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Is there an effective way to show authority when babysitting ages 6+?

My younger cousins and sisters don't respect my decisions and I have had a hard time with putting my foot down. Please help!

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Kids, especially around that age, are looking to be in charge of their own decisions. They will sometimes act out simply because they don't want to be told what to do. Give them control over as much as possible. For example, instead of just making them lunch and then demanding they eat it, let them choose what they want to eat. Instead of saying "we're going to watch a movie now" or "we're going to play a game now," ask them what they want to do. Encourage positive decisions as much as you possibly can! It's been proven time and time again that kids react better to positive enforcement than anything! So when they are listening and being good make sure you make it very well known how much you appreciate their good behavior. For bad behavior, a lot of times "natural consequences" work way better than forced punishments. For example, if the child is refusing to put on their coat before leaving the house, explain very clearly that if they do not wear their coat they will be very cold. If they still insist on not wearing it, don't argue, just let them be cold! (If you'll be out for a long time and it could pose an actual health risk then bring the coat along so they can put it on when they ask for it.) They'll soon realize that they do not want to do that again.

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Use simple but creative solutions. Set up rules ahead of time and let them know there are consequences to not following the rules and tell them what will happen if they break those rules. If they do not listen to you, you could temporarily take something away (ie. if they are ignoring you because they are playing on an iPad, temporarily take the iPad away and tell them how long you will be keeping it). Find out what works for them as individuals consequence wise. Also, to reinforce positive behaviors, reward them for listening and behaving well. Having a hard time putting your foot down is understandable but you do need to start doing it or your problem will not only continue, but get worse as they get older.

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POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT don't give them two options that are just something you have planned or a punishment ex:"you wanna play a game or go to bed now?" those kinds of questions strip the child of any real choice leaving them more helpless try giving them actual options ex: we have a few games to choose from what would you like to play or would you like to go to the park" your still having your choice of playing a game while giving the child a sense of choice. Of coarse sometime the my way or the highway approach is needed ex: "do you wanna hold my hand while we walk or do you want us to just turn around and you can go to bed" Just keep in mind these are children they are never going to follow a specific schedule especially in the younger ages.

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Hello! I totally understand this. When my godson was born, his mother coddled him -constantly-. I don't think she ever put him down on the ground for the first two years of his life! And when I was watching him while his mother/father went to work each day, he would never listen to me. He would resort to tantrums and throwing things, and things got even worse when he finally learned the word 'No.' All that being said, with a little bit of patience, and some work on your part as well as theirs, you can easily fix this issue! Now, I want to preface my answer with saying that no, I do NOT have children of my own, so I can't really speak on the parental part of things. And I won't insult parents by doing so. Some tips I've found after working with my godson and a few other more "difficult" kids: 1. Always stay as calm as possible. -Screaming and yelling will get you nowhere, and it will push the kids further away, leaving them even less likely to listen to you about things in the future. 2. Monkey see, monkey do. -Kids are like sponges when they're young. They are growing, their minds are constantly developing, and they are slowly but surely turning into their own person. They also see and hear EVERYTHING the elders around them do. If you want them to respect you, make sure you're practicing what you're preaching. Show them HOW to be more respectful by doing the same yourself, and by respecting them as individuals with their own personal preferences. 3. Punishment isn't always the answer. -This one often gets me raised eyebrows, but hear me out here. If we use angry tones or screaming and yelling or threats of spankings, etc whenever kids are being what we deem as disrespectful, or for making mistakes, we're showing them exactly how to be cruel to others in that same situation. Set boundaries. Be firm and stick to those boundaries no matter how difficult it might be to do. I LOVE saying yes to my godson and the other kids I've cared for in the past, but it took quite a while for me to be able to start using the word NO in a firm but gentle way. 4. Respect CANNOT be demanded. Respect is EARNED. -You honestly can't expect the kids to respect you if you don't respect them. I know this sounds weird considering how young they are, but it IS a thing, I promise you. 5. Ask questions, and apologize for your own mistakes! -Figuring out WHY the kids are like this, and asking them WHY they're acting the way they are will help out tremendously. If they're angry or sad about something, as kids, they can't really think straight. They've been hurt, and out of basic instinct, want to hurt someone back. Get to the root of the issue, and acknowledge the issue. If you happen to be the person who made them upset, then apologize, and try to help them understand that acting the way they are won't get them the things they want. Hurting others will also hurt them, too. Sorry for such a long-winded answer, but I hope this helps! :)

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User in Lady Lake, FL
Dec. 18, 2018

It seems an intervention is needed. Have the primary authority, in each case, sit down with you and the children and make it clear that they trust your judgment and that while they are away YOU are in charge. Set clear boundaries and consequences together. When the children see your solidarity concerning discipline, there should be no more issues.

