Sparking a child’s curiosity can be key to lifelong learning. Parents can help.
Make up trivia games that you can all play regularly, even when you’re on the run. Give children a chance to experiment around the house with measuring, cooking, repairing broken items, and other activities that require finding and using information.
Also, be sure to know what’s going on at school. Attend school events. Your presence will show your children that you’re interested in their school life and value it.
Ask children for detailed descriptions of what they’re studying and doing at school.
You should also help children establish a sense of ethics. Have the courage to say NO when children’s interests are not acceptable.
As children get older, continue to uphold firm, clear limits. But gradually give them more chances to make choices and live with the consequences.
It is easier to set these standards in first and second grades than in preteen years. But there are also ways to encourage preteens to stick to standards of behavior.
Teach children of all ages to say “thank you” and write thank-you letters when appropriate. Tell them stories of justice. Teach them that there is a right and a wrong way to do things.
In these areas, parents are the most important teachers of all.