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Title: Things Good Parents Should Know

Category: Positive Parenting


      We live in a world today different from any in the past.  Slick Madison Avenue advertising and increasing peer pressures make parenting today uniquely challenging. I sincerely believe, however, that the same old-fashioned methods that were good in the past, still are.

      The number one necessity in good parenting is to be a good model.  By that I mean to be honest with your kids and not expect more of them than they see in you.  We as parents must practice the golden rule if we want our kids to grow up caring for their neighbors.  If we are patriotic, hard working and church going, our kids will likely be too.  If we dedicate our lives to loving and helping others instead of just striving for material things, our kids will more easily find a calling that suits their hearts and talents.  Thus, the better we model (live our own lives), the better we parent.

      Just modeling is not enough though.  We must commit ourselves to spend time with our kids and tell them and show them daily that we love them.  The greatest gift we can give our children is to love our spouse.  By doing this we teach them first hand how to love.  We should also tell our family regularly the vital words: "I love you".  A child will grow up secure in such a home and enjoy loving and relating to other people.

      So good modeling and showing love and affection are important in wise parenting.  Also vital is a home with strict but fair and consistent discipline.  Mom and Dad must agree on the form and stick to it.  I prefer "time outs" to their room or loss of a privilege.  Others believe in a quick swat.  Whatever is used should be appropriate and consistent with each child.  A child without discipline is insecure and knows no limits in behavior.

      What other good parenting skills can we practice?  There are certainly thousands and we learn most from having had good parents ourselves.  A few more parenting skills and family habits that I particularly like include praying together each night at bedtime and attending church together as a family.  I also like to see families play together on weekends, special occasions and vacations.  It's sad to see parents plan out a summer totally away from their kids.  Meals together are special opportunities to foster strong family ties.  It's a great time to teach listening skills and sharing of each family member's thoughts, hopes and dreams.

      If there is one last parenting skill I strongly recommend it is the act of praise whenever possible.  The more we praise our kids the more they'll strive to make of themselves.  A child without praise is like a poor whipped puppy.  Notice your child's unique God given talents and foster them with regular praise.

            Being a good parent is not really hard, but it does take commitment.  Let us praise God for our children and seek His constant help and guidance in raising them.  They determine the future of our society.  In that sense the future largely depends on us.