Lockdown Learning: How to Discipline a 12 Year Old

As the world grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic, many families have found themselves in a new normal - lockdown. The lockdown has forced parents to work from home, and students are now studying online. It hasn't been easy for anyone; people have had to adjust, buckle up and cope as best they can, but it's even more challenging for twelve-year-olds who are still trying to figure out their place in the world.

Lockdown Learning: How to Discipline a 12 Year Old

Discipline is especially difficult during this time because children don't have their usual outlets like sports, extracurricular activities or friends. At times like these, patience wears thin and tempers flare quicker than you can say 'trampoline'. But worry not! In this article we'll be looking at some practical tips on how to discipline your twelve-year-old during this period of uncertainty.

Set Boundaries

Twelve-year-olds aren't exactly known for respecting boundaries; that is why it's critical that parents set clear cut rules as early as possible. Establish guidelines such as screen time limits for social media platforms like Tiktok or Instagram (we know all too well what happens when kids lose track of time).

Ensure there are consequences attached if said boundaries aren't respected i.e., no phone calls or gaming devices until chores are completed (but most importantly stick to them!)

A quick tip: Don’t forget that while creating these boundaries may seem limiting at first glance both you and your child will benefit from consistency.

Use Time-Outs

Most Parents would agree with me when I say punishing children isn’t an enjoyable task but sometimes necessary (after repeated warnings) Eh’sa Tauhid/ HuffPost/2014>. Grounding may feel extreme–opt instead for using effective time-outs. They serve just enough consequence without twisting your heart strings every time they make a mistake. Let your child know that if they aren’t cooperating, you’ll be sending them to their room for ten minutes (minute by age-age) with no electronics or screen time (that will get 'em).

You'll find that this technique usually gets the message across quickly enough, and it's not too harsh on anybody - because honestly, nobody wants to yell all day long especially during lockdown.

Help Them Find Reasons To Stay On Task

Though twelve-year-olds seem already grown at times –let’s just say focus won't always be one of their virtues American Radio Works/ North Public Radio 89.7>. When they can't concentrate long enough to complete tasks peacefully while you work in the other room all sorts of disasters occur like burnt toast or ruined carpets.

As adults we understand these distractions & often minimize outside stimuli when working but kids haven’t yet mastered such discipline. Try giving them incentives i.e., allowing him/her play with bubbles as soon as Algebra is done right or let her binge-watch an extra episode of Friends once she’s completed English homework...etc..

A brief note: These mechanisms ‘may’ give children purpose and bargaining chips towards course-completion; They may now have a reason to put in extra effort! Positive reinforcement does wonders.


In conclusion disciplining your twelve-year-old should come naturally amidst a number of different parental duties Parenting Science/2014./National Institute Of Child Health And Human Development>, and practicing self-care both physically and mentally could go a considerable way toward making daily parenting responsibilities relatively less demanding. Not only this - supplying guidelines helps hone abilities such as enforcing respectfulness habits in general conduct around home!

Remember though—it is ok not being perfect—we’re here every step of the way! Good luck parents!!


Here are some bullet points you can keep in mind while disciplining your 12-year-old:

  • Set boundaries (spend less time on phones and computers).
  • Be consistent with enforcing the rules.
  • Use timeouts for minor offenses or mistakes (let the punishment fit, not surpass, the crime!).
  • Strive to encourage focus (Create incentives, get them committed doing little things every day thereby finding balance between fun and work).

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