One of the most rewarding parts of working in an Early Childhood Education center is that there is not only a focus on child development, there is a focus on parent development as well. Becoming a parent does not mean one naturally knows how to parent. Parents often spend time reading about parenting, talking to friends and family, to their doctors, and eventually, to their child care providers. Many of the conversations I have with families are more about the choices facing parents than their child. Parenting is hard and over the past 20 years, we went from “children don’t come with a manual” to “children come with too many manuals.” Luckily, parenting experts have a wealth of research to draw on to help guide us on the best ways to raise a child. While all experts agree that each child is unique, and finding what works for your child is a top priority, they also agree that current trends known as “helicopter parents” or “over-parenting” do more harm than good.
Madeline Levine is a local expert in the area of parenting, and has previously written a fascinating book on children growing up without want for anything. This book is called Price of Privilege. She has recently introduced her newest book, Teach Your Children Well: Parenting for Authentic Success. In a recent New York Times article, she talks about what she sees as the biggest job a parent has to master sitting back and allowing children to make mistakes. Being realistic, living with seeing your child unhappy at times, and acknowledging our own insecurities and anxieties are key is authentically successful parenting. Ms. Levine makes some good points, which every parent needs to hear.
Read her New York Times article (opens in new window)
(Andi Bales, Directory Early Childhood Education)