10 Child Discipline Strategies That Work

Before I put my kids to sleep, I had a little discussion with my eldest and there's a guilt feeling in my heart that I may have gone ove...

Before I put my kids to sleep, I had a little discussion with my eldest and there's a guilt feeling in my heart that I may have gone overboard.

Questions like - Have I gone too far?  Was I already yelling?  Was I really making myself clear without losing too much temper?  Did I make him feel down instead of encouraging him to do better?  Did I say negative things?  Will my current style really work on him?  What will be the effect of this to him in the future?  Did he really understand what I said?  Did I scare him off instead of teach him to do the right thing next time? - had entered my mind since we ended the discussion.  Actually, as I type away right now, I still feel guilty.

On the other hand, I may also be too hard on myself right now for battering myself with guilt.  Every parent just wants what's best for their children, teach them what's right from wrong, what's acceptable and not and desires to build a better future for them.  Sometimes there are road blocks that we couldn't escape from especially my kid is nearing the tween age, the adolescent stage, when it may become more difficult, if things will not be corrected right now.

Looking back at the discussion earlier, I think I was talking too much, asking him questions brought about by anger.  Expecting him already to give me an answer I won't like.  Hence, making me more intense and more upset.  Those tears in his eyes, that I know he's trying to hold back with a lump in his throat, signal hurt or maybe fear.  How do I get him to remember everything I teach him?  

Don't get me wrong, he's not an unruly kid.  In fact he behaves really well inside and out of our home which is endearing of him.  He's a good boy overall, a good student, a helpful and responsible kid.  I think I am expecting too much.  I just want him to remember everything I teach him, form a good habit out of it which later on will have a major effect on his future adult life.

Raise Respectful Kids
Photo from Flickr Creative Commons by  o5com
Because of this, I've searched around on disciplining a grade-schooler.  Here is a compilation of discipline strategies:

1. We're all in this together. Right from the start, teach your kids that your family is a mutual support system, meaning that everyone pitches in. Even a baby can learn to "help" you lift her by reaching out her arms, says Madelyn Swift, founder and director of Childrightand author of Discipline for Life, Getting It Right With Children. 
2. Respect is mutual. One of the most common complaints parents and kids have about each other is "You're not listening." Set a good example early on: When your child tries to tell you something, stop what you're doing, focus your attention, and listen. Later you can require the same courtesy from her.

3. Consistency is king. One good way to raise a child with emotional strength? Be consistent and unwavering about rules and chores, says Harvard professor Dan Kindlon, author of Too Much of a Good Thing. Even if you pick just one chore to insist on, your child will be better off, Kindlon says. "Being firm and consistent teaches your child that you care enough about him to expect responsible behavior."

4. Life's not always fair. We're so afraid of disappointing or upsetting our kids — too afraid, say some discipline pros. "If a child never experiences the pain of frustration — of having to share a toy or wait their turn in line — or if they're never sad or disappointed, they won't develop psychological skills that are crucial for their future happiness," says Kindlon
5. Teach Consequences - We want our children to always make the right choices in life.  Let's take for example working on assignments.  Let's say the child didn't finish his homework on time he should be told to wake up early in the morning to do it or stay later at night.  We should encourage the child to find a solution to get things he's supposed to do, done.
6. Allow Re-Dos - like in my case earlier, I feel that I may have said not-so-positive things to him out of frustration or anger which I wish I could take back, afraid that I might have hurt him. The Re-Do strategy allows you or your child to tell once more what each of you want to say with more respect and less hurtful manner.
7. Trying Reverse Rewards – It says, we could put at least three of his favorite treats in a jar with smileys.  If he breaks one rule, you take out one smiley and one treat from the jar.  Whatever is left before bedtime, he gets to have it the following day.
Source(1-7): Baby Center
8. Losing Privileges – Taking away something fun for him is a widely used tool for parents now.  It is helpful when used sparingly.  Choose a restriction that’s easy to enforce, like taking away toys or his gaming privileges.  Make sure to use this strategy for repeated offenses and not to make it too long.
9. Write a Good Points Journal (Positive Reinforcement) – I asked my eldest to keep a journal where he writes his daily good boy points.  I check it after coming home from work.  Each good boy point is equivalent to P1.00 which he could get by the end of the week, but with a cap limit (I only give as much as P30).  This encourages the child to do good because he knows he will be rewarded.  Before giving points, I validate his list from the people he’s with while I’m gone.
10. Stop “Telling” Start “Asking” – How would you feel if people around you tell you what to do repeatedly?  Irritating.  So will our children, who instead of listening to the TO-DO roll call, they will resent and most likely not follow it.  But children when asked, will more likely cooperate, understand and follow house rules.  Source: Positive Discipline


Telling Parent

1. Go brush your teeth.

2. Don’t forget your coat.

3. Go to bed.
4. Do your homework.
5. Stop fighting with your brother..
9. Pick up your toys.

Asking Parent

1. What do you need to do if you don’t want your teeth to feel skuzzy?
2. What do you need if you don’t want to be cold outside?
3. What do you need to do to get ready for bed?
4. What is your plan for doing your homework?
5. What can you and your brother do to solve this problem?
9. What do you need to do with your toys when you are finished playing with them?
Implementation Plans
I always say, it's easier said or read than done.  But one step at a time, I know I'd be able to near-master parenting and child discipline.  More patience, consistency, reassurance and a lot of L-O-V-E is needed to succeed this parenting journey.  For now, I'll sleep it off and talk to him again tomorrow.  Goody night.

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  1. Great tips. My seven year old is beginning to have a mind of his own and challenging me sometimes. hayyy, so near to the teen years na (when your nightmares will begin haha. joke. I have two teens and they are precious!)

    1. Oh no.. I can't even imagine my son being a teenager. I think I'm going to cry!


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