DISCIPLINE CHILDREN: I have articles, books, facts, How – to and an opinion on spanking!*

No. 2, Vol. 40, February 27th, 2012

TITLE: “DISCIPLINE CHILDREN: I have articles, books, facts, How – to and an opinion on spanking!*”  

INTRODUCTION: I am again turning my attention to our kids. This week, I am writing about the discipline of children.  “To spank or not to spank?, that is the controversial question.  My book of the week is “1-2-3 Magic: Effective Discipline for Children 2-12” by Thomas W. Phelan. (Editor’s Note: This is another post in a continuing series on parenting.)

PREVIEW (Sunday, March 4th, 2012): I am also thinking about bedtime. A good night’s sleep is important in the life of a child. It’s not only about getting ready for bed and turning off the lights; it’s also about the need for winding down (no electronics), quality time between parent & child- indeed, reading your child a story (story time) is bonding time). I say: “Lights out … now settle down, it`s time for Mr. Sandman …  don’t let the bed bugs bite.” (Editor’s Note: This will be another post in a continuing series on parenting.) 

BONUS PREVIEW (Sunday, March 11th, 2012): As well, I am thinking about school dress codes, the good, the bad and the ugly! Some say: “The tie and grey flannel pant/skirt, white shirt/blouse, cardigan, outfit looks trim and proper and also builds school spirit. Others say: “It’s stuffy and pretentious building uniformity. Instead, they explain that it’s better to be fashionable even in grade school but of course in high school. They add that putting the best foot forward is not age related. I say that school is about learning. If afraid about prefect-monitors or the fashion police, drop by and join the debate.  (Editor’s Note: This will be another post in a continuing series on parenting.) 


As a child, my mother scolded me. When it came to punishment, my parents didn’t think twice before one of us was spanked.  They were old school.  In those days, that was how children were disciplined at home.

I also remember the school principal, as a form of punishment, giving the strap on a student’s hand.  To reprimand, teachers would also use a ruler on the hand.  At a certain point, schools abolished this form of punishment and gave out detections instead. 

As a mother, when my daughters were toddlers, spanking was not my method of discipline.  I relied on my stern voice to alert them that they were misbehaving.  My daughters often joke about that now. 

Today, as a grandmother, I watch how my daughter, now a mother herself, deals with discipline.  As a teacher, she has an added point of view. Her technique is one of correction. First, she explains to the child what he/she has done wrong; and then she instructs him-her not to do it again. Today, my daughter uses time-out as the penalty for misbehaving.

Looking back, my stern voice may not have been the best form of punishment; time-out would have been a better form of punishment.

THE AUTHOR:Thomas W. Phelan, Ph.D.

Thomas W. Phelan, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist. He received his Doctorate from Loyola University, Chicago. His work record includes a stint at the Loyola Child Guidance Center (internship, 1970), DuPage County Mental Health Center (-1972), and then private practice. Dr. Phelan is a member of the American Psychological Association and the Illinois Psychological Association. Interested in ADD, he serves on the boards of directors for both ADDA and CHADD. Married for 32 years, living in Glen Ellyn, Illinois; he and his wife have raised two children. Phelan is a lecturer and also an author – his articles appear in numerous regional and national publications.



Several are:

THE BOOK: “1-2-3 Magic: Effective Discipline for Children 2-12”/ Thomas W Phelan

Moms and Dads, there is a doctor in the house. The problem is arguing, yelling,  spanking and of course the frustration. The emphasis is on talk and persuasion. He has the method of disciplining children ages 2- 12.  For him it’s a numbers game:  3-steps, to manage naughty behavior, promote good behavior, build parent-child bond;10 – strategies to strengthen a child’s ego; 6- types of testing and manipulation by the child … It`s as simple as 1-2-3! The doctor makes many good points. Parents have something to learn from him.  


 Most people agree that kids need discipline. But there is a difference of opinion of what and how it should be done.  

