Discipline. What works and what doesn’t and why?
When you were a kid you probably received a spanking or two. Now parenting experts are saying that spanking is bad for children and often parents who do spank have to deal with answering questions for Child Services.
Do you allow your kids to hit or kick? Or is that a behavior you discipline against? Were you allowed to hit or kick someone as a child? Probably not, in fact you probably got a spanking for hitting your kid brother or sister. Spanking is a form of hitting, so does spanking your child to discipline them for hitting make since? No, and it won’t make sense to your child either and send mixed messages to them about what is acceptable and what is not.
So the first and most important rule in disciplining is to lead be example and be a good role model. If you don’t want your kid to do something, than don’t do it yourself. Kids learn most of their behavior by watching others and their parents are the ones that spend the most time with them so you are going to be their first teachers.
Some good disciplining techniques include:
Distraction: Get your child’s attention away from inappropriate behaviors.
Just say No: Using a firm No while looking your child in the eyes is another good method. However, my child has always screamed and cried ever since she was born whenever she hears the word No whether it is directed to her or someone else so we often avoid this method.
Move: No, I don’t mean packing up and moving to a different state every time your child misbehaves. Simply, physically move your child when he or she is misbehaving and especially if you have tried another method to get them to stop.
Walk away: As long as your child can not hurt himself, if your child is misbehaving or throwing a tantrum, simply walk away and ignore the tantrum. Walk into another room where he can not see you. Children often misbehave and through fits for attention or to get what they want, by removing yourself when this happens it will force them to stop and come try to find you or find something else to do since his or her action did not give them the desired response.
Natural Consequences: Natural consequences let your child learn the results of their actions. If your child throws a toy, do not let them play with that toy for the rest of the day.
Logical Consequences: If your child refuses to put their toys away, go ahead and do it for them but don’t let them play with the toys for the rest of the day and explain to them that because you had to put it away instead of them doing it that this is what happens.
Time-outs: Time-outs are often an effective discipline method. Have a designated spot for time-outs. Use a kitchen timer to help time the time-outs.
Withholding Privileges: This is the most used method in our household. Find or know things that your child likes the best (a favorite toy, a game, etc). Take the item away as a consequence to misbehaving.
Always remember to explain to your child why they are being punished/disciplined, because often times they will not realize that their behavior or actions are unacceptable.