This is an original essay written by Edward Fagan.
Training and adults
Children: their training for life is important for several reasons. These reasons include, developing in them good and regular habits of behaviour that contribute to their personal wellness and circumstances. These habits of behaviour are morally just toward others and themselves; and also help them to become socially graceful.
Others must assist and train them in developing such habits of behaviour. They are unable to develop these habits of behaviour on their own, given their level of immaturity.
The average level of immaturity and underdevelopment in children does not cause them to suffer any serious disadvantage. It gives them, on the contrary, freshness of mind and an eager willingness to learn and let others guide them.
(In this essay the parent, guardian and child care-giver are seen as knowing what they intend to pass on. They will pass on what they intend to, by way of instruction and example, to those children under their care . Their calling expects that they understand the relationship between indifference to training children and its consequences. That calling also expects that they understand training children in the right way and its advantages.)
Children develop good, as well as bad, regular habits of behaviour best during early childhood. They also, generally, form bad habits of behaviour where they do not develop good habits. We know what happens when children develop such bad habits of behaviour during the early years.
Younger children develop correct habits more easily than they understand concepts and principles. They doing so is also more immediately important at this stage of their development.
Understanding underlying concepts and principles behind the correct habits becomes easier as children grow older. Younger and other adolescents should understand these underlying concepts and principles, and their relationship to good and bad habits.
They should understand the connection between their actions, right and wrong, and the consequences of these to themselves and others.
Training our little ones draws on several areas of knowledge and practice. It is concerned with correctly influencing and shaping the thinking and action of young innocent persons.
Discipline and other factors
Occasionally, adults must act to prevent undesirable thought and action from becoming rooted in the minds and behaviour of children.
We can use discipline, simple and appropriate, to help us implant correct thought and behaviour, as may be necessary occasionally.
Early childhood training and development of good regular habits of behaviour contribute to the building of character. Such character affects how we relate to ourselves, and to others as individuals and members of social groups. It also affects how we relate to institutions of the sovereign state in which we live, and to God.
Parents, guardians and others who are responsible for nurturing children will determine whether they participate in the training of them. They will determine also, what methods of instruction and action they use in their attempt to successfully train them. Parents who refuse to train their offspring, choose to train them in the wrong way and toward the wrong outcome.
By Edward Fagan