 Personal Comments

 I believe that:

  • Good discipline should not punish, but rather teach a child.
  • Proper behavior is learned by kids; and their parents need to make the effort and instruct.
  • A close relationship between parent and child is important.
  • Parents must have control; they also need to have self control- no hitting allowed.
  • Spanking is not the right way to discipline children. It causes harm by:
    • Building aggression; 
    • Teaching that hitting is how a person deals with a problem;
    • Instilling fear rather than understanding;  and
    • Putting a distance between parent and child.  
  • Nowadays, parents will not tolerate their children being hit by anyone even at school.
  • Before imposing the punishment, it may be best to tell the child that you are considering making it something greater  and then reduce it to something much less.
  • Time-out may be the best form of punishment – not more than five minutes; it will force a child to calm down and think on his/her actions and why he/she is being punished.

 The Point

It is essential that children be reprimanded when they have done wrong.  What is the best form of punishment?  That is a controversial question.  But I say that it must teach not hurt!


Parents should:

The Start

  1. Be a role model – remember kids mimic their parents;
  2. Be positive with kids – they react well with that; more precisely,

              2.1  Show your children affection;

              2.2  Praise them whenever possible;

3. Keep control – the kids must never be in control; and of course, don’t lose control.

4. Don’t use corporal punishment – some of you might have had more first-hand knowledge of spanking; but it does show aggression;

5. Have a set of realistic rules and enforce them;

Negative behavior

6. Point out the unacceptable acts, but don’t sweat the small stuff;  

7. Explain briefly the misdeed;

8. Specify the punishment; and connect it as the consequence of the misdeed.

9. Act on this punishment without delay; if you wait, the child will not recognize the connection between the misdeed and the punishment.

10. Move on – don`t harp back to the misdeed.

Discipline is not crime & punishment. Instead, this is about teaching the children; and I say:  “Teach them well!”

 And that’s my thought of the week on books, what’s yours?*
Take it out for a spin and tell me if you agree.
“Books are life; and they make life better!*”
P.S. Big News: There are big changes coming to my blog – Please stay tuned.
P.P.S. #1 I have a TWITTER page. Consider becoming a follower? Visit www.twitter.com –   saveandread
P.P.S. #2 I also have a FACEBOOK page. Consider becoming a friend? Visit: www.facebook.com – Alp Save Andread – please check it out.
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*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved.



S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTAGE #1: Spacey Fired Up
”Growing up in California, Kevin Spacey was a difficult child. Years later, he was asked why, at the age of 14, his parents had shipped him off to military academy following a domestic fracas. “I won’t tell you exactly what the incident was that made my parents send me to military school,” Spacey replied. “Let’s just say it involved my sister’s tree-house and some matches.”

(Source: Anecdotage) – http://www.anecdotage.com/index.php?aid=6329) 

“During a guest appearance on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” one evening, Bob Morley recounted a recent episode which had left him somewhat rattled.

“On Hollywood Boulevard today a woman said to me, ‘Hey, baby, I’ll spank you for $20,'” Morley recalled. “I called my Mom and told her, ‘You’d better get down here. You can make a lot of money!”

(Source: Anecdotage) –  http://www.anecdotage.com/index.php?aid=1330) 

S & R* CHOICE ANECDOTAGE #3: Parental Solution
“Both of Stout’s parents were incessant readers. Indeed, even with nine children in the house, his mother’s reading was rarely interrupted. Her secret? Beside her chair, she kept a bowl of cold water and a washcloth – with which the face of the first child to disturb her would be thoroughly washed.”

(Source: Anecdotage) –  http://www.anecdotage.com/index.php?aid=8845 

S & R* QUOTE #1:  Robert Fulghum

Don’t worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you.” (Source: Wisdom Quotes) – http://www.wisdomquotes.com/topics/children

S & R* QUOTE #2:  Letty Cottin Pogrebin

“If family violence teaches children that might makes right at home, how will we hope to cure the futile impulse to solve worldly conflicts with force?”

