From a concerned parent and teacher.
It is Sunday morning and looking back on the week past in our beloved country I cry. I cry for the child that died, I cry for the child that murdered and I cry for the parents of both because all they can ask now is why?
I am a single mother, parent with three sons and by profession a teacher for over thirty years now. Both roles , which I take very serious. Travelling the world for over 25 years I have met up with kids from every culture you can imagine and all of them have the same needs - love, care, order and a future. I have worked with kids from many a different religions, social status, race and capabilities, yet one in their dreams and aspirations, united in their needs.
No matter who or what you believe, if you are a parent, we all row in the same boat where our children are concerned. If my experience could count for anything, I would like to tell you what I have learned all these years.
The fact that you as a parent have been given a child is a blessing amongst many you receive in life. This blessing comes with huge responsibilities, uncertainties, many tears and laughter. It all depends on how you handle it. The union between parent and child is sacred and us as the elder should lead the way. That little bundle of joy has been entrusted upon you as you have been approved as trustworthy, no matter what the circumstances you are in. My duty and joy as a parent is to bring up each child I have been given to be a fulfilled human being and to be an asset to society. To teach him or her in love and to guide by example. That my words and actions will inspire my child to be the best he or she can be, to be kind, gentle, respectful, responsible and in the highest regard devoted to our Lord. My family and I are devoted to Christ and others are devoted to who or whatever they want to be or not. I do not judge.
Children all over the world are the same, make no mistake and we have all been there. A child is a living curious creature, there are so many things for them to discover. He or she will take changes whenever the opportunity is there. There is no colour or shape to what those little minds can invent or search for. They need guidance and above all wisdom. Wisdom is that what we as parents have learned through life through joy and pain.
As a teacher, I made, make and will make it my priority to know each child and his or her parents. At present I am in a tutor capacity for about thirty home school students on a daily basis which I must say makes it easier to maintain this type of relationship with student and parents, but even in my earlier years I have maintained these relationships. As a teacher I am there first and foremost to help a child reach his or her upmost educational needs and fulfilments and groom the talent I see in each one of them. They are all so different and it is such an honour to be part of this aspect of the development of a child. Now I know that classes of 40 plus kids over and over make it sounds impossible, it is not. I will give you a hint here, get your class to invite their parents to maybe a picnic, a parent and student dance, a get-together to discuss problems in your society, just get up and get your parents involved, get to know them and let them know you so that when you need them to help with a problem, they know the face on the other side of the telephone line. This way you will get to understand where your student is coming from. Parents will get to know the parents of the other classmates, the classmates of their child and can form a better picture of what the circumstances at school are. Get parents to be involved, listen to them and when they come up with positive recommendations, get them to work with you to put a plan to work. You will be surprised how quickly change can be brought about once students and parents are active in bringing about better change.
Our children are wide open to this world and everything it has to offer, good and bad. The good we need not concern about, it is the things that takes our children from us silently without as realizing it.
Modern technology - what wonderful invention we find surrounding as constantly and children are mostly affected by TV, cell phones, computers and internet. Making use of them in the correct manner can only benefit society but on the other side it can destroy an entire family. All of these forms of technology come in one way or another with a button that says – PARENTAL CONTROL – there must be a reason for that. CHILDREN ARE NOT SUPPOSE TO SEE AND BE SUBJECTED TO CERTAIN THINGS!
Phones - the contract is to be renewed and the parents give the old high tech phone to the little child - I know 6 year old kids with Blackberries – did you forget that gives that child access to the internet and everything that comes with it? Computers and Internet and games - we all know the incredible value the internet has for all, how small the world has become, someone in Timbuktu is a the press of a button away. Do you control the access of your child or do you not care?
The biggest problem children have today is the lack of honest parenthood. I know we all try our best as parents and children will be children but I strongly believe if you are in the life of your child, you must remember that you are the principal sculpture of the personality of your child which will dictate him or her a success or failure. It is no use to blame any other party, the teacher, the friends, the internet, the cell phone, face-book, the neighbours, the other parent, the grandparents, the games, that is a cowards way out. You are in control ,if not sort it out!
Get down to business because you love your child! It is never too late, children can change, the point is, can you change your ways.
How much and how do you spend time with your child? If there are problems, clearly not enough.
Do you know with whom your child are befriended and do you know their parents?
Do you have access to the cell phone or computer or any other device that your child is currently using? Do you know what he or she is watching or communicating with?
Where or what is your child doing when you are not at home ?
Does your child know the rules of the house and also the consequences when one is overstepped?
Are you an example for your child? Honestly? I have to ask myself that question everyday - am I doing the right thing because those little eyes are watching me.
Are you a friend or a parent? You can always substitute a friend but never a parent. The most insecure and sad children I got to know are those where their parents are their friends. That is the easy way out for a parent because if you do not do as I say, I will be upset with you. Throw a tantrum and you get to do whatever you want because I do not want to lose your friendship. A honest parent will say ,you do as I do,- now watch what you are doing - if not, there will be consequences because I love you and I value you as a growing human being. Children need to know boundaries in life and they need to know that there will always be a loving parent that will guide them through life no matter what their need or their mistakes. They need somebody they can trust and that someone is the hand that feed them, guide them, hold them and above all unconditionally love them. Friends are here today and gone tomorrow. Do not cripple your child like that. Please just think about it. When I as the teacher call in a parent to discuss a child I want to speak to his parent, not his friend, he or she already has many of them. I need a parent in the life of that child so that we can settle whatever problem he or she is having.
Let us give each other the hand, parents and teachers and bring back happy childhood for the kids, please. Blessings and happy parenthood, it can be done!
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