disciplining todllers

They did something wrong, but now they’re looking at us with big and sad eyes: Is there anything harder than disciplining toddlers?

No parent likes to get angry with their children, or to reprimand them, but it is sometimes necessary. Setting boundaries is important so our little ones grow learning what is acceptable and what is not, and so they learn important values that will allow them to be a part of society.

It is possible to teach them with love, but it is perfectly normal for our children to do something wrong, at some point. They can’t always have what they want, and it is important that we learn some discipline for toddlers so we can teach them to take a “no” for an answer. Whether we (and they!) like it or not, they will have to accept a “no” many times in their life, and if we don’t teach him that that is a part of life as well, they will have to deal with lots of frustration in the future. And this is one of the main reasons why disciplining toddlers is important.


Disciplining toddlers: The importance of setting boundaries

Boundaries are essential for children: Otherwise, how would they learn what’s right and what’s wrong? But that’s not the only thing why boundaries are important: They will also make our toddler feel secure, since they will constitute a set of guidelines for life, something they can count on. Besides, those boundaries will also give them some freedom to behave: They will teach them what they can and can’t do, so they will feel more secure to decide what to do within those limits.


Disciplining toddlers: Choosing our methods, and sticking to them

Of course, we can’t be too strict when disciplining toddlers, and we can change strategies if the ones we’re using are not working with our little one. However, we do need to stick to what we say, otherwise our toddler will be just lost.

For instance, let’s just think of the following situation as an example: We’re going to the supermarket with our child, who threw a real temper tantrum last week, when he wanted some colourful but unhealthy cereal we refused to buy. We don’t want that the situation repeats itself, so, before leaving, we explain to him that we won’t get the cereal for him, or anything else: We’re just going grocery shopping and we will buy only what we will need to eat this week.

But once we arrive to the supermarket, he wants a humongous bar of chocolate and starts showing the beginnings of a tantrum. Of course, we don’t want for it to happen again, but we do need to stick to our decision: If we first said no and now we say yes, our “no” will have less value, and it will be more difficult for him to understand. Same thing if we didn’t explain that we wouldn’t buy anything before leaving, he asks politely for the chocolate bar and we refuse. If he starts throwing a tantrum, we’ll have to stick to our “no” anyway. Children also try to set their own boundaries, and we can’t give in to them – otherwise, they’ll know what to do to get what they want! 

This example of disciplining toddlers can be applied in many situations. Our children need to know that they cannot climb on to the table; if we let them climb on to it sometimes and some others not, how will they understand that that is not acceptable behaviour? Disciplining toddlers is difficult, because it also means that we will have to discipline ourselves. We won’t always have the energy to fight a tantrum in the supermarket, and will be tempted to buy the cereal or the chocolate bar. But that will just make things more difficult to us in the future.


Disciplining toddlers: How to get them to understand a “no” 

There are a few techniques that can help us say “no” to our little ones without triggering a furious tantrum. You can try the following, and see if they work with your child or not:

  • Don’t yell at him: Say things without reprimanding them, being calm is always more effective than yelling.

  • Say what you’re saying no to: Especially when they are very young, it’s always good to specify what you’re saying no to: For instance, say: “No, don’t bite the settee”, instead of saying just “no”.

  • Explain why: Your little one may not understand why they’re not allowed to do what they wanted to do, so, when disciplining toddlers, it’s always better to explain. “Don’t take your coat off, you could catch a cold” is always better than just “don’t take it off”.

  • Make it positive: A good and productive way of disciplining toddlers is to turn a real “no” into a positive. For instance, if your little one asks you to ride the bike in the garden, but you’re about to eat, it’s better to say: “Of course, right after lunch you can go ride your bike” than just “not now”. The outcome will be the same one, but the effect and the perception of your little one will be different, and more positive.

  • Give him a choice: Let’s take the same example as before. Your little one wants to ride a bike, but it’s raining lots, so it’s clearly not the best option. Instead of just saying no; you can say the following: “It’s raining outside, what about playing with your train instead?”.

