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Punishment, or discipline, refers to unpleasant acts imposed on a child to discourage and correct undesirable behavior. Punishment can be applied both directly and indirectly. Direct forms of punishment include caning, beating, or any way of inflicting pain in order to discourage the child from repeating a certain action. Indirect forms of punishment include withdrawal of benefits and negative reinforcement. If a child refuses to do homework, for example, the parent may confiscate the child’s toys and play items. This will remind the child that homework needs to be finished before the child can play. Thus punishment serves a major role in encouraging desirable behavior as well as discouraging undesirable behavior. Although psychologists discourage the use of punishment in shaping child behavior, sometimes it is the only way to prevent mistakes in the future. Nevertheless, painful punishments should be kept to a minimum lest it pushes the child into isolation. Positive reinforcement is a more effective form of punishment.

What Is Positive Parenting?

What Is Positive Parenting?

Positive parenting is based on nonpunitive and nonauthoritarian strategies. Children are very much like mirrors; their behavior reflects that of their parents.

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