Instead of using timeouts to discipline children, experts recommend using a positive parenting strategy called Time-In, where the child is given support and comfort. Our role is to create a safe and supportive environment where they can express themselves and their emotions without fear of judgment, interruption, or advice-giving.
It involves being present with children and allowing them to process their thoughts and feelings at their own pace by holding space for them. Holding space requires empathy, active listening, and the willingness to suspend our own judgments and opinions.
It is a way to support and validate their experience and emotions without trying to fix or solve their problems for them. This can include talking to your child about their behaviour, helping them to calm down, and providing comfort and reassurance. It is a way for children to go within themselves to learn to understand and manage their feelings and emotions effectively.
You might like to change the wording to be more child friendly, and I like to use Quiet Time because it explains what it is for.
Everyone needs quiet time now and again, so it is suitable and adaptable for all ages, depending on individual children, the space and the resources you have and on your preferences. Young children may need you to sit with them to help them to feel safe with their emotions and calm down. Older children may have a quiet area they can go to independently or with an adult to help them calm their minds and relax before you talk with them.
There is no time limit when using quiet time, but with today's sensory overload of gadgets, it is time to switch them off and have some peace.
Quite time can be in various places, such as a comfortable chair or sofa or any quiet location in the house, such as the living room, on a bean bag or cushion.
You can put things in this space, such as books, pens, pencils, paper, simple hobby crafts, journals or books for older children to write.
Use and replenish this area with age-appropriate things your child can do to soothe themselves and manage their uncomfortable emotions.