I was talking on BBC Radio Suffolk today about children not being able to use a knife and fork or go to the toilet when they start Nursery or even school, and that children’s teeth are so decayed that teachers are being asked to supervise children in school brushing their teeth!
As a former Deputy Head and a teacher of Reception aged children I have seen this problem increase and not just in deprived areas and it appears to be getting worse each year.
There are so may areas in which children are becoming less confident, less skilled and less empowered.
I’m not sure whether it’s a generation of parents who are lazy, incompetent or who have low expectations of what a child can do if they are taught, shown and expected to try.
By de-skilling a child you are disadvantaging them and denying them the opportunity to become autonomous and independent.
A ‘Can Do ‘ Kid starts as a toddler.
I go into a lot of schools running my ‘Can Do Kid’ self esteem and confidence classes and I’m horrified to see how many children don’t know how to use their knife and fork and who hold them in the wrong hands and who pick up their food with their fingers !
There are a couple of obvious things that have changed in recent years. Finger food makes it unnecessary for children to need to learn how a fork and pasta, of course,need cutting up!
Also the new fabulously easy flip up tomato ketchup and salad cream bottles have also make it unnecessary to learn how to manipulate and twist a traditional bottle top.
Children need to develop their dexterity in all areas from doing up their buttons to pulling on their wellies and parents need to empower their children with these skills and not hover over them ‘rescuing’ them. They make learning to write more difficult as children haven’t developed the skill of twisting, holding, manipulating ordinary objects in their everyday lives.
Perhaps parents need to develop more patience and learn to SLOW down allowing more time for kids to practice.
Regards going to the loo – I’m horrified to learn that more and more children aren’t toilet trained. Whilst schools are patient and helpful when a child has an accident it isn’t the job of the teacher to teach basic potty training that should have been done at 2 years old!
What are your thoughts ?
What can we do to empower our children to develop their skills and start them on the road to independence?
I have a 24 week eCourse that will help you raise a happy, confident, independent toddler ! Click on the pop up to get started with my FREE resources and here’s a link to my ‘Can Do Kid’ Journal for Super Heroes