Little FYI, applying the switch at the slightest provocation can be bad for a child as well. My father would spank me (and I’m talking a volley of hard spanks meant to hurt for hours, not a simple swat) for the slightest cross (hell, he spanked me once because I was backing my tricycle into the drain pipe on our house. Please, explain to me what harm I was doing), and there was never any explanation of why what I had done was wrong or what harm it had caused.
Essentially, I grew up almost afraid of my own shadow, because I never knew what would get me spanked or yelled at due to never knowing what my father considered wrong, and while I wasn’t always scared of my father, I was never comfortable around him (part of the drive to get out on my own was to finally get out from under his control). I believe in discipling a child at an early age, but there has to be logic and reason behind it so the child understands what’s going on, and doesn’t end up scared to death of the very people who are supposed to protect him.
Make the kid keep doing it until they get it right without telling them what it is they are doing wrong. That is so Zen. Zen educational theory is whack, Zen parenting is just scary.
I did not indicate applying the switch at the slightest provocation. I specificaly call out applying at the start of a tantrum. The child needs to learn to control themselves. If they do not control themselves, society will control them. Pain association therpy does a great job of teaching a child what is not acceptable behaviour. First, even before a tantrum starts, teach what is acceptable and unacceptable behaviour. When the tantrum starts, give a warning and allow the child the opportunity to self correct. If they do not, apply the switch.
And before anyone starts shouting abuse, believe me, I know abuse, and this is not abuse. In fact, it is love and kindness because a child that does not learn to control themselves will have the lesson taught to them the hard way. Not correcting a child is setting them up for failure.