Being a parent is really demanding on our time and energy. You don’t naturally have much time to think. It’s great therefore to have an opportunity to step back from the everyday details and immediate needs of our children, to consider a long-term parenting goals and strategies.
I have recently been involved in running a parenting course which has given me and other parents a great opportunity to do just that. There was a real buzz as a good number of parents gathered to do the HTB parenting course which started with a video of Nicky and Silla Lee (who put the course together) introducing the course and giving some foundations for family life. After a bit more discussion Sarah and I spoke on three related goals of parenting as examples of things worth considering from time to time.
We looked to the importance of play and highlighted a couple of its main enemies; too much structured time (ie scheduling every minute of our children’s lives and not leaving enough time for healthy, child lead play), and too much screen time (40% of children under 5 have a TV in their room these days). We looked at the importance of bonding, and busted a couple of myths. The first is that quality time can make up for quantity time. It doesn’t For children love is spelt T-I-M-E. The second is that a slower day will come. It won’t. Well, at least not in time for our children to benefit so if we are going to give our children the love and time they need from us we need to do it now. Finally, we looked at the importance of routines, giving examples of family mealtimes and bedtimes.