Spare the Rod and Spoil the Child

gautam gupta

Learning to read is one of the most important skills a child must master in the early years of schooling.

Comprehension skills, such as finding the main idea, recalling facts and details and finding word meaning within a sentence,

have to be practiced and understood. Interacting with a text and determining what an author’s message is, takes effort on the reader’s behalf.

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One advanced reading skill is the ability to interpret the figurative language the author uses. These are the words or phrases that are not to be interpreted in their usual or the most basic sense.

For example,

if an author uses ‘it’s raining cats and dogs’; they mean it is raining heavily.

Authors use figurative language for effect and to persuade and to make the reader think.

Spare the rod and spoil the child is an example of how a saying that was once regarded as literal can be used as figurative language. judgement tarot meaning It seems that many people still take the phrase literally. They see it as permission to hit their child or refrain from disciplining at all.

There is no excuse for physically punishing a child even though parents resort to doing so often due to frustration.

When we fail to discipline our child we are not preparing them to cope with life. We are sparing the rod. Without discipline a child will not get the best out of life.

The word discipline comes from the Latin word disciplina. It means: instruction given, teaching, learning, and knowledge. It is not about physical chastisement.

To discipline a child fairly and lovingly, a parent has to have self discipline. An undisciplined parent will not raise a disciplined child. We have all seen children out of control and wonder why the parents won’t discipline them.

Students, who come from homes where there is no guidance, are not happy. I have also seen the disrespect children have for parents who let them run wild.

The role of parenting is challenging. However, a concerned parent knows that discipline is necessary for a child’s happiness and well being. It is as important as nutritious food, exercise, formal education and fun. Lack of appropriate discipline can make a child angry, unhappy and resentful and lonely.

Undisciplined children do not have many friends. For school-age children in particular, learning how to manage their own behavior and regulate their negative impulses is particularly crucial.

Learning how to manage their behavior, consider others, work in teams and manage negative impulses, are all life skills a child needs to have for school and educational success. They learn discipline at home, if they are lucky, from disciplined parents, who were taught the skills by their parents.

Discipline is not about creating conflict. It is not about control. It is about anticipating a child’s needs, respecting them and setting a good example. It involves time and energy and focuses on the child’s development.

If a child behaves because they fear retaliation from a parent, they will not develop self-discipline.

Parents who love their child are willing to learn child rearing strategies to give their child security.

Children do understand when they have done something wrong. They do understand that behavior has consequences. Being confronted by a loving adult, and dealing with the circumstances of their misbehavior, is a positive not negative experience.

Many parents are frightened of their child. This is a very serious situation. Mothers, in particular, receive the brunt of their child’s misbehavior. If this is happening in your home, you must first get help for yourself and learn how to deal with your child. It won’t get better as your child grows.

Disciplining a child is not easy. Children do have tantrums. It takes consistency on the parents’ behalf to manage their own reactions and a discipline plan to resort to in difficult situations.

Making house rules non negotiable, helps the child understand that life has boundaries and rules.

Raising a disciplined child is about, consequences not punishment, controlled expression of anger, setting boundaries, respect, positive not negative instructions, and finding out what is behind the behavior.

It also includes allowing a child to discuss their thoughts and feelings.

Biblical wisdom (Proverb 22:6) says, “Train up a child in the way he should go: even when he is old he will not depart from it.”

That applies to the lovingly disciplined child as well as the undisciplined child.

Parents have the most important role of all in their child’s life.

Who you are will most probably be reflected in your child.

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gautam gupta
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