Takes a Community to Raise A Child
Check out my Black Belt Parenting Podcast to listen to this episode: http://dennystrecker.libsyn.com/episode-28-it-takes-a-community-to-raise-a-child
Hey parents, Denny Strecker here from Skills Dynamic Martial Arts with another video talking about this month’s theme of discipline. Today we wanted to talk about the idea that it takes a community to raise a child. It’s an old adage, and it’s still true today if you really think about it. In a couple of the parent groups that I’m in on Facebook and conversations that I have with different parents, the conversation has been coming up that my child is hanging around this other child that’s really a bad influence, or negative influence. They either constantly have temper tantrums, meltdowns, the parents don’t monitor their behavior or correct anything they feel is inappropriate. And I don’t want my child picking up those habits.
One of the things we talk about here is that process of it takes a community to raise a child, what type of community do you want around your child. It’s super important as a parent that you are always monitoring what information your child is picking up, because again up until about the age of seven or eight kids are gonna mimic the behavior that they see. So a lot of times in our three and four year old classes parents will get upset because they want their child sitting still, but they’re sitting and spinning because the person next to them is doing that.
That’s natural, but now think about it. Your child’s friend at school, constantly yells and screams at their parent, I heard of situations where they spit, they swear. Is that the stuff you want your child picking up and bringing home, and thinking it’s okay to do that? I don’t think so, and that’s stuff that we don’t allow here at all at the karate school. That’s why a lot of the parents are gonna bring their children here. We have a positive environment, we have one team, everybody plays, nobody’s left out and there’s set expectations on proper behavior. So whenever you find your child working or playing with somebody and you don’t think it’s a good influence, it is absolutely your responsibility as a parent to say I don’t want you to be friends with them, we’re gonna go in another direction.
This goes the same for anybody who helps raise your child. Maybe it’s your parent, the child’s grandparent. It’d be great if it was your great grandparent, then you’ve got an awesome family. Or a coach, or a mentor, or the school teachers, basically having a quick conversation saying hey here’s my expectations, do you think you would be able to follow those? Or is that something you would have a tough time doing? If they say you know what I’m not gonna do that you really have to think long and hard if you wanna leave your child under the care and responsibility of that person. Because again they’re going to be picking up the behaviors.
We hear this all the time with divorce situations, whenever the child comes home from the other parent it takes three or four days to get them back into the groove because one parent generally isn’t gonna have a set of rules. They’re gonna be focused on being your child’s friend. They’re gonna let them stay up late, they’re not gonna give them a bed time, they’re gonna let them play on the tablets or video games all weekend or all night whenever they want for dinner they can eat. Without that type of structure, without any type of structure your child’s really gonna have a tough time understanding now that I’m back at home with you suddenly I now have to follow all of these other rules. Not to say that it’s not possible and definitely not saying you shouldn’t do it. Just pre-framing out that aspect that it’s a lot tougher and it’s natural for your child to have to go through that exchange in that time frame. In a previous video we talked about pre-framing and how you can help your child make that adjustment a little bit quicker when they come back from the other parent.
So making sure that you’re constantly are monitoring who your child’s friends are, who their role models are, who it is that they look up to, who is that they want to be like and are those the type of people that you approve of? If the answer is no, again it’s your responsibility as a parent to make absolutely sure that you start making those adjustments now. As your child grows older it becomes harder to make those changes, so the sooner you get on them the better it is. Again, find some great role models, find some situations in your community that are good for your child to develop in. Come here to the Karate School, hang out, make friends here.
One of the best examples that I saw was in our discipline class we’re talking about the kids doing their own laundry. This started with my ten and twelve year olds, the twelve year olds are learning how to do their laundry. Suddenly, my seven and eight year olds started saying mom I wanna help with the laundry. Now best yet, we had a five year old. A parent posted in our parent group today, hey my son decided he wanted to help out with the laundry because he saw all of his karate friends doing it. That’s a perfect example of making sure you’ve got the right community around your child, so that they develop the right skills. Do you want your child to be 35 and 40 sitting on the couch playing video games and having to be waited on hand and foot because they can’t do anything for themselves? I don’t think so, that’s not gonna be a productive person.
We’re talking in class about being a leader, leaders lead and I choose to be a leader. So we wanna make sure that the kids are taking that out into the community, being a good role model and that’s our level three of the discipline we’re working on is self awareness. Telling the kids that your choices on your discipline effect those around you and it happened in our karate class last night. Everybody was just kind of mediocre energy in our ten to fourteen year old class, so they were responding like they were supposed to but not with the emotion and the intensity that I expect. So we stopped the class real quick and I said look, you guys are settling and you’re accepting just being mediocre. That’s not acceptable here, we’re leaders, we always wanna do our best and we always do better than the last time. Let’s pick up the energy, who thinks they can do better.
Instantly the energy came up and so what each person did is they realized if I have low intensity and low energy it actually pulls everybody else down because people like to be in the norm, or what’s average. So if I’m high on energy and intensity it’s gonna pull everybody up because they’re gonna want to be at that average. So if everybody strives to be better then it makes everybody better.
Where do you think you can go and teach your child that in today’s society? Not too many places. All the places today are focusing on be average, be mediocre, don’t stand out, don’t be better. As soon as you start to improve yourself others start to pull you down, and they start poking and saying how awful is it? How awful are you for trying to make yourself better, how dare you do better than the rest of us? That’s where today’s society is heading and we have to be prepared for that, because we don’t wanna be in the masses we wanna soar like the eagles. Eagles fly on their own, ducks are in packs, so basically we wanna make sure that we’re not a duck. That we’re teaching our kids to be eagles.
So think about what you can do, think about the community that’s around your child and please do me a favor. Like this video, comment below if you liked the information that I shared today and most important share it with somebody else. It’s great to see the videos make their way out and hearing parents comment that I never met before. I’m getting messages all the time saying hey what about this or my child’s doing this could you help? I’m happy to help with messages and phone calls, you do not have to be a student here for us to help out. We’re part of the community and our responsibility is to help the community. So I’m more than happy and always available to parents that ask questions and want my opinion.
Have an awesome day, it’s freezing out here still so please be careful on the roads. We are open for class so we’re gonna be looking to do some more awesome classes tonight and I’ll talk to you soon. Take care.