By Alejandra Diaz-
Our program of caring for and guiding children at Dorie’s Promise includes continuing education for staff members who work with them.
Currently we are using material that helps our Special Mothers better understand their responsibilities and how to instill discipline and respect in youngsters.
Designed by a trio of teachers and parents with a combined total of 75 years of experience, the Parenting with Love and Logic curriculum teaches parents to hold children accountable for their actions. This includes establishing consequences for their actions and following through.
Says the Love and Logic Institute: “Many parents want their children to be well prepared for life, and they know this means kids will make mistakes and must be held accountable for those mistakes.
“But these parents often fail to hold the kids accountable for poor decisions because they are afraid the kids will see (them) as being mean. The result is they often excuse bad behavior, finding it easier to hold others—including themselves—accountable for their children’s irresponsibility.”
As an example, when a child leaves his or her bike unlocked, meaning it gets stolen, a parent can express sympathy.
However, holding the child accountable includes letting him know that he can only have another one after saving up the money to pay for it.
This year we are training our Special Mothers by reviewing this material at monthly meetings. Each will read a chapter the week before the meeting. At the session, they will have time share and express different ideas or questions about each lesson.
Because so many of our children come from abusive homes or other dysfunctional circumstances, it is easy to take pity and never enforce rules with them.
However, this would be going to the other extreme. No matter how badly they have been treated in the past, children still need loving guidance. As Proverbs 22:6 puts it, “Train up a child in the way he should go…”
The Love and Logic philosophy is a way of raising and teaching children so they can grow through their mistakes, take responsibility for their actions, and live with the consequences of their choices.
We like the way it emphasizes respect and dignity for children while allowing those who raise them to grasp simple approaches instead of trying to learn difficult counseling procedures. As any parent knows, raising children is a tough, often thankless task that takes years of effort.
With God’s help, while we are acting as these children’s substitute parents we will do our best to raise them to be happy, responsible, respectful adults.