It’s Not Discipline, It’s a Teachable Moment

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Punishments such as time-outs, yelling, spanking and removing privileges don’t reinforce positive behavior in children and youth, say experts who argue that the most effective discipline doesn’t involve any punishment at all. Children and youth act up in order to gain adults’ attention, a ploy reinforced when adults give space to those who display polite, autonomous behavior and focus intently on those who behave badly. Instead, experts recommend consistent monitoring, clear rules, active involvement and drawing a connection between freedom and responsibility – a more time-consuming but effective strategy. The article is part of a comprehensive package on children’s health. Sept 14,