Iezah, Ming Wei, Ma Xue, Yan Qing (08S33) © Question: “Tiny tyrants, who contradict their parents, terrorise

their teacher and gobble their food.” Why do more children in Singapore fit such a description and can be done about this problem? Teacher’s Comment: Analysis is sufficient, however, this piece of work could be better if there were hard facts to accompany it. Marks: 6/10 *********************************************************************** ********** Tiny tyrants in this case refer to children who misbehave, rebel against their parents, go against their teachers and do not practice good mannerism. Why do more children in Singapore fit such a description? - Western influence in a modern society such as Singapore Example: mass media Children in a developed country like Singapore have easy access to mass media, such as television programs. Through television programs, they are able to learn a lot about other country’s way of life. Seeing that most of the television programs are originated from western countries, their western culture and lifestyle are unconsciously being disseminated to the viewers, in this case, the children. Children follow what they see and these television programs have an effect on the children. For example, violence through shows such as wrestling will result in the child carrying out the same actions on other people. - Upbringing Singapore is a developed country and the people are mostly educated. They seldom carry out conservative practices as they have become more open- minded. Therefore, unlike the olden times, parents nowadays tend to be lenient to their children and refuse to carry out strict disciplinary actions as they believe that it will worsen the children’s behavior. Still, if a parent is too permissive and doesn't set limits, children will feel that they have too much power, and become self-centered, like in Singapore, where many parents tend to give in to their children’s needs and demands. As such, there have been an increasing number of spoilt and pampered children. Permissive society (where most people are non- judgmental and tolerant of children’s behaviors) In a modern society like Singapore, people have become more lenient and openminded. Parents and teachers are less inclined to discipline children and religious and conservative beliefs are far more lax than it was years ago. Therefore, children find

that they can get away with things as they will not be severely punished for. As a result, they grow up thinking that they are always right as society and their parents do not carry out strict disciplinary actions to reprimand their bad behavior. Therefore, children nowadays tend to be more rebellious as they find that adults tend to show more empathy towards them, and therefore, may not have the heart to punish them strictly for misbehaving. - Freedom of expression and self In Singapore, no one is denied the freedom of expression and self. Therefore, children want to have a say in everything. Similarly, parents feel that they have no right to prevent their children from such freedom. Therefore, they tend to give in to their children’s demands so as to avoid arguments with their child, seeing that their child are free to give their own standpoint on the matter. - Follow what they see Children learn by copying what they see other’s do, especially in Singapore where environment plays an important role in determining their behavior. These children mingle with their peers in school and their family members at home. Mass media also plays a part, such as the television programs that are broadcasted. As a result, children tend to rely on these things for guidance on their actions and behaviors. A bad role model may mould the child wrongly and affect his behavior. - Children tests limits They will whine and argue to find out how you react. If these negative behaviors are rewarded (the children get what they want), they will use the negative behaviors again. Especially in Singapore, where children are fortunate to have families that are quite well to do, these children tend to misuse such privilege by demanding for more, instead of being satisfied by what they already have. What can be done about this problem? - Parents should exercise proper disciplinary methods on children Example: Children should have house rules, and they must be maintained by both parents. Parents should not dote too much on children. Instead, cultivate the child with a habit of filial piety and selflessness. Nothing is more powerful than to cultivate good habits when they are young. In Singapore, there are many parenting courses available that can help to guide parents on how to nurture their child properly. Instead of spoiling their children, parents can be firmer on their views so as to ensure that their child will listen to them. - Provide an environment where children get to share things with others. Example: Always bring them to visit a cousin or friend. / Taking turns to do things is also an excellent alternative that often works well for children. This teaches the children how to show care and respect for others. Especially in a modern society like Singapore, where most children are fortunate to be born into middle or higher income families, these children have access to sufficient needs

and wants. As a result, they grow up to be selfish and greedy. Therefore, activities that teaches them the value of sharing is important in molding them into self-sacrificing members of society. Encourage or praise children once they show some willingness to care about others. Let them experience how good it feels to care for others. Through such behaviors, we can gradually introduce the idea of taking turns to praise every tiny effort they put in. This will further encourage the child to carry out such values and in Singapore, these values have always been implemented in schools, where teachers never fail to encourage and support their students in doing the right things. Frequent mass activities with their peers may also further cultivate values such as caring for others, because through interactions, relationships are built, and through these friendships, children are able to learn the importance of protecting a loved one. - Keep the consistency of all these from young, until it develops into a habit. This is the most important point of all because there is no use in carrying out these practices half- heartedly. Parents should ensure that these practices are constantly carried out so as to nurture it into their child. Soon enough, such moral values will be implemented into their child and will unconsciously become a habit. -

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