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Abigail B.
Jan. 2, 2019

When needing to display or obtain a more welcomed disciplinarian role, I make sure through my assertive corrections I am also providing a constructive activity to re-direct my children's unwanted actions. By doing this we confirm our discipline action to the child as not just corrective, but beneficial and welcoming for their needs and safety. It gives so much opportunity to not just correct but to learn, understand, and imitate positive mannerisms. Children need an environment that stimulates and provides space for their developing minds to create and comprehend new ideas.

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I suggest a list of boundaries to be created among you all! I believe once those boundaries are set maybe it will help with your cousins and sisters respecting your decisions. I feel it's also best if an adult can help you to also create that list of boundaries.

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In the first place can i please know your relationship towards them? Let me ask do you talk to them in a low tone, by saying please, with no command or disrespect and with love? If not you better start practicing that and will begin to enjoy a sweet relationship with them than ever.

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You need to implement consequences for children when they are not listening or they will not listen to you. You can still do time-out for older children. It gives them a chance to settle down and you a chance to implement an additional consequence if needed. First time they are not listening, send them to the time-out chair for the same number of minutes as their age. After the time-out, remind them of your behavior expectations for them. Talk about ways they could better handle the situation next time. Let them know what the consequence will be if they continue with not listening (take away TV time, ipad, phones, favorite toy etc. for 1-5 days depending on the severity of their actions). Make sure they apologize and understand why it's important to follow the rules (older kids need to set an example for younger ones, younger ones need to learn to follow adult instructions so they are safe and can learn from adults; teachers, etc.). If they will not apologize or continue to argue, then continue the time-out for two minutes and try again. Repeat until they are able to talk to you calmly and respectfully. If they refuse to sit in the chair, then implement the consequence immediately and let them know what consequence will come next if they don't sit. You can do a countdown from 7 to let them know when the consequence is coming. But, do not argue with them and stick to what you say you are going to do. Don't keep giving them chances. Let them know you mean business and their behavior will start to improve. They will start to listen to you when they know you mean what you say.

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Congrats on being a responsible young baby sitter. Speak with their parent(s). Six is very young and hard to get to listen to you. Try using something they want and use that to get their attention and control. The older ones are the ones you really need to talk to the parents about. I think you could also use the same game plan with them too. Best of Luck! Flo

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Yes, you have to command not demand respect and authority. Set the expectation of how things will go, what you need, ask what they need, make rules for everyone to follow and discuss and agree upon consequences of what will happen if the rules are not followed. Get their buy in and set a positive example of staying calm and steady. You may need your parents and/or their parents to be in on the meeting to help set the tone. Focus on the positive and look for things that you can give them praise for :)

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Dana in Tulsa, OK
April 16, 2019

Find common ground with them. You can get much more cooperation if you join them in the activities that they are allowed to do. They like to know you are all on the same team.

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My first step would be to ask for a sit-down with the parents - you will have a better chance of success if your discipline is consistent with the parents.

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Krystin in Newport, RI
April 20, 2019

Consistency is the best way to earn respect. They may not like it, but you are not there to be their friend, you're there to take care of them. Remember that you are in charge. You all will have a better time if they are listening to you

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Hi, my name is Lucrecia my friend call me Mily, I recently moved to Vallejo, my information says San Francisco because I have always worked in the Marin area, and also I have a room in San Francisco. I care newborns up to 6 years, I m very tidy, punctual, honest, and I dedicate 100% to the care and protection of the child. If you would like to know more about me, please contact me. Thank you.

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it's all about making sure they know who is the boss. you don't want to be too forceful but being too lenient can cause them to grow stubborn and not listen to you. With my experience of babysitting, the best way to show authority is to encourage positive decisions as much as you can. positive enforcement works better than anything else.

