Thoughts on Discipline

When teachers and parents discipline with stress, they are deprived of joy in relationships. Discipline, however, can be an opportunity, rather than a problem. As the French sociologist Emile Durkheim observed, discipline provides the moral code that makes it possible for the small society of the classroom to function.

Following are some thoughts about discipline from others. All of these echo the underlying concepts of the Raise Responsibility System—that discipline means both to teach and to learn, and that it’s a tool for teaching responsibility.

“Discipline in its highest notion is not punishment or self-punishment. It is rather something seminal to the self. It is our foundation. It is our architecture. It gives us structure. It allows us to steer our energies and pull our wagon.” –Noah Benshea, Great Quotes to Inspire Great Teachers

“Discipline must come through liberty. We do not consider an individual disciplined only when he has been rendered as artificially silent as a mute and as immovable as a paralytic. He is an individual annihilated, not disciplined.” –Maria Montessori

“To focus on discipline is to ignore the real problem: We will never be able to get students (or anyone else) to be in good order if, day after day, we try to force them to do what they do not find satisfying.” –William Glasser, Control Theory in the Classroom

“Discipline is necessary and good. You can’t raise successful children without it, but discipline should not repress or tyrannize. Discipline should lead to powerful habits of direction, work, and good judgment. Good discipline produces strength, not weakness; creativity, not banality; responsibility, not self-indulgence.” –Zig Ziglar, Raising Positive Kids in a Negative World

“The best discipline is the kind nobody notices—not even the one being disciplined.” –Marvin Marshall, Ed.D., Discipline Without Stress

What are some of your favorite quotes about discipline? Share them in the comments below.