Often parents resort to spanking and hitting their kids when angry and irritated. Parents normally use spanking as a means of discipline. But does it work? If you spank your kid whenever he commits some mistake do you think that he will learn by this act? Research shows that spanking makes more harm than good and children tend to be rebellious and violent. Studies confirm that children who are treated aggressively physically will grow up to be aggressive. So the potential for the cycle of abuse to repeat itself through the generations is increased. Another reason that spanking is not a recommended form of discipline is that it can backfire. Therefore never spank your kid. Remember one thing that children are masters of imitation and look to their parents as models. So when hitting is used for discipline, parents risk having the child model that behaviour. They learn to hit, just like mom and dad thinking this is the correct approach.

Following are a few parenting tips that will be helpful to you when disciplining your child.

  • What is more important for parents is to realise that teaching your child good values and virtues and disciplining him is something that is not only curtail and important but also will be helpful to him in the long run. Through discipline a child learns how to behave, to respect others and to follow rules and regulations. Discipline teaches children to be patient and composed, to cooperate and share. It teaches children to take care of themselves and makes them confident to face the world.

  • When you discipline your child do not be too rude and harsh on him. Discipline is not a synonym for punishment. Discipline means showing children positive alternatives and an opportunity to see how their actions affect others. Be patient and wise.

  • Establish fair, simple rules and state them clearly. This will help your child realise that he has to abide by the rules and if he doesn't he will have to face the consequences of his actions. Make the rules clear and simple for him to understand.

  • While disciplining your kid always use words rather than actions. This is important because if you hit them then it is very much possible for them to think that this is the way it has to work and this attitude can make them aggressive and violent.

  • Try to negotiate and discuss the problem instead of hitting or forcing your kid to do something. By this you will make your kid realise that he is an important member of the family and that he has a choice too rather than being forced into something.

  • Don't be too nagging and dominating. Sometimes it is best to let go of small issues and leave your kid to himself. Give him time to sort out his own problems rather than being mad at him and doing things the adult way.

  • Reward your kid when he does something good and praise him. Positive reinforcement is the best technique for encouraging desirable behaviour. Kids are unquestionably more motivated to do the right thing in order to get a reward and to avoid punishment. Rewards are not bribes; they are ways to show a child that she is doing a good job and you appreciate it.

  • Parents always have the option of using natural consequences to drive home a point and discipline the child without using force or hard means. Natural consequences help children learn to take responsibility for their actions and help parents realize that the long-term gain will be worth the short-term discomfort. For example, the 8-year-old who is refusing to eat what you made for dinner and is adamant can be told to eat what is offered or nothing. One night without a full meal will not deprive the child nutritionally in the long run, but it will teach him that there are limits to sudden impulses and he can cannot always get things his way.

  • Parents should work hard to frame things in a positive way rather than negative way. Using " no " always is not a very good idea. It doesn't help a child learn what will get her a "yes." Positive statements teach children what is appropriate. It is not enough to tell a child what not to do; you should also teach them a better alternative.

  • The last important thing that you have to remember is that treat your child with respect. Make him realise that you love him and he can turn to you if he needs anything. Don't let him feel lonely and depressed. Try to understand him and love him.

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