By Shagufta Shazadi
What do we expect our children to do when they: a) grow up as adult, b) pass through grade/class, c) start a job/business, d) become a parent, e) live among other people, f) are emotionally stressed out?
Is the parental responsibility only to give birth to a child and then neglect all other social, moral and emotional responsibilities? Should parents let their children suffer on their own in the world to develop themselves socially under the shelter of society? Is our society secure enough to allow our children to grow?
There is an African proverb, “It takes a whole village to raise a child”. The village refers to a social setup where one helps everyone else to be safe, healthy and well connected. The village makes a perfect environment for the children to grow. If a child is not in the school everyone in the village asks the child why he or she is not in the school.
Children nor like neither they think like adults. They undergo through proper growth of their personality socially, emotionally and intellectually. Parents are single biggest influence in child’s personality development that begins from the time of birth. Unconsciously, parents are shattering confidence, courage, and self-esteem of their children by ignoring them. Like parents taking their children to the parks and other means of trips, yet they ignore their small wishes and scold over their demands. i.e. asking for enjoying fun and interesting games, observing wildlife and taking picture. As a result, the actual purpose of taking the child out becomes worthless. A child should be given the freedom to explore new places where they are taken, whereas, parents are to help them exploring and learning from the places, people and things. Expose children to the real world, allow them making mistakes and help them taking the responsibility of life choices.
It is important for parents to understand and realize personality development of children. Otherwise, those ignored children when in schools hesitate in participating in both curricular and co-curricular activities, they demonstrate behavioral issues, and remain hostile to their peers. Every child is special and has his/her unique character and needs to be nurtured and also exposed to have new experiences and learn from it; hence, they need individual attention. In school giving individual attention is not easy for instance in a 30 minutes class if there are thirty students in the class a child will get only a minute of less than a minute attention. There are other factors that also needs teachers’ attention such as syllabus completion, assigning homework, taking attendance and assessing students’ academic performance. In such cases the parents’ involvement in taking the responsibility of their children and being sensitive to their children’s wellbeing becomes extremely vital. Parents should also take the responsibility of being role models, teaching their children ethics, family history, setting life principles, religion, family values and customs and so on, which does not require a parent to pursue a higher degree or certificate.
In the era where trust on technology and friends circle is crucial to be easily done, parents and immediate family members are to support children. It is required to educate such parents that their children need them most. Parental empathy for their children is necessary to develop the bond between child and the parents. From birth, parents should have built a strong bonding with and among their children. So that children feel comfortable to share their feelings, ideas, failures and successes with their parents. This way parents will easily handle the matters associated with their children. Otherwise, such neglected children gradually suffer from depression, hopelessness, ignorance, frustration and this leads to weaker in academics and physical and mental health.
The contributor is a Specialist of Assessment Monitoring & Evaluation at Sarghodians Institute for Professional Development, Rashidabad