Montessori World

An educational blog for children and adults

Spare the Rod and Spoil the Child

I was reading an article with the above topic in a magazine. 84% of French parents admitted slapping their children to discipline them. And 51% hit their children frequently almost more than once everyday. In fact, when the British government banned parents or guardians from hitting their children, the French was surprised and amused by their neighbour’s new ground rule. They thought that parents or guardians alike are able to differentiate clearly the degree of hitting for the sake of disciplining or physical abuse. The British was not alone in their actions, the Swedish and German government had also followed likewise.

Actually, by allowing the practice of hitting to slip in a culture might worsen or encourage serious abuse cases to be protected. Experts also agree that hitting, even occasionally, can weaken a child’s emotional relationship and encourages the use of violence to solve enmity or misunderstanding.

Do children need to be spanked or hit or slapped or caned for them to realize their mistakes? Does physical punishment actually reminds a child about the right thing to do? Could this kind of treat be the root of violence and war in the current society?

In the classroom, children as young as 3 years old can naturally react violently and physically to a negative or intimidating attack. As teachers, we always encourage them to use words rather than actions or hands to resolve the problem. We also emphasize on the importance of not hurting others by words or striking an emotional war between each other. For example, what do you mean when a person says “I don’t want to be your friend!” or “I don’t want to play with you!”. It’s important that the receiver of this message demands for a reason or an answer from the sender, so that the receiver can change his approach or attitude in accordance with the sender’s reason of proper friendship.

Reacting violently by words or hands is the most final solution of all. This necessity only arises when there is no more medicine for the problem; when the sky has turned red at dawn; and when the world has come to an end.

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January 13, 2007 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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