Discipline of your kids is a very con-traversal subject. These are some rules I use that are Bible based.
I'm often encouraged by others (strangers and friends) that my kids are well behaved. While I've had my share of those oops and embarrassed parent moments, my husband and I have always stuck to a biblical plan on how to discipline our kids.
Attention to the Kids (this part is important)
Make sure you encourage them and tell them when they do good things also. It's called positive reinforcement. When you notice them sharing say, "I like when you share". If you notice them using manners say, "I like when you say thank you to people". Don't go over board but make sure they know they have good qualities too. Hug and love on them often. Say I love you.
Don't compare them to other siblings or other people. We love each our kids for their unique qualities. Joshua is our "Class clown" and is very responsible. Andrew is our "loving tree monkey" and has a great view of what is wrong and what is right. Ashlyn is our "little princess" and see's the beauty of everything. Lillian is our "little independent" and loves to try new things and explore. We focus on their unique qualities and know their "Love language". We have also taught them ours so they know more how to love us.
We spend time as a family doing activities. We even play their games with them. We teach them that even though God and our spouses always come first they are very important to us. We do not live our lives through our kids and we do allow them to get bored and to rest. The kids know they can come to us with anything and we will listen.
The key to good discipline is consistency and immediate follow through.
To spank or not to spank.
Often there are times when you are not allowed to spank children. Most the time it's because they are not yours or they are foster children. Sometime you can't even use it on yours when you are "too hot or angry" to discipline with a spanking. "Never Spank when you are Angry" What do you do then?
With younger kids I totally recommend the time outs. They really don't have a currency except time with you and that you don't want to remove. You may have to keep returning them to the time out spot and restarting the time. Here is the best info I have ever found for the time out.
Here is an example from when my girls under two.
Here is an example from when my girls under two.
I had just put up the toddler bed but I left the pack and play up. This is what they were sleeping in before. They though their bed was cute and loved it. Now that the toddler bed was up, the pack in play was only that place they had to go if they kept getting out of bed. By making it an unwanted place to be the toddler bed because the preferred place to sleep. Because this was a learning situation the freedom to move around the room and the house they were not punished unless they left there room or were loud enough for use to notice they were not in their bed. We also didn't have any toys besides stuffed animals in the room which made them more likely to stay in the bed and play with the animals. Yes they did fall asleep sometimes on the floor of the room. We always shut the doors to the rooms.
If my kids throw toys at each other or hurt the other one on purpose with a toy. They lost the toy. Toy time out. Always put it where they can see it for maximum impact.
As my kids got to school age we move to no spankings. So with my older kids the things they love are "Nintendo DS, staying up, playdates, tv, Wii and computer time". The trick is to know your child's favorite things. We often have them pick their punishments, here is an example.
My oldest told a lie about his younger brother. Because their were two sides of the story we decided to punish both. Neither were allowed to stay up or play any electronics until the truth was told. After about 3 days my son finally tired of not being able to stay up admitted that it was him that lied. So we told him to go to his room come up with two forms of punishment and report back to us. He also had to apologize to both us and his brother. We also apologized to his brother for not believing him and did make it up to him by replacing what he lost. He came up with no DS for a week and no staying up for a week as two separate punishments. We did them both because he lied. We always punish harsher for lies.
Boys are totally different from girls and kids different from other kids.
My daughters have manipulation down to an art. They know to cry when being scolded, and they know it melts my heart. Others fall much more quickly too it. So what do you, how can you tell it's crying verses manipulation. Honestly I think it is age. Here is the difference for a 5 year old and a 3 year old.
3 year old: Crying, You can tell she wants to get away from the scolding and wants it to be over.
5 year old: Crying, Tries to love you in to stopping. Get's closer and wants to hug you.
The thing is you have to finish the lesson. I usually ask them what happens when you do.....? What do you get....? It helps to keep you focused on the problem and the consequence and no the tears. I also call my daughter out on her manipulation of me and others. She knows what manipulation means.
The boys responded better to action and consequences and usually didn't cry when told what they did was wrong. They seem to only cry when they know they have disappointed us.
Punishment to fit the crime!
Spankings should hurt!
I got great advice from a friend a long time about about using a wooden spoon when my spankings with my hand became in-effective. Use it on yourself first so you can see how hard to swing. Don't forget to compensate for padding of diaper or pull-up.Spankings should not leave marks or welts. A little redness like you get when you clap your hands is all you should be doing here.
How do kids learn not to touch the stove and what hot is? Pain is a great teacher. I do not promote abuse though. If you are Angry don't spank, cool down first. Spank only for defiance and disrespect. The bottom and firmly on the buns is the only place you should be spanking here. Discipline is loving never hateful.
Younger than 3 year old discipline.
Moving baby: We use the "no no not safe" the fist time they touch the outlet. The second time we repeat the phrase and tap the hand. We repeat each time, the tap making it little harder each time with tap. The goal is safety.
At about 12-15 months you child learns what it means to do the opposite of what you say. Run away when you tell them to come here, touch plug ins after you tell them no. This is where we start the discipline of defiance. Notice we have been working our way up to this punishment.
We do not run after our children when we tell them to come here, unless they are going to get hurt. If they don't come we walk toward them slowly repeating in a firm voice come here. If they run they get a spanking. They will eventually learn to come when called. So they don't think it is a game of chase I recommend only chasing them when on your knees or crawling. As they get older they will know what is what so you can stand up too.
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