Educators and caregivers have a responsibility to teach their children values like respect, patience, altruism, empathy and the value of earning your rewards. Parenting which ignores these lessons will result in a socialisation process (the process in which families teach children how to become functional adults) that creates egocentric adults who are unable to manage power in their relationships. These lessons can occur in small doses; in easy steps during everyday situations. They can be done by any of the parent. The fun part is that you do not even have to plan an activity for it. Parents can model respect, altruism and conversation in different ways as they treat each other with dignity. Giving in to tantrums will lead the child to believe that rewards are available on demands, so it may be a good idea for parents to practice the art of delaying gratification (not giving something to the child immediately when the child asks for it).
Blogs are very informative, yet their length makes it impossible to discuss a topic in much length. These tips may help, but ultimately it is up to you as the parent to find the balance that works for your family. Always think of the adult you wish your child to become and then model your behaviour and all your teachings to reflect that vision for your child. Remember this, children do not learn only from school. Their greatest knowledge comes from the experience of the world around them.
– Steve Libreri is a social worker and parent coach within Willingness. He offers parent coaching and social work sessions. He can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org.