Parents Can Use The Lockdown To Teach Their Children Soft Skills
No doubt this whole pandemic season is a crazy time, but some good can come of it if you're determined.
Did you know you’re your child’s first teacher? You’re also the most important teacher your children will ever have. Understanding parents role in child education will help you win at this thing called parenting.
Have you noticed that your kids mimic your moves? The way you talk, walk, eat, your mannerisms? Well, they’re learning, and very fast too! That’s who it’s important to pay attention to what you’re teaching them. You have more influence over your child than any teacher does.
Let’s talk about the pandemic for a minute, and how it has us all boxed in. The little ones can not attend schools because schools are closed; you’re probably worrying yourself sick thinking about how much you are failing at homeschooling; as if you didn’t have work and homemaking to deal with already. Breathe, try not to be too hard on yourself. The truth is whether you’re homeschooling or not, your child is learning a lot. From you. Armed with this understanding, it’s time to make it worth their while and your while. Because if you do it right now, some of the skills your child will pick up can set them up for life. And not just financially.
That’s why we think you should focus on teaching your children soft skills during the pandemic. They will always go back to school to learn Algebra, but you will not always have this much time together when the world resumes its frenzied cycle. As far as teaching soft skills go, you’re playing your parents role in child education in a spectacular way.
How Teaching Soft Skills Fall Under Parents Role In Child Education
Now that you know that you have a big role to play in your child’s education, leave Algebra and English structure to the schoolteachers for a bit, will you? There are things you have a better opportunity to teach your children. Values that can direct the course of their future better than Algebra ever could. Enter soft skills. What are soft skills?
Experts in the corporate world coined the term soft skills to describe:
- critical thinking
- teamwork, just to mention a few.
Soft skills are the “humanness” of work; and hard skills are the educational and technical knowledge, like Algebra. And although hard skills are important, they can easily be learned throughout your child’s life. It is the soft skills that are built through experience, role-modelling, and real-life challenges. And nobody can teach these to your child better than you can.
And to be honest, you’re more likely to remember the person who taught you compassion, empathy or patience for the rest of your life. Your math teacher, on the other hand, you’re only likely to remember if he was infusing laughter in his classes.
At Stanford University, the most popular business school course is teaching students these soft skills. The course is one of their most sought after electives. With everyone focussing on the hard skills and not enough focus on the soft, the mental and emotional health of our children is declining. Studies show that 1 in 3 adolescents will experience an anxiety disorder.
So, it is more important than ever for children to learn these soft skills; not only to be successful later in life, but to have the skills needed to better manage their emotional health, mental health, and communication skills while increasing their emotional intelligence.
And this is the perfect time to help develop them.
It Is Your Role As A Parent To Teach Your Children Soft
The whole idea of parenting your children is doing it by example, because they are watching and will copy you anyway. So, the two best ways to teach your children these skills are through role-modelling and personal experience.
Kids copy what they see; subconsciously, their minds are taking in others’ responses, reactions, and communication skills and soaking up how the people they love deal with situations. And when it comes to personal experience, we have to let children deal on their own with certain situations that may be uncomfortable; in order for them to really embrace the life lesson and the soft skill.
- Conflict resolution, because with everybody confined in the house, there will be conflicts.
- Compassion and empathy, because when you miss loved ones you cannot visit, you call them up and share laughs.
- Compromise and negotiation, because we’re not sure when all this will end, and we have to manage our resources
- Creativity and collaboration, because your family must come together to think up ways to cope with the situation, whether you’re playing board games or generally just being more tolerant with one another.
- Patience, because the whole situation is new for everyone, and we just must wait it out.
- Mindfulness, because boredom is a skill that teaches creativity, problem-solving, and being in the present.