Children who are successful in school also behave. A child who cannot sit cannot learn. A child who resists the teacher’s authority cannot learn. A child who socializes when he should be listening cannot learn. Much has been said about what teachers need to do differently but how much has been publicly said on parental expectations for good behavior from their kids?
A child must come to school ready to learn and that includes not only knowing how to say the ABC’s but also how to sit still when told and how to obey. A child who is allowed to run around at home, at church, at the mall, will not sit down to learn. Teachers have 18 – 27 little ones that they must teach to raise their hands or how to hold a pencil or how to walk in a line, But children who are not expected to sit and listen start the school year behind their peers, less likely to learn to read because the teacher is too busy teaching discipline. The problem will only get worst as the child gets older. The less they know, the more likely they are to become the class clown or the talkers. Anything to take the attention off the fact that they do not understand. Even children with ADHD have to be expected to behave and consequences given for infractions. Medicine can help and structure can help, but none of this can substitute for the expectation from home and school that the child WILL behave.
Too often parents work against the teacher and the school when it comes to discipline. Too many parents question the teacher’s judgment in front of the child. That is not to say that the teacher is always right, but when a parent publicly disagrees with a teacher or principal the only person hurt in this whole scenario is the child. He loses respect for the teacher and is more likely to act up, only creating his/her own recipe for failure. This is similar to when one parent disciplines a child, the other needs to support the other and show a united front, even if behind closed doors they disagree.
Children who respect their teachers will thrive more than students who don’t. Our job as parents is to foster that relationship. We need to expect our kids to behave in public and to have self control. A modern consensus is that we have to allow our kids to be their creative uninhibited selves. No, children need to be taught how to act depending on where they are and who else they are around. Yelling and running is not appropriate in all settings. Look at the adults around you. The least successful, the ones who can’t keep a job or work with others are usually the ones who seem to never learn how to play nicely with others and how to control their language and behavior. There is nothing wrong with self control and if we want smart kids, we must teach them to control themselves and to obey authority; it is a simple secret to learning more and being a stronger student. Happy Parenting.