----------------------ABU DHABI----------------------

Monday, November 19

Universal Children's Day 2007

Crucial Advice to Parents on Raising Children

Note: this advice has Islamic ideals written into it. Everything written below is MY own personal opinion from experience as a kindergarden teacher and my own personal life.

“A child’s viewpoint of their future and the way they handle it is created and formed by the life experiences they are subjected to as children. This can be negative or positive experiences. They choose, as adults, how to utilize those experiences to either improve themselves and their life or to plunge into negative conflicts and fail in life. It is our job as parents to provide our children with the foundation of stability, security and loving encouragement to nurture this growth of their personalities and to provide positive loving experiences to them to propel them into successful futures as self-confident and well-rounded individuals who contribute positively to society.”

1) Lead by example. This is the most important advice I could possibly give anyone. In all aspects of life, if we want people to change we have to make ourselves the best examples to learn from! If we make a conscious effort to remember that our children are watching us, it will keep us in check. We will mind our manners, we will speak more soothingly, we will control our emotions, and ultimately we will see that, by our kids watching us, we are beginning to behave the way we want them to behave. In other words, it is a cycle that eventually trains parents and their children towards better behaviour and emotional restraint. If we know that our kids are watching our every move, we will be mindful of our behaviour and set an example with that behaviour. Then, our kids will model that good behaviour and essentially everyone wins.

2) Have great patience with your children and their annoyances. Laugh and find ease in their childishness. There is nothing more blissful than baby’s belly laughs or their ridiculously funny little questions that we stumble to answer at times. They are, after all, children. They are still learning the ways of life, from you. They won’t stay children forever!

3) Don’t EVER tell your children that “children are to be seen and not heard”. They just might grow up to take that advice and completely break away from you, emotionally, forever.

4) Give your children the greatest childhoods’ you can. Remember what yours was like and make it 100 times better for your own children. We remember our childhood as the crucial defining time of our lives. Let their defining time be recollected as one of immense joy and contentment.

5) Never use your children as your best friend. Mothers and Fathers are there to be Mothers and Fathers, not best friends! Your children don’t need your adult problems weighing on their shoulders, not to mention the emotional and psychological consequences of doing so are devastatingly destructive on a child’s personality and emotions. You don’t have to act as a best friend for your child to come to you with their problems and you, as an adult, should be able to handle your own without including your children in them!

6) Keep your promises to your children. A child promised a coveted prize/toy/trip will never forget that promise and will never let you forget it. Actually, quite sadly, many children roll their eyes when they hear their parents say "Inshallah" for fear that Inshallah really means "maybe" or "yeah, right" or a plain "no." A dishonest promise might grant you a few minutes of quiet shopping time, but in the end it will lead you further into the depths of your child's distrust

7) Listen and Respond to your children’s feelings. Let them express their feelings and listen to them, give them advice, and comfort them, even if it is childish, they are after all, children, but to them, their problem is just as important and real as you think yours are. This will encourage your children to come to you for advice and help when they are teenagers and as adults.

8) Make the family relationship between the children and their relatives strong. Encourage children and their cousins to play, pray, and visit together regularly. This will strengthen the relationship and bond between siblings and their cousins throughout childhood and into adulthood. They will then, as adults, protect, help and strengthen each other throughout life because of this bond.

9) Be active in your children’s education and school. Show interest in their academic accomplishments and go to school for meetings and open houses. This will give the children a sense of security at school as well as motivation to do well in school because they know it will make their parents proud and happy. Tell them you are proud of them!

10) Show your children physical affection. If you’re not the “touchy feely type”, go out of your own comfort zone to comfort your children. You’d be surprised at how many children “violently act out” only because they wanted affection from their mothers and fathers! This DAILY type of affection eases the heart and strengthens the bond of love between parents and their children.

11) Teach your children their culture and traditions. Make them proud of it and teach them to respect it. This leads to pride in their identity as citizens and pride in knowing their country’s and people’s history. This knowledge and respect fosters love for their country and their people. It persuades them to serve their country well as adults contributing to their society and helping their people progress for the good.

12) Don’t spoil your children. Teach them the value of money and “things”. Never replace love with “things”. This leads to unhappy shallow adults whose only happiness is found in how much they can buy and how much stuff they have! Giving a child everything they want, when they want it, and how they want it, just so they will be quiet and happy only makes them greedy adults who will never want to work hard for what they desire in life. Find a balance in this very significant aspect of parenthood.

13) Be equal in love and attention among all of your children. Don’t play each child off of the other. (ex. “Look at your brother, he’s being good. Why can’t you be good like him?”) This leads to hatred and jealousy between siblings, this also doesn’t solve the child’s behavior in the first place! Giving one child favoritism over another will crumble the self-esteem and self-worth of the child who you don’t give attention to and only make them envious of their siblings. This loss of self-esteem and self-worth in the child can lead to difficulty in future relationships and development throughout life when the child was not given love and attention from the parents when he needed it the most.

13) Teach them the Honor in helping others and giving charity. This is self explanatory really. Show your children how morally responsible and honorable it can be to help others in need. Teach them that helping others is one of the most dignified qualities a human being can have. Teach them that having mercy and giving kindness to all living creatures and humans is a noble quality for a person to possess.


meeso said...

I really enjoyed the first part you wrote very much...I enjoyed it all really...It would be a different world if everyone followed these ideas.

Sketched Soul said...

As-salaamu'alaykum wa Rahmatu Llahi wa Barakatuhu my dearest sister,

Masha'Allah.. wow, that was so well said! Everything :)

Insha'Allah I hope parents get to read it, it's a treasure people.. you don't want to miss it!

Jazak'Allah for taking the time to share your knowledge, and for making others aware not only of it being Universal Children's Day, but how important it is to raise well-rounded children (the future generation, insha'Allah).

Wa'alaykum as-salaam
Love Farhana

PS: masha'Allah.. you a kindergarden teacher! I bet your an amazing one :) I taught kindergardens for a year.. and had a blast.

Sultana said...

meeso: Thank you very much for readind my article and for praising its advice...I wish that people would read it and take some advice from it...I agree that the world would be very different if we ALL had more of these qualities! Thanks so much for your time :)


Wa alaikum salam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu My Dear Farhana!

Barak Allahu Feeki! Inshallah, Inshallah, Inshallah parents who need help or advice will read this to help thier families! I am more than happy and eager to help you spread such an important message about the happiness and lives of the children of the world.

Yep, Im a teacher and i taught kindergarden for 6 years. I woulndt say im a great teacher! To be honest, i learned more from the children than they did from me! Children have such white hearts and innocence i cant explain the joy it is to be surrounded by such amazing humans!Im sure you know the feeling im talking about, only children can make us feel that happy!

May Allah guide the future generations to the straight path and give them strong Iman in Islam, May Allah bless and ease the burdens of those children in the world who are unseen and suffering in silence from the ills of the world..ameen...

Love,sultana :)

UmmBilal said...

Assalamu alaikum dear sister Sultana,
Ameen to your Du'a and JazakiLlahu for posting such treasured advice for all adults in touch with our precious ones....
Wassalamu alaikum Umm Bilal, almiskeenah

Sultana said...

Wa alaikum salam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu Sister UmmBilal....

Barak Allahu Feeki Sis and im grateful and thankful that you enjoyed it! It really is a treasure as you say :)