Today's Tip for Families

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Set Clear Consequences When You Make a Rule

Establishing consequences for rule-breaking helps children learn to connect their actions with outcomes. This is an important part of responsibility.

Ideally, consequences should be established at the same time as the rules. Discipline is more effective if your child understands the consequences before the rule is broken. For example, "If you don't do your assignments, study time will be twice as long the next day."

Then, if you find out your child hasn't done a math assignment, you won't need to get upset. You can stay calm and say, "As you know, the consequence for not doing assignments is that you will have a double study time today. You obviously need more time to focus on schoolwork."

Setting consequences in advance also keeps your child from feeling picked-on. The rules and the consequences for breaking them were clearly spelled out. Your child chose to break the rules, so you enforced the consequences.

Sticking to what you said you would do makes it easier for your child to accept that the punishment is fair. And that will go a long way toward helping your student act responsibly the next time.

Brought to you by:

West Point Consolidated School District

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