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Assume that you are a founder of Brainy Montessori who will deliver a speech on

Parenting Tips during your open day. Your speech is focused to this area, What does it
take to be a good parent? In your speech, describe the characteristics of a good parent.
Give specific details to explain your views. Use your personal observations, experience,
and knowledge.

Characteristics of a Good Parent


The characteristics needed to be a good parent are many, but here are several that can help form
the foundation for good parenting.
Respect - A good parent is respectful to their child, even when disciplining. Children first learn
respectful behaviors from their parents and caregivers, so a child who is consistently treated
respectfully by a parent is more likely to develop a healthy self-respect, and a respect for others,
including their parent. Parents should keep in mind that it is possible to be respectful and firm at
the same time.
Empathy - A good parent knows how to listen, more than talk. Sometimes, all a child needs is a
listening ear, a safe place to talk things out, and for the parent to put themselves in the child's
shoes, rather than jump in and fix his problems for him. A parent who is willing to tune into their
child's words, tone of voice, and body language, will have a better chance of hearing what their
child is really saying. Empathic listening sets the stage for open communication and can go a long
way in strengthening the parent-child relationship.

Trust - A good parent takes advantage of opportunities to allow their child to make ageappropriate decisions, thereby, instilling a level of trust in the child's ability to do so. Entrusting a
child to make certain choices is a great way to empower a child, and ultimately help a child learn
how to become responsible. When parents try to control too many things in a child's life, it sends
the message, "I don't trust you to make the right decisions, my way is better." Consequently, the
more control a parents uses, the less cooperation they will get.

Leadership - A parent's main role in their child's life is to be a leader- someone the child can
model, and learn from, but most importantly, someone who will keep them healthy and safe.
Leadership in parenting requires being firm, when necessary, and a willingness to put rules in
place, even when those rules are not readily accepted by the child. Parents, who are leaders,
accept that there will be times when their child will not like them for putting certain limits in place,
but they enforce them anyhow, knowing that it's their job to do what's best for their child.

Courage - It takes courage to be a good parent. The need for courage in parenting can show up in
different ways, such as taking an unpopular stand to instill values, rules, and limits, even if it goes
against what their child, or others may believe. At other times, courage may be needed to let go
and allow a child to make certain choices and experience the consequences of such choices, so he
can learn and grow. Courage is not reckless, nor is it the absence of fear; it's the willingness to try,
and do what needs to be done, despite having fears.

Confidence - Parents who are confident don't have all the answers, but they are confident in their
abilities to do the best they can. When they don't know the answer, they look for it. Rather than
dwell on their own mistakes, confident parents are willing to admit them, learn from them, and
make better choices in the future. They see problems as opportunities to learn and grow. As a
result, they're in a better position to help their child develop self-confidence, as well.

Gratitude - Gratitude in parenting helps a parent appreciate their child as they are. Gratitude says,
"I like who you are and who you are becoming." Gratitude helps parents become aware of, and
help build on a child's strengths. A grateful parent focuses on and accepts the present moment,
doesn't fret about past mistakes, or worry about the future. Gratitude in parenting helps parents
become more approachable, and a positive influence in their child's life.

Understanding - Probably one of the hardest characteristics to develop in parenting, but the most
needed, is the characteristic of understanding. Many times it can be hard for parents to deal with a
child's misbehaviors, mostly because they don't understand them. One of the worst things a
parent can do is take their child's misbehaviors personally. As part of their growth and
development, children are going to misbehave and do things that go against the rules. Knowing
this can help parents anticipate and redirect a child toward more positive and acceptable
behaviors, and avoid a lot of unnecessary anger. Understanding can also lead to forgiveness.

Happiness - Happiness is not given to a chosen few; it's available to those who choose to make it a
part of their everyday life. Many people wait for things, events, and other people to make them

happy, but this is a mistake. Choosing to be happy is a choice we can all make because it comes
from within. It's a reservoir that we can tap into whenever we choose. It's not designed to make
problems go away, although, sometimes it may. Happiness can help us rise above our problems,
and not just survive, but thrive, in spite of them. Plus, it just feels good to be happy. Parents who
practice happiness have a greater chance of influencing their child's perception of happiness, and
their attainment of it, as well. Most children are naturally happy and enjoy being around happy
parents.

