Resources for parents of at-risk and troubled teens.



February 2011

How to Discipline Children - Teen Problems in California

by Staff, on california, children, discipline, kid, parents, teen, teenage

Disciplining children in California is a skill that needs to be developed over the years, as your child grows. Ways of discipline will change as it gets older. Positive discipline leads to well-behaved children, which will save from troubles later, when they grow older.

Do not mistake discipline with punishment. It is more of learning, giving instructions, setting rules, teaching your child right from wrong. Discipline methods will vary as your child grows older, but important thing is to start almost as soon as baby is born.

Curious by nature, little children will try to reach, touch and even taste anything. As many times this object will be dangerous and unacceptable, you have to be there to remove them, or distract them with something else. This is the time when you will first start using “no” word, which over the years must develop into the strong command that your child will obey at once.

As child grows, you will expand boundaries of its limitations and set new ground rules. It is important to make them understand why something is forbidden, not just get angry when they do something wrong. “Because I said so” don’t usually have great affect. You have to be patient with your kids, and repeat and repeat and repeat yourself many time, as they can not be expected to understand everything, there is just so many thing they have to learn.

Limit yourself in giving orders and teaching your child a lot of things at once. It is just a child, still confused and you don’t have to confuse it even further. Children are playful, so you can’t expect them just to sit quietly all day. You can use this to give your self some fun time, and playing time is great for learning. After your kid is finished playing with toys, for example, don’t let your child just go away, and leave the mess. Give him (or her) an example, and collect toys together. After a while your child will learn to collect them by itself.

You cannot expect your children just to obey command, especially for the first time, and just punish them if they do not obey. They will not pick their toys if they never see you do it. But, after a while, when you educated them how and why to do it, you can start expecting them to do it by themselves. If they don’t, then you will order them. Avoid repeating commands, and if you do, do it once with a warning of punishment. If still not obeyed, you have to go along with the punishment, or your child won’t take you seriously.

Choose appropriate punishment, like taking toys away for some time, and give them back when they promise to clean up after themselves. If the lesson is not taught, on the next occasion prolong the time of giving toys back. Don’t argue and avoid compromise, and don’t give in into crying and whining. You will only teach them this is the way to get what they want. On the other hand, compliment good behavior, and award it. Punish and award deeds as soon as they happen.

Spanking your children is not recommended. If you do that sometimes, as your very lost result, try not to hurt your child. Raising hand on them will be enough to scare them and show that you are serious. Simple spanking is not forbidden in California, but in unreasonable use may be seen as abuse and be judged by a third party. Staff