Friday, May 28, 2010


"teaching children discipline requires that u control yr impulses"

Most parents don't want to shame, punish/humiliate their children, but they're not sure what to do to help them behave properly. Although behavior modification is hotly debated among experts, most agree that children need clearly defined limits. As a parent who wants to raise your child to get along with others, how do you define limits & what should you do when rules are broken? Below are 3 important tips...

Child Behavior Management Tips
1) First & foremost if u expect children to behave & follow rules, make sure they know what they are & understand why they're in place. Clarity is the essence of child behavior management which means the rules must be few, simple & clear.

For instance, "We do not hit others" / "We do not draw on walls". When yr child disobeys a rule, be gentle, but firmly repeat the rule "We do not hit others" & give a reminder about the reason why.

For instance, "We use our words to tell others how we feel/what we need/want, rather than hitting them". Rule with reason & your child will act with integrity & strength.

2) Child behavior modification strategies should be employed when a child needs to change a behavior that hurts/endangers others/their property. Take this seriously because behavior that is threatening to others does not just go away. Rather than resorting to blame, shame/punishment, appeal to yr child's sense of compassion & do it in a way that is appropriate to yr child's level of development. Considering a child's level of development is paramount to effective child behavior management.

To do this, use story as a tool & take the scenario & turn it around.

For instance, let's say that your child grabbed away another child's toy on the playground. Tell your child a simple "what if" story that makes her the victim of this same/a similar aggression. Afterwards, ask her how she thinks it must feel to be playing with a toy when another child grabs it away. Now make the association to the act she just committed by asking her how the other child must have felt.

Next, ask her how she can make things right with the other child. This is how you teach compassion—u ask yr child to imagine herself in another person's shoes. Although this takes more time than yelling at yr child/punishing her, it will teach yr child to consider other people's feelings & respect their limits before she acts.

3) Child behavior management can be even more challenging when yr child is moody. Like adults, children have mood swings & may have periods when they're feeling down & it is difficult for them to control their impulses. Since this provides the impetus for them to act out, make sure yr child has the essential for good behavior: healthy food, plenty of sleep & a secure relationship with u.

If she has a period in which she seems to have days where she's feeling mad/sad, help her learn how to express & release those feelings. Although children should be encouraged to express verbally what is bothering them, for some kids, physical activity can jump start the process.

Sometimes, a series of punches to a pillow/punching bag will create the physical release necessary to let the words come out. Other times, physical expression will be enough. If u notice that yr child seems particularly moody, step up the time u spend together & also increase her level of physical activity by going on more walks, bike rides/trips to the playground. Get her out in the sunshine & help her feel close to u. Often, this is enough to neutralize a mood. Helping yr child to find positive outlets for her feelings will help her to act from a secure, happy & healthy base.
~family matters parenting magazine~

...consider that teaching children discipline requires that u control yr fact, it may be better not 2 use d words child behavior mgmt at all...instead, focus on teaching yr child d skills she/he needs 2 learn 2 get along with others in order 2 thrive in this world...

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