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Some days I wonder what are the few things that I want to teach my children, if of course I can't teach them every single thing in the ever evolving book of life. 

My little learning sponge of a 2 year old child is just the right age to grasp or forever-hold-her-peace with concepts and values. And I want to make sure I present just those perfect capsules to her right now. Just that... I can't seem to prioritize what they are. 

Most moms tell me that she is way too young or it's to express herself (anymore expressing and I will be clinically deaf and insane) and that I should be trying to get her potty trained. You know what? ..if she is 18 and pooping her pants, that's gonna make a helluva story and a funny video on YouTube  And I am pretty sure she will pick up that skill shortly when she is ready. But now is the time I can teach her some pretty rudimentary values - like integrity or honesty or compassion. 

I figured 'sharing' was a great idea. But when I looked around I realized that BK and I had no need to share anything except of course the house and the kids. (We do not share the chores - it is both of our staunch opinion that we are dealing with all the chores solely). We have our own phones, laptops, closets, shows, favorite spots, ... everything else either is mine or BK's. So what are we really sharing? 

Abandoning that I picked up 'honesty'. That didn't work either because I don't know how to explain it in action to her at all. When I rush out the door to pick up BK and he calls my phone. Pat comes the reply, 'Already left, be there in 2'. Lil O will be staring right at my face. (Yes, BK I confess - when you are waiting in the cold for a ride home, I am still trying to figure out which of my sweatpants are cleaner!). When I ask her who spilled something or destroyed the couch with Crayola, I, invariably snap at her and scold her to never do it again. Honesty just doesn't pay. It is important but I think it's very circumstantial.

I am trying one of the last things I know how to teach. 'Helping'. It is so underrated. Today the only 'help' anyone wants is either money or lots of money. So I am teaching her to help. I make her run and get diapers for lil A, pick up something dropped, wipe the table down, help A with her bottle, clean stuff ...and she is a good little helper (most times). She understands that helping makes Mama happy (she is about to find out how happy when she gets to wash all the dishes, mow the lawn, take out garbage, shove snow and sew). And I am hoping that as she grows older if she has nothing to share or can't be completely honest in life, she will still remember to help everyone out with her time, effort and good intentions. I hope she will help a mom lift her baby's stroller up or down stairs, hold doors, pick up something for someone or move baggage for seniors, pay the toll for a car behind her, buy an extra coffee, pick up trash in a public park. 

I want to hear a few more things that you are teaching your young child. Maybe I need to borrow the thought. And maybe I really do need to work on that potty training. 

What values do we really need to see more of? 

 


01/10/2013 5:53am

I have learnt that there is nothing I can teach my child that I cannot teach by example. In a few more years, your own child will show how you don't practice what you preach in as many words. That said, I think they ought to know acceptable behavior from what is not acceptable. And more importantly, they need to learn about LOVING from us. They can learn everything else from the rest of the world. I am really thrilled when my daughter says I too want to get married and be like you, Mama. I guess, that means, we have duped her into believing marriage is a bed of roses.

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munchkins
01/10/2013 7:58am

I think an important value that kids need to learn these days is how and when to say "Please", "Sorry", "Thank you" and "Excuse me!".... but thats a priority for me :)

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01/10/2013 11:21am

Yes, great values. I figure that Loving is something that I am giving my kids - so they are learning that. I probably need to widen the scope.
And being polite is so key to nice kids. But O has redefined it - she does a sweet smile with crook head to side with "Peaaasssssss Mama" to get candy or her show on TV or to go out. She knows when to yield Please, Sorry & Thank You to her benefit! I need to redefine this lesson for her.

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01/11/2013 2:37am

Jenc.... I forgot to add in my previous post, I mean the boy-girl kind of love,the kind that is romantic and non-platonic.... I REALLY DO HOPE she learns THAT from us. Sorry about the additional post :)

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Rima Patel
01/11/2013 12:48pm

we are in the same phase and we discussed the sharing concept and realized exactly what you have written....its tough for me at this age, that i have no rush to teach him that yet. But teaching a simple "thank you, and please" is more important now..
i love your posts!

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