As children embrace life outside the classroom – this is an opportunity to nurture their ‘Character’

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Posted by: Sue Atkins

 

Where does ‘character’ come from?

Is it something we are born with, develop or are taught?

Is it fixed and determined at birth or something that can be moulded, encouraged and nurtured?

Character is the product of what we teach our kids as parents.

It’s linked to our values & beliefs about life and what’s important to us.

We all know that character is the product of environment and experience but what impact does our parenting have on our children’s characters and do we do enough to shape them – or are we even aware that we influence them?

Children  usually spend 192 days of the year in school  (52% of the year) and, whilst family clearly influences children’s behavioural development more than anything else, especially when they are very young, schools do influence children’s characters, whether deliberately or not.

But children are not at school at the moment and probably won’t be for the next 6 months.

In my experience over the past 25 years as a former Deputy Head and Class Teacher and now working with parents, I have come to believe that character, like most other things, can be taught.

Today’s ‘Pause to Ponder’ for me was how can I encourage you to STOP thinking about frenetically home schooling your kids and to focus on the bigger, more important long-term picture of raising happy, confident, great people.

Lock Down is an Opportunity to Keep the Longer Term Bigger Picture

Perhaps the Lock Down is an opportunity to make time for reflection and family conversations. In today’s political and social climate, children are faced with very real, and often confusing, challenges. They are on the cusp of entering a complex world in which they will be trusted to make decisions that impact themselves, their families and friends, as well as their local and global communities.

Taking time to discuss what is happening in the news presents the opportunity for you to guide, or coach or teach your children and help them understand what tolerance, integrity and respect can look like.

Grab a cup of coffee and a pen and paper and jot down what character traits you’d like to nurture and develop in your children during this time, that will serve them in good stead for the rest of their lives.

I’ll kick off with:

Integrity

Honesty

Truthfulness

Loyalty

Responsibility

Kindness

Compassion ….

 

How about you?

 

What would you add?

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