us crazy! She is generally well behaved, and we do not have complaints from our childcare provider. She is normally very sweet and sensitive but when she doesn’t want to do something, she WON’T do it. Every weekend the kids have to tidy the play room and their shared bedroom (our girls are six and four). We let our four-year-old choose wich one she wanted to clean. She choose the bedroom. We told her she couldn’t come out until it was done. She didn’t finish it for NINE hours. She would just play! We told her she couldn’t go outside and play or go for a walk. She just wouldn’t do it. Finally, after numerous pleas, threats and bribe attempts she finished and came down for supper. I had rented a movie for her to watch after supper and would she eat it? She sat at the table for over TWO hours, by this time it was 9:50 at night, I told her to go to bed and she will be eating her leftovers for breakfast. She is a sweet girl and it breaks my heart, I look forward to spending my home time with my kids but this is ruining any time we have together! She’s not malicious in her actions, she just will not do it. Her father and I are furious and frustrated and are starting to fight with each other over it. Please Help.
Thank goodness your four-year-old is generally well behaved, sweet and pleasant. Your chances of success are quite good.
I would suggest you and your husband devise ways to guarantee success instead of hour-long battles.
Since she is not hostile, you can use this. Don’t put her in the bedroom to clean it by herself. She gets distracted and plays. Tell her you are going to have her clean the room and you will help. Work right with her to do it. She sweeps, you hold the dustpan. You help her picking up stuff. In that way you can prompt her, have her do her job and not get into a battle. Make it fun. When she is about to stop cleaning to play, you can move her along.
The same with supper. Set a reasonable length of time for supper. Encourage her. Remove the meal when time is up. She cannot have any snacks until breakfast.