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Right Brain Education is a philosophy more than it is simply an educational pedagogy, therefore it is important to address the issue of child discipline and the methods employed to achieve it. Central to Right Brain Education is love and the connection between parent and child. It would stand to reason that the disciplinary methods encouraged by Right Brain Education are those that are in harmony with positive discipline.
If you look at Makoto Shichida’s 6 ways to help children relax, you will note that his suggestions are both positive and gentle. In all his books, never has he encourage a heavy-handed approach to discipline. That’s why I believe in order for Right Brain Education to work, we need to provide a gentle, nurturing environment at home. In other words, no corporal punishment and no yelling. The methods of discipline that Makoto Shichida describes are methods of positive discipline.
What is Positive Discipline?
Positive discipline is a method of correcting negative child behaviour that:
- Helps children feel a sense of connection.
- Is mutually respectful and encouraging. It is both kind and firm at the same time.
- Is effective long-term because it considers what the child is thinking, feeling, learning, and deciding about himself and his world – and what to do in the future to survive or to thrive.
- Teaches important social and life skills, such as respect, concern for others, problem solving, and cooperation as well as the skills to contribute to the home, school or larger community.
- Invites children to discover how capable they are by encouraging the constructive use of personal power and autonomy.
Positive Discipline Works
Positive discipline studies show that the use of positive discipline significantly:
- reduced the number of suspensions in schools
- decreased vandalism
- improved classroom atmosphere, behaviour, attitudes and academic performance
- decreased incidence of socially risky behaviour
Positive discipline has also been useful in creating beneficial changes in parental behaviours.
More on positive discipline:
Implementing Positive Discipline
- Stop Reacting and Start Responding
- 7 Tips for Practicing Positive Discipline
- Tools for Positive Discipline
- Our Book List
Another way to encourage “good” behaviour is to employ the method of playful parenting. I have found using playful techniques to be very effective in encouraging the behaviours I desire.
For example, I used to be the one packing everything and hurrying the boys to get ready to leave the house. Sometimes they would listen, sometimes they would carry on with their current activities seemingly unable to hear me. Naturally, I would feel annoyed and frustrated because my polite requests have gone unheard. I would eventually get angry and the situation would rapidly deteriorate after that. By the time we finally get into the car, I’m all huffed up from being angry and the kids are sullen from being yelled at.
The alternative is when I create a play scenario that not only invites them to hurry up but engages them to help me pack. Our recent game would be to get our supplies ready to load into our spaceship before we embark on a mission. The mission would be one where we are racing against the clock to say disarm a bomb before it blows up. This alternative method is not only fun, but it gets everything I want to be done quickly and happily. I don’t have to nag, scold, or get angry.