My friend was telling me the other day that her kids have been getting in trouble at their moms day out for using words like “butt.”
She didn’t want to tell them that those words are BAD words because let’s face it….they aren’t BAD words. They are just not always appropriate in certain contexts and situations.
It is NORMAL for your little boys, and girls, to play around with A LOT of different words and to test their limits. And I agree with this Mommy Teacher….these are not “bad” words just not necessary for a young child, who doesn’t have a filter, to use them.
So, I shared with her one of my old tricks that I came up with when I teaching Kindergarten, and one that I still use when I work with kids.
When kids use words like butt, poop, etc., I call those Potty Talk words. Those are words that belong in the potty or the bathroom. So if a child uses one of those words, I ask them to please grab that word from their mouth (I use my hand to illustrate grabbing from my mouth and then turn my hand into a fist as if I have something in it), and then tell them to go put that word in the potty (I throw it in) and flush please (and flush).
This teaches kids that there is a place for this talk and it isn’t in talking to friends. If I hear them use it again at any point, I ask them “What kind of word is that?” (give them time to say “a potty word”) and then ask “Where does it go?” (“the potty”). And I ask them to go put it in there.
It worked for my friend Megan with her 3 and 4 year old boys too so try it and see if it works for your kids.
Here is a picture of Casey’s little boy putting the lid back down “like a real man” after flushing she says haha.
Another similar trick I use is when kids use a bossy tone or have an attitude I tell them to go throw that tone or hurtful words like “stupid” in the trash where it belongs because bossy tones can “trash” a friendship if you don’t get rid of them for good.
Finally, if kids are too loud inside, I ask them to go throw “outside voice” outside where it belongs.
All of this teaches children how to behave appropriately in an age-appropriate way 🙂