Two Choices Technique and the 2 Year Old

Screaming 2 year old childThis is a negotiating technique.

I first heard of its use in business.  If it has a technical name, I don’t know of it.  I call it: Two Choices Technique.  But trust me, my Kung Fu is strong and, Two Choices Technique works in parenting and in the classroom.  If you’ve ever been in a discussion of the rules with a child and the conversation seemed to derail into an unwanted negotiation or a fight, you could have used this tool.  And that’s all it is, just another tool in the toolbox of the skillful negotiator.  I’ve used it on children of all ages (yes, even with the hard guys – that’s coming in a later post) but it’s easiest to understand and learn when you see how I used it with 2 year old Charlotte.

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A Ticklish Approach To Self-Defense

PMDiconFight or Self-Defense?

“Hey Mr. D!  Would you ever fight a student?”  It was a common question I’d heard over the years.  To which, I would always answer, “No.”  “You mean you’d let some kid hit you?” they’d ask, voices filled with incredulity.  “No, No.  You are asking me two different questions.  You see, I think of a fight as a contest for dominance which requires self restraint.  Getting hit requires self-defense.”  Now dear reader you may rightly accuse me of semantic hair splitting and you’d be correct.  But, sometimes in the classroom, even the bald guy has to split a few hairs to get his point across.  There is a difference between a contest for dominance and a life saving battle of self-defense.  At this point if Erick was in the room he’d say, “Hey Mr. D., tell that story about that time when you were a kid – you know what I mean.”  And I’d have to tell it all again…

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Sex Education #1: Water Based Lube

Durex Play Intimate Lube an important sex education tool for your lucky condom.Content Alert:

Politically Incorrect Material to Follow

The Importance of Sex Education

As an Algebra teacher who believes in rigorous high standards for my students, I believe that sex education, family planning and life skills are far more important subjects for our students than Algebra!  There I said it; and I stand by it.  I do believe a firm grounding in Algebra is important, it’s just not as important as a firm grounding in sex education, family planning and life skills.  But I can hear your snorts and guffaws of indignation out there already.  Perhaps you think I’m being a bit extreme.  Perhaps you disagree.

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A Tale of Two Beatings

Cock FightKnow when to fight and when to run.

When it comes to violence or bullying (not just gambling), you’ve got to know when to walk away and know when to run.  Let me repeat my previous words of caution: what worked for me may not work for you.  I recommend always following the law; always tell an adult or authority figure when you’ve been threatened or injured.  But as we all know, there are times when there is no help to be had and you have to make a decision on the spot (this is a theme of my book What Happened to David). 

When I wrote about getting bullied (see I Was Bullied) I said that there were times when I stood my ground and took a beating and when circumstances were different I wasn’t ashamed to run.  Here are two tales of how I made my decisions.

Stand Your Ground and Walk Away

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