Home Health News What's the Best Way to Discipline Children?

What's the Best Way to Discipline Children?

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What’s the Best Way to Discipline Children?

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The American Academy of Pediatrics on Monday issued its most strongly worded policy statement against spanking children.CreditCreditJoy Elizabeth/Getty Images
  • Nov. 6, 2018

When children misbehave, how should parents discipline them? Do you think spanking is sometimes warranted? If so, when?

Over all, what do you think is the best way to teach children right from wrong?

In “Spanking Is Ineffective and Harmful to Children, Pediatricians’ Group Says,” Christina Caron writes about a new policy being issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics:

Parents should not spank their children, the American Academy of Pediatrics said on Monday in its most strongly worded policy statement warning against the harmful effects of corporal punishment in the home.

The group, which represents about 67,000 doctors, also recommended that pediatricians advise parents against the use of spanking, which it defined as “noninjurious, openhanded hitting with the intention of modifying child behavior,” and said to avoid using nonphysical punishment that is humiliating, scary or threatening.

“One of the most important relationships we all have is the relationship between ourselves and our parents, and it makes sense to eliminate or limit fear and violence in that loving relationship,” said Dr. Robert D. Sege, a pediatrician at Tufts Medical Center and the Floating Hospital for Children in Boston, and one of the authors of the statement.

The academy’s new policy, which will be published in the December issue of the journal Pediatrics, updates 20-year-old guidance on discipline that recommended parents be “encouraged” not to spank. The organization’s latest statement stems from a body of research that was unavailable two decades ago.

Students, read the entire article, then tell us:

— Do you agree with the American Academy of Pediatrics that spanking should not be used to discipline children? Why or why not?

— Is spanking ever used in your family to get kids to behave?

— In your opinion, what’s the best way to discipline children? Do you think different approaches are needed for children at different ages and with different temperaments?

— If you become a parent some day, how do you think you might discipline your own children? Why?

Students 13 and older are invited to comment. All comments are moderated by the Learning Network staff, but please keep in mind that once your comment is accepted, it will be made public.

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