Tuesday, April 15, 2014


     My initial thoughts on this article was, "Why would we be reading on how to raise a child?" But as the article went on, I thoroughly enjoyed the fact that this article made you take a deeper look on something that many people think comes so naturally. Parenting. It's supposed to get easier with experience right? Well, in some aspects this may be true such as learning the better products for your child. However, who says a first time parent can't be just as good as a parent on their sixth child. I feel like with this article's help, you can raise your child to be "morally good" with the help of understanding a few differences in how to react to your child's behavior.
     A difference I found intriguing was the difference between guilt and shame. This article describes shame as "...the feeling that I am a bad person...". However, contrary to this, guilt is describes as the "better feeling" for a child to feel in that "guilt is the feeling that I have done a bad thing" The difference in the children's reactions from these feelings can be closely analyzed. When I first read this I thought that shame was the better of the two. However, I was proven wrong as I continued to read and realized that the feeling of guilt is actually what sets a child up for success in the long run. Guilt, as stated, is a negative judgement about an action. When a child feels guilt, it is said that they want to make it right and will make it right by good behavior. The small distinctions between these two overlooked emotions can be crucial to the development of a child. In order to raise your child "morally", one must distinguish the difference between these and then implement them.
     "When our actions become a reflection of our character, we lean more heavily toward the moral and generous choices. Over time it can become part of us." This quote struck me as a crucial point to touch on. This article emphasized over and over again that one must focus on the character of a person to see improvement in them long-term. When a parent compliments a child's behavior, they are more likely to repeat that behavior. In a study of which a group of children were complimented on their actions and a different group of children were complimented on their behavior, the children whose behavior was complimented were more generous in the weeks following the test. By barely changing a phrase from "Please don't cheat" to "Please don't be  cheater", or something similar that changes from an action to a character statement, huge results are seen not only in the moment, but in the time to come as well. 
     Overall, the emphasis placed throughout this well researched and presented article on moral upbringing is how easily our words can affect the outcome of many situations. With slight wording changes that is focused on your character instead of your actions, a major impact is instilled into a child without them even realizing. Our character is what is with us everyday for the rest of our lives. Many times it is easily overlooked and people base their judgements on simply a person's actions. However, this is not the best way to view someone because their actions may be a one time thing, where as their character shows what they will continually do or be. Building character is the main focus on this article and it's truly never too late to start. 

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