The type of discipline you use with your child depends on their age. We would never encourage spanking as a form of discipline. There are many alternative forms of discipline you can use in place of physical discipline that are very effective. The suggestion for the book 1-2-3 Magic is a great one. It has great ideas for disciplining young children. Behavioral techniques tend to work much better on younger children. Rewarding kids for their positive behaviors with "things" and verbal praise will go a long way in encouraging the continuance of those behaviors. Also, giving consequences such as a loss of an extra sweet treat or a privilege such as TV or phone time for negative behaviors is very effective. Time outs can be effective as long as the child is not grounded to a place that is fun for them such as giving them a time out in their room where they have video games.
As children get older they need more discussion as to why what they did was wrong and real life consequences to follow. Grounding works when the crime is related to them having the freedom to go out and about on their own. For example, if they broke the door to their room because slammed it while they were mad, grounding wouldn't be appropriate.
Each child and situation is different. You know your child the best so assess what type of discipline they respond to and continue to do that. Remember to give positive praise whenever possible.
fritzr - the member who asked this question - selected this as the best answer posted by another Education.com member.
from a fellow member
Personally, I think that spanking done properly and with love is fine, but since my step daughter's mother FREAKED OUT when I spanked her daughter once (she was trying to pick the lock of the gun safe ffs!), I've had to figure out other discipline techniques for both of the kids.
Now we're using what we call reward stones. Basically, we have a bunch of those glass pebbles and when they do good things we put some in the reward jar. For bad behavior we take some away. When the jar gets filled, they'll get a reward (currently they're working towards some play equipment for the back yard.)
It all goes into one jar, which creates an environment of peer pressure for the kids to do good. It's pretty common for one of the kids to encourage the other one to act good so they will earn or not lose reward stones.
Time outs don't work for us as punishment. We only use it as a calm-down thing. When one of the kids is getting out of control, we send them to their room until they've calmed down and can behave, but the time that takes is pretty much up to them.
We're using time out as last resort. The key in my opinion is to be firm and follow through on what you said you'll do. if you say to your kid .."one more time and you're getting a time out".. and you don't actually do so, you are sending them the wrong message.
I try to teach my kids the consequences for their actions, It's the best way to learn!
I'm also interested to hear other parents methods.
I am very much against spanking but others swear by it. Some research has suggested that spanking doesn't have the negative effects often associated with it. Also, spanking may be taboo in one culture but accepted in another, so it's tough to say what to do.
I am a firm believer in grounding and taking things away. The child needs to know what the consequences are and stay firm in your stance. I sometimes take the stance where I will not talk to the child, showing how disappointed I am. This worked for me!
Whatever path you choose to discipline your children, I think it is very important that you maintain trust and mutual respect in the parent/child relationship. Different children respond to different methods and parents should try to be a flexible as possible to make sure that when the day ends their children are still confident that they can trust their parents and that their parents love them.
I agree with Seann. My son, for example, doesn't do well with time outs-- it just makes it escalate more and more to the point where there's no turning back. I find that giving a "warning" before taking something away works well. The timer also works for us, for example, "You can have 5 more minutes until bed and I'm setting the timer. Once it goes off there will be no arguing." Also, not just taking something away, but also giving good things when he behaves well, aka, "You were so helpful in getting your self ready for bed. We're even ahead of schedule! So now you can have five extra minutes of lego before bed."
Have you ever heard of the book 1, 2, 3 Magic? It's about disciplining your child. I have just come across it and started just two days ago. I already starting incorporating some of the techniques and they're working! My daughter is 3 with a speech/language delay and with that sometimes often comes behavior problems. I highly recommend this book. It is Magic.
P.S. The first book store I went to was sold out (was told they can't keep it in stock). The second book store I went to, I got the last copy.
I AM NOT ONE OF THOSE PARENTS WHO BELIEVE IN TIME OUT BECAUSE I THINK YOU PLAY TIME OUT WHEN YOU ARE PLAYING A GAME. MY BASIC DISCIPLINING RULE IS TO TAKE AWAY WHAT THE CHILD CARE ABOUT THE MOST LIKE GOING TO SWIMMING , CHORUS, TV, MCDONALDS AND ANY SPECIAL TREATS. IT BOILS DOWN TO THE BEAR NECESSITIES. I DO BELIEVE THAT SOME TIMES A CHILD NEED TO SPANKED BUT NOT BATTERED. THE BIBLE SAY THAT YOU SHOULD SPOIL THE ROD AND SAVE THE CHILD. IF I DON'T THEN LATER ON THE SYSTEM WILL BATTER THEM FOR YOU AND THE CHILD WILL END UP HATING YOU. CHILDREN WANT TO BE CONTROLED, THEY JUST PUSH YOUR BUTTONS TO SEE HOW FAR THEY CAN GET. IF YOU HAVE TO GO TO COURT YOU WILL USE THAT SAME BIBLE TO SWEAR TO TELL THE WHOLE TRUTH AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH SO, BEFORE IT GET TO THAT, I SAY DISCIPLINE WITH LOVE AND LET THEM KNOW THAT IT HURTS YOU MORE THAN IT HURT YOU BECAUSE YOU DIDN'T THINK THAT THEY DIDN'T LOVE THEMSELVES THAT MUCH. OF COPURSE THAT DEPENDS ON THE AGE OF THE CHILD.
With our daughter, we currently try a 1-2-3 countdown, and if I get to 3, there is a consequence (such as no TV or dessert that evening). This method has been working for us for about four years. When she was a toddler, this method didn't work, she didn't correlate consequences, and we often used timeouts then. To prepare for when she is older (and the countdown is not a fit again), I am reading up on other discipline methods: