Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category:

Who Makes A Bully

In our quest to help our children grow up, to learn to fend for themselves, and to become responsible and productive members of society, do we as parents inadvertently create bullies in our own children?

Since reading the Amanda Todd story a few years ago, watching Bowling For Columbine, and hearing what seems to be an unending stream of bully stories on the six o’clock news, I have become more and more concerned about how my own kids are treating others, and mostly concerned about how they are being treated by other kids.

Where Are The Parents?

Our son attends Karate every Monday evening. The setting is informal – it is not a dedicated Karate Dojo. Instead, it is a class run by two (sometimes three) black belts and taught out of a school gymnasium. At least two of the black belts have their own Dojo, and I believe this is a way for them to reach more people than they could in their own Dojo. It’s certainly not charity, but for us it is a much less expensive alternative than putting our children into a class taught in a proper Dojo.

Of the 20 or so kids in this class, there are only a small handful that take it seriously and pay attention. Also, of the 20 or so kids there are only a small number of parents who are regularly present and pay attention to their children’s class. Many of these parent-less kids are the ones not paying attention and disrupting the class for everyone else. Where are the parents?

Don’t Call Me Buddy

I hear it almost every day, and it drives me nuts. Fathers calling their sons “Buddy”.

I don’t understand. Are these men desperate to be liked by their sons? Do they think that using an alternate word for “friend” will strengthen the relationship that they have with their sons? Do they think that using the term is somehow more calming and reassuring than using their proper name, or are there actually that many boys named “Buddy”? (The only Buddy I know of is Buddy the Elf.)

How Busy Should We Keep Our Kids?

Just for a minute, forget about the cost of after school activities. Pretend you have unlimited money. Ignore your own time constraints and the fact that you have to fix dinner and go to work.

Now that’s out of the way we can have a philosophical conversation.

How busy should we keep our kids?

And what should we keep them busy with?

There are a number of ways of looking at this. The two extremes are of course

  1. Keep them really busy so they stay out of trouble, and
  2. They’re kids, let them be kids and let them play.

I think the answer is somewhere in between these two, and of course some will depend on your religious, community, or family involvement which will take away from activity time.

Don’t Miss The Concerts.

Tomorrow is my son’s school concert. He’s in Grade 1 and it is his first year in French Immersion. In previous years in a different school they always held the year end concert on a Saturday so I was always able to make it.

This year his is on a Friday right in the middle of the workday. And there is a ton of stuff to do at work. There always is.

Should Boys Go To Dance Class?

I have a six year old son and a four year daughter. My wife and I have spent a lot of time planning out the activities we want them involved in.

We both feel strongly that we want our kids involved in a minimum of one activity outside of school almost all the time, and that there are a couple of activities that are not optional.

For example, knowing how to swim could save their life one day. It is not optional and both our kids have been in swimming for over a year. Also, since we are Canadians we consider skating lessons, hockey school, and hockey not optional at least for a few years. Once the kids are old enough to decide for themselves, they will continue in Hockey. Our daughter will be starting in the fall and our son is going into his 3rd year.