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I think it's important as kids get older to have more of a say in negotiating expectations and consequences. 6 and older is a good time to think about a behavior or chore contract and to come up with agreed punishments and rewards for meeting or failing to meet certain goals.

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Ages 6 and up can be hard, they are just coming into their own and love the word no! To show authority make sure you follow through. I use a warning system: first a warning and why what they are doing is wrong, second is another warning and the consequence is spelled out for them (time-out, toy is taken away etc.) and finally the third strike and the consequence. Once the consequence is over make sure to give hugs and explain why they were in trouble and of course an apology from them!

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User in Dallas, TX
March 9, 2019

What is your normal leniency with them? If you often let them do as they please without introducing consequences they will take advantage of your loose authority. Theres nothing wrong with letting children learn things on their own or letting them have fun. However you have to let the kids know that there are certain limits they cannot go past. Like if you tell them to do something like go brush their teeth and they don't listen you need to let them know that they need to listen. For example a kid doesn't listen when you tell them to brush their teeth, if it was my little 6 year old brother I'd threaten to turn off the tv he was on, or tell him no more candy for the rest of the week. (letting him know if he doesn't respect my authority there will be consequences). What you need to do is set these boundaries , since it sounds like they aren't already set. Start by threatening to take their tablets away, or no tv for a week, or if they're afraid of the dark threaten to make them sleep with the lights off. (I know a bit mean, but you need to let them know you are serious). Anyway you set these boundaries and they still don't listen, that's when you involve people who you know have authority. Like parents or uncles. "Hey __ isn't listening, can you tell him to listen to me," or something. The main idea is to let the kids know they need to listen to you. Hope this helps!

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The best approach, in my opinion, that I have used for this is getting down to their level and talking to them about how it's very important that we use our listening ears to those who are trying to keep us safe. This approach has been used in countless childcare facilities and was even taught in one of my child development classes. It not only answers their question as to WHY we have to listen BUT it also helps them see that you're trying to communicate with them at a level they understand.

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Kimberly in Minot, ND
March 9, 2019

It is always best to ask the parents their way of authority with the children and respect their wishes.

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I feel like you should talk to them and try to come to a compromise, make sure your decisions are in the best interest of them. Also, you should try to connect with them.

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Hollie in Salem, MA
March 10, 2019

giving choices give them your choice with a good outcome then give them their second choice which should always been the choice they will not choose ask them which they would like to chose it makes them have a part in making right decisions and learn to problem solve and then they know what they was on them and be consentant always follow throughif you don't follow through they don't respect you when given choices tell them what you would like to do so that I'd like to have do this and then have funI'd like to do this and have fun but if you'd rather we could do this and go sit and do nothing and then tell them okay you decide and thenwait for them to make that decision and then follow through on that decision

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Maya in Brighton, MI
April 21, 2019

Ask them why they don't want to listen to you and then provide really good and well thought out real reasons why you're right. Kids ask why all the time, it's important that they also take a moment to reflect on why they're behaving in a certain way. Once they know why you're making them do certain things, they'll feel more respected than they would if you said "because I said so", and they'll be more likely to do what you say.

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Beth in Ney, OH
Feb. 3, 2019

Children need and crave boundaries. When children know what is acceptable and what isn't they feel comforted. Now, if you combine the above with offering them appropriate choices, this fosters their confidence. Ask them to help you in some activities and chores, praise their efforts and reward them. It is much easier and much more pleasant to build up a person than to be hard and critical of them. Don't be in a hurry to put your foot down so to say but to lay out what is expected ( boundaries) so every one is reading off the same sheet of music so to say. Like this,."When we are at the grocery store I need you to stay right beside me and not to touch things on the shelves unless I ask you to help me get things. Would you like to be my helper?.... I know you will do a fine job! " In short reward the good behavior with compliments and the not so good behaviour, well, treat them like you would've liked to have been treated when you were small ( Practice the Golden Rule). Keep in mind that when a child lashes out it is usually because their little love bucket is lacking and needs to be filled. This is where knowing and understanding love languages really comes in handy. They may need more hugs and snuggles or words of affirmation, etc... Before I had children of my own I was the part time nanny for seven different families in two different locations in California ( San Luis Obispo and Bakersfield). I went on to have seven children of my own who are now ages 31-9 years of age. They are a joy!

