Thoughts on this post? Share them with me on Facebook, join the SPANily or Tweet me at @angieatkinson. ~Angie

So, as I work toward the goal of fulfillment, I must compose a plan to begin taking the journey. Today, I am beginning to use random writing prompts as a way to get my juices flowing. Today’s prompt is “what makes a good teacher.”

Of course it occurred to me to discuss various academic teachers I’ve had over the years, as I’ve had a good many, as has my oldest son. However, today I’d like to discuss a different type of teacher.

I think, in many ways, each of us is a teacher, as well as a student, at different times throughout our lives. For example, when we are children, we are most often students. Our parents, our elders, even our friends teach us lessons that will last a lifetime. As we grow older, we spend more time teaching, but continue to remain students in certain situations.

As we become parents, I think many people forget how incredibly important our actions are. Our children SEE how we behave, who we associate ourselves with, and how we live. They learn to become adults by watching us. They decide their futures based on what we teach them.

Our children allow and expect themselves to be treated as we’ve taught them.

Now, most certainly, even the best parents in the world may raise an unsuccessful adult. There are some things that cannot be changed. However, in my mind, we as parents need to do whatever we can to help to secure the best possible futures for our children. We need to remain involved in their lives and interested in what is going on with them. We need to make them feel valued and loved, and worthy. We need to do whatever we can to help them to succeed, instead of placing obstacles in their way.

I look at it this way, for example. My son wants to wear name brand tennis shoes to school. Yes, it would be cheaper for me to go and buy his shoes at Payless. Yes, it would be more convenient since I shop there for MY shoes. HOWEVER, if it makes his social life less stressful (and thereby makes him a more confident person in the long run), what’s the problem with spending a few bucks on his shoes?

I know that many will disagree with me on this theory, but I speak from my heart here. I don’t think that constant spoiling is the answer either. I think that consistent parenting and genuine love for one’s children is the only way to raise a child. The way one chooses to discipline, as long as it’s done in love and not in anger–and is not abusive, is one’s own business.

I believe that raising children is raising the future. I think parents have the most serious responsibility of all, because we are raising the adults who will one day decide our future. I wish that more parents would recognize that they are raising their children to become adults, and not children. I think the world would be a much more peaceful and productive place if parents would learn this seemingly obvious fact.

So…the moral of the story folks, is that we, as parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, neighbors…we are all providing examples to the children in our lives. And as parents especially, we must take note of what we are teaching our children, through both word and deed.

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