Bests Practices to Effect Corrective Punishment on a Toddler
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It is natural for toddlers to be mischievous. When your child does something wrong, you should not ignore it. Some form of punishment is necessary to instill discipline in them. However, many parents are struggling with how to punish their toddlers effectively to have a meaningful impact. Even the best parents are having difficulties.
Below are a few best practices on how to discipline your toddler effectively:
Best Toddler Discipline Practices
1. Be consistent
Once you decide to punish your kid for a particular mistake, be consistent with that decision. Don’t let them off the hook the next time and the one after that if they commit the same error. Otherwise, the punishment will be ineffective. You need to be consistent with your punishment, or else your toddler will never take you seriously.
2. Take away privileges instead of spanking
It hurts a toddler severely if you take away her rights rather than spanking her. Spanking may seem like a direct and effective way to do that, but it delivers other messages you don’t want to send, such as fear, danger, poor-self-esteem, and distrust. Take away the activity that she likes to do most. This punishment is sufficient because she will have a reminder not to repeat that mistake. Also, clarify to her after what time her privileges can be earned back. Twenty-four hours is sufficient time.
3. Ignore attention-seeking behavior
Toddlers can be cheeky, and at times, they misbehave to get your attention. They deliberately do something dangerous to see how you will react. Instead of giving them the focus with all their whining or complaining, ignore. Pretend like you have not heard or seen her. Once she asks politely or behaves appropriately, you can turn your attention to her. That is how your child will learn polite behavior over time.
4. Teach your child new skills
For punishment to be effective, you must be teaching your child new skills. For example, you are punishing your child because she threw a temper tantrum. Instead of just yelling, teach her how to calm herself when she feels upset. Teaching new skills will help to reduce the occurrences of bad behavior. Discipline should not just be punishment. It should also be a learning experience for your kid.
5. Provide logical consequences
There are logical consequences inherent in a specific kind of behavior. Linking the result directly to the behavior will show your kid that the choices she makes have direct effects. For example, no snack if she does not have dinner.
6. Allow for natural consequences
Sometimes, it is good to allow nature to have its way. Let her learn from her mistakes. If she decides to play outside without a sweater and she feels cold, she will know next time to go out on a sweater. However, don’t allow your child to experience any real danger.
7. Praise and reward good behavior
Instead of always punishing your child, let there be times when you reward her for good behavior. Try and catch your child doing good rather than bad. Have a reward system that motivates her to continue doing better.
Discipline and punishment are part of bringing up a child. You should not neglect this vital aspect of parenthood because it has future implications.