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Discipline – A Spoonful of Sugar...

Posted by: Sharmila Rajah, 28-Sep-2009


Experts say opt for the win win situation – sometimes it's the road we take and at other times, we opt for less desirable ways to get our toddlers to do what we want them to. I'm guilty – as I stand in the bathroom at the end of the day urging Ayanna to get into her bath, I sometimes resort to threats (i.e. “If you don't take your bath right now, we won't read later”). I'm not proud of it.

Humour usually works well. It can be brought into a variety of disciplinary situations. This evening when Ayanna was refusing to take her bath, Mummy pretended to be a dog giving the orders. It worked but it's not always what comes to mind especially if time is a factor. Using laughable lyrics when Ayanna refuses to dress up helps. We sing “Do you put your shirt on your elbow, on your elbow....” - not only does it get her involved, it generates plenty of giggles. The more outrageous the lyrics the more likely she is to be distracted making anything from shampooing and washing happen without a squabble.

I'm sure Marry Poppins will approve...

How do you handle similar situations?

  • HI,,, i went for a parenting seminar and the speaker told that we have to give them 100% love and 100% discipline.
    He said don't use hand to smack our kids.. Our hands are used to hugs them and love them.

    But if at all we want to smack them.. he says u can use rotan. Not in an abusive way.

    What doyou think about " naughty corner" Ask them to stand in that corner for few minutes, then explain to them their mistake.

  • I started time out with my 20 month old son. He almost crack our glass door which I had repeatedly said no. I started off with 5 minutes and it repeated again and then 10 mins. He does not bang on the glass door anymore. So iit worked for me.


  • Dear Abigail

    Yes I agree with you our hands are meant to love. However, I don't quite agree with the use of the rotan on kids. Also, how do you not be abusive with the rotan? Do you simply use it to threaten and instill fear? Isn't that already meddling with your child's emotions and self-esteem in a negative way?

    As for the naughty corner, I like to call it the time out session or the thinking chair. I have not personally used it with Ayanna but I know several parents vouch for it. So it must work with their respective toddlers. It may be an option when she's older and is able to contemplate on what she's done wrong and its consequences.

    Thanks for sharing and keep on reading.


  • Dear Miechelle

    Great job. Thanks for sharing.

    Keep reading and keep up the good work.


  • Dear Shamila,

    GREAT POST! You’re absolutely correct about this ie using a laughable lyrics. You made a good point in this post, which is precisely what I’m doing at the moment. I slowed down with my bad mood tampered and trying my best to be a good examples for my kids. you really give us better knowledge about these stuffs.. keep up the good work!!