Very recently my son’s school district held its Parent Teacher conference. It was an opportunity to meet my first grader’s teacher and share her views about him and find out about his performance in class. I was ecstatic to hear her comments like, “Your child is unique, creative and responsible. He is helpful and friendly too. It is a pleasure to have him in my class.” Her observations about him were heart-warming and encouraging. I was pleased that we are doing something that is right.
Parenting is not at all a mathematical equation. One size fits all doesn’t work here. X+Y= Z, but the X and Y changes with every kid and with every situation. We as parents have to pave a way around our child’s uniqueness. Key to bringing up a healthy member of a society is to be PATIENT and BE OPEN TO TRIAL AND ERROR METHOD. Something that works for me might or might not work for others. But we always have to be vigilant and on the look for new ideas. The bag of tricks for parenting should not fall short of ideas.
Before, beginning to experiment with ideas it always better to know your child. We need to think about their likes and dislikes, their passions, environment they prefer to work in and people they are comfortable with. We often say that we know them but do we really know them that well? What kind of intelligence does he/ she has? How do they learn; By writing or just by looking or reading? Does their performance vary with group they are in? Sometimes these questions that make them different from others get ignored. I am no one to question your credibility as a parent. I am only trying to suggest is that it’s helpful to know these things about our kids; To be able to guide them and prepare them well for their future. And in today’s date and time it is not difficult to TAP OUR CHILD’S INTELLIGENCE.
Wikipedia defines Intelligence as, “an umbrella term used to describe a property of the mind that encompasses many related abilities, such as the capacities to reason, to plan, to solve problems, to think abstractly, to comprehend ideas, to use language, and to learn. There are several ways to define intelligence. In some cases, intelligence may include traits such as creativity, personality, character, knowledge, or wisdom. On the topic of intelligence I usually go by the theory of multiple intelligences, proposed by Howard Gardner in 1983.
There are many website where you can read and learn about multiple intelligence.
http://psychology.about.com/od/educationalpsychology/ss/multiple-intell.htm This one even talks about the careers best suited to each type of intelligence in addition to its description. Basically Howard Gardener says that there are eight types of intelligences and they are as follows:
Linguistic intelligence (“word smart”)
Logical-mathematical intelligence (“number/reasoning smart”)
Spatial intelligence (“picture smart”)
Bodily-Kinesthetic intelligence (“body smart”)
Musical intelligence (“music smart”)
Interpersonal intelligence (“people smart”)
Intrapersonal intelligence (“self smart”)
Naturalist intelligence (“nature smart”)
Observing and noting the characteristic feature of all types of intelligences, I concluded that my older one is word smart. He likes to put everything in words. I noticed that he doesn’t even say, “I love you,” (orally) that often. Instead, he prefers to put his feelings on paper, or on boards or on a Popsicle stick (basically anything that he can write on). He is more comfortable in writing than being vocal about it.
This discovery made things easier for me. Now, I am able to communicate with him more effectively. I point out the things that he is not supposed to do in writing. For him words coming out of our mouth might sometimes seem empty, they do not hold as much weight, whereas, if same thing is written down and he is able to see it, it is lot more meaningful. He is more responsive to those ideas and thus has improved on various grounds.
Knowing the strengths of your kid helps in many ways. We just have to be little creative and make use of it in our own style. Let’s wish good luck for our investigation and application. I hope this technique works for everyone as it did for me. There’s another advice that I would like to share with everyone, it comes in handy when nothing else seems to work. This advice comes to me as a curtsey from a friend named Pooja.
A wise physician said to me,
“I have been practicing medicine for 30 years
and I have prescribed many things.
But in the long run I have learned
That for most of what ails the human creature,
the best medicine is LOVE.”
What if doesn’t work…? I asked.
“Double the dose.” He replied
(… from an unknown source)