This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.

Sparing the Rod Finding alternatives to spanking.

children need to develop self-discipline if they’re going to be successful in pursuing their own goals and accom- plishing anything they want to in life.” This self-discipline will help carry them into adulthood.

Setting Limits Mature adults, of course, know their own limits (even if they occasionally exceed them). They don’t stay out all night if they want to keep their jobs or eat whole tubs of Häagen-Dazs ice cream if they want to lose weight. Since children haven’t learned

AFTER SHE FOUNDED the Center for Effective Discipline, psychologist Nadine Block asked kids around the world what they thought about spanking. Many of their responses, collected in the book This Hurts Me More Than It Hurts You, expressed pain that went far beyond a sore bottom. A 16-year-old boy wrote, “Why does he want to hit me? I never do anything bad. I stay out of his way. I feel real bad inside.” Block says stories like this one

illustrate why corporal punishment is the opposite of effective discipline. “The purpose of discipline is to help children learn to make good decisions,” she says. “If you spank children, chances are that stops that learning process. It may stop the misbehavior for a moment, but it doesn’t engage the learning process.”

20 S COUTING ¿ SEPTEMBER•OCTOBER 2014 Dr. Laura Markham, author of

Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids: How to Stop Yelling and Start Connecting, agrees — and takes Block’s argument a step further. “I don’t even use the word ‘discipline’ anymore,” she says. “I say we’re moving beyond discipline, because people confuse discipline with punishment. And punishment, the research shows, backfires.” So how can you spare the rod

without spoiling your child? Markham and Block have some suggestions.

Focus on Learning First, whether you use the word or not, remember that the goal of dis- cipline is to teach kids how to make good decisions — not to punish them for bad decisions. “It’s the discipline that comes from inside that matters most in life,” Markham says. “Our

self-discipline, Markham says they need adults to set limits for them — and these limits need to include a healthy dose of empathy. For example, if your son can’t play on the playground without hitting, you should remove him from the situa- tion and say something like, “It was too hard for you to follow the rules. Tomorrow we’ll try again.”

Avoid Double Jeopardy Aſter a playground donnybrook, some parents might add a punish- ment, but Markham argues that removing the child from the situation is enough. “There’s no meanness,” she says. “It’s just that that’s the way the world works.” Block agrees, using the familiar

(and frightening) example of a child who has run into the street to chase a ball. “They’ll know you’re upset. You don’t have to scream at them or hit them. They can feel your fear,” she says.

FIND MORE PARENTING advice for raising kids with self-discipline at


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68