Kids & Parenting

How parents can help their children

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Parents need to let kids do for themselves
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How parents can help their children is often by not doing so much for them

How parents can help their children best is probably by not helping them so much. When parents jump in and save the day for their child they may have the best intentions but the right outcome doesn’t result.

When a parent intervenes and completes his child’s homework assignment for him the parent is teaching the child the wrong thing.

Parents that don’t make their child face consequences, make excuses for him and don’t hold him accountable for his actions are doing the kid a disservice. Parents who do too much for their kids are enablers.

Parents choose their form of discipline and some choose none at all. The best thing you can do for your offspring is consistently and fairly discipline him. If he screws up, he pays the price. A child that isn’t disciplined is not going to fair well in the world because he will not know how to get along with others.

When a kid gets his every demand fulfilled he is unable to tell the difference between the things he needs and what he wants. The parent is crippling the child’s ability to think independently and ultimately provide for himself.

Parents teach the manners, rules, standards of behavior and codes of conduct that their children will follow. If the parent wants his 35 year old unemployed son living in the basement, smoking pot 24/7 that is what he'll get if he has helped his child too much. This could be the result if a parent hasn’t modeled and taught him accountability.

Parents are the authorities in the home and there should never be any question about that. When a child is overly-indulged, spoiled and never pays the price for bad behavior this wreaks havoc on the entire family.

How you can help

Parents can help their children by expressing interest in the child’s schoolwork and activities. Set a good example. Read books, go to the library and the museum. Talk to them, don’t just talk at them. Listening is crucial.

Tell your children stories about yourself when you were a kid. Talk about your time in school, childhood friends, your parents, siblings and friends.

Be wary of too much tv viewing, as well as the content of the shows the children are watching. Academic success drops drastically when a child watches in excess of 10 hours of television a week.

Setting a routine for the family helps because the kids know what they’re expected to do and went. Ideally, the evening meal should be eaten together if possible. There should be a set bed time.

Stay involved with the school, particularly when your child is in high school. Attend parent/teacher conferences.

Establish parameters. Make it perfectly clear what the punishment for a given ‘crime’ is going to be and stick to it, as hard as it may be. If your child fails to do his homework and gets a “F” as a result, this is his problem to remedy, not yours.

Obviously, there are times that a parent should and needs to intervene but not every time the child experiences a failure because of his decision not to complete an assignment or failure to mind the rules.

Starting early on, parents can help children enormously by discussing accountability and responsibility.  Discuss outcomes. If a child does so and so, such and such is going to happen.

When a child is accountable and responsible this improves relationships in the family and socially. Confidence is developed and self worth because the child learns to understand the value of taking responsibility for himself.

Be a good role model for your children.

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