Disciplining Your Child
Next to love, one of the
biggest gifts we can give our children is clear limits.
Clear limits help them feel safe and secure. But when
is the right time to begin setting these limits?
A good time to start is around the first year, when children
begin to understand what is okay and what is not. We help
them when we have clear and reasonable expectations.
As your child grows, offer her choices and involve her
in making the rules. This helps her become independent
and accept responsibility for her actions. If you set
a good example and praise appropriate behavior, your job
will be much easier.
Dealing with Difficult Behavior
Corina says, “First, I look at Kayla
to make sure she is paying attention. Then I explain,
very simply, why her behavior needs to change.
I always offer her a couple of choices we can
You Can’t Spoil a Baby
Give your baby prompt, loving attention. Babies
feel insecure and anxious when their needs are not
met. When your baby does something you don’t
like, gently move him or remove a dangerous object
from his path.
Babies are fragile. Hitting or shaking a baby can
cause brain damage or even death. Yelling upsets
babies. If you feel that you might lose your temper
or hurt your baby, get help right away. Put him
in his crib, walk into the next room and count to
10. Then call a friend or this confidential helpline:
Child Abuse Hotline.
Things You Can Do
Where to Find Help
Guiding Toddlers and Young Children
By 15 months of age, children
begin to understand how to behave. You can set a few
simple limits, such as not running into the street,
hurting people or animals, or damaging things.
Children ages 3 to 4 are better able to understand and
do what you expect. Be consistent and praise appropriate
- Set a good example.
- Offer several choices that you can accept.
- Help children express their feelings with words,
rather than hitting.
- Avoid spanking or hitting. It can hurt your
child physically and emotionally.
- Criticize the behavior, not the child. “Don’t
run into the street. You could get hurt!” is better
than “You’re a bad boy!”
- Be specific. “Draw on the paper”