The Discipline of Discipline in Home Schooling “For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” – Hebrews 12:11 Arup K Mukhopadhya, CEO, Rungta Public School, Bhilai Sometimes, when people hear the word ‘discipline’ they picture kids gone wild. I have personally realized that words have its own meaning which are interpreted differently in different culture and context. In some countries and culture discipline is only associated with children and not adults. Moreover, discipline is also closely paired up with punishment. The word itself, however, originates from the same roots as “disciple,” and the Latin word (disciplina) has nothing to do with punishment, it means “instruction given, teaching, learning, knowledge.” Disciplining our children does involve punishment at times, but I think the ultimate purpose is not to mete out justice, but to teach or train. In a broader perspective, discipline may encompass training that corrects, moulds, or perfects the mental faculties or moral character. Thus discipline has nothing to do with age of an individual and inflicting punishment. In this sense, “discipline” not only encompasses teaching our children to be kind and obedient, but also encouraging them to develop positive habits, good attitudes, diligence, and self-control. Discipline does not end once a child quits misbehaving. Its ultimate goal is not to result in a well-mannered child, but a responsible adult. At times, we practice disciplining people through dialogues whereas at times, it requires stringent rules or consequences. In one occasion I had used the phrase ‘ Knowledge with Discipline’ a motto of one of our schools in Africa. As parent we consider all the attributes and attitudes that we want them to have by the time they reach adulthood, I began to realize how important it is to discipline (teach, train) children even when they are not necessarily disobeying.Let’s be honest, though: discipline is hard. It requires hard work, patience, self-control, and consistency,not only because those things are required in the training of children, but also because one of most important ways in which we teach our children is by modelling the behaviour we want them to develop.In other words, disciplining our children starts with us being willing to discipline ourselves, which plays a major role while coming to home schooling kids. This is because they only see us as role model. Home schooling parents must discipline themselves to put considerable effort into their daily instruction. Likewise, home schooling parents are responsible to ensure their children exercise self-discipline since they do not experience the same pressures within a public school classroom to work hard and participate. I don’t know about you, but I am well aware of certain areas of my life that lack discipline. One of these is probably my frustration arising from expectation and gets translated in to anger. At times I struggle with the “anger” part…I can tend to yell out of selfishness or anger. Many parents find it easier to take the brunt of the problem- Kids usually dump blocks/ toys/ clay etc. all over the floor. It usually takes lot of time for kids to assemble and put together. But parents don’t allow that, they prefer to do themselves quickly. When kids are careless and brake or loose things parents should probably encourage kids to search or to save up to buy a new one, but parents don’t have the patience, they will just buy a new one. When children ask to “help” around the kitchen, parents feel their “help” will only prolong the chore and achieve less satisfactory results, so…many parents prefer to just do it by themselves.The problem in all these scenarios is probably fairly obvious when it’s written out like that, but we all do it, right?? At times parents feel being ‘mean’to kids :In the broken toy scenario, it seems “mean” for many parents to require kids to buy the replacement itself when it’s really not that expensive. It seems “mean” to require them to put the finishing touches on their chores when they diligently got them mostly done and when they “worked so hard!!” Yet, We all want them to learn how to take care of their possessions, how to manage money, and how to do a job thoroughly. How is any of that “mean”? When we are faced with scenarios like these, we often think about the mercy and kindness of God, and we want to model that for our children. This tells us that, while there are times when we can show love to our children through mercy or kindness, we can also show love through discipline! It may not feel very loving to the child at the time, but the goal is to build good habits and prevent greater pain down the road. Home school discipline is a crucial element of a family who seeks to educate their children at home. In reality, the discipline in home schooling shouldn't really look any different than the discipline that normally happens in your home. As you bring up children, you need to set the boundaries and set out consequences for when your children are disobedient. It is just the same when home-schooling. There are a number of ways we try to keep our children on track and staying on task. We really want to establish good working habits for our children - for now and for the future. • One thing we have tried to instil is a habit of attention • We have also used checklists to tick off as they complete a task • We mostly keep to quite a regular routine or pattern to the day • An important consideration is knowing and working with child's strengths and weaknesses • Sometimes the loss of privileges is an effective means to encourage diligence and completion of their set work act as deterrent • At times, we need to separate children into different work areas when they were distracting each other • Another thing we have done is actually increased their work load Consequently, the disciplining of any child has an inherent philosophical and theological responsibility embedded within it, a responsibility that lies with the adult — hopefully one who continually strives to be virtuous — rather than with the child. Therefore, when discipline is carried out, either in a traditional school environment or in a home-school one, it is imperative for the adult to recognize that whatever is being employed to do so is either training the child to see the love, mercy, justice, freedom, and perfection or the anger, vengeance, injustice, control and imperfection inherited in man’s ways.