The comprehensive child care program at Malones Early Learning Center offers developmentally appropriate programs for infants, toddlers, pre-school, and school-age children, as well as Kindergarten readiness for 3-5 year olds. Contact us today! (618) 985-5911
Parenting is undoubtedly the most important, rewarding, and difficult job you will ever have. Every day is both a teaching and a learning opportunity — for you and your children. In the midst of all the day-to-day lessons about healthy living, there will be moments you can reinforce some of life's most important choices by taking the time to share your values and beliefs with your kids. Doing so will help guide them in the right direction and equip them to make healthy and well-informed decisions. Malones Early Learning Center invites you to consider the following guidance.
Always Be Willing to Learn and Grow
Teaching your kids to have a growth mindset is a lifelong gift, even if they are too young to understand what that term actually means. To put it simply, a growth mindset includes:
● Encouraging curiosity
● Cultivating a love of learning
● Not being afraid to fail, make mistakes, or be wrong
● Getting comfortable with being uncomfortable
If your children are fairly young, teach them about animals that need to shed their skin or trade their home for a new one as they get bigger. If they're older, talk to them about their dreams for the future and what challenges they may face trying to attain them. Model this yourself by sharing some of your experiences (good and bad) with them. Teaching them it's okay to feel vulnerable and uncomfortable in the growing process is an extremely valuable skill. These are among the many life lessons your children can learn from you.
Cultivate a Discipline of Reading
CNBC notes that studies show reading fiction actually makes you smarter. People who read regularly have larger, more complex vocabularies, show more empathy, and in general, are more successful than those who don't. The combination of those three things alone helps make people better communicators, which in turn, helps them have better relationships. Start your young one off right by reading to them regularly even before they know how to read themselves. Parents magazine offers other ideas for helping your kids develop a love for reading that include:
● Read the book first, then watch the movie.
● Ask questions and have discussions about what they've just read.
● Listen to audiobooks together or play them during quiet time.
● Use books to introduce fun activities
Experience the Satisfaction of Giving
Children are naturally self-focused when they are young and need to be taught (in most cases) to value giving as much as receiving. Perhaps even more important than praising them for their generosity, compassion, and empathy is providing them with regular opportunities to help and serve others. Volunteering together teaches them that you value giving as well, and creates the expectation that helping others is a normal part of life. Most parents want their children to be kind and generous but forget that, like anything, it takes practice to make it a habit and eventually, second nature. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
● Volunteer at a local animal shelter
● Deliver meals to shut-ins
● Start a community garden or volunteer for a local cause
● Join an organization that builds homes for the poor
● Serve in a soup kitchen
The best part about teaching your kids these important life lessons is that you can fully participate in them and learn, too. You will grow together in your relationships, learning, and compassion for those around you.