It can be tough for parents to figure out effective discipline techniques that work best for their child.  Patience can be tested when discipline is needed and it may be easy for parents to give in to a temper tantrum or try too hard to diffuse a situation.  It’s important for parents to be ready to approach a behavior situation with a discipline strategy in mind.  Below is a list of common discipline “don’ts” and suggestions on techniques to try instead:

Don’t:  Yell at your child

Do:  Use a calm voice to give requests and then help your child do what you asked

Don’t:  Assume your child knows what you expect him or her to do

Do:  Give clear instructions to guide your child

Don’t:  Hit or spank your child

Do:  Use a natural consequence or a time-out when your child misbehaves

Don’t:  Make threats to try to get your child to stop doing something

Do:  Follow through with an appropriate consequence if your child breaks a house rule

Don’t:  Use bribes to try to get your child to do something

Do:  Use rewards after your child listens well or follows an instruction

Don’t:  Ignore your child when he or she is calm and quiet

Do:  Praise your child for good behavior

Don’t:  Give too much attention to a temper tantrum or whining

Do:  Teach your child the right way to get your attention, by asking politely

Don’t:  Criticize your child

Do:  Use your words intentionally to encourage your child and to point out the things that make your child special!

Was this list helpful?  Please share the best technique you’ve found to deal with a temper tantrum.

Joanna Love is a Licensed Professional Counselor who provides in-home therapy to families of very young children with significant behavior and emotional problems.

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