How to raise kind children in today’s World.

Raising Kind Children in Today’s World

Are you ever bothered about how much the fabric of our society has eroded?

I often ask myself, “how did we get here?” 

A lot of us have become so self-centered and engulfed with our personal lives. We see the world going through so much diverse chaos such as the degradation of societal culture and values that formed and shaped older generations to the destruction of the three spheres of the environment – air, soil, and water respectively. 

We cannot watch our world be ruined right before our eyes! 

Now is the time for us to stand up and contribute our quota to improving the world. To think we can create a safe world for only the members of our families is nearly impossible because there are so many external influences such as culture, education, media, people, community, advertising, music, technology, etc that have broken every barrier and brought all these influences into our safe spaces. The world around us is no longer a haven for the present and future generations no matter where we live in the world.

As parents and guardians, we put more energy into teaching our children how to behave properly by monitoring the type of activities they are exposed to on the internet, television, cartoons, and books they read amongst other things. 

Perhaps the question that silently plagues the mind of caregivers is: “are these limits enough to raise a kind and responsible child in today’s world?”

It is no longer a mystery to see children around the age of 9 and sometimes less, yell at their parents because they were scolded for bad behaviour or denied certain privileges for the display of rudeness and negative attitude. I recall a particular day, I had picked my children up from school, and as we walked down the road, I saw a little child yelling and cursing at his mother, while the woman just stood there, shaking at the boy’s roar. As I walked past them, I told my children, “None of you would ever do that. I have trained you better than that.” 

One of my sons then replied, “We have many pupils in our school who curse. They won’t do it in front of the teachers or their parents.” 

It dawned on me that it was not enough to solve a problem for my family. Even though I did my best to imbibe good values into my children, other things could influence them badly, such as friends at school or even neighbours that do not have the same values taught in my home. Sadly, today’s generation of parents and teachers are turning a blind eye to this growing menace.

So how do we raise kind children in today’s world? 

Here are a few of the tips I have learned through my journey as a mother.

  • Be the difference.

Any positive change in us must birth a difference in our communities and the world. If all people did was find solutions to only their problems, they would still encounter other issues in the world that no one has proffered an answer to. 

Take a minute to imagine if the inventors of cars, the telephone, or the computers only did it for their families, where would the world be today? Perhaps still in the 18th century! Creating a better world or positive change is not just about our nuclear family alone, it is about others. 

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How can we change our world? How can we influence others? Get children involved in activities that impact others and their environment. When children are involved in their community (volunteering), it gives them a sense of belonging, develops their social skills,  and inspires them to be solution-seekers to any problem around them.  

Let us give our children the chance to be a difference and make a difference in the world around them. Get them involved. As parents, we can encourage our children to share precious items such as toys, storybooks & snacks with others. It often happens that once they get started with a big heart for giving, they get excited, want to do more, and get others involved as well.

  • Engage children often

As parents, we have a huge responsibility to support our children to be the best version of themselves. This is often a tough call as most parents have other commitments especially to make ends meet. A few minutes of discussion (10mins) like a daily ‘devotion’ to ethics and values shared with children will help their views of life. To develop & raise world leaders, culture-shapers, and change-makers, parents need to make that conscious effort & decision to engage their children regularly on core values like kindness, honesty, integrity, etc. Children listen, observe, and imitate their parents. What is bad is bad, we must not ‘normalize’ the wrong attitudes in a bid to satisfy our children. Engage and role model what you want them to be. 

  • Be a role model Parent 

As a very busy mom who has a full-time job and other commitments as a writer, speaker, and coach, I have often struggled with ‘being there & present’ for the children. I usually have a list of activities to engage the children but I get either swamped with work or exhausted from the day’s activities. 

During one of those days, I looked out of the window and saw some street cleaners doing their work. Without thinking, I got the Fabulous Four ( a nickname for my children) out to the park and our adventure started.

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 “What do you see?” I asked. 

” A park littered with rubbish,”  the third of the Fabulous, replied. 

“Well, since the park is on our street, what does that make our street? ” I queried.

The First of the Fabulous smiled, “A street with a park full of litter.”

“Hmmm,” I nodded. ” Good. What does that make our house?”

“A house on the street with a park full of litter” 

 “Exactly! Now we have the opportunity to change that narrative by getting rid of the litter.” I handed them their gloves. The street cleaners later joined us. They were happy, and so were the children. “The world would be a better place if we all brought something to the table,” I thought.

The children took their excitement to school and told their friends about cleaning the park. The message was simple – change the world by making a difference, no matter how little. Parents are the most consistent presence in every child’s life, the ultimate role models. It is important that we demonstrate the right values, and show the right behaviour and attitudes toward the children within the family and to the outside world. Be intentional with your approach to children.

To heal the world, to make it a better and safer space for every one of us, we must understand this is a job for the collective.

Are there other tips for raising kind children in today’s world?

Written by Peace George – a Certified Coach, Trainer, and Speaker, member of the John Maxwell Team. Holds a degree In Mass Communication, in Health and Social Care, and a PGD in Public Health from the University of Roehampton.

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