If you wonder when is the correct age or time to start discipline at home for your little munchkin, let me tell you that you can start doing it at an earliest. The simplest form of discipline can start at the age of 8 months.
You can identify the time when your once powerless baby slaps your face repeatedly or keeps pulling your glasses and laughs. There can be various other instances also when you feel that you can discipline.
Your job is to make your baby understand what good or bad behaviour means for your family. You just need to master three key skills to do this job effortlessly.
- All communications should be with respect to avoid ruining the relationship.
- You should be able to speak in their language with simple words and phrases that they can easily understand.
- You should not be a pushover and you should put your foot down.
The start of the discipline
The way to support your child is by setting some boundaries. You are ultimately putting guardrails to guide his path of life. Mind that your limits must be reasonable. As you want him to succeed, your rules and regulations should be to focus on behaviour. Try to be consistent, and soon your little one will go along.
The happiest toddler is the well-guided child with good behaviour. Few methods like creating routines, using distraction as a way of disciplining and also teach compromising.
Discipline techniques with age-appropriate methods
There is some red-light behaviour that is when your child breaks the rules. This is when you do not want to compromise on. For example:
- Something dangerous like running on the roads.
- Aggressive acts like hitting, biting or being cruel.
- Breaking any family rule like writing on the room walls.
For the above scenarios, there are mainly three ways to handle and discipline older babies or toddlers.
Showing kindness and ignoring
This kind of ignoring is ideal for babies of 8 months of age onwards. This one is called ‘drama queen scenarios’. I hope you are visualising this similar attitude at home with your kid. Your child cries for a long time as he has an audience. Tears keep running down as a form of stubborn protest.
Ignorance is a sort of punishment for children as they always seek attention. But for that, you need to be very kind in doing that. With respect, deliver the message to her.
Say no with firm voice yet politely. Then after acknowledging his feelings, gently walk away or sit nearby and concentrate on some other work. Show your disinterest but do not show that you are getting mad for 20 to 30 seconds.
As he stops doing that, return to him with loving attention and explain or give reassurance. The 8th-month baby understands your gestures and can connect to you very quickly.
Time-out for toddlers
This one is applicable for toddlers above 1 year of age. If you want your child to understand that he has to stop when you say stop, then time-out is a procedure. Toddlerhood is the most crucial period of childhood.
You need to give the last warning with respect. Then if he breaks the rule even after that, ask politely to have a time-out for continuing his behaviour. Make him learn that taking time-out is for him and not something you are doing to him.
Take him to the time-out place. It can be a chair or a corner of the room. Tell him politely that he is in time-out period for a few minutes until he returns back to the calm state.
Don’t worry about putting a one year old secluded for a minute. It is just a way to make them understand that ignoring rules can get them to isolation. The thumb rule is one minute per year of age.
After that, ask him whether he is calm and ready to come back. It will be good if you do not talk to him regarding time-out or behaviour for the next half an hour. Immediately after his return connects to him lovingly and forgive.
Giving a ‘fine’
This type of disciplining technique is ideal for kids above 3 years of age. If your child is continuously breaking rules or disobeying your instructions, simply take away her things or privileges.
If he is misbehaving in the park or in the supermarket, immediately warn that if he repeats you will go back home.
Beating or spanking is never a way of discipline
After going through numerous sites of Hindu baby boy names, you have finally decided on names like Sanskar or Adarsh etc. and your son acts just opposite to his name 2 years later. Then think of these above disciplining techniques instead of getting furious and beating him.
Spanking can never be a way to discipline kids as that conveys a wrong message to them that elders can hit little ones. This is absolutely not ok to vent anger through violence.