Quick list of positive things to help find a balance between work, school and what children really need.
There are many things we as parents and carers can do to help improve the natural tendencies and development of our little ones. Here is a quick list of positive things to help find a balance between work, school and what children really need.
- Be aware that school life pressure and extra Academic classes are not a benefit for your young child in the short term – nor in the long term. Give them new experiences with you. Go swimming together, don’t get a teacher. Make sure they have long periods with nothing planned – A trip to the shops or helping do the washing and cleaning at home will be more beneficial to any child under 6 than a violin, swimming, drawing lesson etc. Time together is the key, it is hard in today’s busy life – but if all carers are on the same page your child will thrive with whoever they are with.
- Help with Homework – Homework is not a good thing at this early age – there are so many positive ways to get your child reading and writing. Limit the time and HELP – If they are struggling at all and feel resentment – Do It for them – (have them sit with you – try take turns but get him to at least watch while you do it – Pretty soon he will be happy to join in and do an activity with mum or dad) Trace the lines yourself, cut and stick the balloons, match the pictures etc. Make it a simple, quick and stress free process. There is plenty of time to learn responsibility etc and doing pointless homework is not the way.
- Build language and social skills by including in the youngest of children in family discussions, meal times, bed times etc. Get them involved ! If they can do it – let them do it. It will take longer in the short term – but you will soon see the results.
- Freedom! – If you can bring some basic Montessori principles into your daily life – your child will be able to play and do much more without you! Try to observe him playing/being, when he is with other kids or by himself. You will see he is more productive without you! He is his best teacher at this age (then other children!) so this time he spends without an adult joining in is important to build and develop in your daily routines.
- Routines are important – a child who knows what will happen next will feel more comfortable in himself in the present (thus be less stressed and more confident) Too much change, too many different settings with different people will take a toll on their confidence and soon you will start hearing the dreaded NO! A child wants to feel control in his life and it is easier and safer to say no then to open themselves up to stressful or new experiences. This happens more when they are not in a very solid routine in general. “No” stops them experiencing new things in a positive way and thus stops them developing to their potential.
It may seem difficult to put all this into action – But if you try step by step, you will see that even small changes can have big effects. Keep learning about Child development and keep observing your child. This is the best way to understand them and to help them develop to their full potential in these early years.