|Sunday, January 26, 1902 - Page 1, column 3, middle to bottom
Goethe says, "There's not much you can do with the adult generation, so have courage and start with those in their youth!" This should give heart to parents. Our children are the future of our people!
The art of education is perhaps one of the most difficult and most onerous, therefore it is the duty of every father and mother to master this art. Whosoever prepares his children though physical and spiritual education to find their path in this world, whoever fills his children with health, ability, courage and spirit - he has performed a mighty task.
People do not say: Healthy human understanding shows us the right path! Whoever believes this still doesn't consider how many aspects are encompassed by the development of healthy human understanding. Still healthy human understanding may very well lack the intuition and insight it takes to educate children.
Above all else two things are desired from children: obedience and the love of truth.
Small children have the tendency to become great tyrants. Pay attention that such behavior does not rule your home. Already by the first year of life the basis is laid for childhood obedience. Bad habits must be rectified by the mother from the time of the cradle. Even though it is difficult, one must allow the child to scream for a while. If the child is fed and dry, he will quiet down if he is not picked up — and in the future the parents will have a peaceful night. So we see, loving mother, that there are consequences from the first day onward! Do not cater to your child's every whim; lead, set limits, deny him things, which are not good for him. Small children make little fusses, large children, who have been poorly raised, create large problems.
If the small child has learned to obey his mother's word, it follows that he will obey his father and the teacher at his school. What you do in the first six years spares the rod in the next six.
It is indeed necessary that father and mother be united in their approach to child rearing. What the one does the other must support as appropriate. When the child is asleep there must be conversation and the question of approach must be decided. The father and mother must not allow any difference of approach to be perceived by the child. Therefore it is necessary to hide from the child any dissonance within the marriage. Nothing is more dangerous than making the child aware of dissension, for it robs him of a feeling of security. The soul of a child is pure, like a blank sheet of paper. Don't give the child the pen from your own hand; you and no one else should be the one to write upon the sheet.
Keep in mind, beloved father and mother, that you are educating yourself along with your child and you will often become aware
|Sunday, January 26, 1902 - Page 1, column 4, top to middle
that the failings, for which you blame him, are your own. Many parents are often astonished when they catch their children in a lie but do not consider how often it is they who have made their children accustomed to hearing lies.
Societal life is filled with lies and children hear them. They hear that Moma's not at home when she wishes to avoid an inconvenient visit; they hear people say the kindest words to someone's face and then when the person is gone they hear the direct opposite being spoken. What an impression that must make on a child. Children are often lied to, people threaten that the stranger takes away the unruly child, that the boogey man is coming, etc. People lie to them to get them to leave since they have something else to do; many mothers and female educators lie to children as a joke and have a good laugh over it. Sometimes people have children deliver untrue messages, for example, a parent's made-up excuse brought to school, and other such situations. Is it any wonder when children don't hold to the truth and occasionally lie when it is to their advantage? Often people commit falsehoods when they are asked certain questions for which they either cannot or will not give an answer; sooner or later children figure out when someone is not telling the truth and their trust in the reliability of their parents or educators is shaken. Thus it is quite natural when they seek to relieve themselves through lying in uncomfortable situations, using the same means as they have noticed in their parents. However it is not necessary to tell a falsehood when one doesn't wish to or cannot answer all his children's questions. One must remain faithful to the truth without telling the children something which is inappropriate or simply not good for them to know. A child must have unconditional trust in his parents; what father or mother says should never be doubted.