I'm having this issue with my almost 4 year old. I'm using my stern Mommy voice and giving her options. "You can either not listen to me and go to bed early OR do what I ask you to do and have a small bowl of ice cream/oranges/apples after dinner." This is just an example. We don't actually have ice cream in our house and she doesn't eat many sweets anyway.
So far, this method has worked. If you give them an option, they still feel like they're in control of the situation because they're choosing it. Now, if they choose incorrectly, time outs and taking away favorite toys or activities work.
at 8:19 AM on Sep. 28, 2010