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Be kind, but, don't let no be the answer. Get the kid to do what you want them to do and be kind to them at the same time. You just need the perfect little balance.

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Rebecca in Dewitt, MI
March 11, 2019

In my experience, babysitting family members is the hardest thing a babysitter/nanny ever has to do. I have been a babysitter and nanny for 8 years now and have never had a harder time with any of the kids I watched than I did with my siblings and cousins. For me, I just had to remember that I wasn't the parent and they weren't going to listen to me completely. As kids get older they like to be treated as adults, responding and explaining in a polite and respectful way always got the best results for me. Try to treat them the same way as you would any other family you babysit for, as hard as it is. The most important thing is to keep calm and take a moment for yourself if the situation is getting to frustrating.

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I would try using a count down system/warning system. I've used this on kids of all ages. I'd give them 2 warnings and if they get a third warning then they get the timeout chair no talking or making noises for 5-30 minutes depending on how bad their behavior was, and if they talked or anything during timeout either timer got restarted or I would add 2 minutes each time. I've found this very affective with all ages from 2 years old-8+ years old. Once the kids would have timeout, I typically wouldn't have any other problems with them listening to me after that. I hope this helps :)

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Alex in Pontiac, MI
March 11, 2019

take them for a walk around the house, the walking usually helps them know that you are in charge of what they do and where they go and its a little time out from what they are currently doing.

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Well if you are sitting for these people and they refuse to respect your rules and decisions , then it is time for them to try to find someone else to do the childcare for these people .or if its not easy to do that then they need some things taken away from them AND time out .

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there're several ways and have to try one at time.whichever is works.

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Wendy in Cedar Park, TX
April 22, 2019

You have to be consistent, and stick to your guns. When you threaten discipline, you have to enforce it so they know you are serious.

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Positive reinforcement for good behavior. Praising them for behaving well and encouraging them to do their chores and homework will help boost their confidence. If they misbehave communicate with them to let them know what they did was wrong and if they continue that behavior there will be consequences.

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I was a teacher at a Catholic school for five years and difficulties would come up once in a while. I taught pre-K through 8th grade and different ages required different tactics. Keeping things under control and busy and happy prevent behavior getting out of hand. No shouting, time out and sitting down for discussions.

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you just have to talk with them and let them know its no different than with mom and dad, grandparents , teachers. Rules are made for a reason

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Hard to answer without specifics. The variables of a situation depend on what level "putting down my foot" you apply, ;) If you can be more specific, maybe someone can better advise. Sometimes it is a matter of approach. When we present in a dictatorial manner, it is usually met with stubbornness or disrespect. If we make it more loose and casual, they tend to go along with less resistance. But again, it really depends on what you are referring to.

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It's super hard to get that balance right - especially with family because they know your weaknesses to call you out. You could try positive reinforcement: When they do something good reward them. When the other kids see one child being rewarded they will want to increase their good behavior.

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Gina in Hemet, CA
Feb. 5, 2019

If a child doesn't listen to you the first time, you give them a warning. If they still don't listen you send them to time out based on their age. So say its a 6-year-old they would go in time out for 6 minutes. After their time out is done you sit and talk to them about why they went and time out, explaining the reason behind it so they can clearly understand. Remind them of your expectations and what they could have done differently. Also explain to them that if they continue to not listen they will lose other privileges such as TV time etc. Make sure you talk to them calmly and have them apologize

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The best way in my opinion is to speak to them in a calm and mannerly way. I have a 3+ year old niece who cooperates better when you don't raise your voice at her. Be as calm but firm as possible.

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Ainka in Shelton, CT
March 12, 2019

In this situation, I would try to talk with them about why they are not listening, and if they choose to continue to not respect me I will put them in time out until they behave.

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User in Lexington, MA
March 12, 2019

I think it depends if you are the babysitter or the nanny. the roles are very different and yet both childcare.

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With babysitting children 6+ I don't believe in showing authority, it's more about understanding them. I found through parenting my own child and babysitting others that when you listen to children, and talk to them you get further then being authoritative. It's always good to update the parents of any behaviors and leave it to them to talk to or discipline their children. There are great articles on positive affirmations to use with children to get them to respect you on pinterest, if you are lost I would begin there. Most importantly, be patient. If the child is doing something harmful in any way then be stern but explain to them why that behavior is not okay and why we shouldn't do that. Good Luck!

