Parents are a child’s first teacher and sometimes we overlook that and get frustrated in moments of discipline. Keeping in mind that children mimic our actions and learn from us can really help in challenging situations of punishing our children.
Although it might not be easy, there is always TIME.
T- Teach your children by what you do and what you say.
I- Instruct them clearly in all areas of their lives.
M- Monitor what they do and how they do it.
E- Encourage them in their failures AND their successes.
With TIME, you can make discipline more about teaching than about punishing. For example, if your child whines and asks for candy every time you go to the grocery store, you can use TIME to:
T- Teach your child through her own words and behaviors to stay calm when you say “No”.
I- Instruct your child to be polite when asking for candy and doing so without whining when they receive an answer they don’t want, and to accept your answer instead.
M- Monitor what your child does and how she acts. This can help in future situations to prevent the following from occurring: “We are going to check out. Please do not ask for candy because I am not going to buy you any today.”
E- Encourane your child when they are doing something great. “Thank you, Ellie, for not asking me for candy today. You are being a good girl. Mommy is so proud of you!”
By the same token, you should discourage your child’s failure to use appropriate behaviors by establishing consequences for bad behavior. For example, if your daughter continues to whine for candy after you’ve told her “No,” you can remind her of the rules and give a consequence: “We don’t whine for candy at the grocery store. Today we had to buy the groceries we needed and nothing else. For whining, you must sit quietly in time out.”
Put your TIME in.
Being a good parent and teacher means taking the TIME to provide positive discipline to your children. When you do, you can correct them in ways that teach them how to make better choices next time. Along the way, you will teach your child lessons that will last a lifetime, ones they can use when they have children of their own.