Discipline is an important part of both growing up and parenting. Good discipline starts at home and stays with your child forever. However, every form of discipline is not meant for every age group.
According to the age and mindset of children, discipline methods also have to change for them to be more effective and sensible. Here are a few effective, age appropriate strategies:
1 Year Old:
At this age, that are just start understanding things and still do not know what is right and what is wrong. So, you have to keep your expectations low. You need to show them what is expected, but do not insist on it. Make them understand in simple words. You might probably want to distract and comfort them.
2 Years Old:
Here, they start understanding feelings and emotions, and want to explore everything on their own. So, let them do so. Give them their space and help them understand things on their own way. Reduce power struggles. Teach them to use words for their actions. Deal with their tantrums carefully. Try to remove your child from a situation rather than punishing or scolding.
3 Years Old:
At this age, they will be able to handle simple tasks, so involve them in easy household works. Teach them appropriate and correct behavior and values. This is also a good time to start shorter punishments.
4 Years Old:
Now, that they start having their own opinion, they might get choosy about things. He/she might start asking for things or thrown tantrums, but you need to disengage them properly. You need to have a proper schedule for them for study and play. They might also lie or make excuses. Avoid arguing, teach them about consequences.
5 Years Old:
It is time to broaden their view point, so involve and engage them in things. Make the schedule a bit more rigid and use limits to stress on self-control – like a warning, etc. Keep a close watch on their behavior and rectify as required.
6 to 7 Years Old:
Encourage independent decision making, foster analytical skills and problem solving. Give them responsibility and reward them for their good work. Encourage them to learn from their mistakes and teach more life skills. Encourage them to come up with new ideas and prevention strategies. Do not help them out of every situation and allow them to take risks.
8 to 10 Years Old:
At this stage, they are more opinionated, so try to discuss things and talk it out. Use more matured techniques and teach them to correct things on their own. Reinforce better behavior and life skills and instill a sense of responsibility.
Discipline is a natural learning process and your child will gradually get used to it. Do not overburden their minds with too many rules and regulations. Remember, a little love and care goes a long way.