For those of you who’ve been following my blog it will come as a relief as it did to us when finally we’ve experienced one week of relative calm .
What brought about this sudden change of heart ? Surprisingly, it is nothing unique but the time honoured method of showing the kid who is the boss. Sadly parents these days have taken friendship with their children a bit too far and are so scared of disappointing them that they’d do anything to see the child happy.
But what they fail to realise is that a child loves discipline and in his little brain a firm NO is a better way to show him love than an hour’s negotiation which invariably leaves him in a wail of frustration ” can’t you understand me?”is what the child seems to ask at the end of this of this game of should we do this? or should we do that?
Essentially a child needs a parent not a friend. Discipline is the way he knows that he is loved. Remember never to make threats you can’t carry out so make sure your punishments are not harmful
Reward and Punishment
Democracy means that all of us are born equal but unfortunately children are children and even though they understand language, they don’t always understand logic. Living for the moment, they don’t appreciate delayed gratification. Nor do they understand punishment meted out for an earlier action. They need to know that reward and punishment are here and now.
A gentle pat on the bottom where it won’t hurt, a raised voice and an angry tone are often enough to get the child to behave the way you want him to. Negotiation doesn’t work.
All of us seek praise and feel good when someone appreciates us. Reinforce good behaviour by appreciation and automatically good behaviour is discouraged.
Acceptable social behaviour
While a child’s inherent personality should be respected and allowed to flourish, it is important to note that a child should abide by acceptable social behaviour. And this is not something that is learned but what is taught. Mothers of children who are monsters at school are amazed at how their little devils become obedient little lambs. Are the teachers caning them or beating them into submission? Not at all.
I spoke to a kindergarten teacher who explained to me how a child can be trained to be obey by slowly making him realise that what goes at home doesn’t fly in a social environment. For instance disruptive behaviour like screaming for attention, not respecting other children’s property, not following basic school rules will not be of any use.
It is important to inculcate good behavioural patterns in children so that life is better for you and the child and those around you. After all , the other people in a restaurant are not interested in witnessing your child’s meltdown. Nor are other shoppers interested in watching your child dart in and out of aisles.
Encouraging good habits
Learning starts at home so a child should slowly be taught basic things
- putting away his shoes and washing his hands
- keeping away his toys after playing
- not throwing food or wasting things on his plate
- playing only with things that he can play with
- speak when spoken too – not every one likes to converse with little kids no matter how cute their babble is.
Essentially a child needs boundaries and if you allow him to scream his way through, it only shows him that you really don’t care. So a firm hand and gentle guidance is all that is needed to rear a happy child without resorting to violence or abuse.
And finally remember that if anything goes wrong, it is only the mother to be blamed. So harden your heart and take a tough stand and show your little one who the boss really is!
Do you agree? Have you ever had to discipline a rowdy toddler? What methods did you use to calm him down?