Many moons ago, I was introduced to the concept of an If/Then Chart. Many of you have probably seen or heard about the one from Doorposts or the one from Titus 2 Ministries. More obscure, but popular just the same in homeschooling circles, is the Wise Words For Moms by Ginger Hubbard.
In case you aren’t familiar with If/Then Charts, let me give you a brief explanation…
They are often used for discipline and training of children. IF the child does such-and-such, THEN the child is disciplined in this manner. Ginger Plowman’s chart not only gives the what-not-to-do’s, but also the what-to-do’s. The ones I’ve listed are Scripture based and give parents a quick-glance tool for instructing children.
Often you are given the ability to write in your own method of discipline, but for someone like me, that is just too much slack in the reins.
Enter my favorite If/Then Chart (and it’s free to boot!)
This is not my own original work, but rather a chart I came across years ago. As far as I can tell, it is no longer available online and the woman who originally created it is no longer blogging at the only address I ever had for her. (You’ll see in the comments section that I did indeed connect with the original author who was happy to see this chart was still available somewhere!)
(I have corrected a Scripture reference and made this into a pdf file hosted here on my blog)
Here’s how the chart works: Basically, you have a list of behaviors (the “IF” side), a center section with Scripture that speaks to that behavior, and a consequence of said behavior on the far right (the “THEN” side). The punishment fits the crime and I don’t have to think too much about how to discipline certain behaviors. Now, that’s the kind of efficiency I need!
(A quick note on the “Penalties” section at the bottom of the second page: the amount of time I “isolate” depends on the age of the child. A 3 year old is not going to be isolated as long as an older child for obvious reasons.)
The thing that I like best about If/Then Charts is that you are not randomly scrambling around trying to find an appropriate punishment for undesirable behaviors. You have a handy little chart all made up for you explaining the why and the how for both you and the child to plainly see. Consistency, which more often than not is the name of the game, is easy to be had with the help of an If/Then Chart.