I just simply asked my students to come join me at the rug area for a lesson, and a child asked me if she could sit in a chair instead of joining the rest on the floor. I said, “No.” She crossed her arms and asked me again. Again, I said, “No, you may sit on the floor like the others.” By now, her arms were crossed and her head was turned away. So I said, “You don’t have a choice, so please come sit on the floor.” She marched to the back of the room, broke down into tears, and said, “I just have a problem with the word ‘no’!” At this point, I wasn’t going to be flustered by her belligerence. I told her that even though the word ‘no’ is a strong word, it is something she needed to accept. I told her that she could sit right near me on the floor, and so she eventually did.Are we brainwashed into thinking that our kids should have more? Are we guilty of not spending enough time with our kids, so we end up saying ‘yes’ to keep them happy? Have we nurtured a rising epidemic of Discipline Deficit Disorder? More and more, I have noticed that children are having extreme difficulties with understanding respect. If there isn’t any instant gratification, off goes the tantrums at home, at school, or at the mall. They’ve become more impatient and self-centered. They routinely ignore parental or teacher commands. These are the symptoms of DDD. Scary, huh?What must we do for the children of today? As adorable as they can be, we should not be reluctant to say ‘no’. Saying ‘no’ may cause disappointment for the child, but it can boost the confidence and self-esteem. Saying ‘no’ can create self-discipline which promotes success in school. Saying ‘no’ can teach a child that there are other ways to solve a problem. Saying ‘no’ can develop healthy relationships between parents and children…(or, teachers & students).
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