With the beginning of a new school year, I find myself becoming a bit nostalgic. Whether I am longing for my own first days of school or missing the first days for my children, my mind wanders to different times in my life.
I never filled my children with stories of how difficult it was walking to school in six inches of snow, uphill both ways. I wanted them to know that I loved school, but more than that, I loved to learn.
My mother always had a book in one hand and a crossword puzzle in the other, with a dictionary close by her at all times! She watched birds and learned about them, along with flowers and plants. She was never bored because she always had a project going. If she wanted to do something she wasn’t sure about, she taught herself. These were the days before the internet and You Tube, mind you!
I think about my own thirst of learning, and I know it was a gift she passed to me. I can only hope that I have passed on some valuable things to my children. I certainly tried to show them the joy in living and learning.
These are some of the things I find most important for children. Perhaps you might find them useful:
- Be interested in many things, not just what’s in the People magazine. Watch documentaries together on nature and how the animals interact and behave. Watch the nature outside your window. Have an appreciation for the spider that weaves his web at night only to unweave it in the morning. This will teach your children to look and see the world around them!
- Be interested in people you meet. Everyone has a story to tell – make yourself available in your conversations to hear their story. This teaches your children to take the focus off of themselves.
- Always have a project going. Learn to scrapbook, knit, crochet or sew, or even to paint. Teach your children how to occupy themselves in ways other than turning to video games and t.v. This will teach your children that boredom is not an option.
- Let them see you read. Enjoy books! If you are not a reader, attempt to become one. You will always have material about which to converse. This teaches your children that the world is huge with so many things to discover from right in our own homes, and further it always gives them something to share with others.
- Volunteer your talents. However be careful not to over commit yourself. It’s important to teach your children to give back to the world either your time, your talent or your treasure. So be sure to tithe, and teach your children too. Your children will be unselfish with the gifts they’ve been given if they have been taught to share them.
- Budget your time well. We have so much going on with our children in so many activities and the areas in which we, as parents, are committed. However, it’s important to have a balance of activity outside the home and time spent with one another inside the home. Teach your children how to prioritize by making time spent at home with one another the priority.
- My A – #1, absolute TOP JOB for parents – leave your children with GOOD memories! I have never heard my children share memories with one another that involved the ballgames they played, but rather they talk about the times spent here at home, or out having family fun. Simple spontaneous and usually more inexpensive activities have been some of our most wonderful memories. Sometimes…..there is value in everyone being at home, just doing their own things. This teaches your child to appreciate family, as well as time spent alone…learning to entertain themselves.
I have bought into the phrase that “What is caught is more important than taught”. As I think about my own mother, I truly believe that.
What are some areas in your parenting that you feel are important to pass onto your children? Maybe you have a particular memory that is special to you that you would like to share…PLEASE do! I would love to know what your thoughts are and perhaps you can help someone else in their family! You just never know what morsel you lay down might be a complete meal for someone else! Give us your morsel! 😉