I noticed that there is a great change in parents’ attitude towards their child when their child starts schooling.

I have seen so many parents from a playmate to the child changed into a disciplinary master. Rather, even before they put on their school uniform for the first time, the child has probably noticed a big change in their parents’ behaviour.

Its no longer,”yes, child, what do you want? what would you like? would you like to do this or that?”

It has become,”child, sit here…. do this…. do that….. hold the pencil the right way….. why are you eating with your left hand….sit up right….why is your line crooked…draw a straight line….don’t colour outside the picture….and the complain list goes on….” And these complaints were voiced out either at the top of the parents’ voice or in a scolding manner. Do you really need to raise your voice?

Every-time I see such a scene, one big question (to the parents) always comes to my mind :‘Were you that perfect when you were at that age?’

Children learn as they grow, their skills improve as time passes, practice makes perfect, right? So what’s the hurry? Why do these parents expect their child to do the perfect stroke the very first time they write their first number or first alphabet? Or expect the child to get a score of 95/100 for every examination paper. To me, its ridiculous.

After so many years, and now that I am a parent of 2 myself, I finally understand why parents pressurize their kids so much when they are about to start school. The list below is true and scary to me, I often remind myself never to fall into the trap:

Parents do not want their child to appear more stupid than other children in class. Parents do not want their child to feel inferior in class. Parents wants to be proud of their child, so the child must be the best in class. Parents worry that their child may not be promoted to the next level. Finally, parents want to hear praises (not on the child) about them, how well they have trained their child.

Your child will never appear stupid in-front of anyone, unless you feel he is stupid. Your child will not feel inferior unless someone did a comparison, are you the one that is actually making him feel inferior because you compared him with someone else? How you feel about him matters more than anyone in the world.

Your child should always be the pride of your life, for the simple reason, he is your child; not because he did well in school or came in first in any competition. What about children who are born handicap? Their parents still feel proud of them. Just because they are their kids.

If your child’s limit has reached and he still fails to be promoted to the next level, there is nothing you can do. Academic results are not everything. There are alot of successful people or even millionaires who were once a school drop-out. Academic results do not equal to success in life. Train your child to have a mind to succeed in life not just on papers.

All the above expectations on their child is a result of the parents’ pride, their own pride. Seriously, there are so many parents out there who have unfulfilled wishes and they want their child to fulfill their wishes for them with unrealistic expectations on the poor child. Its a sad truth and its still happening.

Dear parents….‘Patience’ is the word. Some kids learn faster, some kids just happens to be slower. Even a rubber-band has its limits. Overstretch it and it snaps. Its the same for children. When that happens, its really difficult to get the child to love school work or even feel like going to school again. Do you know when to release your grip? Give the child some space to breathe.

So often we read in the newspapers, children at a young age, committed suicide just because they received their examination result slip and the results were not as good as the target set by the parents. Imagining that they will be scolded or beaten up, their little minds just decided to give up their precious life.

We do best in whatever we love to do. If the parents do not cultivate a love for school or a love to learn in their child, the child will just do the needed-to-do homework without absorbing it. Hence when it comes to the examination period, he will not do as well as he should have because the love for it is not there; when there is no love, there is no memory.

After teaching so many children in my life, be it during the days in the child care centre or personal tutoring, everything goes back to the basic : “How much do you understand the child? What is his learning capability? What will make him want to learn more? What is his limit?”

Your child is perfect, when he is perfect in your heart. Do you really understand your child well enough?