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On Discipline and L-O-V-E

Molly Brett, Early Childhood Teacher at Kimberton Waldorf School shares advice and resources for establishing a healthy family culture.

Being a parent today can be confusing. There is so much information about how and why we should parent. The advice starts sometime before conception and continues until your children are out of the house. There are countless books, blogs, and memes about what is or is not acceptable. With so much conflicting advice it can be hard to hear from the most important person: you!


Remembering that essentially you are the creator of your family’s culture makes you an expert because no one knows your household or your children better than you! When we consciously define our family’s culture, we craft our days and months to define and sustain the needs of our unique family. There are many ways we can fill our days with meaning. Rhythm and routine develop calm and purpose in our lives. Rituals cultivate purpose and intention by highlighting daily and yearly moments of quiet and/or celebration. Depending on our culture, faith, or upbringing there may be things we choose to weave into our family’s rhythm or things we consciously choose to leave behind.


When we are consciously creating our family culture there is often a topic that brings about many strong feelings: discipline. Many of us have memories of either feeling loved and held by authority or shamed and scorned. How can we lovingly create boundaries for our children while maintaining an atmosphere of warmth? What tools can we utilize to help our children’s moral compass mature as they grow?


Deciding and defining what your family’s discipline culture is may be a journey of processing and assessing, but there is one tool that is abundant within us all: LOVE. If we think of LOVE as an acronym, it can be an incredibly useful discipline tool. When we bring one or all of these tools to the table:



Versatility/vulnerability, and


then we can solve some of the most challenging behavioral problems!



This L-O-V-E tool was developed by Cynthia Aldinger, founder of Lifeways NorthAmerica. In her 40+ years in early childhood education and as a mother of two, she developed this approach as a tool for herself and for the families in her care. To hear more about this L-O-V-E approach to discipline, find the WENurture podcast on your favorite listening platform, and subscribe. To learn other parenting tools to utilize as you define your family culture, follow WENurture on Instagram.


Learning to listen to and honor our family’s diverse needs creates health and wealth for the whole family!


–Molly Brett, Early Childhood Teacher, Kimberton Waldorf School



Kimberton Waldorf School supports the Main Line Parent Community.

Kimberton Waldorf School, founded in 1941 by Alarik and Mabel Pew Myrin, is the second-oldest Waldorf School in North America. Located on 430 acres in semi-rural Chester County, Pennsylvania, the school serves approximately 300 students from parent-child and early childhood through grade twelve. www.kimberton.org