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Support and Advice from TNPC's Parenting Experts

It’s important to look upon punishment as corrective, not retaliatory. You want to educate your child, not get even with him or her.

• The form of punishment should be appropriate for a child’s age and behavior. For example, many feel that a child over a certain age (perhaps seven or eight) should never be spanked.

• It’s important to have punishment occur as soon after an offense as possible. Don’t use the “just wait till Dad gets home” threat.

• Let logical consequences do the job of punishment for you when you can. If a door is left open, with a loss of heat or cooled air, set a fee for the energy wasted. If a lunch box is lost, brown bag it.

•┬áMake realistic use of time-out periods. Remember that five minutes can be a long time to a six year old, but it’s really nothing to a preteen.

• Don’t fall into the overkill trap. Grounding for a day is as good a lesson as grounding for a month for any child over the age of ten.

• Don’t assign as punishment anything you want your child to like (such as reading a book), and don’t bring up the subject again once the matter is settled. It’s not reasonable to try a child for the same crime more than once.

Vicki Lansky’s practical, common sense approach to parenting is familiar to millions throughout the world. Vicki’s first book, Feed Me, I’m Yours, published in 1974, and still one of the most popular baby/toddler food cookbooks in the country, was followed by The Taming of the C.A.N.D.Y. Monster, a #1 New York Times bestseller. Her other titles include: Toilet Training, Birthday Parties Best Party Tips & Ideas For Ages 1-8, Dear Babysitter Handbook, Welcoming Your Second Baby, Getting Your Child to Sleep … and Back to Sleep, Trouble-free Travel with Children, Baby Proofing Basics and Games Babies Play From Birth to Twelve Months, Koko Bear’s New Potty, A New Baby at Koko Bear’s House, Koko Bear and the New Babysitter, and Koko Bear’s Big Earache. Vicki Lansky’s Divorce Book for Parents: Helping Children Cope with Divorce and Its Aftermath

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Behavioral, Support and Advice, Temporary, Treatment