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User in Saint Paul, MN
April 22, 2019

Never yell. If the child(ren) hit, or swear, I don't do warnings. I don't even say a word, I calmly walk over, pick them up just like you would a toddler who's wanting to be held (not roughly nor with any emotion), I walk them to their room, set them down and on my way out I repeat the same phrase of, "please let me know when you're ready to talk. And keep in mind that I love you like crazy." *Even if they are yelling/crying and when they said "I hate you." After the first few times of doing that same thing, they begin to catch on that you don't do warning and it works 100% of the time for me (after those initial times).... There's no need to 'put your foot down' nor show any upset or worry. And consistency is the key to every single thing in the world that involves a child. :-) *Consistency does not = a day or two of trying it consistently. Consistency = weeks/months/years of doing it. :-)

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Kaelynn in Chico, CA
April 22, 2019

Your authority lies in your ability to enforce the rules. Set clear boundaries with clear consequences that make sense. ONLY set consequences that you can and will actually enforce! If you say something will happen and then it doesn't, the kids will remember that and then they won't take you seriously. I hope this helps.

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Cheyanne in Augusta, GA
March 13, 2019

There is an effective way to show authority when babysitting! I have learned that setting the child away from the other children, allowing no electronics, or moving from room to room (like time out) or going in their room for an allotted amount of time is effective. I also am in agreeance with the parents (if comfortable with the family) that if I feel the need to further carry out their punishment throughout the week such as no T.V., games, etc. will happen. I repeat that I am the boss and their actions/attitudes will not be tolerated.

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User in Bellerose, NY
April 22, 2019

By positively reinforcing younger cousins (ages 6+) can show authority and at the same time, positive reinforcement can make young ones connect to you better.

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If they have a favorite toy or electronic tell them if they don't shape up in the next 3 seconds your gonna take away that toy and then they may respect you enough to get their stuff back.

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The best thing you can do is showing them you will only address them and their issues if they use their "big words". If they are either sulking or being snappy/or using a smart attitude then they can wait to get a resolution until they are willing to have a conversation. Until then, they can either sit in a quiet room or maybe put a journal in front of them and have them write it out.

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User in Denver, CO
March 13, 2019

I use a time out from their favorite thing until they decide they want to show that respect. After all you are the adult and the one responsible one and I always explain that from the start letting them know that they don't have the choice of listening to me or not. When they are the adult they will have the same responsibilities of making decisions.

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Beverly in Atlanta, GA
March 14, 2019

Restrict them from toys or activities they love until their behavior has improved.

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I use positive behavior interventions. Start praising them and rewarding them when they do what they are supposed to do! That will allow them to trust you and want to please you better.

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I think that with love and respect sometimes we have to make our on decisions.

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Remind them of their place in a strict, but not mean way.

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Queen in Durham, NC
Feb. 7, 2019

Be consistent and set clear boundaries. Let them know that you not being heard and how that makes you feel. Also set age appropriate consequences when they do not respect your decisions when you are left in charge. Try not to lead with frustration when that occurs and stick by what you say no matter what.

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Yes, use consequences. They do work ONLY IF you follow through. If you take TV- Time away, don't give in and turn it back on. The more you follow through with the consequences, the more respect you will get. Plus, it helps you get the respect, vs. you going to the parents to talk to the children to behave. As most times, they will start mis-behaving as soon as the parents leave. But here is the most important part. PRAISE the child/ren. If they do something right, do a star chart, so they can earn the TV-time, etc. When the child/ren feel like they are respected by you even for the smallest thing, you will see the difference in ways that will amaze you!

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Kelly in Milford, MA
Feb. 7, 2019

I would take them aside and talk to the child whos the most difficult, and be positive but say that something needs to change, or you need to speak with their parents.

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User in Pikeville, NC
April 23, 2019

Your family will know you the best. They know exactly how to push your buttons and how far they can push you. First, you have to follow through with what you say. If you are telling them that they will be punished for a certain action, follow through with the consequence. Mean what you say and say what you mean. They may think you're being mean, but they will get over it and eventually you will earn respect.

