The words discipline and punishment can often be used to mean the same thing. But they are very different from each other. To me discipline is a means of helping a child to learn how to act when they are in public as well as when the parent is not around; for example whether it be at school, their grandparents house, or when being babysat a child should always act as if their parents are there which means; being respectful, listening as well as doing what you are told. I feel like discipline should never stray away from the fact the you are trying to focus on the positive aspects and self esteem of the developing child.
The reason for discipline is to help a child learn how to control their behavior as well as their emotions and the child should be reassured with firm reminders. Punishment is also another form discipline. There are several methods to physical punishment which would including pking, push-ups, squatting against a wall, or even hitting. There are psychological punishments such as taking away privileges, extra chores, writing sentences, or sending a child to their room. The reason for punishments is to discourage unacceptable behavior.
To most people discipline and punishment can be viewed as the same, but there are certain methods to discipline and punishment that are different. Punishment and discipline methods both have some similarities that attempt to correct the negative behavior at hand. Punishment removes the accountability for the misbehavior from the child. Punishment is not really teaching a child what they did is wrong and what to right the next time. Punishment is ultimately telling the child if they do something wrong then they will be punished whether it be push ups, extra chores, or TV. taken away.
Children need to learn that they need to take accountability for their own actions to be able to exercise self-control so that they can be successful as well respected adults. The objective of punishment is to stop a child from misbehaving. However, punishment usually only stops the behavior for that short period of time the punishment is given. Punishment does not necessarily not teach a child how to not do the same behavior again in the future. Severe punishments can cause physical and emotional damage that could last throughout a child’s life. Harsh punishments can also lead to abuse which could follow on to their children as well.
Another difference between discipline and punishment is that punishment only works in the present. If a child is punished by being pked or screamed at, they will learn not to misbehave when someone can see what they are doing but, they are not learning how to not misbehave in the future. Discipline is designed to teach a child how to exercise self-control and how to not repeat the misbehavior in the future. For example if the child is with a group of friends who decided to do drugs, that child has been taught through the discipline and guidance of their parents that drugs are bad.
So as a result the child has enough self-control and discipline to know not to follow in their friends footsteps. Discipline and punishment are different in that discipline is an on going learning process that allows parents to teach their child self-control, respect, and the importance of acceptable behavior and non-acceptable behavior. In life a child is going to become an adult and be faced with obstacles and barriers; that will test their morals and values that their parents instilled in them.
Parents have a responsibility to communicate their expectations to their child in a manner that the child will understand. Which also means knowing what is acceptable behavior and what is not acceptable behavior. There are many types of discipline, and punishment is one of them. Punishment can work in the moment, but as a parent it is their job to commit to a discipline process that is ongoing throughout their child’s development to truly change the behaviors in a child Discipline and Punishment
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