Children look to parents to provide them with an upbringing that will help them become productive adults. Achieving that goal involves following-through with child-rearing responsibilities, including using consistency to teach consequences. According to KidsHealth.org, consistency is the most important ingredient for successful parenting. A discipline plan that uses consistency and boundaries encourages children to understand consequences, have self-confidence and make appropriate choices.
A child raised with consistency learns responsibility, according to the University of Alabama's Child Development Resources. In addition, the university reports that inconsistent discipline keeps a child guessing, leaving him without a solid foundation for decision-making. When a child faces the same consequence every time he doesn't do his homework, he will figure out that getting it done is the right thing to do. Treats, praise and other rewards for getting homework done teaches him the benefits of taking care of responsibilities. As the child matures, a consistent foundation at home leads him to understand societal consequences of his choices.
Effective parenting includes allowing children to accept consequences at school and other places for their actions, according to child psychologist Jennifer Marrero. This teaches them to show respect for rules and for others. Consequences such as not eating causing hunger, staying up too late causes sleepiness are examples Marrero suggests. Using this natural consequence technique will strengthen a child's responsibility.
It is important for children to learn how to be resilient. Such children bounce back from adversity, choose a different path when the first one fails and overall refuse to give up in life. One way to instill this quality in a child is to give him the opportunity to come up with a plan B when plan A does not work. For example, if a child feels a project is too big for him to handle, helping him break it into chunks that can be accomplished a bit at a time will help him feel successful, according to Parenting for Life. When a child has difficulty with a friendship, be a good listener as the child explores various ways to face and deal with the issue. Through such exercises the child learns that there is usually more than one solution to a problem and that he is able to bounce back and try again until he reaches success.
Children with confidence have an easier time at school and in society, according to KidsHealth.org. A child gets his first taste of confidence at home when he figures out that a toothless grin at any passing adult will garner attention and smiles. As the child grows, parents are responsible for continuing to build that confidence. Children should be given increasing responsibilities so they experience success and build confidence in their abilities. A toddler can help put toys in a toy box. A preschooler can help set a table and elementary-aged kids are able to sweep, take out trash and do other chores. Praising success and correcting errors build a child's confidence which will serve him well in life.
- Kids Health: Nine Steps to More Effective Parenting
- HealthyChildren.org: Building Resilience in Children
- University of Alabama: Consistency: The Key to Well-Behaved Children
- Broward County Public Schools: Teaching Responsibility Using Natural and Logical Consequences -- Tips for Parents
- Parenting for Life: Kids Can Cope-Raising Resilient Children
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