By Ritika Jain
It’s been said before but it just had to be reiterated. Kids aren’t taught everything by a teacher. There are some things they learn by observing their parent’s behaviour. They subconsciously absorb it all and it gets hardwired, like language does. So, if you want to raise good little human beings, here are simple things you can do at home.
Teach them about privilege
Just telling kids about the advantages they have won’t make as much of an impact as donating some toys and letting them see the happiness on an underprivileged person’s face. Besides this, if you’re considerate to your house help, do some housework yourself or assign small chores for kiddo, he’ll also learn respect for labour. Doing something for another person automatically teaches one empathy. So next time, ask him to offer water to the delivery guys, volunteer to serve at the Gurudwara, or give your help that extra gadget her kid can use for an online class.
Show what kindness and generosity mean
If you believe in non-violence, it’s not enough that you disapprove of the events happening around you. Go out and offer help to riot victims, volunteer some of your time for a charity drive, or raise funds for a cause. If you’re not one for grand gestures, just don’t haggle with local vendors or vegetable sellers, etc. Ten bucks that may mean nothing to you may actually be of big help to someone else. Speak respectfully with everyone you meet. Be kind to animals. Rescue or foster a stray if you can. You may save a life and, at the same time, teach your kids to be kind.
Open channels of communication
Sometimes another kid may be getting bullied or a friend might be down and out. If you’re a family that discusses everything at home, you kids won’t hesitate to broach such topics with you. Communicating openly and retaining one’s objectivity are tools that will help them throughout their lives. Additionally, learning to take a stand for fairness and truth will build their character. So, have things up for discussion, fight fair and apologise when necessary, because it’s all being recorded in those little brains.
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Practice gender equality
Assigning certain roles to boys and girls is so old-time and uncool. While we may have grown up hearing that girls should learn housework and boys shouldn’t cry, the same simply doesn’t fly anymore. Psychologists will ascertain that expressing emotional needs is indeed healthy. And it goes without saying that everyone should learn housework. This will also ascertain that they actually have equal partnerships when they grow up. So, let your boys try on their sister’s makeup and let the girls learn to change a bulb. You never know which skill will come in handy someday.
Resilience has proved to be a life-saver in times of corona. But it isn’t learnt in a day. Making do with the resources at hand and counting one’s blessings are a habit that’s cultivated over time. Make it a nightly exercise for each one of you to say out loud what was best about their day or keep a gratitude journal, where you record one good thing in your life, on a daily basis. If you’re pessimistic, you’ll unwittingly end up passing on the attitude to your child as well. Instead, play games, hug a lot, and cherish being healthy and being together as a family.
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