OGE MAGAZINE 1 - Page 41

I am sure someone out there may think weird about some things I am about to share, most especially in Africa where the rod method in bringing up a child is the order of the day. The question really is, do we think this method is effective enough or do we need to review it? One thing I have also noticed is the extensive gap between the parents and their children. The closeness is rare, and in such a situation, how do you earn the trust of your child. Honestly let us take a practical look at it, a teenage girl with a wide communication gap from her parents, not due to distance but in the show of concern and affection, do such parents expect the child to disclose any emotional struggle she may be faced with?, Hell No! The intimacy that could give room for such confidence is missing. All they had was the parentschild kind of relationship, and this may be worse if the relationship was a militarian or authoritarianism type. Have you ever wondered why in spite of the dictatorship approach from some parents, children from such homes still do not turn out best in the society, because once they get hold of a little chance or freedom they blow it. Some of us engage in some wrong approach in child discipline, like: • Put the child at arm’s length, not giving the child any attention • Rain foul words on the child, which eventually may run down the child’s confidence • Beat the child, sometimes leaving some wounds on him/her • Starve the child • Subject the child to rigorous task meant for the adults, and so on. Many a times we do not draw a line between child discipline and child abuse. I understand quite well that it could be tough raising a child, let alone two or three or even more, but raising child/children is a task we have come to accept and we should gladly be diligent about it. We can get it right, let us not lose heart. The first way to getting it right is to develop an intimate relationship with your kids, no matter your tight schedule at the office or on your business, our first responsibility as parents are the children. Make out time for your family, take the kids out, have fun. This is one of the best ways to discover their traits, and you can help correct the traits or encourage the character. One thing about kids is, their intellectual ability develops in line with what they are encouraged on from childhood. In every child is an adult. If at age four a child is whining unnecessary and it is becoming a habit, then you can take a firm stand against it. You know what the child likes, may be watching cartoon, gift items, or go to play ball with daddy, or swim with mummy, loves chocolate, cookies and so on. You could tell the child that he would not get his preference if he does not stop whining. Mostly the child stops at this point because he/she does not want to miss out on any favorites. • Build a trust based relationship with your kids. Give them room to trust you, don’t lie to them. • Correct them when they go wrong, but do not let it get into child abuse. If you make your child your friend at the early age, you would have little to worry about. • Know their friends in school and the parents of the friends, in this way; you get them off the wrong group. • Do not take side when your kids disagree among themselves, it could send a note of hatred among them if you did. • Take interest in their studies; don’t ever ignore any invitation from your child’s school teacher to discuss on your child. The invitation may be for his good. • Perhaps your child has picked up some bad habits, don’t get mad at him, first understand the origin, then correct him in love • Engage your child in activities such as spots, home work, story books and do not give room for idleness. • Encourage them to have siesta after school, they get relaxed and refreshed from the siesta before the lesson or assignment time. • Watch your child’s mood, listen to his complaints, air his opinion and figure out how to help him In every child is an adult who is waiting to be mentored, that is where the duty of the parents lies. What a child turns out to be was the mentoring he/she got from the parents. Thank you Roberta 41