By   April 27, 2015

       Effective Time Out By Parents

  1. Give your command in a firm but pleasant voice. Make it simple, make sure your child hears and understands your command.
  1. Count backward from 5 to 1. Do this out loud the first few weeks. If no move to comply occurs-
  2. Make direct eye contact, raise your voice, adopt a firm posture and say “If you do not do what I asked (or Mauricio no creestop misbehaving) then you will sit in that chair” (pointing to the chair in the corner placed far enough away from the wall so that your child cannot kick the wall and in a quiet boring spot). There should be no play objects or TV/Games close by your time out chair.
  1. Count backward from 5 to 1 again. If no move to comply occurs-
  2. Take your child firmly to the time out chair. Do NOT allow bathroom stops, drink stops, or argument from your child.
  1. Place the child in the chair and say sternly “You need to sit in this chair until I tell you to get up.” You may also tell your child that you will not be back unless he or she has become quiet.
  1. Do NOT talk to your child while he/she is in time out. Remember this time out needs to feel like “jail time” for misbehavior or not complying with your request.
  1. Minimum sentence. 1-2 minutes for each year of age. 1 minute for mild misbehavior and 2 minutes for more serious misbehavior.
  1. Do not return to your child until he or she is quiet after the minimum sentence. This may require 1-2 hours of sitting in the chair the first few times.
  1. Child must agree to comply with command and/or promise not to repeat the misbehavior. Do not allow your child to leave the chair until he or she has agreed to this condition.
  1. If your child leaves (both buttocks off the seat) the chair without your permission. Put him or her back in the chair and say: “If you get out of the time out chair again, I am going to put you in your room.”
  1. If your child leaves the chair a second time without permission. Take your child to his or her room and have them sit on the bed using the same rules of minimum sentence and being quiet. Be sure all major play items are removed from the bedroom before using this suggestion. Remember this time out needs to feel like punishment.
  1. What makes time out effective is what your child misses while in the chair or the bedroom, so do NOT make up for anything missed while in time out.

From Defiant Children: A Clinician’s Manual for Assessment and Parent Training, Third Edition. Copyright 2013 by The Guilford Press. Permission granted for personal use.

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