Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Redo

I am a lover of the parenting technique the redo.  I'm not sure where I ever heard it to begin with, but I have since read about in Charlotte Mason's Original Works.  Miss Mason talks extensively in her books about habit formation (which I am certain I will continue to post about).  In regards to habits she says,
"The mother who takes pains to endow her children with good habits secures for herself smooth and easy days; while she who lets their habits take care of themselves has a weary life of endless friction with the children." Home Education, Volume 1, page 136.
I think redos are the perfect way to help our children get into the habit of good behavior and good work effort.  What is a redo?  A redo is when a child does something incorrectly and you ask them to redo it the right way.  For example, if a child talks back to me I ask him to redo it and talk correctly to me.  If a child doesn't wipe off the table to his/her ability we will say, "please redo the table."  If a child gets angry and hits his brother I say, "That's not appropriate.  Please redo the situation and deal with it appropriately.  Would you like some suggestions on how you can redo it appropriately?"

Redos can be done for any poor behavior, any sloppy house work, any sloppy math assignment, etc.  I especially hammer in on the whining.  If they whine when I ask them to do some something I tell them I want them to redo that.  So I'll say again, "Leader I need you to change the laundry."  Then instead of whining Leader says, "Yes, Mom."  (Actually Leader loves doing the laundry).

We do redos in our house ALL day long.  In the six plus months we have implemented them the behavior in our house has DRASTICALLY improved.  Where has the redo been my whole parenting life?

There have also been times as parents where we have also said, "I am going to redo that.  I didn't say that right."  We have had whole conversations where the parent and the child have redone it. I think our kids respect us more when we admit and work on our faults too.

Q: What if your child won't do a redo?
A: In the beginning we had one particular child that refused or would go mute.  We gave them one opportunity to redo the situation.  If they wouldn't redo it we sent them to their room (or the corner).  They had to stay there until they would redo it.  (This would also imply that there were no toys in their room.  So if there are toys perhaps telling them they can only lie on their bed or you can send them to the corner).  I haven't had a problem with a redo since the very beginning.  They didn't like getting sent to their room and they quickly decided that it was easier to just redo it right away and get it over with. 

Q: My child doesn't understand how to redo it?
A: Sometimes we either have a short discussion and offer suggestions on how to redo it and then we role play the situation again.  Or I may role play the situation for them to begin with and then they model me and redo it themselves.

Q: Do you do redos in front of other people?
A: Sometimes.  It depends on who they are.  If they are close family members or friends we do.  Usually I'll take them to the side and quickly discuss what went wrong in the situation.  Our children respond very well to redos and are more than willing to correct their behavior now.

Q: Aren't there times when you just let a poor behavior go because it's inconvenient and you don't want to ride them all day.
A: No.  My job is to teach them all the time, not just when I'm well rested and in a good mood.  The redo is never done angrily or disrespectfully so the child doesn't feel like they are being "ridden."  Also in real life there is no time during the day when poor behavior should be allowed.  Just because we or our children are tired or hungry doesn't mean we have a license to be ill behaved.

I love redos and they have changed my parenting life for the good.  I wish I had known about them years ago.  I hope they can be a blessing that you can adapt to your life.


crazy4boys said...

I love re-dos too! Sometimes I forget to use them, but when I do they are very effective. I have had children do over 30 re-dos before they choose to get it right. I often have them do some of my work since they wasted so much of my time.

The Lazy Organizer said...

I don't know how long you have been reading my blog but I posted about them last year. We call it Try Again. My children can either choose to try again or they can go to time out. They always try again.

Like you, I do it myself too. If I raise my voice or say something I immediately (or later) regret I say, "I shouldn't have said that. What I should have said was..."

It really does help us get back on track quickly and learn good habits of communication. I love it!

The Lazy Organizer said...

I'm wondering where you got the idea of re-do in CM. I was recently reading where she says you don't let your children go back and fix a lesson that they did wrong. If it's wrong, it stays wrong. You just teach them to do it right the next time.

I'm still pondering it. What did you think about it?

Debra said...

Love this idea! We really need it in our home. Thanks for sharing.

Being A Mother Who Knows said...

Lazy- I know what you are saying. There are some conflicting things. CM never says 'redo' of course, but some of her thoughts I read and said, "yeah, that sounds like our redo." Here are some of the examples that I "translated" for me to be redo, but you might not agress with them?

II-The Children Have No Self-Compeling Power section. pg. 98-100 Book 1

Stages in the Fromation of a Habit and The Dangerous Stage sections. Pages 122-24, Book 1.

"The child should be daily confirming a habit of obedience by the unbroken repetition of acts of obedience...the mother will insist from the first on an obedience which is prompt, cheerful and lasting..." page 163 Book 1.

I hope that helps. : )

The Lazy Organizer said...

Yes, I agree with you. I was just surprised when she said not to let them redo a math problem. I wonder what the difference is?

Fernandez Family said...

Hi Deanna,
Your blog is really pretty! I really like the "redo" idea!!! I'm going to try it tomorrow.

crazy4boys said...

I need to brush up on my Charlotte Mason, but I know for spelling you instantly have the child correct the problem so they don't get used to seeing a word spelled incorrectly. You don't have them re-write it somewhere else, you have them erase it and write over it - get rid of the wrong word altogether.

That is a sort of equivalent to The Re-do. I wonder (again, I need to re-read) which subjects she wants you to correct and which she does not.

I lean more in favor of correcting the 'bad choice' right away. If my 3-yr-old thinks he got away with something, it becomes a life-long habit. Thus far...

We're taking a month long road trip and Charlotte is coming with me!

Mrs.Smith said...

I love the new look! It's so perfect for you & what you write about. I just love it.

I've used the "try again" method here and there (and with the sucess I get every time, you'd think I'd have caught on sooner!), but this has finally helped me see I should do it EVERY time. It's going to change my life! I can't wait!

Dana ♥ said...

We call this "rewind" at our house. I've never heard of it anywhere, we just started it with our son one day. It does help immensely.

Jen said...

I love this! It is so simple.