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Positive Discipline Tool Card: Control Your Behavior

Positive Discipline Teacher's Tool Cards by Jane Nelsen and Kelly Gfroerer and Positive Discipline Parenting Tool Cards by Jane Nelsen and Adrian Garsia, each offer 52 Positive Discipline tools that are available to help with many teaching and parenting challenges. Control Your Behavior is the highlighted tool in this blog post.

After trying out this tool with the children in your life, please share a story of success, or struggle, you've had with it. Thank you! The more you apply the Positive Discipline teaching and parenting tools, the more they will become a part of your own lifestyle. Practice makes better!



Story - Mr. Smith's day started out badly. He accidentally slept through his alarm, due to a power outage during the night, his cat threw up on the carpet, and he spilled coffee on his shirt. Although he managed not to be late to school, he was definitely not feeling grounded. His first period class was noisier than usual and he felt a headache coming on. 

By the time third period rolled around, he could tell he might have a hard time not yelling at his sophomore English students. He decided to plan ahead and took a few deep breaths. Then, he asked the class to keep the noise level down, while they worked on their project, because he was fighting a headache. He demonstrated, by talking, what appropriate noise level was, and asked each group to pick someone in their group to monitor the level and make the group aware when to bring the level down. 

Planning proactively helped Mr. Smith to avert potential trouble spots in his day. He knew he would be less able to handle behavior from his students that he normally dealt with fine when he was feeling better.



Story - 10-year-old Cory was in a bad mood when his mom picked him up from school. She tried to ask him about his day and he snapped at her. When she turned on the radio hoping some music might help, he yelled, "Turn it off!"

Marla, feeling frustrated, wanted to yell back and decided to do something else instead. She pulled the car over and parked it. She took some deep breaths, and then calmly said to Cory, "I'm guessing you had a bad day at school. Sorry that happened. It's ok to be upset, however, it's not ok to yell at me. It's disrespectful and while I'm driving, is also unsafe. Let's take a few minutes to both calm down. I'll check in with you in 3 minutes to see how things are going."

By Marla taking this opportunity to model respectful behavior, Cory was able to take a cool-down period and reset his behavior. Then, they were able to talk about what had happened that day. One important note - some children (and adults) need a longer cool-down period and some need shorter. It depends upon the child and the situation.


Where can you purchase these tool card decks? The card decks are available at (Select products, then select tool cards) and there are versions available for iPhone and Android in the App stores on the phones.

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