How I Do It: Discipline
I’m strict. Don’t get me wrong. I’m a laid back person, but I don’t put up with a lot of disobedience. While I love and adore my kiddos, and we have the best time wherever we go, they know the rules. And not following them can result in time-out or a restriction. I know, I know, y’all are thinking, “but when are your children bad and misbehave??”, well, just like any other children, they have their moments. W has a temper at times, and E doesn’t always listen as well as she should.
Threaten to take something away. It usually works like a charm. I’ll tell them no tv show after dinner, or you don’t get to sleep with a certain stuffed animal that night. My main thing is that you have to follow through, with whatever consequence you give. For instance, if you tell them that if they whine one more time, that they don’t get to to go to their friend’s party, well then you better stick to that. Also, I probably wouldn’t give such a severe consequence, but hey, if you think it’s effective, go with it. One thing’s for sure, do what works for you and your children, and once you find the right discipline tactic, stick with it.
Repetition and consistency is key. That way if they know they’re being disobedient, hopefully they’ll correct themselves first, before being corrected by you…well, that’s the goal we’re going for here, right? Just keep in mind that if you give them an inch, they’ll walk all over you. Meaning that if they see that they can get away with it, without being disciplined, then they’ll keep doing it. But I know you’ve got to pick your battles, so I’d choose the ones that are the most important.
Sharing. One thing I’ve taught my kids is that if they want a toy that the other is playing with, instead of just grabbing it, they should use the barter system…offer up another toy for them to play with, in exchange for the one they’d like. And if they ask nicely to switch and they still say no, then they still must wait their turn. At age three, I’ve learned that saying “wait your turn” is so much more effective than saying “share”.
1-2-3 works. It gives children a chance to collect their composure, or stop what they’re not supposed to be doing, before getting disciplined. Like “I’m going to count to three and if you’re still crying/whining, you’ll have to go to time-out.”
Restarting the day. If they’ve started the morning off on a bad note, ex. the girls are fighting, fussy, etc., a lot of times I’ll have them stop, take a couple of deep breaths, and we’ll talk about how we’re going to start the day over, and this time we’ll be more happy, helpful, obedient, etc. It actually works most of the time!
Eye contact. Whatever you do, when communicating with your child, maintain eye contact with them. That way you know their listening to you, and it shows that you’re giving them your undivided attention.
Incentives, positive reinforcement, and rewards will be saved for a later post. Just be sure and equal out the disciplining with rewarding. If you discipline too much, they’ll start figuring out that that’s how to get your attention, and they’ll misbehave more. Trust me, I’ve not only witnessed it in my classroom, when I used to teach, but in my home, as well. All children are smarter than you think!
My hope is that these tips give you some fresh disciplining techniques and hopefully keep your kids in line. Please feel free to give me some of your tactics, that work for you and your family. I’d love to hear them, and get some new ideas to try!
Of course, now I’m having to reprimand L, especially with the Christmas tree and all the ornaments up. Let’s just say that hearing the word “no” is definitely something new for him. But I guess disciplining has to start sometime…
Hope y’all have a great rest of your Monday!
It’s pretty cloudy here today, hope it clears up soon!