I read an article posted by a former student who is now the director of a large pre-school. In the article, the author cited numerous studies that say bad behavior in a toddler is a cry for help, an unspoken emotional crisis that needs to be met with kindness, calmness, and gentleness. The author claims that studies prove that sitting the child down and speaking in a soft, mono-tone to explain which behaviors are acceptable, and why their behavior is harmful to them and others, results in behavior change. Reasoning with a toddler produces the desired behaviors, the author claims, even though that flies in the face of other studies that say humans are unable to reason until their brains are more highly developed than that of a three-year-old.
Isn’t what the author proposes kind of like teaching Algebra 2 to a child who can’t recognize the number “1” yet?
Once again, I ask who is the authority on which these opinions are based? Because THE AUTHORITY has a lot to say about rules, about right and wrong, and about discipline. Here are just some of what God said through Solomon:
He who ignores discipline comes to poverty and shame, but whoever heeds correction is honored. (Proverbs 13:18)
He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him. (Proverbs 13:24)
Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid. (Proverbs 12:1)
Make no mistake about it, discipline according to Scripture involves a swat on the bottom. The Bible tells us that’s the loving kind of parenting.