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User in Des Moines, IA
April 23, 2019

I have worked in child care for over 10 yrs, & I am known for effectively handling difficult children. My secret is time-out, regardless of their age. I will put a 12 yr old in time-out if they refuse to listen! If time-out is too hard for you to manage (such as, if they kick & scream & won't stay in their time-out spot), then removal of privileges, such as electronic devices or visiting with friends. The biggest thing for you, is to stay calm & be authoritative without raising your voice. Calmly state what you expect. If they ignore it, then remind them with a warning of what will be the consequences if they don't listen.

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You have to be firm and stand your ground. Do not give in. Offer options to make them feel like they are making a decision for themselves. You can either clean up your room and get an extra half hour of play before bed or you can just go to bed now. If you want to get ice cream today you have to do a job for me and here are your options..., no job no treat. Kids like to feel like they are apart of the decision making process. You do not need to yell to gain respect in fact yelling has the exact opposite effect. Speak to them calmly but firmly and lay out your consequences, stand by them even if they seem inconvenient.

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Be firm and patient, that's something I've always had work. They understand that you're in charge but the want to be able to push you to see how much they can get away with. Communicate to them in way that they understand and explain why they've got to do something if necessary. And when in doubt talk to the parents if you're really struggling. The parents understand how their child works and have their own approach to it. Every kid is different and sometimes you just have to understand how they perceive things differently than others. One may be totally fine with being told to do their math homework and another might need you to approach it differently because to them that's a challenge.

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Angela in Muskegon, MI
March 16, 2019

The main key is to make sure you're being super nice about it, talk to them, see why they are not listening and talk through it with them. If that doesn't work you can try to trick them into thinking it was their idea.

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Silmery in Austin, TX
March 16, 2019

having a previous discussion about rules and discipline expectations will help to set the work way. Sharing trust information about discipline and own experience with other families about it.

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User in Bloomington, IL
March 16, 2019

In my experience children of that age will challenge you to get a feel for your sense of authority. Some kids require a higher level of sternness to get them to listen to you. I always use positive reinforcements to encourage good behavior. The current child I care for, is highly reinforced when I offer highly preferred snacks or fun activities. We use a token board that we use to work for highly preferred things. Token boards are commonly used with special needs children however I have had success with all children I have used this program with. You can google what a token board is, but they are fairly simple to implement.

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User in Athens, AL
Feb. 7, 2019

I struggled with this with one of the kids I used to watch after school. You're not alone! He responded to me taking privileges away like playing outside and video games when he refused to listen or misbehave. Be careful with how many chances you give them to correct their behavior. If you give them too many, they wont take you seriously. If they are really giving you a hard time, call the parent and have them take the time to sit down with you and the child and explain things. You're not there to be the bad guy, you're there to watch them and keep them entertained, but you're also there to take care of them, enforce boundaries, and keep them safe. Thats the most important thing they need to understand. If you can get that across to them, I think they will listen better! hope this helps and hang in there! - Julia L.

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Demi in Denison, TX
Feb. 7, 2019

I use a rewards system with the kids candy or more game time if they finish their homework early or tasks. or if there's an older one I put them in charge of the younger one and making sure they obey, that way the older ones keep the younger ones in line and are willing to listen to you because you have given them some form of authority the younger ones have no choice but to conform when they see the older one listening to you.

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Tracy in Wayne, NJ
March 16, 2019

It can be hard to establish yourself as the authority figure when dealing with members of your own family. In order to gain their respect, I suggest being very careful with your words and actions while you are the authority in the situation and when you are not. If you show them that you follow the rules as set by your parents or aunt/uncles, they will be more likely to as well, even when the parents are not around. Also, I would be sure you are enforcing the rules the same way your parents would by staying calm and using similar language. Asking your parents before you are left in charge what they recommend can also help or having everyone sit down together (including the kids) so the parents can explain to them as well.

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Noemi in Kaysville, UT
March 16, 2019

It helps a ton if you give them the choice between two options. By doing that the child feels like they have more control and are generally more cooperative. For example you can say "Its time for bed (child's name) do you want to play for another five minuets or would you like me to read you a story?"

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just pray!! Hive it to GOD

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Jennifer in Gardena, CA
March 18, 2019

quiet time in the cornor no fun

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Annalynn in Pullman, WA
March 18, 2019

You need to be firm and consistent, and you also need to follow through. Stick with your answer, and always give the same answer. Consistency and follow through are key, without those you won't have respect or control.

