Singapore is a very competitive country to live in. You compete almost for everything. As parents, you want your children to be best of the best, you want to help your children to excel in school. Yes, everything is for your own good, you always tell your children. But do the children think the same too? If the parents “overdo”, it may have inverse effect on the children.
Nonetheless, as parents, you can still do something to help your children:
- Be a role model — Referring to post What We Can Learn From Cats, children learn from their parents. Thus, setting a good example will help the children to have good habits since young.
- Give children freedom — Freedom does not mean the children can do anything they want, instead, it means giving respect to the children to choose what they want to do, with “terms and conditions”. Even young children can understand simple explanation why they can or cannot do something. Thus, train them to think on what is right and what is wrong since young will lead to responsible adults.
- Use the language — If you want your children to improve in Chinese Language, speak Chinese Language with them. Vice versa, if you want your children to improve in English Language, speak English Language with them. What happens if you want them to be effectively bilingual? My suggestion is, the father speaks English Language and the mother speaks Chinese Language (or vice versa, depending on which language is dominant for the parent) to the children. In that way, children learn two languages at the same time.
- Shower children with love, not toys (or hand-held electronics) — This goes without saying, children need attention and time. No matter how busy your schedule is, spend some time with your children and communicate with them. Having dinner together is a good start, even if you have to dine out.
- Pay attention to your children’s health — Similarly to item 4, when you are spending time with your children, check out anything unusual about your children. Eyesight, hearing, behaviour, progress of life (eg. one-year-old children should be at least able to stand and walk with support), etc, all these are important to the development of children. Early detection on any unusual about the child is essential to give the child the necessary (medical) treatment or make the necessary adjustment.
All of the above are simple steps that you can take as parents to help your children, without giving them extra pressure on studies. Studies are important, but they are not the whole world for the children. A child with good character and has the resilience to face life challenges will grow into an adult who can succeed in anything he or she wants to do.