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2 Ways To Ensure Outings With Your Kids Are Successful

Looking for ways to make outings to the shops or someone else’s house less stressful with your kids? In this blog I share two easy and effective ways to ensure your trips out of the house are a success!

Have you ever seen the mum in the supermarket with the little child screaming about wanting the lollipop? Ever been that lady? Well, as mortifying as it is, our children’s meltdowns are usually their way of communicating that they are tired, hungry or totally out of their comfort zone. Now, that’s a blog for a different day…. In today’s blog we concentrate more on setting your child up for success to behave appropriately out of the house or school gates and attempt to cut out or at least reduce the likelihood that your child will embarrass the hell out of you on your next outing.

Think about when this happens for example; your child bails you up to buy a toy while you are in Kmart, or they run off from you when they see the toy section at the shop, or even when at a friend’s house they jump around on your friend’s couch! Cringeworthy moments for parents! But, remember we have all been there. And… you got this! Here’s how;

These behaviours can often be prevented. The key to remember here is that this could be the first time your small child is experiencing this outing at this place (or its been a while, thanks, COVID) and they aren’t able to automatically transfer their understanding of how to behave from one place to another.

If your rule at home is that ‘we don’t stand on or jump on the couch’ don’t assume they know that means that they can’t stand on anyone else’s couch too. You need to be explicit with them about this.

Ok, so here’s my two suggestions;

1. Set them up to be successful by giving them what I call “The Pep Talk” - On the way to your outing, for example, while driving there in the car (best place as they cannot walk away!) ensure they are listening and are not distracted by something and go through with your child/ren what you expect from them at that place you are visiting.

Here’s a few examples;

“Boys, when we visit Aunty Mary’s house, remember that we do not run inside the house as we might knock over her special things and we sit on the couch and do not stand on it as that is not respectful to Aunty Mary’s furniture.”


“Ok kids, when we go to Kmart, I am there to buy new towels, pyjamas and socks and that is all. Please do not touch anything unless I ask you to and do not ask for anything as my answer will be no. I am buying you new winter pjs and that is all today.”

2. Acknowledge their efforts – Provide feedback to your child about how successful they are being. After you walk into the shop and buy your towels, say something like, “That’s so helpful Johnny that you are staying near me and keeping your hands to yourself. Let’s go and choose new pjs for you now. Walk with me.” Now, once you leave the store or leave Aunt Mary’s house, for example, on the way home in the car, praise their efforts and let them know that you noticed them trying to follow your expectations. Even if they fell a little short, pull them up on it but always praise the effort.

Now, once you have done this once, make it a habit that each time you visit somewhere different that you set your child up for success BEFORE you go there. Also, the next time you are at the same place, ask your child if they remember how to behave or what they think they need to do to be respectful there? They may just remember what you said last time and surprise you that they are all over your boundaries. Consistency is key here.

Happy outings!



Hi! I’m Chalkie.

I want to empower you to feel confident as a parent and to help you gain clarity about your parenting role!

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