Being a parent can be one of the most rewarding and fulfilling experiences of your life,
but that doesn't mean it's easy. No matter what age your child or children are, your
work is never done. To be a good parent, you need to know how to make your children
feel valued and loved, while teaching them the difference between right and wrong. At
the end of the day, the most important thing is to create a nurturing environment where
your children feel like they can thrive and develop into confident, independent, and
caring adults. If you want to know how to be a good parent, see Step 1 to be on your
way.

Give your child love and affection. Sometimes the best thing you can give your
child is love and affection. A warm touch or a caring hug can let your child know
how much you really care about him or her. Don't ever overlook how important
a physical connection is when it comes to your child. Here are some ways to show
love and affection:
o A gentle cuddle, a little encouragement, appreciation, approval or even a
smile can go a long way to boost the confidence and well-being of your
children.
o Tell them you love them every day, no matter how angry at them you may
be.
o Give lots of hugs and some kisses. Make your children comfortable with
love and affection from birth.

o Love them unconditionally; don't force them to be who you think they
should be in order to earn your love. Let them know that you will always
love them no matter what.

Praise your children. Praising your children is an important part of being a good
parent. You want your kids to feel proud of their accomplishments and good
about themselves. If you don't give them the confidence they need to be out in the
world on their own, then they won't feel empowered to be independent or
adventurous. When they do something good, let them know that you've noticed
and that you're very proud of them.
o Make a habit of praising your children at least three times as much as you
give them negative feedback. Though it's important to tell your children
when they're doing something wrong, it's also important to help them
build a positive sense of self.
o If they are too young to fully understand, praise them with treats,
applause, and lots of love. Encouraging them for doing everything from
using the potty to getting good grades can help them lead a happy and
successful life.
2. 3
Avoid comparing your children to others, especially siblings. Each child is
individual and unique. Celebrate their differences and instill in each child the
desire to pursue their interests and dreams. Failure to do so may give your child
an inferiority complex, an idea that they can never be good enough in your eyes.
If you want to help them improve their behavior, talk about meeting their goals
on their own terms, instead of telling them to act like their sister or neighbor.
This will help them develop a sense of self instead of having an inferiority
complex.

o Comparing one child to another can also make one child develop a rivalry
with his or her sibling. You want to nurture a loving relationship between
your children, not a competitive one.
o Avoid favoritism. Surveys have shown that most parents have favorites,
but most children believe that they are the favorite. If your children are
quarreling, don't choose sides, but be fair and neutral.

Listen to your children. It's important that your communication with your
children goes both ways. You shouldn't just be there to enforce rules, but to listen
to your children when they are having a problem. You have to be able to express
interest in your children and involve yourself in their life. You should create an
atmosphere in which your children can come to you with a problem, however
large or small.
o You can even set aside a time to talk to your children every day. This can
be before bedtime, at breakfast, or during a walk after school. Treat this
time as sacred and avoid checking your phone or getting distracted.
o If your child says he has to tell you something, make sure you take this
seriously and drop everything you're doing, or set up a time to talk when
you can really listen.

Make time for your children. Be careful not to stifle or smother them, however.
There's a big difference between protecting someone and imprisoning them
within your too unyielding demands. You want them to feel like your time
together is sacred and special without making them feel like they are forced to
spend time with you.
o Spend time with each child individually. Try to divide your time equally if
you have more than one child.

