Creative Child

Discipline Through Play

by Rebecca Eanes


Role Playing

Ask your child to dress up and take on different roles, such as waiter, teacher, or grandparent. You, playing the role of the child, demonstrate how to behave in a restaurant, sit quietly in a class, show gratitude when opening presents, or whatever you feel your child needs to practice. Then switch roles and let your child practice these important skills. Remember to keep it lighthearted and fun. Silly costumes are a bonus!

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There are lots of children's books that teach morals and manners, and those are wonderful tools, but making up stories gives you an opportunity to address a recent problem or issue your child has faced. With a bit of creativity, story-telling is a wonderful way to teach cause and effect. Be sure to add in humor! Research suggests that laughter produces psychological and physiological benefits that help children learn.

Meeting children in their imaginative worlds is both a magical and practical way to teach them the lessons we want them to learn. A world of possibilities open up when we step inside the playful world of a child. What will you playfully teach today?

Related Article:  The Message Behind “Be Good” and What to Say Instead

Rebecca Eanes is the bestselling author of multiple books including Positive Parenting: An Essential Guide, The Positive Parenting Workbook, and The Gift of a Happy Mother. She is the grateful mom of two boys. 


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