|Ten Guidelines for Effective Discipline of Children
- The goal of discipline is to teach children acceptable behavior. Whenever possible, teach children what you want to see rather than punishing them.
- View children's misbehavior as a mistake in judgment. It will be easier to think of ways to teach more acceptable behavior.
- Never hit or shake infants. They do not know right and wrong. They do not misbehave on purpose. They need love and protection, not punishment.
- Create a safe environment for children. Baby-proof the house. Distract or remove infants and toddlers when they are doing something they shouldn't be doing.
- Provide order and consistency. Whenever possible have regular times for meals, studying and bedtime.
- Give toddlers and preschoolers age-appropriate choices and consequences.
- Establish family rules that are appropriate for children's ages. Keep them few in number with clear and reasonable consequences for not obeying.
- Develop a trusting relationship with children by protecting them from harm, by being honest and trustworthy, and by exhibiting predictable and mature behavior.
- Children need to hear more good things about themselves than bad things. Offer praise for appropriate behavior. Praise will increase that behavior.
- Adopt a "no-hitting" attitude. No one has a right to hit anyone else in the household...that includes hitting children for misbehavior.