o Listen and respect your child and respect what they want to do with their
life.
o Set aside a day to go to a park, theme parks, museum or library
depending on their interests.
o Attend school functions. Do homework with them. Visit their teacher at
open house to get a sense of how they are doing in school.
3. 6
Be there for the milestones. You may have a hectic work schedule, but you should
do everything you can to be there for the important moments in your children's
lives, from their ballet recitals to their high school graduation. Remember that
children grow fast and that they'll be on their own before you know it. Your boss
may or may not remember that you missed that meeting, but your child will most
certainly remember that you didn't attend the play they were in. Though you
don't have to drop everything for your children, you should at least try to be
there for the milestones.
o If you were too busy to be there for your child's first day of school or
another important milestone, you are liable to regret it for the rest of your
life. And you don't want your child to think of his high school graduation
as the time when his mom or dad couldn't show up.
Part 2 of 3: Being a Good Disciplinarian
1. 1
Enforce reasonable rules. Enforce rules that apply to every person leading a
happy and productive life not model rules of your ideal person. It's important
to set rules and guidelines that help your child develop and grow without being
so strict that your child feels like he can't take a step without doing something
wrong. Ideally, your child should love you more than he fears your rules.

o Communicate your rules clearly. Children should be very familiar with


the consequences of their actions. If you give them a punishment, be sure
they understand the reason and the fault; if you cannot articulate the
reason and how they are at fault the punishment will not have the
discouraging effects you desire.
o Make sure that you not only set reasonable rules, but that you enforce
them reasonably. Avoid overly harsh forms of punishment, ridiculously
stringent punishments for minor infractions, or anything that involves
physically hurting your child.
2. 2
Control your temper as much as you can. It's important to try to be as calm and
reasonable as you can when you explain your rules or carry them out. You want
your children to take you seriously, not fear you or think of you as unstable.
Obviously, this can be quite a challenge, especially when your children are acting
out or just driving you up the wall, but if you feel yourself getting ready to raise
your voice, take a break and excuse yourself before you finish talking to your
children.
o We all lose our tempers and feel out of control, sometimes. If you do or
say something you regret, you should apologize to your children, letting
them know that you've made a mistake. If you act like the behavior is
normal, then they will try to mimic it.

Be consistent. It's important to enforce the same rules all the time, and to resist
your child's attempts to manipulate you into making exceptions. If you let your
child do something he or she is not supposed to do just because he or she is
throwing a tantrum, then this shows that your rules are breakable. If you find
yourself saying, "Okay, but only just this once..." more than once, then you have
to work on maintaining more consistent rules for your children.

o If your child feels like your rules are breakable, he'll have no incentive to
stick to them.
3. 4
Be a united front with your spouse. If you have a spouse, then it's important that
your children think of you as a united front as two people who will both say
"yes" or "no" to the same things. If your kids think that their mother will always
say yes and their father will say no, then they'll think that one parent is "better"
or more easily manipulatable than the other. They should see you and your
spouse as a unit so there's order in your high school, and so you don't find
yourself in a difficult situation because you and your spouse don't agree on
certain things when it comes to raising the kids.
o This doesn't mean that you and your house have to agree 100% about
everything having to do with the kids. But it does mean that you should
work together to solve problems that involve the children, instead of being
pitted against each other.
o You shouldn't argue with your spouse in front of the children. If they are
sleeping, argue quietly. Children may feel insecure and fearful when they
hear parents bickering. In addition, children will learn to argue with each
other the same way they hear their parents argue with each other. Show
them that when people disagree, they can discuss their differences
peacefully.
Provide order for your children. Your kids should feel like there's a sense of
order and a logic to things in their household and in their family life. This can
help them feel safe and at peace and to live a happy life both in and outside of
their home. Here are some ways that you can provide order for your children:
o Set boundaries such as bedtimes and curfews, so they learn that they have
limitations. By doing so, they actually get a sense of being loved and cared
about by their parents. They might rebel at those boundaries, but
inwardly enjoy knowing that concerned parents guide and love them.

