Providing positive discipline for children – Part 2

Explore strategies for child disciplining and child rearing by understanding your parenting style and history, and by creating an environment conducive to positive discipline.

It’s important to explore and have an understanding of the purposes and principles of positive discipline in young children. Doing so will enable you to generate several appropriate techniques for dealing with discipline problems involving children of varying ages.

Understand yourself and the precedence set in your life by your parents
Understand your own parenting style and your history. Did you experience harsh or physical punishment in your upbringing? Try and remember that for the most part, our parents may have punished us by what was the norm for that time, doing the best they could or knew how. Now that you have your own children, consider how you could learn from their discipline style or the mistakes they may have made. Ask yourself, “Is this the way I want my children to experience positive discipline (to teach) or have the experience of punishment (to know someone is bigger than us and can hurt us), whether it be physical, verbal, or emotional?”

We all learn when someone shows us respect and talks to us about our mistakes, not yelling or hitting us. Remember, children should be treated in the same way if we expect them to learn from their mistakes.

Create an environment they can safely explore
Give children plenty of opportunities to explore in the home and outside. Instead of always saying “no,” try showing them what is/is in the object you’re directing them away from (example: a cupboard) and give them a logical reason as to why they can’t go into that area. Most times if we just say no, it can make them more curious.

Provide age-appropriate toys and books to lower the level of frustration the child feels; always child-proof for the child’s age level. Remember to physically get down on the child’s level; if they are a crawler, then get down on the floor to see dangerous items they could get into. It can be a whole different world that we don’t see when we are looking down. Always remember to cut the loop or wrap the strings on any blinds so that they are out of reach.

Lastly, set limits. When you say “no,” mean it and stick to it. Children get confused if we say “yes,” than “no.” The child will learn not to trust what we say, because sometimes we change our minds. It is important to stay consistent.

Explore strategies for child disciplining and child rearing through routines and positive attention by reading part one of this article series: “Providing positive discipline for children – Part 1.”

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