That magic word!

I have seen both under – and over- involved parents.

We would all like our children to be socially acceptable both in behaviour and attitude. We all like to be proud of how our children behave within the community and in relation to other children.

The approach and attitude to discipline should start with parents perhaps before our little stranger is born.

Coming from different backgrounds and various experiences their own childhood, prospective parents should try to get some form of consensus in how they intend to tackle discipline once the little stranger enters their life. There should always be consistency and both parents should try to follow the same agreed upon response to discipline. (we all remember which parent always gave in to our requests)

There is no general method of disciplining your child. Your culture, your country and it’s laws will dictate to you what are acceptable and unacceptable methods to discipline your child.

Don’t leave it to a nursery school or later to the teacher to discipline your child. Your child needs to learn the difference between right and wrong in the home.

Loving parents should instill basic acceptable behaviour.

From a very young age the little one can learn that there are consequences to unacceptable behaviour.

A child loves attention even if it is negative attention. Don’t lavish attention on unacceptable behaviour.

If you continually shout “NO!” to the child, the word eventually becomes meaningless to the toddler.

Remove that ‘little monster’ from the area where destructive behaviour is observed take him/her to an area where he/she cannot destroy anything or give them something positive to do instead.

If possible ignore tantrums but reward the little one with positive attention when the tantrums have ceased.

There are no perfect children and likewise there are no perfect parents. We all make mistakes. If we learn from our mistakes we will become better parents and we may mould the little ones in our care to become the adults of whom we will be proud.

© Teresa Denton


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