"Parenting is all about promoting and supporting the physical, emotional, social and intellectual development of a child from infancy to adulthood. It refers to the intricacies of raising a child and not exclusively for a biological reason."
Parents fundamentally shape children’s lives and everyday experiences.
As we are all aware that there are no strict guidelines to parenting, still we can sum up a few important tips for parenting in this 21st century. They can be studied under the following points.
1) Believe in your child: Every child is gifted with some talent and it is your credibility how quickly you identify that. It will not only bring out their interest but also help them excel in the field later.
The sooner you understand your child the better it gets in terms of relationship and a strong bond of understanding prevails.
2) Say ‘NO’ to comparison: Each child is born with unique abilities, interests, tastes, and opinions even if they are identical twins. Identify your child’s interest, encourage them and make sure they excel in that field instead of comparing them with other children.
3) Correct to correct: If your child does something wrong, correct them in a right manner giving examples, explaining the reason at the right time so that the child doesn’t feel embarrassed in front of others. It will help them overcome their fear of losing and insecurity complex.
4) Value Education: Make sure that your child starts learning value-based education. By value-based, we mean – moral values, family values, manners, ethics and not the value in terms of money.
5) Be the ideal parent for your child: There is a saying ‘Charity begins at Home’. Do not forget that you are your child’s first educator. Your children learn from you. So be careful about your choices, decision, usage of words, your behavior and your actions.
6) Let them be ready to face the world: When a child enters the outside world, he/she comes across a lot of things and learns from those. It can be good, it can be bad. As a parent, you have to keep an eye and monitor those. You have to handle and tackle situations very carefully so that their emotions are not hurt.
The points discussed above may help you but side by side we have greater challenges too. The challenges faced by today’s parents are:
a) Balancing family and career: The burden of your professional life sometimes restricts you from spending quality time with your children. Lack of quality time at times has an adverse effect on your child’s behavior. It is you as a parent who has to carve out and deliver the gift of time on a regular basis.
b) Being afraid to say NO: Parents are usually on their toes to cater for their children as they want their children to be happy always. But side by side they also must learn to say ‘NO’ or ‘May Be’ to avoid the sense of entitlement. This will make your child learn the value of things and sometimes they even have to earn it. (e.g. If you eat fruits & vegetables, you would be allowed to watch cartoons for 15 minutes)
c) Culture of blame: Your desires for your child at times may backfire. Your desires are actually pressured on your child – best sleeper, earliest toilet training, smartest kid, cutest kid, active kid etc. These desires at times lead to a wrong decision and guilt over not being able to do everything perfectly.
d) Ensuring children receive a quality education: With the rise of competition in every sector, the market value in terms of money has increased and you as a parent have the burden to earn enough to meet the rising cost of education. The pressure continues in making sure that your child succeeds in school to have a competitive edge when they move to the job market. Too much pressure affects the child-parent relationship.
e) Overload of information: Parents of 21st-century struggle to find their own unique way of parenting. There is no ‘one formula’ that fits all and with such conflicting advice, parents are in a dilemma on what to choose.
Having discussed with the tips and the challenges let us now have a look at the role of the pre-school and schools when it comes to good parenting.
Since a child spends 4-6 hours of a day at the most in a pre-school and school and the role of the organizations and caregivers in building the character of the child is limited, yet most vital.
However much we discuss, Parenting is an endless topic that has no boundaries, as Parenting is neither a skill training program nor an art, neither a subject for study nor a business. It is a mutual understanding between you and your children while they grow up to be a responsible citizen.