Every day, you teach.
In normal, every day living, Mom, you’re a teacher. You teach by example, and you teach by practice. You really are your child’s first teacher, whether you realize it or not.
When you give your child a choice of a colored cup from which to drink, you’re teaching colors. You are also teaching that we are creatures of choice. Plus, your child learns that what he wants (which color) is important, so his ideas are needed.
When you go up or down steps and count out loud, you’re teaching arithmetic. By counting, your child learns to count and learns that there are numbers. Plus, your child learns that there is progression in life, and he can make it happen.
When you help your children take turns, you are teaching comradery and care for others. You are also teaching that selfishness is not a good idea. Plus, your child learns that is is important to look out for someone else besides himself.
When you read to your child, you are teaching that words make sentences, and sentences make stories. Your child learns that stories teach us about life, about getting along, and about good and sad feelings. Plus, your child experiences the importance of time to slow down and be together.
When you allow your child to “help” in the kitchen, you are teaching that creativity is fun, that healthy meals are important, and that even little hands can help. Your child learns from working side-by-side with you. Plus, he experiences the sense of satisfaction from creating and accomplishing with you.
When you help your child apologize to a sibling or someone else, you are teaching the importance of relationships and truth. Plus, your child learns, “to err is human, to forgive divine.”
A teacher without words
When you model honesty, trust, forgiveness, and love, you are teaching. It’s true that more attitudes are caught than taught. Our children “read” what we live. They pick up attitudes about school, work, friendships, church, and family from us. We don’t have to say a word; they will get the message.
We lay the groundwork for their attitude about life. The things we find important will become important to them. The things we disdain will become something they abhor. It does not help to say, “Do as I say, not as I do.” They will do as we do and not as we say. That is because once we have taught, they mimic what they see modeled to them.
Mom, you’re a teacher! You can do this. Go ahead – do it well!