Saturday, February 11, 2012

French parents teach politeness & patience - Americans don't

      [see also Time Why American kids are brats]
[...] But for all its problems, France is the perfect foil for the current problems in American parenting. Middle-class French parents (I didn't follow the very rich or poor) have values that look familiar to me. They are zealous about talking to their kids, showing them nature and reading them lots of books. They take them to tennis lessons, painting classes and interactive science museums.

Yet the French have managed to be involved with their families without becoming obsessive. They assume that even good parents aren't at the constant service of their children, and that there is no need to feel guilty about this. "For me, the evenings are for the parents," one Parisian mother told me. "My daughter can be with us if she wants, but it's adult time." French parents want their kids to be stimulated, but not all the time. While some American toddlers are getting Mandarin tutors and preliteracy training, French kids are—by design—toddling around by themselves. [...]

One of the keys to this education is the simple act of learning how to wait. It is why the French babies I meet mostly sleep through the night from two or three months old. Their parents don't pick them up the second they start crying, allowing the babies to learn how to fall back asleep. It is also why French toddlers will sit happily at a restaurant. Rather than snacking all day like American children, they mostly have to wait until mealtime to eat. (French kids consistently have three meals a day and one snack around 4 p.m.) [...]


5 comments :

  1. Recipients and PublicityFebruary 12, 2012 at 4:24 AM

    The French are "polite"?

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think that this text is just an accumulation of clichées.

    But somehow, people love to read this kind of texts, since it makes the world so easy and explainable...

    I would have thought that a professional psychologist knows better than to spread pseudo-psychological ignorance.

    ReplyDelete
  3. hink that this text is just an accumulation of clichées.

    But somehow, people love to read this kind of texts, since it makes the world so easy and explainable...

    I would have thought that a professional psychologist knows better than to spread pseudo-psychological ignorance.
    =================
    you obviously are not familiar with psychology

    ReplyDelete
  4. French parenting sounds like American parenting of the 60's and 70's. Today there is obsession with Children's happiness and helicopter rescuing.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I would be able learn to wait if only my mother had breast fead me. These solutions are much too simple- the truth is WAY more (oedipal) complex.

    ReplyDelete

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