Parenting on Purpose

Parenting on Purpose


Parents As Coaches~ Teaching Our Children To Think For Themselves

posted by srballantine

Kids with chef hats preparing the cake dough - mixing ingredientIt’s easy for all of us to do things out of habit rather than thinking about our actions. Whether you want to or not, you teach your children all sorts of lessons that will also help them to develop habits. Therefore, one of the most important things parents can do as teachers is to coach their kids to think for themselves and to understand why they are doing what they do.

Everyone has experienced the inquisitiveness of young children repeatedly asking, “Why?” about everything that is said.

Naturally, this isn’t always welcome in the moment, especially if you’ve had a stressful day at work and long to merely put your feet up for a few minutes. Whether this is true or not, stifling this natural curiosity does your children a disservice and you miss the opportunity to teach them to think rather than accept things just “because you said so.”

When the urge to understand why you are doing something is suppressed, you start to do things without thinking about it. While this may allow someone to follow directions and orders well, it doesn’t instill critical thinking skills.  It also doesn’t require children to check in with their Internal Guidance Systems to see how doing something feels to them.

In order to raise independent, thoughtful adults and leaders, you must teach your kids that they can and should think for themselves. They should know that it’s okay to continue asking, “Why?” so they understand what is happening and can make the appropriate choices.

By understanding the reasoning behind an action, children can then use the knowledge, not only for similar situations, but in order to apply the rationale to other situations. Without that level of understanding, children are merely copying behaviors.

To help illustrate this point, please consider the following:

One Saturday, a newlywed was preparing a romantic dinner. She took out all the ingredients for a fine roast. She proceeded to cut off each end of the roast beef before carefully placing it in the pan. Her husband asked, “Why did you cut off the ends of the roast?”

She looked at him, paused, and replied, “That is what my mother did.”

With her curiosity kindled, the young woman called her mother and asked her why she always cut off the ends of the roast. Her mother said, “That’s what my mother did.”

Certain she would learn some great secret about how meat is more tender when prepared this way, the woman phoned her grandmother and asked, “Grandma, why do you cut off both ends of the roast before put it in the oven?” Her Grandmother replied, “I don’t do that any longer, but when I was younger I didn’t have a pan large enough to hold the entire roast so I had to cut it.”

The next time you are tempted to have your children do something “your” way without understanding why, consider how many generations may be affected by this habit. It may seem unimportant at the time, but the result may not be as harmless as unnecessarily cutting a roast.

Please feel free to comment.

© 2014.  Sharon Ballantine.  All Rights Reserved.

 

 



Previous Posts

Letting Your Child Have Sex In Your Home?
  You think you’ve prepared your child for their teen years, at least to the best of your ability. Perhaps you have talked about sex, relationships and how they fit in to their young lives. Your child

posted 2:12:55pm Sep. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Raising Kids Free of Parents' Fears
Many people have strong fears based on experiences that have happened in their lives. You can be aware of your fears and understand that these fears are totally irrational, while still having them. Naturally, yo

posted 4:30:24pm Sep. 17, 2014 | read full post »

Tips For Teaching Kids A Positive Money Attitude
Children spend most of their young lives watching their parents spend money. Every household may value their money in different ways, but it is very important for children to learn how money fits into their lifestyle. Perhaps a child is observing their family spend large quantities of dollars or is

posted 7:57:38pm Sep. 13, 2014 | read full post »

Letting Kids Create Their Own Dynasty
It is essential that as a parent, you remember that your children are not miniature versions of you -- even though it may seem like it sometimes. While they mirror many of your traits, your children are still their own unique beings with unique perspectives, ideas, and desires. It can be easier w

posted 11:16:45pm Sep. 11, 2014 | read full post »

Tips~ Hit The Parental Brick Wall?
  Every parent wants the best for their child. You want them to be safe, happy, succeed in their endeavors, do well in school and be able to create the life they want. Many parents however, have a precon

posted 6:38:36pm Sep. 06, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.