9 Lessons to Teach Your Child Before They Go Back to School

posted in: Parenting | 19

 

It is time for a new school year. Whether your child is just entering Kindergarten for the first time or is returning back to school, learning these 9 vital lessons will help them immensely when interacting with their peers. These are the 9 things every child should learn in order to help them become kinder and more supportive friends.

 

 

1) THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN COMPLAINING AND ADVOCATING

Explain to your children that there will be times when they will need to stand up for themselves but it is important to do it in a constructive way. One of the main differences between complaining and advocating is the presence of a solution. Teach your children to not only spot injustices, but to also work hard to come up with solutions to fix the problem. Make sure that they understand that complaining is stating that something isn’t fair while advocating is recognizing that something isn’t fair and then offering a way to reconcile the situation.

2) HOW TO APOLOGIZE

No matter how kind, smart, or sweet your child is, they will make mistakes. It is vital that your child learns that an apology is necessary even if the hurt was unintentional. Teach your child that after the situation has been resolved, they can apology with 2 easy steps:

Step 1: Admit to wrong doing.

This is a part of apologizing that even adults have trouble with. Let’s say for example: Your child says something that hurts another person’s feeling. However, your child wasn’t trying to be hurtful and had no mal-intent. Often the common first reaction of the offender would be to explain away the situation and refuse to take blame for the misunderstanding. If your child truly wants to apologize then teach them to accept responsibility for their role in the event. Instead of saying “I didn’t mean to hurt your feelings” say “I’m sorry that I hurt your feelings”

Step 2: Offer a solution for the future

End by making it clear that you will try to do better in the future.

Example: “I won’t use that phase again.” Or “I will try to be a better listener.” This lets the offended party know that you care enough to take their feelings into consideration when interacting with them.

3) TO ASK INSTEAD OF ASSUMING

So many misunderstandings happen because people decide to assume what is happening or what someone else is thinking instead of just asking. Teach your children to be open with their feelings and thoughts and to allow others to do the same. Teach them to ask questions when they are unsure rather than assuming.

4) HOW TO BE AN INCLUDER

Once your kids have a set group of friends, it can be difficult to feel a need to bring others into the group. However, there will always be lonely kids and while it’s not your child’s job to help them, it is a really amazing thing to do. Encourage your children to look for kids who are sitting by themselves or who they know don’t have many friends and try to include them in an activity or save a seat for them at lunch. Small gestures and acts of kindness won’t cost your child anything more than a few moments of their time but will mean so much to the child they are helping.

5) HOW TO DEAL WITH UNFAIRNESS

As much as we wish it was, life is just not always fair. Every child isn’t going to be invited to every party or always get to do what other kids are doing. Children have to learn that that is okay and a part of life. Your children have to recognize that sometimes they will get to do things that other kids won’t get to do and vice versa. They also have to know that the unfairness is not because of them and that it is not a reflection on them as individuals.

6) HOW TO RESPOND INSTEAD OF REACTING

Responding requires time. First you have to hear what the person is saying, fully digest it, and then think of how you want to respond. While reacting is primal and instinctual. Responding will help to explain a situation and solve a problem, while reacting will most likely just add tension to a problem and leave issues unresolved.

7) TO SEARCH FOR SIMILARITIES

It is human nature to seek out differences and look for an easy way to categorize objects. However,  when it comes to individuals, it is important to search for similarities because differences separate us while similarities bring us together. When your children meet new peers, teach them to immediately find similarities. For instance instead of noticing they have different skin colors, try to work with your children to teach their brains to first notice that they are both girls or both have on a blue shirt. As they are getting to learn more about their new friends teach them to ask questions and seek out things they have in common. This will help your children to enter into situations looking to accept others rather than reject.

8) THAT THEIR WORDS MATTER

From a young age, kids must be aware that things they say can and will have an effect on those around them. Words are so powerful and your child must decide every day if they want to use their power for good or evil.

9) HOW TO BE HAPPY FOR OTHERS

So many things in life seem like a competition when really they’re not. Teach your children that the success of a classmate is not a failure on their part. Teach them to be genuinely happy when their friends have good fortunes and to work hard and wait patiently for their time to come.

 

 

 

 

 

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19 Responses

  1. These are definitely important lessons for every kid to learn before they go back to school. It can be hard for a child to do some of these annoyed because I think adults have a hard time doing it, but does are definitely points that every kid should hear.

  2. I love these lessons. I think that all children need to learn these lessons while they are young. It will teach them good life lessons.

  3. In this society of “Everyone deserves a trophy” it can be difficult for our kids to remember how to deal with unfairness and how to be happy for others but learning these skills early are sure to help them as they grow. I agree with one of the early commenters that the lessons can be difficult and some adults struggle with it but they’re all great lessons.

  4. These are some really important lessons for all children to learn, I remember being taught them all by my parents.

  5. Hope all parents take the time to teach and instill some of these ideas into their children. Nice to see the teacher do the same. Not to mention the parents learn as well.

  6. You make some great points. Most of the things you mentioned are traits should be demonstrated and encouraged before the child ever goes to school.

  7. These are all awesome and a great reminder! We have been working on teaching our kids some of these things.

  8. It seems like it gets harder and harder for kids, nowadays, to measure up to peer, problems and social life. These are all great tips and I wished I would have thought about and put some of these tips to use, when my child started school 20 years ago!

  9. I am a teacher and ALL of these are so important to teach your children…I applaud you for sharing this…thank you.

  10. Pam Wattenbarger

    These are all great lessons. So many people, adults included, do not know how to be an includer and how to apologize.

  11. It’s good for kids to have an understanding of these things as they start interacting with people more and more. These will be great lessons for them to build upon as they learn.

  12. These 9 lessons will help build a child’s character. As parents, we must raise our children to be more sensitive and compassionate towards others. My kids are grown and I am proud of the adults they have become.

  13. I hope I have taught my children these 9 lessons. Each and every one of them is so important as a life skill!

  14. These are great lessons for a child going back to school. Learning to say sorry is not always easy but it’s a necessary lesson for young kids.

  15. Sandy N Vyjay

    These are really wonderful lessons and all of them are so important and reflect the need of the times. Being happy for others is such a wonderful and expansive sentiment to be inculcated in the kids.

  16. These are really important tips and valuable lessons to live by. I should apply some of these to my daughter who is going to middle school this year. Thanks for sharing!

  17. Responding instead of reacting is a HUGE one and definitely something they’ll take with them throughout their lives! These are all such important lessons – I truly agree that all kids should be taught such things at as young of an age as possible!

  18. A huge one to me is the inclusion. So many kids get this click thing in their head and I hate that.

  19. I love all of these, especially for my 8th grader. We need to have a few talks before the school year gets underway.

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