What 70-Year Study Reveals About Raising Successful Children

What 70-Year Study Reveals About Raising Successful Children

It turns out being a good parent is simpler than you think. This 70-Year Study of Over 70,000 Kids Reveals How to Raise Happy And Successful Kids In What Is The Biggest Child Development Study Ever. Read More...

It's not a secret that parenting advice is very easy to come by, both on the internet and offline. These tips range from strategies on discipline to tips on communication. And from all of it, we can safely conclude that parenting is no mean feat. But it turns out that parenting is simpler than we think. That's according to the grandmother of all scientific studies. This study that stretched over a 70 year period, tells us how to raise happy and successful kids.

About The British Birth Cohorts

After the second World War, Uk scientists took on the giant project. They studied every woman who had a baby in within a certain week in 1946. A generation later, they did it again, and again and again, surveying 70,000 kids as they lived over a 70-year time period. Then a generation later,  to see how they were doing in terms of health, education, and overall thriving.

What 70 Years of Data Tells Us About Parenting

how to raise happy and successful kids

In a 2017 TED talk, author Helen Pearson shared the lessons she learned from writing her book on the cohort studies. Some findings from the study include:

  • Kids born into disadvantaged families grow up, to do less well in life.
  • Kids with troubled childhoods and then following them to see which ones beat the odds
  • Parenting matters, regardless of unfortunate beginnings

Our early years clearly have a great influence on how we turn out as adults. But the great news is quality parenting can straighten out the rough edges, and help kids become happy and successful. According to the study, children who had engaged and interested parents, who had ambitions for their future, were more likely to escape from a difficult start.

According To The Study, Here's How To Raise Happy And Successful Kids

What 70-Year Study Reveals About Raising Successful Children

Pearson goes on to list an array of parental behaviours that the scientists have associated with improved outcomes for at-risk kids. Scientists can't say with 100 percent certainty that these interventions cause better outcomes, but these are the most likely actions that make a difference:

  • Talking to and listening to your kids

  • Making it clear you have ambitions for their future

  • Being emotionally warm

  • Teaching them letters and numbers

  • Taking them on excursions

  • Reading to them daily (and encouraging them to read for pleasure)

  • Maintaining a regular bedtime

Watch Pearson's Ted Talk Here:

While you might wonder at the simplicity of the parenting tasks above, remember it's the little things that matter the most. Also, in this jet age, so much is lost to the fast paced nature of our world. This study is an awesome reminder of what is truly important, and it turns out it's the little things.

Pearson herself admits that she was often so busy with work she barely had time for a proper conversation with her three boys. After writing about the cohort studies she now sets aside time every night to talk to them about their days. And then she makes them go to bed.

“Ultimately, if we want happy children, all we can do is listen to the science, and of course, listen to our children themselves," concludes Pearson.

You already know how to be a good parent, and it has nothing to do with fancy enrichment activities or tiny choices about which way your stroller faces. Now all you have to do is act on what you know.

Also read: Parenting For Dummies: Useful Tips For The Accidental Parent

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