Ask any teacher about which families regularly attend parent workshops and they will always say, “the ones that don’t need to.”
It could be said (and often is said) that the irony of these parent workshops is that the families who need the information the least are the most likely to attend. But there isn’t any irony here because the families who attend are ones who regularly seek help and are open to suggestions.
Unfortunately, the families who don’t attend are often the ones where the children could use a little bit more support.
During my years of teaching, I would have parents who had a lot of knowledge in child development; perhaps they worked at a school as well, or they were a pediatrician, or even fellow teachers. But just as often, these parents had unruly, poor-mannered, or disagreeable children. As a teacher, I spent years trying to figure out why so that I wouldn’t fall into the same traps.
What I finally realized (maybe after having my own kids) was that a lot of these “in-the-know” parents didn’t seek help for their children and made simple mistakes that another set of eyes could have prevented.
No one is perfect and it really does take a village to raise a child.
I myself often seek help from other experts to see a situation from another point of view. Before I started this, I had to ask myself, “How can I help parents, when I often need help myself?” and it was that very questions that made me realize that this work is even more important than I previously thought. We need to support each other and not be afraid to seek help.
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