We believe that a successful home is
We do not believe in a child-centered home and here is the reason.
GOD CENTEREDWithin the Bible we find excellent values to live by. We learn to love one another, be faithful, honest, committed, selfless, respectful, obedient and act with integrity.
PARENT DIRECTEDAs parents we are given the responsibility to lead the family. We teach them the qualities above so they become responsible, hard working adults with excellent character and to one day be sound leaders within their own homes. We need to create and teach family values and lead by example. We need to set high expectations yet be fair in giving the guidance needed to reach those expectations. We need to set boundaries and consequences for infringements. We need to teach our children by example how to make wise choices. We should be loving yet firm in our discipline. Who is in charge? Parents should be!
When a baby is born into the family it naturally requires all the attention. That is quite natural. However, there has to come a time when the child becomes part of the family rather than demanding all the attention. To do this they need to understand about contributing to the greater family welfare such as looking after their own stuff, helping in family function, sharing and caring. (see below)
FAMILY ORIENTEDWhen we say we believe a home should be family oriented, we mean that parents are actually part of the family. We have found that when parents concentrate solely on kids’ needs, the dynamic is completely lopsided. The kids are in control of the family’s direction and their needs always seem to come first. Kids may get the notion that the universe revolves around them. This situation is not preparing them for the real world. It is not teaching them that they are part of a team and a community. It doesn’t encourage them to consider others, to fit into others’ plans, or to value their parents.
To be family oriented, the whole family needs to have equal share of fun times along with family chores. To provide for, and ensure other’s needs are met, the family has to have a plan. When kids decide they want to be in sports teams, attend gymnastics, music, or dance classes, a family meeting needs to take place to discuss how this will affect the family unit, including the parents' own relationship. Every aspect needs to be thought through. How long is the class? How many practices will there be per week? Who is going to provide the transport? How much will the activity cost? Does it mean the family dynamics will be impacted in favor of one member above others?
Kids need to learn to think about what parents want and make sure they can enjoy fun activities, too. How can this happen? In those family talks, each member of the family has a turn to say what they would like to do – what hobby, what sport, or what study? I remember when my kids were pre-schoolers and I decided I wanted to start university study as an external student. I didn’t just go ahead and buy the books and start. I discussed it with my husband. We talked about how much time it would take per week, whether we could afford the fees, and what I would do with the kids when I was trying to study. There was also the problem of what to do with the children when I had to travel several hundred miles to attend a week-long, in–house course at the University. I was very grateful that my husband saw what doing this study would mean to me and he did everything he could to help me. Parents can still have a life when their kids are small. We did and it worked.
OUTWARDLY FOCUSEDA vital part of healthy family living is to become contributors to the wider community. Whether that means being involved in fund raising efforts, offering free services, food or used toys to others in need, helping where need is observed, being members of clubs, sharing their skills or knowledge to help others - all of these activities teach children to give of themselves for the sake of the wider good. They learn that they have a responsibility beyond themselves.
If you have any comments, questions or success stories to share on this subject, please contact us through our website on www.forefrontfamilies.org by email at firstname.lastname@example.org