I’ve seen with experience, that punishments do not work well in the long term. The child who is given a time out every time, or is shouted at for his mistakes and misbehaviour every time is more likely to get used to with the punishment. Also, this increases the distance and weakens the parent-child bond.
Disciplining your child is very important and if the method to discipline her is shifted from punishment to Logical Consequences, then it can have a lasting effect and the bond you share gets stronger with time as the child understands her mistakes.
Here I’ve listed some logical consequences which can be used for general behaviours of the child-
1. Loss of privileges.
This is an easy logical consequence to fall back on as it can be applied to so many different situations. If your child is throwing her toys or refusing to share with others, she loses the privilege of playing with them for the rest of the day.
If your child throws a tantrum when you ask her to stop playing with her phone, game time is reduced or removed for a period of time.
If your child behaves badly during a playdate with her friends, the playdate is cut short and/or she’s not allowed to participate in a playdate the following weekend.
2. Additional household chores.
If your child has a tendency to complain she’s bored or refuse to participate in activities, crafts, and games you organize on weekends and school holidays, a logical consequence would be to assign household chores (‘I’d like to do X, but if you don’t want to participate, the other option is to help me with Y.’).
3. If you break it, you fix it.
Kids love to play roughly with their toys, and sometimes they break them out of anger or frustration. It’s normal. But when you stop fixing their toys for them, they will soon learn to respect their belongings and the belongings of others.
4. Take a 10-minute break.
When behaviour gets out of control, a short break in which a child is quiet can help calm her down and help ground her. This doesn’t need to be as drastic as sending a child to her room or ordering her into a time out. Simply removing her from the activity she is participating in and asking her to sit quietly and read a book for 10 minutes can help restore a sense of calm without it feeling like a true form of punishment.
5. No work, no play.
If your child refuses to do her chores, don’t be afraid to take away playtime. Once your child makes the connection, she’ll act more appropriately.
While logical consequences require foresight and involvement from parents, teachers, and caregivers, they are extremely effective in helping children replace poor behaviours with more appropriate choices when used correctly. Remember to be clear about rules and expectations, consider the reasons behind your child’s behaviour, and use consequences that are relevant, realistic, and respectful.