SELECTED ARTICLE
Author
Tami Bolton 
Article Title
Child Discipline-Do You Know What it Means? 
Posted Date
11/19/2010 

What is Child Discipline?

Child discipline is teaching children what behaviour is acceptable and what behaviour is not. It helps build a positive self esteem, and encourages children to think for themselves, and make sensible choices in life. Positive discipline teaches children how to be accountable for their actions as well as taking responsibility for themselves.

Punishment vs. Discipline Punishment and discipline are two drastically different methods. The punishment technique uses things like fear tactics to get children to behave in a certain way. This doesn't work in the bigger picture, as children are not taught the valuable lessons of how to think for themselves and also the consequences of making bad decisions. Children are essentially bullied into conforming.

Discipline on the other hand, offers children the opportunity to learn from their mistakes, and helps them to make good decisions in the future. Discipline incorporates communication; an explanation is giving to the child as to why their behaviour is considered to be unacceptable. It also allows for a discussion on the different behaviour choices that could have be chosen instead. Discipline encourages the child's self esteem. It gives them the self-confidence and security to make decent, appropriate decisions in the future.

Respectful Discipline Techniques

It is crucial to remain respectful to the child and their feelings. Behaving in a certain way is a skill which requires learning. Children need to be given the opportunity to express why they've chosen to behave in a certain way. Often times children don't see things with the same insight as adults do. There are times when they have pure motives behind their behaviour, but have not yet learnt the skill set to implement suitable choices. An example of this is a 3 year old putting bubble bath in the fish tank. This behaviour is clearly unacceptable, but by remaining calm (as hard as that might be is certain circumstances) and asking the child why he or she did this, you may be surprised by their response. Maybe the fish wanted a bath, or maybe the fish wanted to play with the bubbles as he or she so loves to do at bath time. This doesn't by any means excuse the behaviour, but by showing the child some respect, you may have a much better understanding of their motives.

Quite often as parents we forget that children don't have the same level of life experience as we do. There are many lessons they have not yet had the opportunity to learn. There are times when children's motives are pure and good. They are trying to be thoughtful and kind. Because of their lack of experience, they might not know the best way to demonstrate these qualities, but at the end of the day, these are the kind of qualities you want your child to grow up with.

Positive Discipline

Positive discipline gives children the opportunity to learn from their mistakes. It gives them the opportunity to learn about the consequences of the choices they make. It teaches them to be responsible and accountable for their actions. In order to instil positive discipline parents need to remain calm and in control. They need to be clear and concise when they speak. Positive discipline encourages communication. It opens up a channel for discussion where children get the chance to learn from and think about the choices they have made. It gives them the motivation to reflect upon the better choices they could make in the future.

References
Child Discipline is a crucial element to get right when raising a child and it is often a concept which leaves many parents feeling confused. There are various Parenting Guidelines to consider. Click on the links above for some more detailed information. 
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