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how long do you leave a child in time out?

My son is 19months how long do you leave a toddler in time out for? sometimes i think its not working with him because we arnt leaving him there long enough but i dont want to leave him to long because i dont want him to forget why he was there to start with.

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Asked by Anonymous at 1:23 PM on Dec. 9, 2010 in Toddlers (1-2)

Answers (11)
  • The rule of thumb is a minute for every year of age.

    Answer by kmath at 1:24 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • Like kmath said. That is what we do.

    Answer by Raeann11 at 1:25 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • a minute for each age. For instants when my 3 year old is in time out we put her in timeout for 3 minutes, but when my 5 year old is in timeout she is in timeout for 5 minutes

    Answer by mommy5409 at 1:26 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • He's too young to even understand what you are wanting from him. Time out is so they can think about what they did wrong. At that age they have no clue what they did wrong. Teach him what you want him to do and how to do it right. He'll learn better by example than by punishment for something he can't understand.

    Answer by admckenzie at 1:28 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • Time out usually only works for ages two and up. One minute per year old.

    Answer by Misteh at 1:29 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • One minute for every year they are. So one minute for your child.
    Time out works if you allow it to work. There isn't an age limit on time outs! People really need to understand that.
    It's not going to work if you give up, change punishments day after day, hour after hour, or if you don't follow through with warnings. The kids are going to push their limits and act like it didn't get to them. However, they're toddlers and that's how they learn. That doesn't mean it's not working, it just means they think you'll give in.

    Give one warning, only one, and then they get a time out if they repeat their offense. They are told what they did and how long they are to stay. If they get up, put them back each time in silence and restart the time. They only complete their time if they stay in time out the full minute.

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 2:27 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • With my son we do 4 mins (he's 2) we started with the minute per age rule but it took him 2 mins to calm down and stop fussing... time outs for us are usually used as a calm down time if he was throwing a tantrum so he needed more time. By the end of 4 mins he is calm and ready to join back in.
    Do what you think is best... time out at this age is mostly for redirection, it's not like they sit there and think about what they did wrong... they are too young. So if your son is ready in 2 minutes to join back in, great... if it takes a few more minutes then go with it.
    With my son he has to be at least calm before coming back... so if he is still carrying on at 4 or 5 mins... timeout continues... he has to be calm for at least a minute. But like I said, with my son it usually takes him 4 minutes.

    Answer by AmiJanell at 3:55 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • Until we both calm down!!!

    Answer by MamaOfB at 6:30 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • Approximately his age in minutes (sometimes plus one minute for bad stuff like biting or hitting). My DS is 2 1/2, so I usually do it for somewhere around 3 minutes now, but I did around 2 minutes around the time he turned two. Our pediatrician encouraged trying time outs around 18 months, but it took a while for it to work. He also doesn't mind time outs most of the time and stays seated, but occasionally he gets upset about it and tries to get down. He knows he has to sit in the chair until we come over to explain (or now we ask him) why he was in time out. We use a kitchen egg timer, so he knows we will come over when that rings. I knew he was getting it more when he started play acting with his stuffed animals. He put his panda in time out, and I asked why panda was in time out, and he said he was 'throwing things'. lol

    Answer by pam19 at 7:49 PM on Dec. 9, 2010

  • Exactly what kmath did. So for 19 months I would leave my son in for a minute and a half.

    Answer by Mipsy at 10:53 AM on Dec. 10, 2010

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