Yesterday, 2nd of March, Dr. Goh Chee Leong did double duty. First he preached a sermon during the Sunday morning church service and then later he took a very special meeting at 11.30 am.
In the latter meeting, Dr. Goh shared from his expertise and experience on the topic of “Understanding Your Child”. While many of the children were treated to popcorn and the movie “Frozen” upstairs, some 60 parents and grandparents were downstairs eager to learn more about understanding their children.
The session started with the floor invited to share some of their questions and concerns and the parents/grandparents were not shy with those.
“Is it okay to force the child to do something – like eating vegetables?”
“How to deal with children that throw tantrums?”
“How to deal with children that do not answer when called?”
“How about when the child questions the authority of the parent?’
“Is it alright to administer a spanking?’
Although the many questions seem to range over a wide spectrum of concern, Dr. Goh was able to answer them all by addressing 5 areas of development for a child. These included;
I could see that many parents/grandparents had a light bulb go off in their heads and were nodding in enlightened agreement as Dr. Goh spoke and explained to them the driving forces behind each developmental area for the child, the common problems and issues that arise as a result but also how the situation could be made positive by the right level of expectation and the appropriate parent-child dynamics.
For myself, I had a new understanding about the issue of tantrums in tweens ( which we were told was part of the normal course of their emotional development at that age) and how to respond appropriately.
And so with a better understanding of the child’s behavior and development needs coupled with a realistic expectation of the child from the parents and an informed, mature and consistent response by the parents, the child would be nurtured and encouraged …… and the parents would also experience much less stress.
Another key tip: “Do not expect that raising a child is like an engineer raising a building where every aspect of the building from design and material is to follow a construction blueprint – where the engineer expects to have full control over everything. Instead, realise that raising a child is more like tending a garden where one can water and nourish the garden and protect it to the best of one’s ability from pests and predators but in the end the gardener has no control on where the plant will have its branches or whether the fruits will be sweet or sour – that part really is up to the plant.” i.e. nurture but don’t micro-manage.
If any of you have some additional questions for Dr. Goh on this topic, please leave it in the comments section of this post. We will try to get a reply for you from Dr. Goh if it is reasonably possible.