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10 Things To Teach Your Kids (Part 1)

14 April 2021

Being a Parent Requires a Lot of Hard Work. Check Out These Parenting Tips To Make Your Life a Little Easier.

Considering everything you need to teach your child is overwhelming. Instead of banging on about teeth brushing and putting your plate away day in and day out, rather prime your child to help them make the connection between these small everyday tasks and their own personal identity.

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1

Context and Scale of Our Position as Individuals

Instead of hammering on about please and thank you’ s, kindness, and virtues, why not help your child understand their position or importance against the scale of nature. Too often modern life drives home the absolute individual, but the individual is nothing without the whole community to support and revel in their “uniqueness.”

Teaching your child community and their place in it, is a great parenting tip. It is more important to show not tell why and how we can work with others to help us fulfil our needs.

Help your child by greeting and talking to the people who help you in your community. Introduce your child to politeness and kindness with your own actions, and expressing the importance and your gratitude to the community system you live in. The same goes for the way you care for the natural environment, showing your child the role, your actions play on it.

A Harvard University study showed a direct link in increased happiness in people more connected and involved in their community.

As your child grows their world and context will expand, and citywide, national, and then global citizenship can be expanded on. This way, introducing the need to say please and thank you becomes less a matter or ritual and more a part of our identity in a community, which will stick with your child far longer.

2

Healthy Habits Are Good Habits

Don’t drone on about eating an apple or finishing your vegetables day in and day out. A grea parenting tip is to show and teach your child through your own example the wonders and benefits of healthy living. Let them see your vitality from exercise and healthy eating, or the energy you get from an early night sleep. And let them understand the benefit of sunshine or sunscreen or brushing your teeth for 3 minutes twice a day.

As Familydoctor.org explains just “Telling your kids what to do won’t always work. They need to see you choosing healthy habits too.”

When a child first understands that your body is your access to fun and freedom, and that health makes it possible, they will adopt healthy habits sooner. If you begrudge these things, then that informs your child’s attitude towards them.

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3

Curiosity

If you don’t want to spend your life begging your child to get their schoolwork done, then best you breed a healthy curiosity for learning and knowledge in them.

You don’t have to have a PHD in child-psychology to get your child fascinated with the world around them. Just ask questions and enquire about everyday things and give them access to a portal to learn through.

So, if you see a big bus go past, ask your toddler to think about how many elephants would be the same size, or how does an elevator go up and down. Then later use the internet or a book to find the answer together. This fun bonding experience will encourage your child to ask the next riveting question that you can discover together.

As they grow you can encourage independent research by praising them for new facts and figures that they discovered themselves. You’ll be fostering a natural curiosity in the world and giving them the necessary skills and resourcefulness to find the answers with the help of this parenting tip.

As Edutopia.org explains, “the ability to find and use available resources to achieve goals,” are some of the most important skills to navigate the world by.”

4

Resilience

The American Psychological Association or APA list resilience as the number one skill for kids to master to be able to manage and thrive despite challenges. Teaching resilience is a parenting tip which can help your child learn by fostering connections with you, their family, their teachers, and their peers.

Encouraging your child to help others can empower them and maintaining a routine can offer great comfort to children no matter their age. Goal setting, a positive outlook and self-care are all lessons that lead to a resilient outlook.

Help your child accept change and embrace self-discovery and understand that resilience is a journey that requires plenty of direction. The result will be children who are happier and more content regardless of the challenges or difficult situation they might be in, as they know who they are, and that hard seasons and challenges do pass. 

5

Independence  

In a world of helicopter parenting, it’s easier to never let your child fend for themselves than ever before. It is understandable that in a world where we are confronted with so many dangers and horrors that we will want to shelter our kids. But the truth is that will neither protect them nor prepare them to remain safe.

The only way for your child to really react to “stranger danger” or face bullying or be able to take responsibility for their schoolwork is if you allow them to breed a sense of independence. And sure, it stings the first time your child doesn’t want you to hold your hand as they climb up the stairs to the top of the slide. But it’s also a moment that you succeeded in your parenting, so well done you!

The fastest way to help your child with independence is to give them some responsibility and autonomy from young. Wiping up their high-chair tale after meals, carrying the toy they insisted on taking with to the shop, or letting you know when they need to wee instead of you taking responsibility of reminding them.

Independence has a nifty way of breeding self-confidence, and in a world of bullies and advertising that tells us we’re not good enough, self-confidence is a wonderful gift to give your child.

Independence also means teaching your kids the value of money and how to spend it wisely, check out 15 Best Books to Teach Kids About Money.

6

Self-Discipline

Hand in hand with independence is self-discipline. If you’re giving your child opportunities to be independent, then they will need the knowledge of what suitable behaviour is. For example, if you are allowing your teenager to go to the mall alone and pick out a friend’s birthday gift, they will need to have the self-discipline to keep THEIR mask on during Covid, or not go to the game arcade and blow all their money.

Self-discipline starts with knowing the boundaries of what is good for you, and the consequences of not doing what is right. It’s a life skill that if mastered will lead to a happy and healthy life with fewer stumbling blocks.

Teaching Self-discipline is a parenting tip that will help your child make good decisions whether someone has set a rule for them to follow or not.

7

Emotional Development and Self-Expression

Having a good understanding of emotions and how to express them is a powerful tool for any adult, but this skill is best learnt as a child when the stakes are lower, and the consequences aren’t as serious.

Helping your child identify their emotions, what sets them off and how to handle them is something your child can achieve from little. Your own example is the main way your children learn to develop emotionally. If you fly off the handle with road rage the minute something does not go your way in traffic, your child doesn’t learn to self-moderate their own anger when they feel an injustice is done to them.

8

Optimism

No one said life would be easy, but it’s sure understated just how wonderful it can be!

Another parenting tip is to teach your kid to notice the positives in a bad situation or bring out the best of a bad day. This way they won’t have a bad day in their life. This does not mean you have to pretend that life is a bed of roses, but it does mean that you help them see that nothing is completely awful, and there are hard parts in the perfect moments too.

When hiking a mountain your child might consider you a drill sergeant, but when they get to the top and feel a sense of accomplishment and see the views, they will feel thrilled and understand that the hard stuff made the view so much more beautiful.

Help your child by pointing out the flowers that the weeds bring to the grass, or the fun of puddles on a rainy day.

9

Friendship/Social Dynamics

For any creature on earth, social dynamics are the trickiest part of life. Weighing up who, how and when to reach out, and knowing when to hold on or let go, or how to get along in a difficult situation challenges us all the way through life.

One of the greatest lessons any parent can teach their children is how to form and maintain relationships, and the only way to do it is…practice.

From when a baby can smile and recognise a smile, it is aware that human bonds are important. As toddlers start to understand “ownership” and “sharing” these bonds suddenly become difficult to navigate. Which leads us to the last point, and possibly one of the most important skills to teach your child…

10

Generosity

The toddler good at sharing is usually the first to make friends, and the same can be said for adults. Generosity often stems from an understanding that your needs are as important as others, and the comfort that there is enough to go around. 

It is hard for anyone to truly succeed without a level of generosity. Even the most successful tech billionaire succeeded because he saw there was a human need, and he found a way to resolve it. But capitalist endeavours aside, kindness and generosity are undeniably attractive character traits and a great parenting tip that your children will thank you for teaching them early on in life.

Question:

What is the most valuable lesson your parents taught you?