Raising children can be quite overwhelming, especially when new information comes out everyday about what is best for our kids. Sometimes we just need to get back to the basics and trust our instincts to guide our children to success. You can take a few simple steps to ensure they grow up to be well-rounded, curious, open-minded, and happily ready to explore the world around them.
Part of growing up and maturing means learning how to take care of ourselves. Our children can start to learn independence through healthy habits like eating well, exercising, and taking care of basic personal skills like brushing their teeth. Eating healthy can be challenging, especially for kids, but A Happy Hippy Mom explains that that diet can be stripped down to a few basics. Just make it simple for your kids, and they will succeed.
Another important habit is being polite and courteous. It is our job to instill politeness into our child by reminding them to say please and thank you, and then showing them the same respect. My husband and I take this one pretty seriously, and we are proud that our kids are known to be very polite at school and at their friends’ houses. These are examples of important healthy habits that will help them develop their own personalities and guide them to success in the future.
The education system will go through a change in the coming decades. Instead of following the traditional “learn a bit of everything” mentality that schools currently have, it will become more catered toward each child’s needs and interests. For example, a math whiz will no longer spend time learning about geography, while a hand-on, outdoorsy child will be out in the field rather than only learning in the classroom. Even if your community has not yet adopted this educational approach, it does not mean that you can’t do so at home. Don’t let your school be your child’s only educational experience. Instead, ask them lots of questions and give them a platform to follow through on what they want to do in their life. Provide many opportunities for them to explore the world around them and to develop new skills and interests.
Creativity is linked to success. It helps children express themselves and to develop mentally, socially, and emotionally. By exposing our children to the arts from a young age, they will develop skills to help them brainstorm and find solutions to challenges they will face throughout their lives. You can encourage them to express themselves through creative projects and to use art to give back to our community.
One of saddest parts of getting older is the loss of adventure and exploration. For several reasons, like safety concerns, children are told not to run outside and play in the woods as much. Most children have this trained out of them by the time they reach age ten, but you should strive to keep that sense of exploration and adventure inside of them for as long as possible. By doing so, they will pursue their dreams in ways you can’t possibly predict. You can give them the tools to go out and discover their goals and purpose in life.
One of the best gifts you can give your children is the opportunity to travel and discover new places and cultures. By exposing them to these other views of the world, they learn to appreciate similarities and differences of people beyond their home town or even country. Research tells us that when we immerse ourselves in cultures different from our own, we strengthen our own personal identity–including our values and beliefs–and increase our confidence. It is a priceless gift, one that can also solidify bonds between families.
Which of these tricks do you use with your children?