Parenting is the process of promoting and supporting the emotional, social, and intellectual development of a child right from infancy to adulthood. Children depend on their parents in all aspects of life until they are eighteen years old or even older.
Values are things that define us.
Family is the most valued unit of the society that influences the behavior, values, and development of an individual. There are different types of families, for example, a nuclear family that consists of father, mother, and children, extended family that consists of father, mother, children, and relatives, and foster families. Today, not all children are raised from extended families, nor nuclear families.
We have parents who are raising children as single parents while other children grow up from foster families. It does not matter which type of family that your child belongs too, what is most important is the values that you pass out to your child as a parent or guardian.
Here are some of the values that you can teach your growing child/children.
Appreciation: It’s important for parents to teach children to be grateful and pleased with what they have. Children can learn to appreciate want they have as early as two years with a simple word” Thank you”. You can teach your child to say thank you every time you give them something, for example, a toy, snack, or gift or by saying it yourself whenever you have given anything. Parents from a Christian background teach their children to say grace before eating food to appreciate God for the meal they are having even if it’s not their favorite meal.
Honest: As a parent, you should also be honest with your child. I’m sorry dear, I didn’t mean to break your toy, as a mother is not bad. This is a very rare word for African mothers because we think children should see the perfect side of us. Being honest with your children will help them to learn that human beings make mistakes and its good manners to speak the truth however bitter it may be.
Kindness: Teaching children to be kind helps them to develop social connections with anyone and make many friends. Teach your children to be kind by performing acts of kindness, for example giving a gift, donating to the poor, and helping the homeless. For toddlers, parents can teach them to be kind by reading them storybooks that talk about kindness. When reading the storybooks you have to use imaginations.
Respect: Teaching children respect starts with the parent. Children are intelligent and learn a lot from their parents and caregivers therefore they should be exemplary. If you want to teach your children to knock your bedroom door before entering start by respecting their privacy. Knock your child’s door before coming in more especially teenagers.
There are many other values that parents should teach their growing children, but respect, appreciation, kindness and honesty are core values that your child should not grow without learning.