Good morning world. It’s time for another topic for this challenge. Todays topic I find more easy to talk about.
First of all, I really love kids. They’re fun and full of energy and really, they’re the ones who will be taking care of us when we get old. For that, I believe education is so important. Both formal and informal. From the moment a child is born they are learning from their parents/carers. They are learning how to interact and taking in everything around them. I believe that from a young age it is so important to teach good manners to children. Please and thank you’s will get a child far in life. I believe that we should teach children to sit at a table and have proper table manners and learn to tidy up after themselves once they have finished playing with a toy. These things are fundamental skills that a child will need as they grow. By teaching manners we are enabling them to learn how to respect those around them as well as themselves and by learning to tidy up after themselves we are also teaching them how to look after their belongings and value them as well as helping them to understand the work their parents do that would be taken for granted. Place guidelines for behaviour in your home and make a reward chart so that once all of the boxes are filled for the week with a sticker, the child gets a treat e.g. bedroom cleaned, help with dishes (this could be helping to load a dishwasher or even help to wash dishes once they are a bit older) shower and brush teeth can be added to encourage self cleanliness. Tailor it to suit your child. If you find there is something they struggle with such as using the toilet, add that to the chart so that they can see they have done well.
Be firm and fair in your decisions. If you tell your child no, don’t take it back or they will learn that this can happen again. Use a time out. I know that sometimes sending them to their room may not work because that is where their toys may be. A naughty corner/step? Some children just simply walk out of them. I suggest having your child sit at a table with nothing that they can fiddle about with how ever many minutes your child is e.g. five minutes if your child is five. Once the time is up, sit with them and calmly talk to the child “Are you ready to talk now?” “I set you at this table because…” “Can you tell me why you …” (e.g. shouted at me, your parent) and listen to what your child has to say. Ask them if they feel that was the right decision that they made to shout and work it out together. Sometimes we can frustrate the children without realising we are doing so. Asking them can give an opportunity for the child to talk about something that we have done that bothers them and allows us to learn from the child. When a childs behaviour is challenging, remove them from other children so that they will not be humiliated if you scold them in front of their peers as this can have a damaging effect on the childs emotional well-being.
I know that when you work with children, sometimes you may find there is a certain child acting up constantly. Before telling them off, why not ask yourself “What has happened to cause this reaction?” There may be situations that you don’t know about that go on in their lives. How about sitting down with that child and saying “I have noticed that sometimes you find yourself getting into trouble and being told off. I know that it can be hard for you when this happens. Well, I know that you are a good boy/girl and I care about you and I need you to know that. Shall we try hard together to be good from now on?” In that moment, you are connecting with that child and showing them that you genuinely care for them and want to help them and this can change that childs behaviour. If you say “Let’s try our hardest to be really good this week” but notice that it may not be working. Ask them if they are finding it hard to be good for a whole week and change it to a day by day goal. Reward them with a sticker or a sweet if they manage it. Having an instant reward helps to increase the chance of the good behaviour being repeated.
As for formal education, I think it has changed a lot since I was at school. I remember getting a few pieces of homework each night, each in a different book which we had to put in our bags one by one. Now, children get only one or two pieces of homework a night which come in a folder. In a way, this is good as it means that all of the pieces of homework are in one place so there is less chance of something being forgotten about and they also spend less time on it outside of school which allows them to play and relax outside of school. After all, they are children. They learn best through play and need to have a childhood where they can have fun instead of sitting at a table for hours doing homework. A lot of work goes on in school settings that children may not realise such as how the classroom assistants spend time preparing copies of each homework and classwork and the training both teachers and assistants go to so that they can make learning a more fun and enjoyable process for the children not to mention the amount of planning that teachers do so that a lesson can run smoothly. Formal education is important as it can help children to discover the careers they wish to pursue later in life, teaches social interaction and respect for peers and adults and also dress codes (uniform in school and a uniform/dress code in a working environment). It helps children to learn how to look after themselves and deal with situations away from their parents. For some children, it is also a place to learn things that they cannot learn at home. Perhaps the parents do not have knowledge of subjects taught at school for various reasons and so schools can help enhance a childs chances/opportunities in life.
For me, I want to make learning as fun as possible so that I can instill a positive attitude towards learning in each child. Honestly, I probably could make up a song for everything that we do. Games can be used to teach children skills while letting them move around and use up some energy. After all, if you are having fun while you learn you are more likely to remember something than if you had to sit still for a long time staring at a board and becoming bored with the lesson (then start daydreaming or talking to the person beside you). Education should be fun and rewarding for both the children and the adult. No matter in what capacity you work with children, we should always work in partnership with parents as they are the childs primary caregiver and can learn from them e.g. if the child has a particular interest that we can use to help a child learn such as football. If a child has difficulty with adding/subtracting, give a visual representation such as drawing small footballs and placing them (cut out) in front of the child so that they can take 2 balls away and find that 5-2=3. If we find the child is going through a tough time as a new baby has arrived you can be more understanding and tolerable of their behaviour and try to relate by reading a book that has that sort of theme and talking about it as a group.
Ultimately, education, in all of its forms, is so important as it helps to shape a child into who they are.