Saturday, April 5, 2008

The Missing Chapter

There is one chapter missing in Win’s best selling book, and I am going to provide it here:

Everybody knows it, but few do anything about it. PARENTS are the key motivators for their childrens’ success. PARENTS need to be taught how to motivate their offspring and set examples for them. This chapter tells you how.

Let’s start with creating “The Month of The Child.” Select a month to celebrate as a time to reignite the beauty and magic of childhood for children of all ages from birth to 100 years old. Underneath our gruffness and cynicism, we are all children at heart even if we have forgotten it. In our mad dash to survive and eke out a living, many of us forget the charm and mystery of “childness.”

So let’s make one month special in which we “talk with” children and “with each other” instead of “talking at” each other. If our own children are grown, then share the joy with our grandchildren.

For one month, let’s show and tell our children what our childhood was like. Dust out photos of when we were young with all the mementos. Yes, even talk about the report cards you received in the same grades they are in now. I often take out my photos of childhood and with my children laugh and giggle at how I looked at say seven or 12 years old and at some of the crazy styles of clothing I wore. I point out my classmates to them, and the children ask where they are. I also wonder where they are and what they are doing.

Hand in hand, let’s play and sing the joys of youth. Let’s recapture over the month the magic of a time dear to all of us. Create a time to take out some of our favorite books of childhood stories. Who of us doesn’t stop whatever he is doing when he hears the magical words: “Once upon a time…”

Together read with them or view a video of the old classics “Alice in Wonderland,” “The Wizard of Oz.” Perhaps you may also enjoy some of my favorite stories about that silly Winnie the Pooh. Grab a book of Mother Goose, the grand lady who never grows old, and sing and clap your hands with the children in reckless glee. Don’t forget Peter Pan and his boyish adventures. Don’t forget to sing “Follow the Leader.” And how can we ever forget the delightful fairy Twinkle Bell with her magic wand! Join in the frolics of the Seven Dwarfs as they sing and play with Snow white. After all these years will the Prince still come and save Snow White from the curse of the Wicked Witch? The list goes on and on. Yes, those were the magical days. Relive them with our children.

Tell the children that they have choices in life. Explain how the choices they make will turn them into winners or losers. Tell about the competition that awaits them in the cold world and teach them the secret to success in life—education. Help them to understand how their schoolwork is planning and molding them for their future in society. Guide them step by step in their crucial state of growing up.

Take time to tell and show the children how beautiful the world is. Open their eyes to the loveliness of a setting sun or the majesty of a rainbow as it sprays itself in a splendid arc across the sky. Ask the child to pick a flower, smell it, stroke its petals and admire its beauty.

Show them that the world also has a dark side and how to cope with it. Stop denying children the wholeness of life. Let them experience and savor the good and the not so good. Don’t build walls around them. Help them to experience all the sights, sounds, smells, and feelings that life offers.

When is the last time we listened to our children? I mean really listened. Ask them to tell what they feel happy about. What do they fear? We have to get into their world and explore it together. An amazing thing happens as we listen to them, we begin to listen to ourselves better. The idea is to explore their world together.

We must start early in letting our children know about the wondrous gold mine of imagination that is strictly their own. When did we lose ours? We must teach them that they are the only “they.” No one else is like them. They are unique with unique qualities. It is our duty to help bring those qualities out.

We should explain about death and stop protecting and giving them concepts that we are all immortal. They have to understand that death is a normal part of the cycle of life and of the life force that ever flows through the universe. Let us share with our children that life is not only pain, misery and despair as so often seen and heard on daily television shows or in the newspapers. Instead balance those images with the daily

miracles and fantastically beautiful things that happen around us.

I am reminded of the words of Frederick Moffett: “Thus a child learns more through trial and error, more through pleasure than pain, more through experience than suggestion and telling, and more through suggestion than direction. And thus a child learns through affection, through love, through patience, through understanding, through belonging, through doing and through being.”

During this special “month of the child,” let’s guide the children in their choice to become winners. Let’s help them to keep burning in their breasts the wonder and mystery of “childness.” At the same time let us rekindle the flicking flame still alive in ourselves. Too soon the child becomes the parent. Why not make every month The Month of The Child!

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