Monday, 7 February 2011

Hit The Kids Experts 10 top tips.

It's not against the law in the UK to smack your children, but is it really necessary?

There is a school of thought that suggests that if physical chastisement is used then it must be because the parents has lost control or worse, lost their temper. I don't buy into this fully. There are times I'm sure when a tap on the back of the hand makes the point. My problem is the next stage or stages. A tap on the hand is a far cry from hitting your child. Any physical act that leaves a red mark is a step too far. Some children are extremely difficult to manage I know that from my own experience. But hard hitting does indicate a loss of parental control.

Laying down the law at an early age, making and keeping firm and fair boundaries is the best way to help your children attain adulthood and become good parents themselves.

Have look at the following ten tips. If you need any more help do visit our forums at

1. When your child wants to show you something, stop what you are doing and pay
attention to your child. It is important to spend frequent, small amounts of time
with your child doing things that you both enjoy.

2. Give your child lots of physical affection – children often like hugs, cuddles, and holding hands.

3. Talk to your child about things he/she is interested in and share aspects of your
day with your child.

4. Give your child lots of descriptive praise when they do something that you would
like to see more of, e.g., “Thank you for doing what I asked straight away”.

5. Children are more likely to misbehave when they are bored so provide lots of
engaging indoor and outdoor activities for your child, e.g., playdough, colouring
in, cardboard boxes, dress ups, cubby houses, etc.

6. Teach your child new skills by first showing the skill yourself, then giving your
child opportunities to learn the new skill. For example, speak politely to each
other in the home. Then, prompt your child to speak politely (e.g., say “please”
or “thank you”), and praise your child for their efforts.

7. Set clear limits on your child’s behaviour. Sit down and have a family discussion
on the rules in the home. Let your child know what the consequences will be if
they break the rules.

8. If your child misbehaves, stay calm and give them a clear instruction to stop
misbehaving and tell them what you would like them to do instead (e.g., “Stop
fighting; play nicely with each other.” Praise your child if they stop. If they do not stop, follow through with an appropriate consequence.
9. Have realistic expectations. All children misbehave at times and it is inevitable
that you will have some discipline hassles. Trying to be the perfect parent can set
you up for frustration and disappointment.

10. Look after yourself. It is difficult to be a calm, relaxed parent if you are stressed,anxious, or depressed. Try to find time every week to let yourself unwind or do something that you enjoy.