My four year old was unusually naughty the other day. I cannot remember the last time that I have had to tell him off for something and as it happens this was not just a telling off case, it was a ‘face the wall’ case. Now, there is a lack of free wall space chez nous and traditionally the kids face the door, not the wall. My son had only ever experienced this himself once or twice before and he was much younger then. So his knowledge of facing the wall comes from watching his siblings do it.
‘That’s it! Go and face the wall’
He toddles off quickly, tears beginning to fall down his face and he faces the door.
I get on with what I am doing, as does everyone else, when a little voice says somewhat boldly though teary:
‘Where is the wall? …because I am facing the door and you said wall and I don’t want to get in trouble….’
‘You are fine where you are, just stay there’
‘But it’s a door and you said wall mummy’
‘It’s okay darling’
He then proceeds to ignore me, convinced I do not understand the urgency of his predicament and shouts out to his big brother:
‘T! Where is the wall? I can’t find the wall, this is a door!!!’
I was tempted to let him off just for bringing a smile to my face but remembered advice from one of the many parenting classes I have attended; ‘be consistent and follow through’
So I did. He served his time facing the door all the while worried that this very action may get him into more trouble.
100% person. 100% little person. May take things literally; a door is not a wall!