 (Source: Wisdom Quotes) =  http://www.wisdomquotes.com/topics/children/)

 S & R* QUOTE #3: Theodore Roosevelt

“No ordinary work done by a man is either as hard or as responsible as the work of a woman who is bringing up a family of small children; for upon her time and strength demands are made not only every hour of the day but often every hour of the night.” (Source: Wisdom Quotes) –  http://www.wisdomquotes.com/topics/children/) 

“For today, my word/phrase(s) are:  “child discipline”; “spanking”; “time-out”

Child discipline

“Child discipline is the set of rules, rewards and punishments administered to teach self control, increase desirable behaviors and decrease undesirable behaviors in children. In its most general sense, discipline refers to systematic instruction given to a disciple. To discipline thus means to instruct a person to follow a particular code of conduct.[1] While the purpose of child discipline is to develop and entrench desirable social habits in children, the ultimate goal is to foster sound judgement and morals so the child develops and maintains self discipline throughout the rest of his/her life.”

(Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Child_discipline)


“Spanking refers to the act of striking the buttocks of another person to cause temporary pain without producing physical injury.[1] It generally involves one person striking the buttocks of another person with an open hand.”

(Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spanking)


“A time-out involves temporarily separating a child from an environment where inappropriate behavior has occurred, and is intended to give an over-excited child time to calm down and thereby discouraging such behavior. It is an educational and parenting technique recommended by some pediatricians and developmental psychologists as an effective form of child discipline.”

(Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time-out_(parenting))


“Child discipline is a topic that draws from a wide range of interested fields, such as parents, the professional practice of behavior analysis, developmental psychology, social work, and various religious perspectives. Because the values, beliefs, education, customs and cultures of people vary so widely, along with the age and temperament of the child, methods of child discipline vary widely.

In western society, there has been debate in recent years over the use of corporal punishment for children in general, and increased attention has been given to the concept of “positive parenting” where good behaviour is encouraged and rewarded.[2]

The primary guidelines followed by medieval parents in training their children were from the Bible. Scolding was considered ineffectual, and cursing a child was a terrible thing.[5] In general, the use of corporal punishment was as a disciplinary action taken to shape behavior, not a pervasive dispensing of beatings for no reason. Corporal punishment was undoubtedly the norm. The medieval world was a dangerous place, and it could take harsh measures to prepare a child to live in it. Pain was the medieval way of illustrating that actions had consequences.[6]

In many cultures, parents have historically had the right to spank their children when appropriate. Attitudes and legislation in some countries have changed in recent years, particularly in continental Europe. Domestic corporal punishment has now (2009) been outlawed in 24 countries around the world, most of them in Europe or Latin America, beginning with Sweden in 1979.

In North America, Britain and much of the rest of the English-speaking world, corporal punishment remains highly controversial. In the United States, corporal punishment of children by their parents remains lawful in all 50 states.

Some studies have suggested that spanking may lead to more misbehaviour in the long run, and some researchers have linked what they describe as “authoritarian” child-rearing practices with children who withdraw, lack spontaneity, and have lesser evidence of conscience.[11][12][13][14]

Stress positions, such as murga punishment in South Asia or forced prolonged kneeling (sometimes on beans or salt to increase discomfort), are used as punishment for children.

Non-physical discipline consists of both punitive and non-punitive methods, but does not include any forms of corporal punishment such as smacking or spanking.

A common method of child discipline is sending the child away from the family or group after misbehavior. Children may be told to stand in the corner (“corner time”) or may be sent to their rooms for a period of time.

Grounding is a form of punishment, usually for older children, preteens and teenagers, that restricts their movement outside of the home, such as visiting friends or using the car.

Scolding involves reproving or criticizing a child’s negative behavior and/or actions.

Some research suggests that scolding is counter-productive because parental attention (including negative attention) tends to reinforce behavior.[17]

While punishments may be of limited value in consistently influencing rule-related behavior, non-punitive discipline techniques have been found to have greater impact on children who have begun to master their native language.[18] Non-punitive discipline (also known as empathic discipline and positive discipline) is an approach to child-rearing that does not use any form of punishment.

