Today, we (my son and myself) were doing some math problems, and as we were progressing, he slowed down substantially on a problem with three single digit number whose addition was totalling to 10, which he usually does fairly fast. And it immediately struck to me that this is the “moment”. I attribute this decision to the practice of The Strength Switch (Dr Lea Waters) for ‘Perspective’ and ‘Judgement’.
We believe that Numeracy is a life-skill and not few test-clearing assignments. Every individual has to do some or the other calculation in his/her daily lives.
I will refrain from mentioning the engineering and technical calculations that are performed at lightning speed by calculators and computers, because these machines perform much faster than humans.
I am referring to the ones that we do so fast that we barely notice that we performed one e.g. how much water to add in flour to make it a soft and supple dough, how fast to reach the bus stop to catch the next bus in order to reach office on time, how much bargain should be good for handling monthly budget on purchasing items, discounts etc.
The above daily examples are now a routine, that has much to do with your tremendous amount of practice and efforts taken in your childhood while growing up.
However, as parents, we sometimes tend to forget and overlook this larger picture of math when it comes to expectations from children in their understanding, and in the situation like today’s, we might even say something to them in our frustration (comparing our competency with theirs) that it might become a belief system about themselves (because words matter to children). In some cases, it may even gradually settle down to the negative core belief system – eventually displaying in their behaviour and character for life.
Core beliefs actually are very much responsible for the kind of choices that a person makes in life. And like narrated in the example above are a product of lifelong experiences and exposure the person has.
I know this and the answers to many such questions of my behaviour and choices and those of my friends’ owing to my fair engagement into the roots and pedagogy of Psychology. Now, I precisely try to find an opportunity to make an improvement with the help of Positive Psychology.
Further, being a Positive Parenting Education Practitioner, it is imperative that I should be able to harness such “moments” with care to inform about the importance of not being fast all the time. Sometimes, we may need to slow down, maybe pause or even take a step back, to be able to accomplish certain tasks. It is just a math problem, they will be handling life-size problems that we all are unaware of owing to the VUCA World they have forayed into.
And rightfully so I did explain this to my child during our lunchtime discussion today, where our reference point was that “moment”.
Likewise in many situations and scenarios of daily parenting, we may come up with different “moments”, not necessarily when you are solving math problems but otherwise as well.
Hence, it is my humble request to all parents to identify such “moments” in life where you can play a very vital role in building a positive belief system of your child. We all must take our own moment of taking a deep breath before we say anything to them, and ask ourselves, that is this the best thing to speak to our child, and that, will this help him/her in life. If the answer is affirmative then you may proceed, else you may pause for some more time and come up with your own innovative ideas of making the best out of that “moment” for the well-being of your family.
When we take small steps like these, they go a long way in enhancing the confidence of children, and with our love & support they may aspire to achieve something otherwise unfathomable, that we all will be proud of.
With hopes and good wishes.