Discipline is about helping children learn how to behave appropriately. You can use a range of discipline strategies to teach your child the basics of good behaviour on basis of their age. But don’t forget, it works best when you have a warm and loving relationship with your child, in fact, it is built on good communication with your child. Let’s have a look at why is it important for your child to be disciplined –
- Your child will know what behaviour is appropriate, whether at home, at a friend’s house, at child care, preschool or at school.
- Managing their own behaviour and developing important skills like the ability to mingle with other kids easily, respecting & helping others.
- Learn to understand, manage and express their feelings properly to others.
Depending on your child’s age, you will discipline them differently. While disciplining your child, start by setting some rules that your child clearly understands. While implementing discipline, be consistent and set rules that encourage your child to succeed. Appreciate when your child does something right and encourage their best behaviour. Below are some basic tips to encourage discipline in your child:
- Set some rules: Talk to your child and decide on family rules. You may set rules like – We speak nicely to each other, look after each other in the family, ask for help in house chores, look after our own belongings etc. You can also involve your, child, in helping to decide on some of these rules.
- Establish a routine: Make morning and bedtime routines predictable so that your child can anticipate their day. If your child has a change in their routine like a visit to the dentist or a family member visiting for the weekend, let them know well in advance. If your child needs some time to adjust, build this into their routine.
- Teach about your expectation: In spite of expecting children to understand & behave properly, tell them what is expected from them at a specific point in time. Children learn by watching what they do. So behave in the same way as you expect from your child rather than just reading the manual on good behaviour. For example, if you want your child to sit down to eat, sitting down together to eat family meals can help children learn this behaviour.
- Provide consequences of their act: Decide on a consequence for breaking a family rule and give some space for natural consequences to occur because that can help your child gain a sense of cause-and-effect and build self-responsibility. Give choices to your child and let them know about the outcome of their choices and then let your child ultimately decide and take responsibility of the consequences & experience them.
- Praise your child for good behaviour: “Praise is when you tell your child what you like about him or his behaviour.” Descriptive praise works amazingly for your child because he knows exactly what it is that you like and he tries to improve on it continuously. Praising your child is the best option for you to encourage your child to consistently behave well.