Tears and tantrums one minute and overwhelming exuberance the next.
Pre-schoolers are a roller-coaster of intense and surprisingly sophisticated emotions.
Asking a child to get off a trampoline is tantamount to declaring war. Met with fierce objection and sometimes a red-faced tantrum. So how are we able to control these unpredictable, emotional tiny humans at Gymkidz? The simple answer is discipline.
Here are five simple tips for disciplining a young child, without the traumas of a tantrum:
1. Discipline does not mean punishment
Discipline is about fixing and learning from mistakes. It is corrective and instructional and focuses on the long term well-being of a child.
Our aim is to differentiate behaviors that are acceptable, from those that are not. The goal is self-regulation in our absence, rather than never-ending control. We need to develop children with principled characters that lead to a child building respect rather than fear of punishment.
2. You are in charge
Children need boundaries and consequences to function in society. It is our responsibility to be the ones in charge. Letting children do whatever they want does not educate them on how to behave in the real world. We need to teach them how to accept ‘no’ and to deal with their feelings when they don’t get what they want.
Be strong enough to say no with solid, principled boundaries.
"We need to develop children with principled characters that lead to a child building respect rather than fear of punishment."
3. You are their primary teacher
Discipline needs to be easily understood, fair and must contribute to your behavioral goal. It is important to recognise that children are a work in progress and that their development requires patience and thoughtful guidance.
Tackle their discipline in the same way that you would teaching a child to read, with persistence and patience throughout the process.
4. Consistency, Consistency, Consistency
This is one of the most important aspects of disciplining and raising a child. Consistency allows a child to easily work out what to expect from you, whatever the circumstance. If you keep changing the rules of engagement they will feel confused, distrusting and unsure of themselves.
Build behavioral routines and trust by being consistent. Consistency is one of the simplest, yet most under utilized behavioral technique.
"Letting children do whatever they want does not educate them on how to behave in the real world."
5. A sprinkle of tough love
As parents and teachers, our immediate instincts is to protect children from disappointment. It is however in these brief moments of frustration and failure that they will master and learn new skills. Your challenge as a parent is to have the resolve to let your child suffer the natural consequences of their own actions, of course provided these are safe.
Give them the space to make mistakes and learn from them.
A child's early emotional development progresses very similarly to their physical development. At Gymkidz we work through an increasingly complex progression of fun skills that build both their physical and emotional maturity and teach children the value of respect, responsibility, resilience and most importantly discipline.
Why not join us and see our principles in action?
Contact us at Gymkidzau@gmail.com for a FREE trial or visit our classes and pricing to book online and see our full week availability.