  • Make them take a time up: Sometimes, children seem to go completely crazy and go from one forbidden thing to another. It can happen sometimes! A good option in this situation is to tell your toddler to take a time out. It will give him sometime to calm down and it will give you a rest.

Some studies have proven that toddlers who hear “no” too many times a day show less language skills than those toddlers who have been raised in a more positive way. This is why it’s important to get creative when disciplining toddlers! Besides, saying no too much can end up being negative. Do you know how a word seems to lose its meaning when you repeat it too many times? Well, it can be the same when disciplining toddlers! If you say “no” too much, your little one will end up not caring about it.

How to discipline a baby

But does all this mean that we only have to star disciplining toddlers when they are actually toddlers? Absolutely not. Babies are babies, and children are children, and we need to let them be that – but boundaries need to appear as soon as our little ones start doing unacceptable things – and this may start before the toddler phase. Our baby will probably start crawling around 8 months, and they will be able to paint all over the walls or break stuff. We need to tell them that that is not OK.

However, how can we be sure that, being so little, they will understand what “no” means? It’s not recommendable to yell at them, but they will be able to understand that “no” means something different by how your voice sounds. Still, try not to overwhelm your baby with too much forbidden things and “no’s”. They may not understand, and it may make them feel uncomfortable with their new crawling ability, and it’s better for them to enjoy it.

The best thing to prevent them from touching what they’re not supposed to touch is to put it out of reach – baby proofing the apartment is a must when that little rascal is moving around! Another thing you can do is distract your little one with something else instead, or replace the thing they’re focused on touching or grabbing with one of their toys.

As you can see, there are many different techniques for disciplining toddlers. Do you have any other tip or trick? Don’t forget to tell us in the comments!


Need help? Ask other mummies in CaptainMums' forum!


Overall Rating (0)

0 out of 5 stars

Leave your comments

Post comment as a guest

Your comments are subjected to administrator's moderation.
  • No comments found

Activity Stream

Qutona started a new discussion What inspires you?... 7 hours ago 56 minutes ago

Where do you get inspiration from?...

natalli added a reply in discussion How can I crop videos from my ... yesterday

Now there are video editors you can yourself without spending a lot of money. So you can make a video that you need and at a convenient time for yourself....

Sancsa added a reply in discussion What is the most common footba... 2 days ago

I’d have thought it would be boring 1–0 wins or maybe 0–0 draw but its just a guess friend. You can check modern scores for example on https://777score.ph/ as you can see they can be very different....

Aksha added a reply in discussion What is the most common footba... 2 days ago

Oh, interesting question! Research by James Curley at Columbia University analyzed 126 years of English footballing data to find out that 1–0 victories (for either the home or away sides) contribute to 16.1% of the outcomes....

Cherry2 started a new discussion What is the most common footba... 2 days ago

What is the most common football (soccer) score?...

Cherry2 added a reply in discussion What has shocked you the most ... 2 days ago

For me absolutely nothing. He is a good man. And what is there too shock. Also. Except for. His injury prone body. He would have well passed federer in grand slam wins. HE IS AN HONOURABLE CARING MAN. Question. What is there too shock? He and Stan Warinka. Are the real good guys on the tour. I follow all popular tennis championships on https://777s...

Aksha added a reply in discussion What has shocked you the most ... 2 days ago

How good he is and for how long he has been able to keep up his playing style, given the demand on his body. He basically grinds out points and plays LONG rallies. That is a tough style to play, long term. And it has taken a certain toll on him, with all the injuries that he has had. But he is essentially using the same style he always has, and it ...

TerPL added a reply in discussion Do you like to workout?... 3 days ago

Definitely, I do sports. But it is more likely to keep yourself in physical form. I go to the gym a couple of times a week. I prefer to play football or something else on the computer. Create your own team and manage it. True, I have been interested in Fortine lately. This is a great combat game. It is rather complicated but this is what attracts m...

