Raising Good Humans
Building brain muscles around perspective is one of a teenager’s best skills. It helps them to think more critically and become more comfortable with their own identity. The teenage years are also a time when people form their values, so it’s important to recognize that having different perspectives can help shape those values positively. Through various activities such as engaging in debates, talking about current events or exploring literature from different cultures and times, it can be possible to open up one’s own mind and begin to understand different points of view. Doing so will lead to a greater understanding of the world around them and help them become more tolerant of others. Furthermore, learning how to take on an alternate perspective can also help in problem-solving, critical thinking, and other essential skills for applying to college,
Practice Perspective Talking and these Tips with your Teen:
- Subscribe to All Sides Newspaper (Link– AllSides™ is a media solutions company that strengthens our democratic society with balanced news, media bias ratings, diverse perspectives, and real conversation.)
- Keep a box of Table Topics on your dining room table (Link)
- Encourage Debate: Encourage your teenager to express their opinion and challenge others’ thinking respectfully and constructively.
- Discuss Current Events: Discuss current events with your teenagers and encourage them to make informed decisions. Encourage them to consider different perspectives, evaluate evidence critically, and consider the consequences of different decisions.
- Encourage Problem-Solving: Encourage your teenager to identify problems and develop potential solutions. Reward them for unique and innovative ideas.
- Encourage independence and responsibility: Gradually giving your children age-appropriate responsibilities and tasks, allowing them to develop independence and a sense of accountability.
- Foster a loving and supportive environment: Create a nurturing and safe environment where your children feel loved, valued, and supported. Provide ample opportunities for open communication, active listening, and emotional expression.
- Set clear expectations and boundaries: Establish clear and age-appropriate rules, limits, and expectations. Consistency is key in enforcing these boundaries and ensuring that children understand the consequences of their actions. However, also allow for flexibility and reasonable negotiation as children grow and develop independence.
- Teach compassion: Encourage your children to consider the feelings and perspectives of others. Teach them to be kind, compassionate, and respectful towards people from diverse backgrounds. Engage them in activities that promote empathy, such as volunteering or helping others in need.
- Lastly, Lead by example: Children learn greatly from observing their parents and caregivers. Model the values, behaviors, and attitudes you want your children to adopt. Show kindness, empathy, respect, and integrity in your interactions with others.
Remember that adolescence is a time of exploration and self-discovery, so be patient, understanding, and supportive. Maintain a balance between guiding and giving them space to grow into responsible and compassionate individuals.
Join our Parent Community for tips from other parents as well on how they are raising good humans.