Are You Ready to Be Hired as the Best Parent Teacher for Your Child?
An effective parent is the best way to develop a child. School, preschool, and after school programs become key partners but the parent role has the most potential. Why is that?
- Parents are likely to have most of the child’s time. The school may have 40 hours a week. Parents have every morning, every evening, and all weekends and holidays.
- The ratio is smaller. If your family has only one child, the adult/child ratio is 1:1 or 2:1. I was raised in a home with my parents and grandparents – 4:1! 😊 The best preschool is 1:5 and public schools spiral down to 1:32.
- The role of parent is much more emotionally supportive than the teacher role. I have several children. Some have gone on to fame and fortune. Others are still struggling economically. I’m 100% supportive of my children, regardless of their decisions or situations. Teachers also can be supportive but the parent role is unique. Children need support for self-confidence and success.
The strength of the parent role cannot be overstated in raising confident children to be capable adults.
You may be reading this and wondering if there are areas where you can improve parenting skills. Carol Dweck and Paul Tough have great books on this, so I’m only giving the one – minute version
- Are you a single parent struggling with cash? Children can understand that their parents have struggles. My parents struggled with cash and talked about it openly. They were threatened with income insecurity. I think that the atmosphere at home made me more independent and ready to struggle. That’s not a bad thing.
My parents also balanced the struggle with caring acts. My mother baked desserts better than anything you can buy at The 4 Seasons. We had evening routines to read together and put together picture puzzles. The cost was minimal but the experience was incredible.
- Are you too stressed and angry? You may have a tough situation and are not ready for incessant questions every night or the normal misbehavior of children. Look for resources so that you have one protected part of each day just for you. That will build your emotional reserves for parenting.
Stressed parents tend to speak 2/3 less to their children and usually with negative warning words. Unstressed parents speak many more words daily and many more positive words. You need emotional reserves to make the change in your language.
- Are you stressed in marriage? Be careful not to ask your child for emotional support that should come from a spouse. Most marriages are not perfect. There still has to be a bright line so that your child can develop their own relationships successfully.
- Are you overprotective? Richard Reeves says that children from the upper middle class/ professional class do not do as well in some jobs that require risk and decisions under pressure. Why? Their parents tried too hard to create a perfect life instead of life with the normal risks and disappointments of childhood.
Children need occasional space from their parents to push them to independence. They fight against this since we all prefer a life with eternal maid and butler service, I sent my daughter to Cambodia at age 15 by herself. As soon as the plane left Newark, I remembered many things that I should have done. I had a sleepless night. Miraculously, she developed her own capacity to get through Bangkok and on to Phnom Penh. (I would never do it again, but it was a defining moment for her with wonderful results!)
So your child needs the best teacher. Are you ready to apply?
82nd Street Academics partners with parents. If we can help your family, let us know.