Ye Sentao, a famous educator, said: “Education means developing good habits.” Childhood is the beginning stage of your life, and it’s a crucial period for developing habits. If parents are mindful of their children developing good habits, it will be difficult for their children not to grow up to be good adults in the future!
Before children become teenagers, parents should help them to develop the following 6 habits
1. Doing their own jobs
Get children to do what they can by themselves as much as possible. Start with small tasks such as putting on their own socks, choosing their own clothing for school, checking their own homework, etc. Ask children to make their own judgments when there are problems so that they can become independent thinkers.
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All children will be adults in the future. If they have been made to do their jobs well and make good judgments since childhood, parents do not need to worry about their ability in life; they do not need to worry about it themselves, either.
2. Doing housework and developing a sense of responsibility
Many parents consider children to be not mature and make all decisions for them. They mean to protect their children, but actually, the children lose opportunities to exercise their independent thinking and judgment.
Fanfan’s mother always assigned some housework to him. She said to him: “Mom is responsible for cooking, Dad is responsible for cleaning, and Fanfan is responsible for taking out the trash.” So Fanfan would empty the trash can whenever he found that trash had accumulated. Each time the family needed to buy important new items, such as a TV set or a car, a family meeting would be held and everyone could express personal opinions. Growing up in this atmosphere, Fanfan developed a sense of responsibility for the family because he was a member of it.
3. Love of reading
Reading can increase a person’s vocabulary, speaking and writing ability, knowledge levels, and oral skills. The best time to lay a good foundation for reading for a child is at the age before 12. When in grade school, nothing is more important than encouraging children to read a lot and increase their reading ability.
Some parents may say that their children just do not like reading. That is probably because there is no encouragement, or a good environment, for developing the habit of reading.
Parents can set an example for the love of reading by reading together with their children. There is no need for them to read classics. Start with what appeals to children. As long as they can concentrate on reading and develop the habit to read, that is good enough.
4. Learning to choose and to let go
A father negotiated with his child before they went shopping: “This time, you can only choose one thing — potato chips or a toy. If you choose the chips, fine, you will get something delicious. If you choose a toy, it is fine too, because a toy lasts longer.” The child chose chips for the first time, and the father let him make a choice among many brands and tastes. The next week, when the boy went to the supermarket with his father, he chose a toy.
Throughout your life, you will need to make choices many times. Developing the ability to make choices is also to develop the ability to think. The earlier you develops this ability, the more likely you will make correct choices and succeed in important matters.
5. Living a simple life
Help children to live and enjoy a simple life, such as when to wake up, have breakfast, do their homework, read, and go to bed. These may seem like small things, but it is hard to persist. If children are used to persisting, they will grow up fast and also develop the habit for planning in their future life.
Those who live a simple life will have the habit of planning and persistence in carrying out their plans. Parents should encourage children to persist in planning and carrying out their plans. They will be more likely to succeed when they grow up.
6. Learning to listen and help
Children are eager to share with others what they think about the world. Parents should listen carefully and patiently to them because it is a sign of respect. At the same time, parents should teach their children to listen and be patient with others to show their respect. It would be great if they were ready to help others. Who would not welcome children like that?
Those who understand how to listen to others and help others will have more friends and good relationships, and they will get help when they need it.
Translated by Audrey Wang