Parenting Preschoolers: How to discipline a preschooler?

Appropriate ways to discipline a preschooler for positive live long learning

A preschooler is a child in between the toddler age and the elementary school age. A preschooler have a slightly developed brain than a toddler but slightly underdeveloped than an elementary school child.

Kids generally get into one or two trouble with their parents or siblings which indirectly or directly affect them and everyone in their environment.

Some trouble they get into because they simply don’t know that doing that will cause trouble, some unknowingly and some just because of their curiosity.

At this stage, they mostly want to be independent and feel like they can do everything by themselves, they are anxious, afraid, frustrated because of their not yet refined motor skills and curious at the same time so they end up trying out different things to see how you will react. They will show defiant behavior, push limits.

The energy they radiate at this age is what they will build on as they advance to the elementary school so it is extremely important for the parents to keep a good eye on them and quickly correct them in whatever negative thing they do.

How to discipline a preschooler? A father administering proper discipline on a preschooler
Dad administering discipline in right manner to model good made preschooler

Disciplining which is the way of correcting or compelling a behavior mostly by the use of punishment. This being carried out on a child is never a sin but it becomes one when discipline is carried out inappropriately.

Therefore, parents should make sure to administer discipline the right way so as not to cause more harm than good to children in the process. It can result to back talk or defiant behavior in them which is another problem.

Disciplining a preschooler is a very exhausting task because the tactics used last time might not be effective for another time. The parent must be constantly updated about the kid and the type of steps to take when carrying out discipline on them.

There are many ways to discipline a preschooler and it will be effective, it will change that which you want to change and you will end up having fewer problems with your kids.

Note that; disciplining is not only to correct negative or wrong deeds’ but. it has positive aspect too so don’t carry about the intention that you only need to discipline a child for their negative behaviors.

How to discipline a preschooler?

Ways to administer discipline of preschoolers that will yield positive result are many but proven few of them that have help model right behavior and made them yield good feedback are listed below

  • Always prepare for trouble

Don’t just trust the kids blindly and say they can never cause trouble just because they haven’t started causing one. Always expect that they will cause trouble someday and prepare yourself for the trouble so you will not be too shocked and will be able to carry out necessary steps and punishment without attaching emotions.

  • Listen to them

When your kid finally causes trouble, then hear them out. Although a preschooler might not be able to explain themselves clearly, they try to talk with their actions either by crying, laughing or rebelling. Understand them and try to make them understand you too so that you will be on the same page.

  • Identify their strange behavior

At this age, they start to exhibit some behaviors which will baffle you as a parent but fear not, it’s completely normal. Some of the behaviors are lying, which is the most common behavior amidst kids of this age.

They also whine, which is their way of forcing or begging you to submission, don’t give in to them easily because they will conclude that they won and will try it again next time.

  • Compliment their good deeds

There are some times that the kids will follow the rules and instruction you lay out for them, at those times you have to compliment them, praise their good behavior to make them happy and understand that you are pleased with what they did.

Tell them “good boy or girl” when they place their sandals where you told them to, tell them you love them when they retire to bed in the time you set for them. Show affection to encourage them, it works!

  • Get rid of privileges for sometimes

When they do something bad that makes you angry, sad or disappointed but it’s not worth to be hit over, place them in a tight spot. Take away some privilege that will be painful to them like taking away toys for sometimes, not allowing TVs, no ice cream for a specific moment, this works better then hitting where they just cry, forget and repeat the same mistake sometimes soon.

  • Reward them

When kids listen to your instructions, it’s natural to compensate their obedience. Don’t just smile and pat them on the head calling them good kids, reward them with something.

Tell them if they keep the good behavior up then they will be rewarded with toys, money, foods, snacks, clothes and so on but if they fail, they lose them one by one until they get their head right.

  • Prevent coming troubles

Don’t just dump the responsibility on them, take a part and step to make them stay away from trouble too. When your kids are going to a new or strange place, alert them about how to compose, comport and carry themselves before hand.

Tell them the rules they should follow, tell them the implications of breaking the rule and also make sure they won’t feel lonely because that’s where curiosity to do bad things start.

  • Don’t overwork and underfeed them

Kids struggle to stay still when they are hungry, stressed or in discomfort. When you are leaving your kids’ side or taking them to school or outing, ensure they have eaten, pack some other snacks along to keep their head straight, make them rest prior to the outing so they will be calm and settled.

A hungry kid will frustrate the life out of not only you but everyone when they start to whine and It will eventually lead to crying because they can’t hold back that hunger.

  • Set rules and limits

So they child won’t get away with everything they do, set rules and limit for them. Tell them that they can only be pardoned up to a level, tell them what rules they have to follow so you and the kids can be on a good page and also let them know the punishment attached to every rule they break.

  • Offer choices

Don’t give them long list of choices. Give them a limited offer that will end up in positivity for you both. Let the choice you table before them be one that will end up taking care of whatever is required of them.

Ask them if they want to rest before attempting their assignments or vice versa, it’s okay as long as the assignment is done.

  • Let them know other ways to handle things

Since kids around the age are mostly aggressive when they are furious, tell them other ways to channel their energies without hurting others.

Don’t just scream at them or scold them when they are angry and they end up doing something bad, talk to them and tell them what they can do when they find themselves in similar situations some other time.

Disciplining is not all about hitting a kid, it also have to do with strict patterns to follow, how to behave and live so they don’t cause unnecessary trouble for themselves, the parents and the society at large.

Discipline must not be excessive or stricter than their ages or capability so they don’t end up being ruined instead of being made. Know what work for you and your child. Absolutely, what you have learn so far is all about administering appropriate discipline on a preschooler to model him/her for better future and thus, works for majority of children from diverse background.

Parents also read: Best ways child misbehavior can be corrected with love

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