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Three Year Old Obedient... Except With Mom

Question

Hello and thank you for your time. We have a 3-year-old who is, most of the time, a very good and obedient boy. Let me rephrase that: He listens to his father 100% of the time. With his mother, me, he is not quite as responsive, and I admit I have let things slide. However, we don't allow him to talk back to us, hit his 1-year-old sister, or display any of the traditional "threenager" behavior for an extended period of time.

I spoke to his preschool teacher this morning, and she informed me that starting this week he has been responding to her instructions with, "NO!!!" or "I DON'T WANT TO!" When she tries to have a stern talking-to with him, he evades her, changes the subject, runs away, and is disruptive. He's also hitting one of his friends that he plays with the most, and then that boy hits back, and then they have to separate them and try to encourage them to play with other kids.

Some things that have changed recently are that we are cracking down on potty training, and his sister is entering a new phase where she is talking more, fighting more, not wanting to share toys, asserting her independence, etc.

This morning before he went to school, I had a very stern talking-to with him that he is not to yell or scream at his teachers, that he's to listen to them and be a good boy. Apparently his behavior has been better today, but what can I do to help him work on this for the 5-6 hours he is at school every day? Thanks in advance.

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