Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

April 28, 2005
Help kids feel needed

I was told as a youngster, “The only thing that really matters in life is how well you treat other people.”

If this applies generally speaking, the most important people in our lives should be family members.

So, how are we doing with this philosophy in Tooele County? Are we bonded or bonding to the ones we should love most? What do we do to change the situation if we are not?

According to experts in the field, bonding within the family is paramount in creating an environment where parents can teach healthy, social beliefs, establish clear standards [rules] and have love flourish in the home.

How does this bonding process take place? Let me suggest a few ideas which are part of the actual Social Development Model®.

As we know, children are not all the same. They come with their own personalities and individual characteristics. These characteristics are identified by social scientists as: resiliency, intelligence and a positive social orientation. Thus, resilient children have the ability to bounce back easily in difficult situations.

An intelligent child has the foresight to think through and reason around hard times. Children with a positive social orientation don’t see the world as being difficult to manage; life is good and prospects are bright.

Unfortunately, some children are easily crushed, others only endowed with average intelligence and, finally, some see the world as rather bleak.

Considering these individual characteristics, the message I share is fairly simplistic. Our kids yearn to feel needed and an important part of the family unit or, by the way, any other organization. This process, quite easily, can be achieved by offering opportunities which make children feel needed [age appropriate jobs], teaching the necessary skills to be successful with the newly-given task [don’t leave them to flounder and fail] and by providing frequent, sincere, specific recognition for their contribution to the family [rave about how much easier running the home is with their help]. These suggestions put into effect, with the endurance to overcome initial struggles, can become the “icing on the cake” for parents looking to avoid family arguments and the frustrations which often accompany parenting.

More of these valuable skills are available to parents having children ages 9-14 and attending Tooele City schools. All are part of five two-hour workshops [one night a week] called Guiding Good Choices®. For more information call Communities That Care® at Tooele City Hall.

Contact Melissa or Milo at 843- 0392 and 843-2188.

Milo Berry is coordinator of Communities That Care®

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