The Educator's PLN

The personal learning network for educators

Discipline is not a four-letter word

Somewhere along the way the word discipline has, for some, become a four-letter word.  Isn't discipline a good thing?  Don't I need discipline to sustain a habit, change my lifestyle, or excel at anything I do.  Isn't it important that I learn self-discipline so I can monitor my own progress toward any goal.  If I don't have it or know what it looks like, isn't it important that I have someone to help guide me there? Now, I know that's probably not what is often meant when people use the term discipline, but therein lies the problem.  If by discipline you mean punishment then say punishment.  Living in the world of connotation opens the door to misunderstandings even when we actually agree.

I don't want to move "beyond discipline"; I want discipline, self-regulation and self-control...and I want it for my students.  I certainly want to move "beyond punishment" to engage in more meaningful dialogue to assist students in understanding where things went wrong, how they can restore their relationships, and how to avoid making the same mistake again.

For schools, discipline plans or systems should be designed as instruments of support & inclusion, NOT removal and isolation. The focus should be on teaching what is socially acceptable within the given context and helping students learn what is and is not appropriate. Students are greatly influenced by the parameters outlined by the adults they interact with and are taught, both directly and indirectly, what is socially acceptable. Do we not celebrate coaches who can instill a disciplined atmosphere within their team? Do students not need discipline to prevent themselves from reacting inappropriately while emotionally charged?

Discipline is a good thing; the misuse of discipline - or mistaking punishment for discipline -  doesn't render the idea of discipline inappropriate or ineffective. Effective school discipline brings a sense of belonging, an atmosphere of inclusion, a feeling of predictability, and a climate of respect.

Views: 154

Comment

You need to be a member of The Educator's PLN to add comments!

Join The Educator's PLN

Comment by Oscar Marin on December 13, 2013 at 7:00pm

Well said Tom. I really liked your end note saying that people think as punishment as mode of following punishment which is absolutely wrong notion. An effective discipline is creation of norms which a student can will fully abide by abide by. Students do follow such norms outlined by adults when they feel respect for them. So a whole new outlook towards practice of discipline is required. 

Comment by andrew aker on December 12, 2013 at 6:08am

Tim, you are exactly right!   

Let me know if you ever dream of coming to teach in China!  ;) 

About

Thomas Whitby created this Ning Network.

Latest Activity

John Braswell posted a blog post

What is Your Essay Definition, Explain by Essay Writer?

Essay Definition can vary widely depending on the Person DefiningEssay definition can be different depending on the source. The narrowest definition of essay is “a short piece of writing on a particular subject”, as appearing in Oxford Dictionary. Most common form of essay is written in prose. In practice, essays are regarded as short pieces of writing, though there are some exceptions like John Locke’s” An essay concerning human understanding”. In its broadest sense, definition of essay…See More
Dec 9, 2020
Agnes Mckenna updated their profile
Dec 2, 2020
Eleonore Cowan updated their profile
Dec 2, 2020
Miles Brandon updated their profile
Dec 1, 2020
mario barker updated their profile
Nov 30, 2020
cal bates updated their profile
Nov 30, 2020
jimmy zack updated their profile
Nov 29, 2020
Erick Goodman updated their profile
Nov 27, 2020

Events

© 2021   Created by Thomas Whitby.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service