My kid discovered and started enjoying pranking. For example, he will ring the doorbell and then hide in the bushes, or pour water in our mailbox.
He really enjoys this and I find it impossible to be angry when I see him jumping up and down and laughing out loud. We have explained that he should not do this to other people and when it is too much I tell him it is too much and he should quit. He then quits. An example is when he and 2 friends turned on the garden hose and played inside the house.
But I'm wondering if I'm not now failing to take advantage of an educational situation where I could teach him about choices, consequences and responsibilities. Specifically:
- When I respond mildly, am I forcing the kids to up their game just to find the boundary?
- Will this backfire with the neighbors kids disrespecting us because their parents are stricter?
- My child is pretty assertive, but in this case he is showing some submissiveness towards the older neighbor child (she is 8) who is the brains behind many pranks. I want to be sure he knows when to stand his ground and I have explained that even when 3 of them do something he is still responsible for his own actions.
- Will this backfire with our kid starting to disrespect us?