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How do you deal with timeouts for a 6.5 year old who is not your kid?

I have a foster kid in my home who throws temper tantrums. I was wondering what methods can be suggested. We are using time outs right now and he throws tantrums while on time out. We are trying to ignore his tantrums but he is trying to destroy things around him. I usually increase his time out another minute if he tries to break something. Anyone have feedback? I am not allowed to spank him or hit him (not that I would anyway) in any way so no suggesting anything like that please. Thanks in advance!


Asked by dragonqueen at 10:08 PM on Mar. 28, 2011 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Level 17 (4,207 Credits)
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Answers (6)
  • Hey OP! Has the child been diagnosed with PTSD, or any other disorder? Has he suffered from abuse or neglect? Things of that nature could be the core of his anger. If he is already seeing a therapist, I would seek counsel with the therapist. If not, he should probably be in therapy. In my experience, a child in foster care has most likely suffered a great deal of trauma before removal, and will probably harbor resentment for anyone who attempts to parent him. Until trust is concrete with the kiddo, and he fully understands that he is safe, he will most likely act out. Even after he trusts you, he will need time to adjust to a 'normal' way of life. Bless you for taking on the challenge of a foster child! There are so many in need of caring families! My advice is to be very clear about your expectations, go over them often (not just during times of negative behavior), be consistent with (cont)

    Answer by kenzie07 at 10:18 PM on Mar. 28, 2011

  • consequences (don't ignore behavior), and give so much praise and recognition to the positive behavior. He will begin to understand that the good feelings are connected to positive behavior, and hopefully the negative actions will subside. Maybe create a sticker chart and allow him a sticker for every task that he completes and positive display of behavior. He will have something to look at and be proud of. Create a reward system so that he can pick out a toy at the dollar store if he earns a certain amount of stickers at the end of the week. Good luck! I praise you for your efforts! Don't give up on him like so many others probably have. :-)

    Answer by kenzie07 at 10:23 PM on Mar. 28, 2011

  • Exactly what pp said.

    Answer by mommythree0508 at 1:28 AM on Mar. 29, 2011

  • you might want to google it - but in my state it is completely legal to make them stand in time out. also to make them hold out their arms like a T ... so you could say - go to timeout - and if he does w/o a fit then he can sit in the chair. but if he has a fit he has to stand still - you can make him face the wall - so that he cannot see if you are paying attention to him - the fits are anger but also attention seeking. and then if he acts out again - make him stand with his hands out (like a T) i understand it is legal because it doesnt hurt them in any way - if anything it tones your arms and we all should do it more. what everyone else said about seeking therapy is also true but i think you also wanted ideas of how to change time outs to work better... remember if something doesnt work the first time - dont just abandon it - i work with troubled kids and they can be reached and healed.

    Answer by AmaliaD at 7:58 PM on Mar. 29, 2011

  • Really Pnukey? he has already had a horrible life and been told by his mother he is unwanted why would I want to do that? That is just wrong!

    Comment by dragonqueen (original poster) at 9:58 AM on Mar. 31, 2011

  • Get rid of him.

    Answer by Pnukey at 7:16 PM on Mar. 30, 2011