Daycares, Preschools, Schools Partner With Parents To Teach Reinforce CharacterIt's never too early to begin teaching children how to be caring, confident, self-aware and respectful of those around them. Of course, parents are a child's first teacher in teaching character lessons, but moms and dads should be pleased and confident in knowing that many schools across America as well as pre-schools and daycare settings are teaching and reinforcing these efforts as well.
La Petite Academy offers a curriculum called “Kids of Character” to teach children (from preschool on) the fundamentals of character building, including: teamwork, kindness, honesty, citizenship, responsibility and respect.
Following are five tips La Petite Academy shares with parents on how to raise “Kids of Character”:
- Volunteer with your child. By making community service a regular part of your child’s life, you reinforce the importance of giving to others/sharing and help him or her develop a greater awareness of the world and the diversity of people in it. Volunteer outings together also provide great opportunities to spend quality time together as a family. At La Petite, kids are asked to join with parents in two annual fundraising events per year for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The events are not only fun family activities, but also raise considerable money for a worthy cause.
- Treat others as you’d like your child to treat them. You are your child’s first and most influential teacher and they are always watching you. “Modeling” your own kind and caring behavior towards friends and relatives is an effective way to teach your children how to be good to others. Show what being a good friend is about and tell your children how to treat people with kindness and respect.
- Be your child’s problem “helper” versus problem solver. Guide and support your children as they work through conflicts or struggles, but avoid doing for them what they have the skills to accomplish on their own. Rather than anticipating and dissolving potential struggles for your child before they happen, become a partner and join his/her efforts to work through them together.
- Encourage your child to be truthful, but focus on correcting behavior versus pressuring them into “confessing.” Children often stretch the truth or make up stories to avoid getting in trouble after misbehaving. By rationally focusing on a behavior problem rather than showing disappointment about you child’s cover-up/lie, you send a direct message that he or she shouldn’t fear being disciplined and thus telling a story is not necessary.
- Engage and involve your child in everyday tasks. Asking for their help makes children feel useful and important. By regularly involving your child in age-appropriate jobs with you, you’re helping him/her develop a sense of responsibility and familiarity working with others.
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