Young children who are not disciplined from an early age are more likely to grow into angry, anti-social teenagers, a national report has revealed.
Research by the National Academy for Parenting Research, commissioned by the Department of Health, discovered poor parenting skills are to blame for the ‘generation of angry children’ after questioning nearly 300 families on their child’s behaviour and their discipline techniques.
Researchers found children were twice as likely to be aggressive or disruptive if they had parents who are critical, inconsistent and set no rules or example of good behaviour.
The ‘How is parenting style related to child anti-social behaviour?’ study discovered that children with strict parents who disciplined their children with a reassuring, clear and non-physical approach, tended to be better behaved and have better vocabulary skills.
Researchers added that child behaviour “remained true even after a range of socioeconomic factors were taken into account,” reports the Telegraph, meaning children from middle-class families are just as likely to go off the rails as a result of bad parenting.
The study is hoping that their findings will reinforce the benefits of parenting lessons across all section of society and demographics, on the best ways to discipline children.
“Since the study has confirmed the link between negative parenting and child antisocial behaviour in England today, the implications are that it is appropriate to offer parents parenting programmes that have been shown to reduce coercive parenting practices, improve positive parenting, and reduce child antisocial behaviour.”
To help tackle the angry children generation, the report suggests parents take on a “positive parenting” approach by consistently praising and rewarding good behaviour from an early age, as well as having an active role in their child’s everyday life.
Miriam Chachamu, author of How To Calm A Challenging Child, told The Huffington Post: "It is important for children to have clear, consistent boundaries, yet it is essential that this takes place within a warm, loving family relationships. Even the most challenging children become better behaved when their parents use positive parenting skills consistently.
"Positive parenting is not always natural and many parents find parenting courses very helpful."
According to the Super Nanny website, led by leading child behaviour expert Jo Frost, many parents confuse discipline with punishment. However, it needn’t be a negative experience.
“See discipline as a way of teaching your child self-control instead of a way to control your child. Once you’ve helped build that sense of self-control, you’ve effectively taught your child the skill of disciplining himself.”
If you want to find out how to discipline your child using the 'positive approach', take a look at the tips below.