Finding what motivates Nolan has been a challenge. We know he is smart but it is like pulling teeth getting him to communicate what he knows. We have been searching for what exactly will motivate him to try and do his best.
On top of that, Nolan is very anxious when he doesn’t know how. He would rather throw a fit and avoid than try something new.
What was working was treats. Hold a treat in sight and he would list off a lot of things he knows. As his language regressed further this was still very challenging for him.
It progressed into holding a treat and giving him the first letter sound so he could find the word he needed with less frustration.
As language continued to be more difficult and he continues to get older and smarter, he realized if he whined enough people would give and THINK it was to hard for him so they would give in (and give the treat). Mommy says nay-nay.
What has currently been working is looking him in the eyes and saying, “Nolan, you can do it! You got this. Try again!” “You can do it!” and he tries it!
Once he does it, we then try to make sure to acknowledge and praise. “you did it!” “yay Noley!” “Such a smart boy you are a rock star!” *high five *run hands between yours *rub belly. We get the best smiles out of him and it makes my day to know we are proud of him.
We stopped and slowed down the praise once we thought he had potty training down and then he started having accidents. Praise and excitement came back, accidents stopped!
I cannot believe it was so hard for us to find what motivates him and the solution was pretty simple. Will this work in a few days? Who knows. For now, we have a something that not only works, but brings smiles to his face and pride in himself! I’ll take it!