o Encourage responsibility by giving them jobs or "chores" to do and as a


reward for those jobs give them some kind of privilege (money, extended
curfew, extra play time, etc.). As "punishment" for not doing these jobs,
they have the corresponding privilege revoked. Even the youngest of
children can learn this concept of reward or consequence. As your child
grows, give them more responsibilities and more rewards or consequences
for completing those responsibilities or ignoring them.
o Teach them what is right and wrong. If you are religious, take them to the
religious institute that you follow. If you are an atheist or an agnostic,
teach them your moral stance on things. In either case, don't be
hypocritical or be prepared for your child to point out that you are not
"practicing what you preach".
Criticize your child's behavior, not your child. It's important to criticize your
children's actions, instead of your actual child. You want your child to learn that
he or she can accomplish whatever he or she wants through his or her behavior,
instead of being stuck being one kind of person. Let him or her feel like he has
the agency to improve his behavior.
o When your child acts out in a harmful and spiteful manner, tell him or
her that such behavior is unacceptable and suggest alternatives. Avoid
statements such as: "You're bad." Instead, say something like, "It was
very wrong to be mean to your little sister." Explain why the behavior was
bad.
o Be assertive yet kind when pointing out what they have done wrong. Be
stern and serious, but not cross or mean, when you tell them what you
expect.
o Avoid public humiliation. If they misbehave in public, take them aside,
and scold them privately.
Part 3 of 3: Helping Your Child Build Character
1. 1

Teach your children to be independent. Teach your children that it is okay for
them to be different, and they do not have to follow the crowd. Teach them right
from wrong when they are young, and they will (more often than not) be able to
make their own decisions, instead of listening to or following others. Remember
that your child is not an extension of yourself. Your child is an individual under
your care, not a chance for you to relive your life through them.
o When your children get old enough to make decisions for themselves, you
should encourage them to choose which extra-curricular activities they
want to do or what friends they want to play with. Unless you think an
activity is very dangerous, or a playmate is a very bad influence, you
should let your children figure things out for themselves.
o A child may have an opposite disposition, ie: introverted when you are
extroverted, for instance, and will not be able to fit into the pattern and
style that you choose, and will make his or her own decisions instead.
o They need to learn that their own actions have consequences (good and
bad). By doing so, it helps them to become good decision makers and
problem solvers so that they are prepared for independence and
adulthood.
o Don't routinely do things for your children that they can learn to do for
themselves. While getting them a glass of water before bed is a nice way to
make them get to sleep faster, don't do it so often that they come to expect
it.
2. 2
Be a good role model. If you want your child to be well-behaved, then you should
model the behavior and character you hope your children will adopt and
continue to live by the rules that you set. Show them by example in addition to
verbal explanations. Children have a tendency to become what they see and hear
unless they make a conscious and concerted effort to break the mold. You don't
have to be a perfect person, but you should strive to do as you want your

children to do, so you don't look hypocritical if you tell your children to be polite
to others when they find you getting in a heated argument in the supermarket.
o It's perfectly okay to make mistakes, but you should apologize or let your
child know that the behavior is not good. You can say something like,
"Mommy didn't mean to yell at you. She was just very upset." This is
better than ignoring that you made a mistake, because that will show the
child that he or she should model this behavior.
o Want to teach kids about charity? Get involved and take your kids with
you to a soup kitchen or homeless shelter and help serve up meals.
Explain to them why you do acts of charity so they understand why they
should.
o Teach kids about chores by setting a schedule and having them help you
out. Don't tell your child to do something, but ask for their help. The
earlier they learn to help you, the longer they will be willing to.
o If you want your son or daughter to learn to share, set a good example
and share your things with them.
Respect your child's privacy. Respect their privacy as you would want them to
respect yours; for example, if you teach your child that your room is out of
boundaries to them, respect the same with their room. Allow them to feel that
once they enter their room they can know that no one will look through their
drawers, or read their diary. This will teach them to honor their own space and
to respect the privacy of others.
o If your child catches you snooping through his or her things, then it may
take him a long time to be able to truly trust you again.
3. 4
Encourage your children to have a healthy lifestyle. It's important to make sure
that your children eat healthy food as much as they can, that they get plenty of
exercise, and that they get enough rest every night. You should encourage