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In my experience, I have found that it is important to know what discipline system the parents have in place. Once you know that you can adapt it to you. You are not the parent, but they do need to respect you. It is the parents responsibility to teach the children to respect the babysitter regardless of who they are. With all of that being said and I could say much more, you also need to realize that it is someone else's child. So what that means is that you may have to lower your expectations. That does not mean you do not set boundaries and have them walk all over you. You are there to support what the family has in place whether you necessarily agree with it or not. Do not fear not being liked by the children if you set appropriate boundaries, they are children. Their moods change all the time. You just need to be the stable adult. I hope that helps even a little bit!

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Ashlyn in Lynchburg, VA
March 19, 2019

It is so important to be consistent with kids. If you say one thing, you should almost always (there can be some exceptions) follow through with it. Don't go back on what you originally said. It makes it confusing for kids and it creates an atmosphere of uncertainty and kids will use that to their advantage. Stay strong and keep putting your foot down. Let them know that when you are there, they have to listen to you. If you do this in a consistent, firm but caring way, the kids will learn to respect you and listen to you.

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In my experience, I have learned that kids of all ages are a lot more intelligent then they let on. When I have to show the child that I am watching that I am the adult and they need to listen to me, I get down onto my knees so that I am at their level and ask them to look at me. I explain to them that the reason why I am telling them to do/ not to do something. When speaking, I do not use an angry voice rather a calm but quiet one. If they are doing something dangerous, I explain to them that they could get hurt and that it would make me very sad to see that happen. While it is hard to get children to respect you sometimes, it really is easy to get them to listen when you are honest when explaining your reasons as well as showing them respect.

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Safety is a priority, child is unable to measure situations regard to child safety and child care. Adult is in charge for safety#1.

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Being stern without becoming emotional. Remove yourself from the situation on an emotional level and view it reasonably. It creates a different mindset for yourself and the child, and allows for a much more positive outcome.

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It can be hard to be both their friend and authority figure. From my experience the best way to stand up for your self and show authority is in a loving way. I have worked with some unruly children but I have found that the loving gentle approach works the best long term. But if they still refuses to obey you and the child can always make a contract where both you and the child compromise a little but if one of you falls short for the contracts rules there is a fair punishment.

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Giving consequences for actions is a good way to deal with this. For example giving a timeout or taking away a toy or something else important to them for a bit.

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Dawn in Newton, NJ
Feb. 10, 2019

structure and consistancy

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I believe your tone and patience has a lot to do with this! If you show that you are stressed out and can't handle them, they will only push our buttons more and begin not to listen. Find activities that each of them like to do and try to sit them down and cooperate with you. :)

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Sasha in Beverly, MA
Feb. 10, 2019

Stay as calm and consistent as possible. Remember, more often than not children mirror our emotions and mannerisms. Being firm does not mean being "mean" and offering a small reward of some kind as positive reinforcement of good behavior almost always works.

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User in Waltham, MA
March 20, 2019

Juat take away what they like the most until their behavior improves

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Put them in time out and see if that helps.

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give them consequences,for poor choices,No TV,No iPad,set the rules!and stick to them,make sure they clean up all toys etc,that your not left to do it!Ask them to help,with lunch etc,set the table is easy enough take trash out.They need to learn respect,and that your the adult!

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tell them who is boss but dont be so mean to where they treat you worst

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Carina in Oviedo, FL
March 20, 2019

First at all you should always be an example to them, at that age they are very observative, if you ask them to do something but you don't do it, they will be confused and probably they won't trust you.

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Try to compromise with them or give me a reward to look forward to after they do what you say. Dealing with six years olds are tuff, but you will always find a way because your their tempory caregiver and you're responsible for them in anything happened. Try to express that to them. Good Luck!!

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Yes, there is. The best way is if they are not being destructive than ignoring them is good. They mostly act up because they want attention. If they are destructing things than put them in there room until they can figure out how to calm down.

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Easy ways to show authority include timeout, compromises, tone of voice!

