Grounding Children

  • By: The DIG for Kids
  • Time to read: 3 min.

Grounding is a discipline technique which many parents use with their school-aged children. Though it has been used widely for decades many parents are still unfamiliar with the details of Grounding. Though Groundings can be modified by parents as needed, some basic information can be given. Below are answers to frequently asked questions regarding Grounding children.

What is Grounding?

Grounding is a technique that parents use to discipline children. Parents Ground children by forbidding them to leave the home for social events for a specified period of time. Some parents also forbid children from engaging in entertaining past-times during this period as well. Other parents prefer to Ground children only from certain activities, for example from watching television, attending a particular birthday party or taking part in a particular group event.

How Long does a Grounding Last?

A Grounding can last as long as a parent likes, however the longer the Grounding lasts the less effective it usually becomes. Children very often become bored during Groundings, and many end up breaking further rules in an attempt to entertain themselves. Long Groundings also impact parents negatively in that many parents prefer not to have a moping child at home at all times. To avoid these outcomes, parents should keep Groundings short and sweet.

What Do Children Do During a Grounding?

When children are confined to the home and are not allowed to socialise they have a lot of free time. To avoid children getting up to no good during a Grounding, parents should consider assigning them certain projects to get through. Cleaning up a room, completing extra revision or babysitting younger siblings are all tasks that can be assigned to a child during a Grounding. Depending on why a child has been Grounded, parents can devise tasks that will teach them a lesson or a sense of responsibility related to these events.

Should Parents Remain at Home during Groundings?

Many parents prefer not to Ground children because they feel that their own lives are impacted by this type of discipline as well. Parents do not necessarily have to remain at home during a child’s Grounding, if they would leave their older children or teenagers at home alone were they not Grounded, though obviously this will depend on how much a parent trusts a child not to misbehave while they are out.

Do Groundings Work with All Children?

Groundings do not work with all children. Children who are not naturally outgoing or who do not particularly enjoy socialising will not necessarily find any further discipline in staying home simply because their parents are now requiring it. Children under about ten years of age often do not gain anything from Groundings.

How Frequently Can Parents Ground Children?

Parents should avoid Grounding children too frequently. If children feel as though they are Grounded for anything and everything, they will be less hesitant to break rules (because they will feel that they would probably be Grounded for something soon anyway!). Instead, parents should reserve Groundings for major misbehaviour.

Grounding children is a method of discipline that many parents embrace. In order to teach children something during their Grounding, parents should be prepared to have tasks for their children to complete which related to the behaviours that led to the Grounding in the first place.

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