True Education


Chapter 34—Discipline

One of the first lessons that children need to learn is the lesson of obedience. Before they are old enough to reason, they may be taught to obey. By gentle, persistent effort, the habit should be established. To a great degree this may prevent those later conflicts between will and authority that create alienation and bitterness toward parents and teachers, and too often resistance of all authority, human and divine. TEd 179.1

The object of discipline is to train children for self-government. They should be taught self-reliance and self-control. As soon as they are able to understand, their reasoning powers should be enlisted on the side of obedience. Show them that obedience is right and reasonable. Help them see that disobedience leads to disaster and suffering. When God says “You shall not,” He is, in love, warning us of the consequences of disobedience, in order to save us from harm and loss. TEd 179.2

Help children see that parents and teachers are representatives of God, and that as they act in harmony with Him, their laws in the home and the school are also His. As children are to obey parents and teachers, they also are to obey God. TEd 179.3