At a recent Fisher Price event, we were gained some parenting advice from Carrie Lupoli, Parenting Consultant/Advisor, on her experience, understandings and skills on parenting. She shared that in order for children to grow into successful and independent adults, you just need to be their safety net for them to bounce back right up. We have jotted down 10 ways which are, according to Carrie, the best pointers for raising an independent and successful adult.
1. Offer physical and emotional affection and security
The development of a child’s security and emotions starts at birth. So, be responsive, communicate regularly, support their development and understand that mistakes are opportunities for them to learn from every once in a while.
2. Encourage interaction with others
Socialising a child from a very young age will help develop their communication skills, people skills, confidence and increase their self-esteem by encouraging them to have conversations on their own.
3. Promote child initiated play and exploration
Play is a form of physical and mental exercise. It’s important that a child practices both sorts of play to develop their physical abilities as well as mental abilities, and enables them to learn new things while overcoming obstacles.
4. Set boundaries
Children must always be taught values – religious, personal, traditional – from a very young age so that they understand good from bad and acknowledge their limits enabling them to grow into independent and wise characters.
5. Create a healthy family for your child to belong
From birth, babies can pick up on energies that surround them. By creating a healthy family, it doesn’t necessarily mean to luxuriously groom the house everyday, but to groom every relationship that lives under the same roof. Children look up to adults and tend to copy and imitate what goes on in the household.
6. Find opportunities for independence and risk taking
Don’t always be a helicopter parent hovering around your child. Allow them to make and learn from mistakes, allow them to take risks and either fail or succeed; the point is for them to learn. Opportunities for independence lies in the risks they take on their own without you having to cradle them all their lives.
7. Encourage spiritual development
Spiritual development can come from anywhere, be it religion, family beliefs, and so on. Children who have been taught spiritual aspects of life learn to be more self-assured and confident to explore the world as they no longer feel the need to depend on anyone else but themselves. Participate as a family in rituals and practices that engage the five senses—sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell and encourage your child to join peer groups to develop not only socially but spiritually.
8. Teach and model character
Studies show that teaching children model morals and characters can help them solve problems on their own and make better decisions. When children watch movies and cartoons, they tend to place themselves in the situation of the movie. Hence, setting a hero character who has the right morals and beliefs as a good example can lead them to respect and aim to be just like that model character.
9. Make reading a priority
Reading is very important, even to a newborn child! The more they hear, the quicker they adapt words, develop a broad vocabulary and also improve their memory. It’s highly recommended that children be encouraged to read from a very young age.
10. Engage in constant and consistent communication
When toddlers begin to talk, they grow curious and eager. When your child commences a conversation, it’s always good to continue the conversation and have them carry it out for as long as they can go. This will teach them to engage in conversation, be confident and always have interesting topics to converse about. When they are at the toddler stage and talking, constant and consistent communication with your child will aid them in developing their social, physical and emotional skills as they will always feel important when you are engaged in their topic of conversation.
Image Credit: Flickr user Ashley MacKinnon