How to give children a head start in life

How to give children a head start in life

How to give children a head start in life

“Life affords no greater responsibility, no greater privilege than the raising of the next generation.”

These words by one of America’s first paediatricians C Everett Koop certainly rings true – raising children is probably the biggest challenge any parent will face. Arming them with the right tools will ensure that they can face whatever life throws at them.

Show and tell them that they are loved

Never hesitate or let a chance go by to express to children that they are loved, valued and accepted for who they are. Showing them affection, whatever way you choose to do it, tells them that they matter, that they are important and that they are enough.

Encourage independence and self-reliance

Support them in learning how to do things by and for themselves. Give them more responsible tasks around the home; let them sort out their own quarrels; let them learn from their mistakes; allow them to air their opinions. It builds confidence and gives them the courage to face life.

Teach them a strong work ethic

Children live up the the expectations we have for them. They should learn that they are expected to work hard, and that hard work is the only way to success. Illustrate the importance of this through your own strong work ethic.

Teach them to stand up for themselves

Let them know that no one has the right to make them feel foolish or guilty; that they are entitled to an opinion; that they do not need to know everything; that they do not have to prove themselves to everybody; and that they are allowed to change their minds.

Teach them the true value of money

Allowing them to earn pocket money for chores, teaching them to save towards the things they want, discussing money and drawing up a budget with them lay a solid foundation to show them that money is earned and that people are not defined by money.

Kaplan-Freiman, Cyndi & Wise, Susie. 2001. The pocket therapist. Simon & Schuster