The Three Common Discipline Styles
The February 2009 Be the Best Nanny Monthly Guide http://www.bestnannynewsletter.com/ will discuss discipline.
To help you answer the mini-poll to the right on this blog and a more detailed survey on our web site at www.bestnannynewsletter.com/monthlypoll.htm here are the definitions of the most common discipline styles.
These definitions can be found at:
Strict discipline style. Authoritarian [caregivers] always try to be in control and exert their control on the children. These [caregivers] set strict rules to try to keep order, and they usually do this without much expression of warmth and affection. They attempt to set strict standards of conduct and are usually very critical of children for not meeting those standards. They tell children what to do, they try to make them obey and they usually do not provide children with choices or options.
Authoritarian [caregivers] don't explain why they want their children to do things. If a child questions a rule or command, the [adult] might answer, "Because I said so." [Authoritarian caregivers] tend to focus on bad behavior, rather than positive behavior, and children are scolded or punished, often harshly, for not following the rules.
Children with authoritarian parents usually do not learn to think for themselves and understand why the parent is requiring certain behaviors.
Permissive [adults] give up most control to their children. [Permissive caregivers] make few, if any, rules, and the rules that they make are usually not consistently enforced. They don't want to be tied down to routines. They want [the] children to feel free. They do not set clear boundaries or expectations for [the] children's behavior and tend to accept in a warm and loving way, however the child behaves.
Permissive parents give children as many choices as possible, even when the child is not capable of making good choices. They tend to accept a child's behavior, good or bad, and make no comment about whether it is beneficial or not. They may feel unable to change misbehavior, or they choose not to get involved.
Democratic or Authoritative:
Democratic [caregivers] help children learn to be responsible for themselves and to think about the consequences of their behavior. [Adults] do this by providing clear, reasonable expectations for [the] children and explanations for why they expect their children to behave in a particular manner. They monitor [the] children's behavior to make sure that they follow through on rules and expectations. They do this in a warm and loving manner. They often, "try to catch [the] children being good" and reinforcing the good behavior, rather than focusing on the bad.
For example, a child who leaves her toys on a staircase may be told not to do this because, "Someone could trip on them and get hurt and the toy might be damaged." As children mature, [caregivers] involve children in making rules and doing chores: "Who will mop the kitchen floor, and who will carry out the trash?"
Parents who have a democratic style give choices based on a child's ability. For a toddler, the choice may be "red shirt or striped shirt?" For an older child, the choice might be "apple, orange or banana?" Parents guide children's behavior by teaching, not punishing. "You threw your truck at Mindy. That hurt her. We're putting your truck away until you can play with it safely."
Tomorrow we will discuss positive discipline.
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Do you share the same discipline style as the parents? Have you had any issues disciplining your charges?