Educating children during their childhood is always a complex thing ; There are many things to keep in mind, and it is clear that babies do not arrive with an instruction manual. There are several patterns of behavior and thinking of children who are particular to that age group. Therefore, unless we strive to understand them, their upbringing becomes very complicated. 7 tips for the education of children from the family context As a parent and as a clinical psychologist with more than 25 years of experience, I have seen that in many families the same mistakes tend to be repeated again and again regarding the education of young children in the family environment . In the next lines, you will find a summary of several of the main ideas contained in the book and that I think are very useful for educating children beyond school , in the family environment. 1. Children are not miniature adults One of the basic principles of child psychology is that children are not half-done adults. On the contrary, they have their way of interpreting reality and relating to the environment ; a psychological system present in childhood that, although it has its defects, does not need to be “filled in” with information constantly to mature before. Therefore, pressuring children to learn as quickly as possible makes no sense. Many of the things that we try to teach them by force will not understand them in the way we want them to understand them, and probably with that, we will only be getting them to feel rejection by a good part of the education initiatives with which they are going to find over the next few years Also, the learning of children often occurs in situations that from our adult perspective we might perceive as “wasting time”: play, dialogue with friends , etc. If they are curious and given to exploration from their first months of life, it is for something. 2. Punishment does not equate to physical suffering Unfortunately, there is still a tendency to associate punishment with physical aggression, the custom of causing pain to the child who has misbehaved. This means that, for some families, the “common sense” idea that inappropriate acts should be punished becomes the normalization of violence towards children, something that is harmful and not only generates suffering but also can worsen the education that these little ones receive . But also, this belief has another opposite effect; it leads some families to assume that, for example, denying a child the possibility of going out to play for several hours is more or less like hitting him. The banalization of physical violence thus acts in several directions : on the one hand, it normalizes it, and on the other, it stigmatizes the legitimate use of non-physical punishment methods that can be effective in certain contexts. 3. Growing up is not intrinsically painful It is true that during childhood both boys and girls burn stages of their development rapidly, from one year to another, and that this can pose many challenges and put them under some pressure in certain phases of life (especially as they progress towards puberty). However, no stage of life is intrinsically painful, or that is “very hard” and requires them to become hardened in suffering. If a boy or girl shows obvious signs of being having a bad time , that does not mean that he is learning to face challenges or take care of himself before the demands of life. You may be experiencing childhood depression or any other psychological disorder from which childhood is not exempt, and it is important to see a professional. 4. The educational power of friends must be valued As fathers and mothers, we have a lot of information and experience about how the world works, and it is clear that this is very useful for our children. However, as regards non-formal education (that is, that which occurs spontaneously outside the classroom), a good part of the contents that they will learn and the roles that our children will try to imitate are not in us but boys and girls their age. Especially when they grow up and go through puberty, young people of their age or slightly older become their reference , what our children pay attention to most. This must be taken into account to assume our humble role in their education, on the one hand, and not to blame ourselves unjustifiably if for some reason he learns problematic behavior patterns with which he has come into contact only outside the home. 5. You have to lead by example As we have seen so far, the spontaneous learning that occurs in leisure time is a very relevant part of children’s education during childhood. Therefore, as fathers and mothers, we must set an example of the values that we can transmit to them . For them, everything that seems to be limited only to the world of theory does not interest much. 6. Palettes are a challenge, but you have to face them with stoicism Tantrums and tantrums are never a pleasant thing, and if they repeat themselves a lot, they can become very overloaded and have a significant impact on our stress levels. However, this discomfort should not justify us behaving similarly, using those moments to vent and shout at our son or daughter. A bad action does not cancel another bad action , and beyond a purely moral analysis, it is also not something that will make your behavior improve. 7. You have to give clear guidelines One of the aspects that best defines the success of early childhood education during parenting is the ability to remain consistent with the behavioral norms we propose. Therefore, we must pay attention when thinking about the consequences of these rules once they have been explained to the children of the house. Are we going to be able to implement them? Will we be able to fulfill them?
Everything that makes us change the rules on the fly, improvising depending on what happens, detracts from the habit of respecting certain rules. There is always room for readjustments and corrections on time, but they should be the exception, not the norm.