Which one of the following qualities do you think is the most important to share with a young child (5-10 years old)?
1. Being helpful;
2. Being honest;
3. Being well organized.
Ages 5 to 10 is a critical periodof an individual’s development; those few years is the time children develop life-long qualities and virtues. While children are confused since they are still young, parents may be more confused. Should they encourage their young children to be helpful or educate children about being honest? They could also develop children’s organization skills, which I think may be more important.
When we expect children to develop empathy and sympathy, we may encourage young children to help others.For example, the child may help a person with a loaded shopping cart not because of his or her caring heart but because of the curiosity about the cart.
In addition, children may be incapable of helping others, and the inability may conflict with the mind that they want to help. Having the intent but having no ability is likely to cause frustration. Therefore, it may be better to develop children’s ability to help before develop their aware of being helpful, and the age of 5, or the age of 7 or 10 is not the proper time yet.
Although honesty is a definitely desirable personal trait, a trait that should be developed at a young age, complete honesty may be a problem under many circumstances. Children being completely honest can put themselves in danger. Therefore, in issues which they are supposed to withhold, such as privacies and secrets, they may causally reveal them instead. In kindergartens also, children may be asked to “share” details of their family in front of the class by teachers. These details may include possessions of real estates and cars, and their parents’ salaries—which are unreasonable and even illegal requests. Despite feeling uncomfortable, under the veil of honesty, however, children may talk anyway.
It thus follows that organizational ability, which can be readily applied into future agendas of children, is preferable. By learning how to plan and manage their time, children can cultivate a sense of priority. This could benefit them significantly after they have entered secondary school or high school, or even university years later. When confronted with a multitude of academic tasks and extracurricular activities, they would compose themselves and tackle these issues in a reasonable sequence thanks to the habit developed at an early age. Moreover, a well-organized child would enjoy better self-autonomy. For example, if children could well budget their time, balancing game and study, parents would not interfere with their use of electronic devices.
Should parents (or teachers) instill in young children, aged 5 to 10, the awareness of being helpful or educate children about being truthful? Neither is recommended. Organization skills need to be developed at a tender age more than the two.