Following on from our Life Skills for Kids post, Dinah Turner, mum of three children under ten and director of Stepping into Business describes why we need to let our kids fail …
“If you don’t eat your meat, you won’t get any pudding”, might have worked for Pink Floyd, but if your child is a fussy eater, you’ll know [stubborn face] when you see it!
“Are we nearly there yet?!”, is the cry of millions of children, generally when you are only two roundabouts from home. As the children get older, they get more able to amuse themselves in the car, and understand and estimate how long the trip is going to take, but how can you better prepare for an awesome road trip with teens and tweens?
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My daughter comes home with a badge pinned to her school uniform: DEPUTY, it says in proud capital letters.
“I’m a deputy teacher”, she tells me. “Miss Jamieson* moved me to sit next to Jack and Max because they don’t behave and I do. It’s mostly the boys who don’t behave so we need to model good behaviour for them.”
She’s not wrong: it is the boys. “Boys will be boys”, they are told. It is the boys who talk during quiet time, wrestle when it comes time for silent reading, tear the art supplies and shout out at assembly. The girls’ learning is interrupted again and again while the teacher deals with their male companions. They are asked to change seats to calm the boys. They are asked to lay down their advanced reading books to help their male friends catch up.
Meanwhile, my daughter is proud of her role as gatekeeper. She stops what she’s doing to shush the boys when they get rowdy. She reports to me after school that Jack is sounding out longer words now, but she’s worried because Max had to sit in the quiet corner and maybe the teacher will take her coveted title away.
Following on from our How to Be a Good Houseguest advice, here’s the other side of the coin. How to be a good host!
The move from the slightly cosseted existence of primary school to the adventures of secondary (or high school) can be difficult for children to navigate, even with the transition programmes that many schools have in place. What can YOU do, to help the move go more smoothly, and best prepare your tween for secondary school?