Now that you're the grown-up, it's your job to teach your kid how to behave. Yikes! Here are some basic kid-discipline techniques that will help you cope when you're not sure what to do:
- Use time-outs. They work (once kids are over 18 months). It's amazing how effective a couple of minutes in the "naughty corner" can be (thanks Supernanny!).
- Set consistent rules and follow through with clear, predictable consequences for not following the rules.
- Make sure you and your partner are on the same page as far as discipline.
- Don't give in to whining, crying or temper tantrums.
- Be positive. No kid wants to hear "no" all the time, so try to be creative and phrase things positively.
- Occasionally offering choices if fine, but don't do it on non-negotiable issues (for instance, don't ask "do you want to hold my hand when we cross the street?").
- Reward good behavior. Kids love sticker charts and other positive reward systems.
It's easy to lose your cool when your kid just poured juice on your iPhone. But try to take a deep breath and use some of the above discipline techniques. They're way more effective than screaming your head off!