May 13, 2013 by admin
How to Discipline Your Child – Clear Expectations Make it Easier on Both of You
Setting clear expectations helps you discipline your child more effectively. Communicating with your child is sometimes challenging. The younger they are the lower their ability to understand what you are saying and the harder it is for them to express themselves.
One thing that works at any stage of child development is setting clear expectations and consistent results when their behavior is bad or good.
Switching the end result or the rules of the game from day to day is a surefire way to confuse your child and pretty much hand them full license to behave as they wish. This leads to frustration on both sides. Kids do like boundaries, rules and leaning cause and effect.
Under 3 years old they need you to establish simple rules. Tell them, even though they will have some trouble understanding, that things like hitting, yelling, biting or other negative behaviors have a consequence. That may be as simple as you leaving the room for 1 minute.
Toddlers are very quick to learn that if they act poorly then things they do not like happen. They are also quick to forget so again be consistent every day even if it does not appear to be working. Patterns are forming in their minds and inconsistent behavior from you now can lead to hard to control kids down the road.
For older children the same rules apply. Sit down and explain the rules, let them know that these rules are not negotiable. But do not create rules and punishments that you cannot follow through on. You need to believe they are necessary and correct.
Older children often perform well with written contracts or a chart on the wall that shows them the expected behaviors, the rules and the consequences that go with breaking them.
An important part of discipline is also rewarding good behavior. Give them the right to expect praise or rewards for being good. Clear expectations work both ways in happy, healthy relationships.
Make sure that your child knows that these expectations and rules are there for their benefit, their safety and that you are doing it because you love them.
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