So far in this book, we have concentrated almost exclusively on the practice of the positive approach and we hope that we have provided the reader with suffi cient evidence of the effi cacy of the approach to children’s learning, well-being and behaviour. We have said very little about the theoretical basis of the approach, neither for that matter have we said much about the role and use of sanctions, punishments and simple ‘telling off ’. In this chapter, we will put the approach in the context of various other theoretical positions in psychology and education, consider the role of punishments with children and explain the reasons behind the power of feedback.