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After viewing the short video clip, the Bowersock family is in need of some help. Father, Thad has somewhat taken up the uninvolved parenting style due to his employment or job obligations, leaving the mother, Jenniffer to manage the three children daily. It is clear that the children are not well behaved and both parents are struggling to effectively discipline their children in a reasonable. As an ECCE practitioner, I would assist the parent by reassuring them that although parenting may seem difficult, it can be very rewarding. I would reinforce parental competence and help find strategies that suit the family’s needs; as well as effective discipline techniques according to the child’s developmental level according to studies from Paediatr Child Health, (2004). I would respectfully highlight key areas such as the way each family member is treated, the flow of communication between the parents and children, and the living examples the parents are setting for the children. If as a mother, Jenniffer pushes, slaps and spanks as forms of discipline to the children; they in turn see no reason in why they can’t react the same way to their siblings and peers, and that’s not alright.
There is constant shouting and a level of disrespect within the household. Four (4) communication strategies I would encourage within this family are:
1) Clear and direct communication which is the most, healthy form of communication and occurs when the message is stated plainly and directly to the appropriate family member, and this needs to be frequent and consistent within the household (Peterson, 2009). Effective and positive discipline is about teaching and guiding children, not just forcing them to obey. Love, support and trust between parent and child should also be communicated (Paediatr Child Health, 2004).
2) ‘The word discipline means to impart knowledge and skill – to teach. However, it is often equated with punishment and control. There is a great deal of controversy about the appropriate ways to discipline children, and parents are often confused about effective ways to set limits and instill self-control in their child’ (Paediatr Child Health, 2004). Try requesting the child to stop the negative act or be put on time out, instead of sticking or lashing out immediately. Effective communication is an important characteristic of strong, healthy families. Research identifies communication as an essential building block of strong marital, parent-child, and sibling relationships (Peterson, 2009).
3) Corporal punishment consists of hitting, forcing the child to stay in uncomfortable positions, or eat foul substances such as soap; all of which is meant to cause physical pain, emotional punishment is meant to humiliate the child and cause psychological pain (UNESCO, 2015). Instead of such, Jenniffer should speak with her children on a one on one basic. Explain what is acceptable behaviour and acknowledge or reward good behaviour. Give the children positive alternatives and firm guidance.
4) Reading pamphlets or books on parenting and communicating with a professional councilor or psychologist is also advised.
Peterson, R. (2009). Families First-Keys to Successful Family Functioning: Communication. Virginia Cooperative Extension. Publications and Educational Resources, 350 / 350-092. Retrieved from
Paediatr Child Health. (2004). Effective discipline for children. 9(1): 37-41. Retrieved from
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization – UNESCO. (2015). Positive Discipline in the Inclusive, Learning-Friendly Classroom. Retrieved from
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