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Be stern but sweet, simple as that! teach them that temper tantrums aren't okay and reward them when they behave

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A good way to show authority is to be extra prepared before arriving. Start by having an hourly schedule of activities to do. Be consistent daily so the kids know what to expect. Explain what will happen before it happens. "Once we finish our snack, we are going to wash our hands and play a game". You can do this with any age group. If they don't want to listen to you, give them choices instead of opportunities to say "NO".. For instance, "Do you want to play the game or go to bed?". Also, make sure if you go out in public the kids aren't tired or hungry. If they run away from you practice before how walks go. We hold hands, if we do not hold hands we do not play at the park. Make sure to stick to your words. Make sure they're having fun and interested in the activities you choose to do. Most of the time, when kids are bored they'll misbehave. Give them a lot of praise when they do something you like.. instead of complaining and being negative. Its discouraging. They need a strong leader to take control and have a plan. Make sure you're well rested and have energy. If they are older kids, lead by example. Respect them- listen to what they are saying, say sorry when you are wrong and communicate to problem solve expect them to behave the same way.

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Kayla in Chalfont, PA
Feb. 11, 2019

Try to use a stern voice and know that what your teaching them now will help them for the future.

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Set limits and show them that you are the adult for a reason. You are there to make sure they are safe and be there when needed. Reason with them.

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There isn't really any effective way. Just talk to them and make them understand that you are the adult and you make the decisions not them. "Adults know more than kids. So listen when an adult speaks," I tell my little 7 years old cousin.

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I would tell them to go to their room or sit them in a chair and make them stay till they learn to listen. I also might try making them help me do a chore or an art project to get their minds off what they are fighting me about.

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User in Baltimore, MD
Feb. 12, 2019

I am not a newcomer...been with care for years be firm but be gentle. ask for the childs input......

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User in Haverhill, MA
March 22, 2019

I tend to find myself in the position with kind words, telling them things along the lines of "We have to work together. I can't do _____ if you can't do _______ for me", etc. It takes a balance of kindness and an authoritative stance. At least that's what works for me!

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i would watch nanny 911 and look at the disaplinary actions they teach the family

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Debora in Hudson, FL
Dec. 9, 2018

Sometimes its not in knowing its whether the job fits you and your personality

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yes a firm face and a positive tone.

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Tracey in Stow, OH
March 22, 2019

put your foot down, you are the boss not them

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Respect is something built. It takes times of understanding and being there for them, for respect to be cultivated. If a child is always hearing "no", the value of that word goes down. Use times of connecting to uplift them as well- they are children and need fun times!

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Honestly, and I hate to say it, but time outs and actually taking toys has worked for me. Not for long periods of time, but enough to establish the authority.

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User in Palo Alto, CA
Feb. 12, 2019

I would first talk to the parents and see what method they have and how can they help maybe having a talk with the kids and letting the parents tell them to behave nicer and if that don't work ask the parents what they would recommend and what they do when that happens in their house hold.

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Naomi in Fairborn, OH
Dec. 10, 2018

Often a good solution is to take away something non-essential, but desirable. For example, if they don't respect your decision, no Netflix today, or no more video games. If you can reason with them, try to, but don't give up if they refuse to acknowledge common sense. Also, try to give positive reinforcement when they do listen to you. If you're simply not a very strong-willed person, learning to put your foot down takes practice and time. But if you take small steps, you should be able to get them to obey you without too much strife and nastiness.

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Caty in Winter Park, FL
March 24, 2019

Consistency is key. Their greatest need is consistent guidance, unwavering. Treat them with respect, understanding, kindness, while being the boss and being firm. Always try to focus on what they are working towards and when they act up, remind them of what can be taken away.

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Instead of punishing them when they do wrong, try rewarding them when they do what you'd like more often. If punishment doesn't work, praise might. Try researching positive affirmation or shaping in child developmental psychology and you'll see how big of a difference these methods could make!

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When i babysat my nephew and he didn't respect me either until i started disciplining him when he would act out, or be disrespectful. I would either make him do chores or he could sit in timeout. Sometimes even giving him positive attention made him stop being disrespectful. All a child craves is attention and they will find anyway to get it, even if they are disrespectful.

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Set the boundaries and stick to them! Only offer choices that you really want them to choose; it gives them the power to make a choice but it's still within the scope of what you are trying to accomplish. For example eating at the table is a have to but you can choose to eat your banana cut up or whole like a monkey!

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