Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Simple Skill becomes a Habit and Changes Everything

Enlightened Discipline does not create a magic potion that makes children under your power. It certainly isn’t the only way to get children to behave well…adults have been getting children to conform, behave, act differently for centuries. It’s not because there is no other way. It’s not because this way works and another way doesn’t. It is because this way is better. You are better. You are a better teacher, parent and mentor to a child.

With the Enlightened Discipline methods you are teaching so much more than merely what YOU want. You are teaching every child, every time, the WHY in all things. This one additional component gives the child the best possible social and behavioral education. The WHY is what they will carry with them forever.

I liken the Enlightened Discipline strategies to the habit of being polite. For instance, I can usually get people to do for me without having manners. But it will change my experience and theirs immensely when I add a simple “please” and “thank you”.

Similarly, a teacher or parent can get a child to behave. Read all the books, tapes and listen to experts: bribes (called rewards or incentives), isolation and banishment (called time outs), to more punitive punishments abound.

Do they work? Yeah, sure.

Do they teach? They teach a child what the adult wants for that moment in that instance. They do not teach the child how to think on their own and to solve their own problems in the future.

We hear much about “critical thinking” skills in the upper grades, Enlightened Discipline teaches “critical thinking” at the very beginning of life when all ideas are getting locked into place. It’s a simple thing like good manners. 

Enlightened Discipline will require you to change your behavior in tiny ways. These changes will become habits and replace old habits. The change in how you effect children will astound you. 



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