Educating children is never easy. Children are cute, they are beautiful. But they also scream and get on your nerves. Sometimes, we want to punish them severely to channel them. Unfortunately, most parents use punishment without knowing what it involves. A spanking, a beating, deprivation… There are positive punishments, and also negative ones.
Punishment, but what is that?
First of all, let’s note that we are dealing with punishment in the educational context. In this context, it is a corrective measure. It consists in producing a decrease in the occurrence of a behavior of the child.
We can distinguish between two types of punishment: positive and negative punishments. Basically, a positive punishment is one that uses an addition (+). A negative punishment is one that uses a withdrawal (-).
In order to give a positive punishment, the child must do or experience something he or she does not like. This invites emotions such as fear. Pain is created. Here are some examples of positive punishments:
– Yelling, insulting, threatening.
– Subjecting the child to corporal punishment.
The child has something he likes taken away from him. It is a question of removing a positive stimulus. The most common ones are the following:
– Not letting him watch television.
– Not giving him pocket money
In both cases, the result is not optimal. Punishment is therefore the least recommended technique for changing behavior. So how do you “correct” the child? Specialists distinguish between punishment and sanction. This “sanction” is supposed to be meliorative.
What to do then, punish or sanction?
Sanction or Punishment? We invite you to make the distinction between a sanction and a punishment and to learn how to elaborate sanctions. The guidelines we are going to give you are taken from Jacques Salomé’s ESPERE Method.
– In the case of punishment
When children are punished, parents often do so out of fear or anger. For example: your child has broken the TV screen while playing ball in the living room and you are very angry. It is in these situations that we punish our children based on the impact of their behavior. In these cases, we are just reacting: we react according to what is touched in us and not in relation to the behavior of the child as such.
Thus, the punishment is inevitably unfair, it is a function of us, of our emotions and also of our mood, our stress and our fatigue of the moment, they do not fulfill an educational role.
This is why Jacques Salomé’s ESPERE Method invites you to propose sanctions instead.
– In the case of a sanction
A sanction is the consequence of the transgression of a rule.
The child did not respect a rule that he knew, he transgressed it knowingly and the sanction is simply the consequence of this behavior. We distinguish two types of consequences:
– The natural consequence: the child learns his mistakes on their own. In this case, the parents do not have to intervene. The child has always been told to secure their bike when they park it outside the house. They learn by themselves the usefulness of this instruction.
– The consequence caused: it is imposed by the parent. The instruction was to always remove the muddy shoes before entering the living room. Reluctantly, on order of the mother, the child cleans their error.
For a punishment to be fair, it is important that not only the rule but also the punishment be known in advance by the child and be clear enough for them.
The basic rules of a good punishment
Draw up a contract that you read out loud to the child explaining the main rules of the house, which must not be broken if the child does not want to be punished.
The purpose of a good punishment is to establish non-violent communication. Punishment should never be humiliating.
THE MOST EDUCATIONAL PUNISHMENTS
Some educational punishments to inflict on your child:
– Isolate him/her in their room
– Deprive him/her of TV
– Ask him/her to apologize
– Fix what he/she brokes
– Have a contract
– Allow not to leave the house for a period of time
– Take away their favourite toy
– Denying dessert
Every child makes mistakes. It is up to parents to guide their children to comply with the rule. This means punishing the child when necessary. But not for the smallest mistake.