A child is a precious gift that any parents can ever have. Parents embark a long journey to nurture good habits in their children. This is because good habits are important as they establish a child’s personality. Therefore, a child who embodies good habits tends to grow up to be a better person in the future. Nurturing good habit can be a part of learning process for the child. How and where do a child acquires the good habits? Certainly, a child acquires these good habits from the roles performed by his or her parents at home. Here are some of the ways for parents to nurture good habits in their children:
1. Be a good role model to your children
Children tend to learn something or an action through imitation. The people that they will first imitate are their parents. The imitation can range from their parents’ behaviours to the language used by them in a conversation. Thus, as a parent, you need to set a fine example for your children to learn and follow. Some good habits that you can teach your children are be polite when speaking with the older people, be honest, keep your place clean, etc. It is also important for you to keep up with your good habits and behaviours so that your children will be able to cultivate these good habits in themselves as they know the importance of these habits.
2. Set strong ground rules for your children
As your children begin their school, it is important for you to set strong ground rules for them to follow. For example, you can help your children to make their own routine timetable. The timetable that has been created should allocates fixed hours for their homework, playtime, nap time and screen time. You can also point out that they always need to prioritize their homework first over other activities. It will allow your children to learn which task is more important as compared to others. By setting a routine timetable, they will also be able to develop a self-discipline in their lives. However, you also need to ensure that your children’ routine are not too strict or too flexible until it affects their mental and physical development. There should be adequate study time and playtime for them.
3. Encourage your children to read good stories and watch good films
Good stories from books and films can help to nurture good habits in your children. The stories will contain moral values and lessons to be learn by the children. After you read a story or watch a film with your children, you might ask them questions. For example, “What would you have done if you had been in the same situation as the main character?” or “What have you learned from the story?” These questions will get your children to think about values and what are the right and wrong things to do. They can also apply what they have learned from the story especially on good behaviours and manners in their lives.
4. Praise your children for their good habits
When your children are doing something good or on their good behaviour, praise them accordingly. If you see your children complete their homework or clean their room without being told, let them know that you are pleased with their actions. A simple praise such as “Well done”, “Good girl” or “I am proud of you” will make your children happy and they will continue to be on their good behaviours and actions that they will gradually become habits. It is also a way for you to show them your approval for their behaviours and actions. You can also reward your children with enjoyable experiences such as a visit to the zoo or a visit to the funfair.
5. Be firm with your children when they make mistakes
No children are perfect. There are moments where your children display bad behaviours or being ill-manners. They could even have done something wrong intentionally or unintentionally. In this situation, you should be firm and make your children understand that what they have done is intolerable and the consequences of their bad behaviours. Allow your children to bear the consequences of their behaviours so that they can learn from what they have done and never repeat those bad behaviours. Instead, your children will always keep in mind on the good behaviours and practice them well in their lives.