I mentioned a while ago that we were trying 1-2-3 Magic with the Monster. It’s having its up and downs.
I think the majority of the problems we’re having are due to two different factors:
- He’s not always inclined to pay attention to the warnings
- We’re not necessarily applying it consistently
Now, I’ll be honest – I didn’t come into using the 1-2-3 Magic system enthusiastically. I’m from the school that does believe in trying to treat kids as semi-responsible (though not quite like little adults), and I don’t really know that the whole ‘time out’ thing works so well with younger children who don’t quite grasp the concept of being made to sit somewhere, or be exiled somewhere, for periods of time to learn a lesson. But, I did agree to actually commit to doing it, and I’m doing it.
Having not heard so much from other parents of children with ASDs about success/failure with the system, though, this was obviously an experiment. (I’m not calling this a review, but… maybe down the road if I have nothing else to really write about.)
We sometimes get days like yesterday, trying to do his homework – he gets fixated on something (in this case, a song) and it pulls him constantly off track. When we caution him that we need to change gears, we’re finding that he’s too obsessed with the song to cleanly transition to the next homework activity. This results in his being sent into time-out after the requisite three warnings. When he comes out of time-out, everything seems alright, until he’s sitting behind his homework and then the obsession returns. So we get into this bad cycle of trying to get him to do his assignments, getting into warnings, and then he’s back upstairs for four minutes before we try again.
On the other hand, as I said to the wife yesterday, we need to be consistent. It was her idea for us to be switching over to 1-2-3 Magic… and she’s not abiding by the rules. She’s arguing with him, yelling at him, negotiating… and it’s undermining the fact that of the two of us, I’m the only one using the system. It’s led to him getting a caution, and immediately running to Mommy who isn’t going to necessarily follow through on the fact that he’s already at 1 or 2. It’s something we both have to work on (consistency) and it’s obviously going to be an effort.
Today’s a new day, and hopefully, his homework won’t involve a song that he can fixate on…