Education is the basis of our society. Without it, we won’t function: we won’t be able to work, to fit in or to meet other people. And this education is essential during childhood, or our formative years. Why? Because this basically has a huge impact on how we turn out as adults. I’m obviously not saying that things cannot be different. It’s true that exceptions are around the corner all the time, but I still stand by my statement. Let’s see how parenting and the school system affect children’s development throughout their lives and how does this work.
Is there any correlation between parenting and development?
The answer won’t shock you, because yes, there is. It is quite sad, if you think about it. This is something you can’t control. As children, we can’t choose our parents or the environment in which we grow up and it’s not fair. For example, you can be born with tremendous potential and you show signs of high intelligence, but you do not get the deserved education and nourishment. And you start doubting yourself and “losing” the abilities you once had.
In addition to this, some parents tend to be perfectionists and always want their children to do more and more, while only pointing out what they do wrong. When it comes to these children, not only will they feel like they’re not enough, but they will also stop doing what they did, because “what’s the point if it’s not good?”.
Parents should encourage their children, not criticize them. Their feedback must be constructive, in order for them to have some sort of positive impact on their children. And this criticism will make them expect the worst and feel like the things they deserve aren’t good enough for them. So they will be underachieved and won’t see a problem with it.
The school system and its flaws
It goes without saying that the school system plays an important part in a child’s future as well. And I’m not only talking about the quality of the learning a child receives, but I’m also talking about the quality of the environment. If children put each other down and resort to bullying other children, or if teachers encourage this behaviour by ridiculing their students, this is not good. Because this will have a huge impact on a child and there are huge chances that this will mark them forever.
A teacher should be a role model for his/her students, encourage them when possible and tell them when they’re wrong. The school system should make sure that, regardless of environment and social status, every child gets the deserved education. Sadly, that’s not the case. Even in an environment which is supposed to be safe and neutral, children are characterized by their social status and privilege.
I’ve seen it a lot when I was in school and it’s still accurate today. This is one of the reasons why some children are very confident and accomplished and the others don’t feel like doing anything.
Why should we pay attention to both parenting and the school system?
First of all, even though the process of proper education should begin at home, a good teacher can have an amazing impact on a student. Let’s say that a child hears from his parents that he won’t do anything with his life. But a teacher sees his potential and encourages him. That teacher makes a tremendous difference in his life. This child hears some words he did not hear at home, which is cool. And it makes him question himself: “Is my teacher right? Am I capable? I suppose I am!” And we will have a child that gets out of his comfort zone and betters himself.
In some cases, teachers put down students as well and tell them mean things, such as “You can’t do it” or they are ironic and sarcastic when there’s clearly not the case. I’ve had many teachers like that, who thought they were being “perfectionists”, but they just ended up putting us down. And if there was someone who heard those words from their parents, this belief would have been very wired in their mind.
Everyone is capable of something, but if two of the most important factors in a child’s development put him down, he won’t be able to grow up into a functioning adult. So this is why they also need external motivation in order to cultivate their inner motivation.
Parenting and the school system go hand in hand. It’s important that both sides do their job in order for a child to be the responsible adult they want to shape. If they neglect him or constantly put him down without any constructive improvements, nothing will change apart from his outlook on everything. This outlook will become negative, pessimistic and will have a lot of self-doubt in it. So, play an active, positive part in a child’s life! Encourage him as much as you can, while giving him constructive feedback.