Natural and logical consequences are the best way for people to learn.

Natural Consequences:

These are consequences given by nature. There is never any discussion, second warnings, or negotiating with nature. If you go out in the rain, you will get wet. If you climb a tree and let go, you will fall and suffer the consequences of that fall, etc. Other natural consequences include going to the potty so you don’t have wet pants, picking up your room so you can find your toys, etc. When a consequence comes from nature it’s the best way of learning. When ever possible, let your child experience the consequences of his/her behavior. Of course, this isn’t always possible due to safety reasons. You wouldn’t want to let your toddler get burned to learn not to touch the stove, or get hit by a car to learn not to ride a bike in the street.

Logical Consequences:

When natural consequences can’t be used due to safety or other reasons, the next best way of changing behavior is Logical consequences. When you tell a child “you need to set the table so we can eat,” you are using logical consequences. When a child needs to stay home to finish homework before playing with friends, that is a logical consequence. If your toddler throws food, remove the food, or remove him from the table. There is no reason to hit, yet, spank, or put the child in time-out. Any of these punishments will distract the child from thinking about what HE did, and turn the focus towards feeling angry at you. A child learns best from his experiences. When children fight, it’s best to ignore them as long as no one is going to get hurt. If one is much bigger than another or you fear injury, they need to be separated, but don’t hoover over your children. Give them a chance to work it out themselves.

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