Sancsa started a new discussion What has shocked you the most ... 3 days ago

What has shocked you the most about Rafa Nadal?...

pennyq added a reply in discussion How much does it cost to make ... 3 days ago

There are so many factors that should be taken into consideration that you can easily be confused. I used to read this article https://light-it.net/blog/9-recommendations-building-fitness-bracelet-app-like-fitbit/#4 upon this topic and should say it turned to be very useful. Simply go through it and make sure you are aware of all details as far as ...

davidwind added a reply in discussion How much does it cost to make ... 3 days ago

It can cost anywhere between $0 and hundreds of millions. $0 because you did all the work. $hundreds of millions if you are Uber or Facebook. Both have spent tons of money on their mobile initiatives. It depends on what you want, your budget, and what your expectations are....

Sallyford started a new discussion How much does it cost to make ... 4 days ago

How much does it cost to make a health & fitness mobile app?...

pennyq added a reply in discussion Who is the richest footballer ... 5 days ago

Messi or Ronaldo. I believe they both have huge money on their accounts.Personally I adore Messi. He is the greatest football player of all times. I even bet through https://777score.com/ to make sure he is simply the best. He is the most talented and titled football player and I won`t stop admiring him...

davidwind added a reply in discussion Who is the richest footballer ... 5 days ago

There's a lot of speculation over who is the richest footballer on the planet. Different publications have different answers but it narrows down to only two people and everbody knows it. Yes, its either Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel messi. No one can exactly estimate their net worth as it includes their weekly wages and tonnes of endorsements. An...

Sallyford started a new discussion Who is the richest footballer ... 5 days ago

Who is the richest footballer in the world?...

Cherry2 added a reply in discussion Does caviar really taste amazi... 6 days ago

As with most matters of taste, it is a matter of opinion. Personally, I love it and not because it is expensive. It is more of a textural than a taste thing for me. The saltiness combined with the "pop" of the individual eggs makes for a unique taste and mouth feel that I enjoy. If you want to give it a try yourself, there is good place to buy http...

ScarlettHart added a reply in discussion Summer Travel Tips... 6 days ago

This thread reminded me of my troubles travelling to Russia from Germany. You must specify the cities you will visit. You also need to be aware of whether you will make multiple entries into Russia during the duration of your visa. For example, if you want to skip to a neighbouring country like China, you must include it in your travel plan. I know...

Sallyford added a reply in discussion Where can I find private careg... 7 days ago

As it was said before it can be quite unsafe, so I would recommend to turn to www.allheartcare.com home care agency in manhattan that has already earned a reputation of being reliable. I am sure you will be quite satisfied with their prices and qualified staff. Hope it can help...

Sancsa added a reply in discussion Does caviar really taste amazi... 7 days ago

Much like fine wine, I suspect that anyone not familiar with the taste trying it for the first time would not be overly impressed, and wouldn't think even be able to tell the difference between cheap and expensive. So unless you've got tons of money to burn I wouldn't really worry too much about what you're missing out on. It's nice enough but I...

Olijya started a new discussion Which vacuum cleaner is best f... 7 days ago

Girls, tell me what kind of vacuum cleaner better clean the house? The kid is small and the doctor said that there is an allergy to household dust. Which vacuum cleaner is best for cleaning the house? We live outside the city. We have our own house....

Olijya added a reply in discussion How can I crop videos from my ... 7 days ago

I use the video editor Bolide Movie Creator. I add both color and sound and special effects. This video editor is simple. I do everything by following this guide . Step by step will help you....

Olijya is now ranked up to New Member... ! 7 days ago
Olijya added a reply in discussion Summer Travel Tips... 7 days ago

The main thing is to plan a trip well and not to miss on trifles....

ScarlettHart added a reply in discussion What is the world's best vacat... 7 days ago

My wife and I had a wonderful time at https://www.blueparadise-dr.com/. Our feelings became more romantic and passionate as 10 years ago. The resort gave us the opportunity to feel young Good service, romantic atmosphere everything we were needed. Advise everyone!...

ScarlettHart is now ranked up to New Member... ! 7 days ago