Three different types of 'no'

My six year old is having a bit of trouble at the moment. He lacks flexibility and resilience. He throws a lot of tantrums and his exited exuberance can quickly turn into miserable grudge-holding.

He has auditory processing disorder (like his big brother) and it's clear that it's affecting his emotional regulation as well as his language. I don't go for the 'he's just being naughty' reasons for bad behaviour. I believe there's always a reason for what children do. And for some reason, he's not processing all the information that's coming into his head sufficiently well to allow him to move on and be flexible enough to accept someone else's instructions.

So, we are trying to come up with some strategies that will teach him better thinking skills and coping skills and which will allow him to be happier in general.

This is the newest 'poster' to go up on our kitchen wall.

With apologies to the 'no means no' slogan, I've identified three different kinds of 'no' that he hears every day.

The Red Light No means definitely not, no way, not ever, forget it kid.

The Orange Light means no, but you could negotiate a solution and find a way around it.

The Green Light No means 'not now, but certainly later, so you'll have to be patient.

It's important for him to learn to recognise the different types of 'no' that he encounters during his day. Hopefully by identifying them, he'll learn to think about what 'no' means when he encounters it and he'll avoid the trigger button he seems to have around the word.

I hope that he'll be able to learn when negotiation is possible, and when he just has to grin and bear it.