Discipline Tips

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What to do about Whining

I recently encountered a problem with my daughter whining. Ever since the summer recess I’ve been noticing her whining more and more incessantly. A few days ago I decided to put a stop to it. I explained to her that whining is a trait no one likes and especially no likes to hear and that no one wants to be friends with a whiner. When she continued to whine, which happened, I placed her in a timeout. When she is in a timeout there is no talking, so the whining stopped. It took all day, but she stopped whining. I ended up placing her in five timeouts. It took all day and eventually she stopped the behavior. It’s been two days and the whining hasn’t raised its ugly head. Correcting undesirable behavior takes patients, time, and diligence. If your child whines try what I did and see of it works. Best of luck to you.

Should I punish my child for bad behaviour?

Discipline bad behaviour

Bad behaviour in your child requires discipline - not punishment. Although sometimes the discipline may be seen as a form of punishment, discipline is more focused on teaching the child what they have done wrong rather then just making them feel bad about their actions (punishment). Discipline requires sending the child to their room for "time out" for a couple of minutes, or temporarily taking something away from them (a toy or lolly) until they have improved their behaviour, or denying them a treat, i.e. "We won't go to play at the park until you stop...". Discipline also requires you to remove your emotions from the situation as, often, the punishment given is purely our emotional reaction to the situation (yelling at the child or spanking them).

How should I discipline my kids?

Discipline tools

Avoid smacking or yelling at your children. Use discipline tools such as timeout (sending the child to their room for a couple of minutes) or taking away toys (but not their security blanket type toys). When applied consistently, these methods give a very clear message on the consequences for misbehaving without damaging the child's confidence.

How should I discipline my kids?

Apply the rules every time

Are the children not behaving or following your requests? Perhaps you are not being consistent in enforcement. Stick to the rules that you have set for your children or they learn, very quickly, that you don't mean what you say. They will then try to circumvent the system every opportunity that they get.

Should I punish my shild when they hurt themselves being silly?

Be disciplined

Be disciplined with your kids. Don't be soft with them. Give them the right message about being in control and having confidence in your self and your abilities. However, avoid being too firm or arrogant. Discipline means being firm but fair. It also includes allowing yourself to be playful (child-like) but not childish, to be organised but not too organising, to be in control but not controlling, to be the leader but not the dictator. Show your kids strength and backbone, not arrogance and power.

How should I discipline my kids?

Calming your emotions

If you find yourself over-reacting to your child, step away from the situation and count to ten. Do this by slowly breathing in and softly counting a number on each breath out. By the time you reach ten, you will have calmed your emotions. You can then return to deal with the situation more reasonably and effectively.

When should I punish my child?

Separate discipline and empathy

People are more important then the silly things that they do. If your child hurts themselves doing something silly, separate your discipline about the incident from your empathy for the pain. Show your child that you care and love them despite what they have done. However, be careful not to overdo sympathy or the child may link the silly action with the sympathy and do silly things in future just to get sympathy. The order is to be sympathetic first and then discipline second, but don't leave the discipline too long after the incident or the child may not make the connection between the two.


Amusement Park Lines

Taking your kids to an amusement park can present didactic opportunities to teach them how to react to everyday social norms. A common social norm they will encounter is waiting in line or waiting your turn. This may seem easy enough, but countless times children, teens, and even adults have little regard for the common norm of waiting your turn. Tactics people use to lessen the time they spend in line range from having someone hold their place while they are busy doing something else to outright jumping in front of another person. I’ve even witnessed people jump in front of others just because they aren’t moving along fast enough for the people behind them!

Waiting for your turn is a trait we all learn in Pre-K, so why is it when we go to amusement parks people have so much trouble with this basic pre-school concept? The answer is conformity. Children will conform to what a group or their peers will do. I’m sure you’ve heard parents explain their child’s unacceptable behavior by saying “Mary just got involved with the wrong crowd, that’s all” and to some extent those parents are correct. Mary got involved with a crowd that has little to no regard for our societies rules. And your child will experience theses pressures when they reach adolescence as well. How does a parent protect their child from falling into the same conundrum as Mary? For the most part, by setting an example and explaining why we choose to abide by social norms. A strong sense of self is imperative to any child growing up. So the next time you’re at an amusement park with your child set the example to your children that waiting in line is not a hassle, it’s perfectly acceptable and expected. Patience is a virtuous quality that will help your child process their decisions and teach them to not be susceptible to unwanted outside influences.

How do I settle an unhappy child?

Crying toddlers and children

If you have trouble getting your toddler or young child to go to sleep of a night, try this method: Gently but sternly (no yelling) settle them down; spend only a couple of minutes doing this. Then, quietly and without fuss, leave the room telling your child that you will be back in a few minutes. Wait 2 minutes and return, repeating the same settling and leaving routine. Wait 4 minutes and repeat. Keep doubling the wait time. You may find this doesn't work for a night or two, but soon the child will respond and settle more quickly; they'll enjoy Dad's 'tuck-in'.

How do I stop abusing?


Experts now advise against spanking.
Spanking is legal in most jurisdications and I won't say it is always wrong. However, few people have enough knowledge of child psychology to understand the whens & whys of corporal punishment. So, for punishment it is best to skip the spanking and go for the time out.

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John Valadez