Disciplining Children: Some Points of View


Your little girl talks back to you, your small son hits the baby. What can you do?

The short-term results of discipline include surviving each day with the house, the children, and your nerves relatively undamaged. But the long-term results of discipline determine the kinds of parents your children become and the understanding they gain of key gospel principles such as free agency, self-control, and their divine identity.

The Ensign presents here the views of three professionals and one gifted amateur on disciplining children: Eugene Mead, Brigham Young University professor of child development and family relations; Hermann Peine, Western Michigan University behavioral psychologist; and BYU sociologist Reed Bradford, whose wife Shirley is the gifted amateur.

The Ensign invites parents throughout the Church to share their own experiences with discipline. What works for your family? How does the everyday problem of coping with your children’s behavior fit into the eternal goal of celestial parenthood? What are your successful experiences with teaching children responsibility and obedience that respects their free agency and individuality? Selections from reader responses will appear in a future issue.