Teach Your Children Well

 Are we loving our children to death? In our fervor to equip them for an ever more competitive world and to acquaint them with as many sport and arts experiences as their schedules allow, are we, in fact, squelching their spirits and destroying initiative and curiosity?

Madeline Levine‘s new book, “Teach Your Children Well- Parenting for Authentic Success”, suggests that, in many cases, today’s parents are doing just that.  Contemporary culture, which allows admission to specific, prized colleges to define a student’s sense of self worth, defeats most students before they even get to the starting line of life.  Child psychologists’ offices are crowded with unhappy young people who feel stressed,  disconnected from their own lives and unclear about the meaning of their journey.
Dr. Levine’s suggestions:
– Teach empathy
– Encourage the development of an authentic self
– Make time for reading, dreaming, creating, and unstructured outdoor play
– Trade fear for a child’s failure with faith in the child’s inner resourcefulness
– Live in the moment
She suggests that parents need to look at and change themselves to help their children the most. That’s the hard part.  We need to stop compulsively running from event to activity. We need to be relaxed, listen to our children’s stories and jokes, stop during errands for lunch or ice cream with a child— make errands fun, even if they all don’t get done.
As Levine summarizes, “… the inconvenient truth is that not every child can be shaped and accelerated into Harvard material. But all kids can have their spirits broken, depression induced and anxiety stoked by too much stress, too little downtime, and too much attention given to external factors that make them look good to an audience of appraising eyes but leave them feeling rotten inside.”

Sarah C. Reese
sarah@myiesolutions.com
Executive Director, Informed Educational Solutions
This entry was posted in College, College Admissions, Communicating with your teen, Education, Educational Consultant, Educational Counselor, helicopter parent, parenting, peer pressure, social fit, Teen Self-Confidence, Teens and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Teach Your Children Well

  1. Pingback: Simon Says Don’t Use Flashcards | Informed Educational Solutions

  2. Pingback: “How Children Succeed” | Informed Educational Solutions

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