positive and healthy behavior without harping on it too much or making it seem
like you're forcing your children to eat or act a certain way. Let them come to
these conclusions on their own while helping them see the meaning and
importance of a healthy life.
o One way to encourage them to exercise is to get them to play a sport early
on in life, so they find a passion that is also healthy.
o If you start over-explaining to the child that something is unhealthy or
that they shouldn't get it, they may take it the wrong way and feel like you
are insulting them. Once this happens, they will no longer want to go out
to eat with you, and they will feel bad eating around you, which could
make them want to sneak and hide junk food from you.
o When trying to enforce healthy eating habits, start it at a younger age.
Giving rewards of candy to children may create a bad habit, because once
they get older, some may feel they should reward themselves which can
lead to obesity. While they are young, start them out with healthier
snacks. Instead of chips, try goldfish (crackers), grapes, etc.
o The eating habits they learn as they are younger are the ones they
continue to have. Also, never make your child finish their plate, if they say
they are not hungry. This can continue throughout their lives, causing
them to finish no matter what portions are on their plate.
4. 5
Emphasize moderation and responsibility when it comes to alcohol consumption.
You can start talking about this even when children are young. Explain that they
will have to wait until they are old enough to enjoy a drink with friends, and talk
about the importance of designated drivers. Failure to discuss these issues early
sometimes contributes to sneaking and dangerous experimentation, if they don't
understand.
o Once your friends get to an age where they and their friends start
drinking alcohol, encourage them to talk about it with you. You don't

want them to fear your reaction and to end up doing something


regrettable, like driving drunk because they're too scared to ask for a
ride.
6
Allow your kids to experience life for themselves. Don't make decisions for them
all the time; they must learn how to live with the consequences from the choices
they make. After all, they will have to learn to think for themselves sometime. It's
best they start when you are there to help minimize the negative consequences
and accentuate the positive ones.
o They need to learn that their own actions have consequences (good and
bad). By doing so, it helps them to become good decision makers and
problem solvers so that they are prepared for independence and
adulthood.
5. 7
Let your children make their own mistakes. Life is a great teacher. Don't be too
quick to rescue your child from the results of their own actions if the
consequences are not overly severe. For example, cutting themselves (in a minor
way) may hurt, but it's better than leaving them unaware of why sharp objects
should be avoided. Know that you can't protect your children forever, and
they're better off learning life's lessons sooner than later. Though it can be hard
to stand back and watch your child make a mistake, this will benefit both you
and your child in the long run.
o You shouldn't say "I told you so" when your child learns a life lesson on
his own. Instead, let your child draw his own conclusions about what
happened.
8
Give up your vices. Gambling, alcohol and drugs can jeopardize your child's
financial security. Smoking, for example, almost always introduces health

hazards to your child's environment. Second-hand smoke has been linked to


several respiratory ailments in children. It could also contribute to the early
death of a parent. Alcohol and drugs might also introduce health hazards or
violence to your child's environment.
o Of course, if you enjoy having some wine or a few beers now and again,
that's perfectly fine, as long as you model healthy consumption of alcohol
and responsible behavior while you do it.
6. 9
Don't place unreasonable expectations on your child. There's a difference
between wanting your child to be a responsible, mature individual and forcing
your child to be perfect or to live up to your idea of what perfect should be. You
shouldn't push your child to get perfect grades or to be the best player on his
soccer team; instead, encourage good study habits and good sportsmanship, and
let your child put in the effort that he is capable of.
o If you act like you only expect the best, your child will feel like he or she
may never measure up, and may even rebel in the process.
o You don't want to be the person that your child is afraid of because he
feels like he will never measure up. You want to be a cheerleader for your
child, not a drill sergeant.
7. 10
Know that a parent's work is never done. Though you may think you have
already molded and raised your child into the person he or she will become by
the time your child dons his or her graduation cap, this is far from true. Your
parenting will have a life-long effect on your child and you should always give
your child the love and affection he needs, even if you're hundreds of miles away.
While you won't always be a constant daily presence in your child's life, you
should always let your children know that you care about them and that you'll be
there for them, no matter what.

o Your children will still turn to you for advice, and will still be affected by
what you say no matter what age they are. As the years go on, you can not
only improve your parenting techniques, but you can start to think about
how to be a good grandparent!