1. Keep it positive Instead of making your house rules a list of don’ts.
Make them a list of do’s – for example, instead of phrasing it like this: ‘Dorcas must not interrupt if Mum and Dad are talking’ do it like this: ‘Dorcas can wait a minute’ and then say “Excuse me” if he needs Mum or Dad when they’re talking; instead of ‘Dorcas must not shout’, say, ‘Dorcas can ask nicely if he wants something’.
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2. Score good behavior.
It’ll give him the incentive he needs to co-operate if he gets an immediate reward in the form of points. Draw up a reward chart with pictures of what he’ll get when he has enough points and keep it doable – for example, 10 points could win him a new comic book. This works better than promising an unspecified reward at the end of the week if he tidies up his toys every evening – that objective is too far off and he’s likely to forget what he’s working towards and how well he’s doing.