As a child I didn’t have a room full of toys. I did not sit in front of a TV to learn baby sign language, a foreign language, nor did I listen to Bach and Beethoven. I went to school when I was supposed to, did the studying and homework I needed to, and then… I went outside. I played in the dirt. I rode my bike. I played baseball and football with the other children in the neighborhood. I got dirty, sweaty, and do you know what? I loved every minute of it.
I do not feel that my intelligence has suffered in the least bit from this type of childhood. I learned how to make friends. I learned to accept loss, and relish a win. I learned to read, write, and do arithmetic. Today I am a successful father, husband, and businessman.
Today things are much different? The average child in America receives seventy new toys per year. How can our kids decide what to play with, much less find where that specific toy is?
If toys are overwhelming our children, their space, and our pocketbooks, why do parents feel that they have to buy them? The answer is simple – MEDIA! Everywhere parents look they see commercials, infomercials, magazine advertisements, and other marketing material for new educational toys, games, learning videos etc. The marketing is formulated in such a way that a parent is made to believe that only with these products can they raise a successful, happy, well-adjusted child.
Don’t believe it! Raising a happy, successful, well-adjusted child occurs when children learn specific skills during their formative years such as: independence, resourcefulness, imagination, and basic life skills. None of these are skills that can be ingrained in a child by hovering, constant indulgence, and material goods.
If you want to help your child grow into the best person they can be, give them the tools they need, rather than the things that others tell you to buy. Spend time with your child – give them the freedom to learn new things, experience new situations, and learn how the world around them works, first-hand.
The staff at Ohana Karate strive to help children grow into the best adults they can be. If you are interested in more information on this topic or any other topic regarding children or martial arts, please contact Sensei Sam Larioza today.