What is the Relationship between Guidance and Discipline?



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It is found wherever there are problems to be solved in teaching, in supervision, in discipline. In fact discipline offers one of the most useful and rewarding areas for guidance.

The confusion of these leaders is best resolved by examining the meanings which may be attached to the term ‘discipline’.

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has two different but related meanings. First, discipline is a planned series of activities or exercises considered necessary for the attainment of a certain goal.

An example is the training of an athlete for a race or for some other athletic contest. This meaning would include the development of regular exercise, eating, and sleeping habits as well as certain restrictions.

Another example of this meaning is the college curriculum leading to a degree. In this first sense discipline also means a set of rules or laws affecting conduct such as the discipline of the church, the law, or medicine. This meaning maybe called ‘positive’ discipline.

Second, discipline means punishment for conduct that is considered undesirable. Failure to achieve a required standard in school, for example may result in punishment or ‘discipline.’ The punishment may also be the natural result of undesirable conduct.

This meaning may be called ‘negative’ discipline. Its purpose is to prevent conduct that is undesirable. It is intended to help the individual understand what is necessary to attain the goal and to motivate him to keep to the exercises and the rules that have been set up.

It will be seen that the two meanings of discipline are closely related and that guidance has a unique function in both of them.

Guidance helps set the goal and develop a programme of activities leading to it. It also encourages and motivates the individual to keep at the activities and exercises that are essential in attaining the desired end.

Guidance as Punishment:

When discipline means punishment by some authority for unacceptable behaviour, guidance may help the student to understand why the behaviour is unacceptable.

High school is not too early to help students to understand the function of punishment as seen in the history of human society and to comprehend what their community would be without laws leading to the punishment of offenders.

The responsibility for assistance to students in cases of discipline, in both its positive and its negative meanings, may rest upon any school personnel.

They must provide the motivation necessary for the attainment of the objectives and administer such punishments as may be necessary for failure to study or to achieve academically.

In addition each teacher is responsible for the behaviour of the children in his class and to a large extent for their attendance and health. Without a doubt the chief responsibility for all these guidance services rests upon the teacher.

Preventive Guidance:

By far the most effective discipline is that which operates before the crisis occurs and helps the student to understand and accept the type of behaviour that is demanded by the school. In most cases discipline of this kind helps the student to realise what is required and therefore makes punishment unnecessary.

Here the teacher is the most important factor, but the counsellor may also be of real assistance. This type of discipline is not always possible, however, because one cannot always foresee the approaching crisis.

Furthermore, not every crisis can be prevented. When a crisis does come, the student is in dire need of help, and the counsellor has a clear responsibility to give him help.

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