Is He Really Naughty? 

Ollie has been doing some cheeky things lately which from the outside, you might think he’s being naughty.

My first response was, “No Ollie!”

He was putting pencils in the dryer. I said to him, “Ollie, when have we ever shown you it’s ok to put pencils in the dryer?” Then I looked closer at was he was doing and I said, “Sorry Ollie, Daddy does that all the time doesn’t he!”

Obviously, Dave doesn’t put pencils in the dryer. Ollie wasn’t putting pencils in the dryer. He was putting his pencil in the screws on the door of the dryer. Just like he’s seen Daddy put a little pointy stick into screws in various places all over the house.

So did we stop him? No we didn’t. Dave went and got Ollie’s toy screwdriver and let him carry on with the correct tool. He wasn’t being naughty he was doing something he’s seen his Dad do loads of times.

Then a few weeks ago he started putting wires around his neck. Obviously, first reaction is OMG Ollie don’t strangle yourself.

It wasn’t until I saw him put my keys around his neck that I realised what he was doing.

I wear a lanyard around my neck for my work keys.

He isn’t being reckless by putting stuff round his neck, he’s exploring the world and taking in what his Momma does. Obviously I’m not going to encourage this behaviour because it would only take a split second for it to be entirely dangerous however I’m not going to tell him off either.

In his little head, he’s just doing the normal thing. Instead I just distract him. Take the wire thing away and play something else!

Then he did what most people would say, “Naughty!”

Yep, drawing on the walls.

The pencil is the wrong way round Ollie... We know you can do it properly!
The pencil is the wrong way round Ollie… We know you can do it properly!

But being the chilled out over thinker that I am… This is what actually happened.

A few months ago Ollie discovered crayons and how much fun they are. Everytime he picked one up I handed him paper to encourage him to only draw on paper. Which worked. Everytime he found a pen, he’d look for some paper. White paper.

Then he’s noticed this giant piece of paper on the wall. I can’t criticise him really because I bought him an easel for Christmas which he’s been using! So his little head thinks momma gave me a wall to draw on but we’ve already got one! It’s a white wall. The wall drawing actually started after Christmas, basically after I’d given him the OK to draw on a little wall.

So which wall is ok for drawing Momma?
So which wall is ok for drawing Momma?

So I’m not mad with him. I actually think it’s quite clever that he’s made these links.

Again, it’s not something I’m going to encourage although it’s not naughty at this age I don’t think I could say the same if he carries on doing it for the next five years!

We are weaning him off the wall by putting the Paw Patrol easel in front of his colouring spot on the wall and making and big “yay” deal about it every time he uses the easel and just calmly saying, “No Ollie” when he aims at the wall and guiding him to the easel!”

I agree none of this behaviour should be rewarded or encouraged as it could potentially be dangerous or destructive. My point is simply “when you point the finger there’s always three pointing back” (a quote from my old boss.) It means don’t be so quick to label somebody as naughty or bad until you’ve looked at yourself and what you might have done to lead to their behaviour.

In all of these ‘naughty’ incidents I take full responsibility for my own behaviour that has led Ollie to these acts!

Don’t be so quick to attack, look at what is actually happening first.

How naughty a child is, is defined by your own tolerance to certain behaviour and by your own understanding of that particular child. So, Ollie is not naughty!