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Ovation: GUEST POST! How to Educate Overindulged Youth.

06/08/2013

GuestBloggerAll across the country, children seem to think they’re entitled to whatever they want. They whine when dinner isn’t up to their specifications, and they complain when they are supposed to do chores around the house. What can we do to solve this massive problem? I see it in my home and in that of the parents around me. As a concerned and tired father, here are my thoughts!

Set Consequences – Parents, if we’re going to solve this problem, it starts with you. You need to start setting consequences for your children again. If they don’t eat their dinner, they have to go to bed without dessert. If they don’t complete their homework, spending time with friends is absolutely out of the question. Remember, YOU are the parent in the household. While you don’t need to be a tyrant, you must remember what your role is.

ThankYouTeach Them Appreciation – When was the last time you heard a youngster say, “Thank you” without being commanded to do so from a parent?! Young people need to learn how to show appreciation. Visiting a location where they can witness the lives of those less fortunate is one way – have them help out at a homeless shelter or visit a developing country for your next vacation. On top of that, stop writing out thank you cards for your children! If they can spell, they can write them without help.

Taking Responsibility – Here, we have a huge issue. Students often blame the teacher if they receive a low grade on an exam. Of course, not all teachers are perfect, but students need to learn how to take responsibility for their actions. If students are complaining about the teacher, parents can’t just automatically agree. They need to take the time to find out if these statements are true. Youngsters also must be given responsibility at home. Teenagers and older children are absolutely capable of taking on chores around the house – so take a load off and have them help out!

CriticismLearning to Accept Criticism – It seems that no one’s able to accept criticism anymore. People are so concerned with positive reinforcement that they forget about the other side of the coin. If children are never criticized, they never have the opportunity to learn or improve. If they’re told about what they can improve on, they can work to become better versions of themselves. We should have a system of rewards, but if that exists, then we also need to have a system of punishment. A student doesn’t need to be praised for a “D” on an exam. Parents can work with them to show them how to do better which will help prepare them for college and adult life!

Independent Play – We need to teach children how to play alone. Parents and babysitters are not trained clowns! If your children aren’t engaging in an educational activity every second of the day, they’re going to be fine. They need to have their imaginations in gear, and they must learn how to occupy their own time instead of demanding it from everyone else.

The overindulged youth of this country are a major problem. When they grow up and are running the world, who knows what is going to happen.

Martin Eckler writes about parenting, family issues and education. His recent work can be found at TopCounselingSchools.org.

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4 Comments
  1. Lene permalink

    I think you are right on. It all starts at home. It takes time, thought and perseverance, but the payoff is well worth it.

    Like

    • I completely agree. Kids need to lose once in a while so they know what it feels like to be a winner. And they need to hear some “nos” so that they appreciate the “yesses”.

      Like

  2. When my daughter was young, all her punishments were based on logical consequences. An example: my daughter hated to clean her room & she often had lots of toys all over the floor. When she was very young, I sent her outside to play one day & stripped her room of everything but the furniture. She was very upset when she came in. I told her for ever day she kept her room clean she could win back a toy.
    When my daughter was in her young teens & my ex’s daughter would come stay with me for all holidays including Christmas break, I found the girls were acting lazy & unappreciative, so I volunteered us all to deliver Christmas hampers to the poor. We set out with our Santa caps on, singing Christmas carols & all appreciated Christmas much more that year!

    Like

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