The Review is an essential tool for helping kids learn from difficult behavior incidents. The focus is on asking the child questions that help expand their self-awareness, as well as, increase their sense of accountability—all of which lead to emotional and behavioral maturity. Print and post this on your wall or fridge so you can reference it when it’s time to talk about difficult moments.
Spend a few minutes covering the following questions after a behavior episode (after all parties have calmed down). To get the most participation, use a motivator (incentive or consequence) and have the child do as much of the talking/problem-solving as they can.
1. Remember when…? Help your child recall the situation.
2. What were you feeling? Explore feelings related to the behavior you saw. Make sure to validate, or let them know you understand their feelings.
3. What was causing you to feel this way? Focus on emotional triggers.
4. What did you do with that feeling? (i.e. what choices did they make?).
5. Was that the best way to handle the situation?
6. How could you handle that feeling or event in a better way? (i.e. what other strategies might work better?).
7. Re-play the situation. Have your child practice role-playing with you how to respond to the situation with words and good choices.
8. What will you do next time you’re in the same kind of situation? Have the child plan to use some of the new strategies you’ve discussed the next time they are in this kind of situation.
9. Repair (Have your child apologize, make amends etc., if necessary).
10. Discuss consequences. (Make sure to reduce consequences if your child has put good effort into participating in the Review).
11. If your child feels bad about the incident, help him or her practice self-forgiveness and move on.
For much more information on The Review, see Chapter 7 in Noah’s book, Better Behavior: Helping Kids Create Change and Improve Relationships.