Positive discipline is a general term that refers to both non-violent discipline and non-punitive discipline.

Praise (encouraging words) and intangible rewards (hugs, time with the child, etc.) is an effective method of encouraging good behavior.

Natural consequences involve children learning from their own mistakes.

Children who are punished without further reasoning are more likely to repeat the offense and may simply make more of an effort not to get caught.[citation

Parents may feel that positive parenting and non-punitive discipline is too permissive and will lead to unruly and disrespectful children. They also argue that there is no recourse for parents of misbehaving children to effectively control their misbehavior. Deliberate misbehavior, they say, must be firmly punished to prevent its recurrence[“

(Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)-http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Child_discipline)

S & R* NEWS ALERT* #1:
Involve your kids in the kitchen

“The kitchen is an engaging place for kids as they learn by playing, touching, and tasting. Letting your kids experiment will encourage them to try new foods and teach them valuable kitchen skills. Breakfast for Learning, a national charity dedicated to child nutrition programs, offers the following tips for getting your little chefs involved.

Before you get started, teach your children the two simple rules of the kitchen:

1. Wash hands before and after touching food. Scrub with soapy water for the amount of time it takes to sing the ABCs.

2. Ask to taste. To stop the spread of food-borne illness from raw food like chicken and eggs, make sure kids ask to sample food before they taste.

A child’s hands are the ultimate kitchen tool; even young children can participate in meal preparation. For example, children can:

Tear foods like lettuce and pull grapes from vines;

Remove the peel off fruit;

Mix ingredients;

Measure dry ingredients;

Push buttons on blenders, toasters, and microwaves (with supervision);

Set the oven timer and tell you when it’s done.

Involving kids in the kitchen allows them to learn about food and nutrition, spend quality time with an adult, and have fun.”


S & R* NEWS ALERT* #2: Healthy food ideas when kids get a snack attack

“For busy parents, finding easy, healthy snacks can be a challenge. Even the most organized parents can become overwhelmed and stressed trying to balance multiple nutritional needs with their toddler’s food preferences.

Ensuring the best transition from breast milk or formula, to a balanced diet of solid food meals and snacks, requires patience and planning. Take a look at these easy, healthy, on-the-go snack ideas:

Steamed veggies, such as carrots or broccoli, cut into pieces: Softening them by steaming makes this snack easier for toddlers to eat. Vegetables such as broccoli contain vitamin C, which helps in the absorption of iron.

A single-serving of dairy on its own, or paired with iron rich breakfast cereals like rolled oats: For optimum nutrition choose a transitional milk product, one adapted to toddlers as the step before regular milk, and one includes all the vitamins and nutrients toddlers need. These include omega-3 DHA to support the normal development of the brain eyes and nerves in children under 2 years of age; vitamin C which helps improve the absorption of iron; vitamins A, D, and B6 which work together to help build strong bones and teeth; and with 4 per cent fat content which is an important source of energy for brain and tissue development.

Low-sodium dry cereal, or cracker: This type of snack can be a great source of dietary fibre. Foods that contain less sodium are generally easier on toddler tummies.

Fruit, such as berries, grapes or melons cut into bite-sized pieces: These finger foods make for a sweet, refreshing snack, without any added sugar.

With toddlers growing at such a rapid pace and needing to refuel between meals, healthy snacks can help complement a balanced diet of solid foods. Planning nutritious, easy to carry snacks that tots can practice eating on their own will help keep them happy and full between meals, and remain healthy and active.

More information on these topics, along with some additional tools and resources can be found online at www.natrelbaboo.com.”www.newscanada.com

*TM/© 2012 Practitioners’ Press Inc. – All Rights Reserved

This entry was posted on Monday, February 27th, 2012 at 11:54 am and is filed under Parenting. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.


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