Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Disciplining Your Toddler

One of my friend recently asked me a question: “How to bring discipline in a pampered child without the change affecting him in a negative way mentally”

What to do and how to discipline a toddler who thinks he can get everything done by crying. Be careful to do it without letting it seem a drastic change or without letting it affect the baby emotionally and mentally

Here are some steps I followed when my son was a toddler:
I knew all his crying tones and what does each of it mean. I always ignored when he was in a blackmailing mood and go to another room. He used to stop crying after sometime and start playing again.

I taught him the meaning of "no" ever since he was 6 months old. He knows what to expect and do when he hears a firm but gentle "no" from us.

When he used to ask for something which we didn’t want to give him, then we used to try and divert his attention to other interesting things. He used to forget about his object of desire after sometime.

My thumb rule is: Kids are usually attracted towards glass show pieces and any fancy items they may find fascinating. Sometime they tend to put any items found on the floor in their mouth without realizing that it can be dangerous. So I made it a point to pack away all the glass items, show-pieces, medicines, etc. and keep it out of my son’s reach. What is the point in getting frustrated or angry over a small child if they break or eat any of these items. After all, a very small child does not have clear and deep sense of what is right and wrong.

As a parent, be ready to sacrifice some of the things you love, like coke/ice creams/junk food if you don’t want your child to have it. Children see their parents as role models. They imitate what you do.

Set some basic rules like: This is yours, that is Dad's and that is Mom's. When they try to pick up something they are not supposed to, you should tell them, "Oh this is Dad's stuff. Does Dad take your stuff?" Trust me it works because I have all fragile items like perfumes, glass show-pieces etc. on my bedroom shelf and my son would just go near it and point out to different bottles and say loudly, "This is Mumma’s" or "This is Papa’s" and then move on without touching.

If the child is overactive, involve them in various physical activities like:
Playing cricket with the baby outdoors.

Take them out for cycling in evening. (My son loved tricycle at this age.)

Get the kid a kit of plastic bowling set (pins & balls). Set the pins at end of room and ask the baby to roll the ball. It will not hurt the baby and will keep them occupied for sometime.

Set aside a big plastic basket and fill it with various toys the baby has. Let the baby scatter the objects and then ask them to put all the objects back in the basket by saying, that good children always clean up after playing. Work hard on this. It will take sometime but it surely works. It worked for me.

If the baby has a separate room to play then remove all the high furniture from it and make some floor arrangements.

Notice what makes the kid upset and angry and try to remove the cause. You have to be firm sometimes and lenient sometimes. You should not always say “no” as it ticks them off and a “yes” always spoils the kids. You are the best judge of what is best for the baby.

If you are scolding the child and the other guardian feels that you are wrong, they should tell you this later when child is not around. Children sense who is on their side and then they take advantage of this.

I hope this might help you.


  1. Hey this is really very informative must say ...thanks for the info please do post some more topics on Child behaviour..would need to know more about it also.....thanks ..Cheers!!!

  2. @ Kausar: Thanks a lot for stopping by... I've posted an article on over-active kids behaviour. Hope you find it useful. Do keep coming for more...

  3. I liked the most, this is very useful article for parents like us...you have very informative articles in your blog..keep blogging and help us to know better and better...

  4. Thanks a lot for your wonderful comments... Glad you found my blog useful... Hope to see you more often.


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