Did you come to Canada to give your children a better future?
If yes, think about your parenting style. How are you raising your kids?
Where and when did you learn your parenting style? You learned it in a different place and at a different time. Usually, people learn parenting from their own parents and family. If you learned parenting from your parents, that was a loooong time ago.
Two things are different now for you and your children:
1) you changed the country where you live
2) times have changed
Think about how life was different when you were a child… Did you have all the technology available to kids today? Did you have a computer in your room? Did you have to do homework on computer? Most likely not. Did you have a cellphone? Times have changed, right?
Think about the food you used to eat as a child… Did you have all the junk food available to you? Did you have money to spend on pop/soda, chips and candy bars?
Many things you know about parenting come from a different time and a different place!
Why is it important to know and choose your parenting style in Canada?
You and your child are now in a special situation: you are immigrants. Your child might have been born in Canada but then he or she is a child of immigrants. You want to have a good relationship with your child, right? A careful choice of parenting style will help you to have a good relationship with your kid.
When your child goes to a Canadian school, he or she will be treated there in a Canadian way. What is a modern Canadian way? In Canada, children are usually being treated with a lot of respect and are given choices. Fun and play are considered very important for successful learning and positive reinforcement is one of the main techniques used. If at school a child is being treated one way but at home he or she is being treated in a different way, your child will be very confused.
What is your parenting style?
There are four main parenting styles:
- authoritative (also called positive parenting) (parents communicate with their child, give choices, treat child almost like an adult, teach child how to control his/her feelings, child grows up to be independent)
- authoritarian (strict parents, tell child what to do, punish a lot, child grows up quiet, obedient and not very happy)
- indulgent (parents demand very little from a child and try to play a role of a ‘friend’, almost no punishment, few rules, child often grows up to be immature and impulsive person)
- neglectful (parents provide only basic needs – food and clothes – but don’t support their child emotionally because they are too busy working or doing other things, child will often skip classes and commit small illegal acts)
Raising a child is a challenge. Raising a child when your family has immigrated is a double challenge. But you have help available:
1. All that technology that your kids have access to, it is for YOU as well. Use the Internet to search for the ideas and advice on modern day parenting. Research ‘positive parenting’. You will find some good ideas on how to control and guide your child.
2. If you don’t like technology, you could go to a library (but be careful to get new/recent books) or you could go to a bookstore and find books on parenting.
3. If you don’t like reading and prefer listening and speaking, look for workshops on parenting (for example at community centres). There are also some useful TV shows on parenting.
Your kids are important to you. You want to raise them happy and healthy, right? If yes, don’t leave it all to chance. Your kids are too precious to take chances. Don’t wait until problems start – don’t wait until your kid is obese, have self-esteem problems, is involved in a gang, has a drug addiction, depressed or suicidal – don’t wait for that! Invest some time now to find out the best STRATEGIES on how to raise your child physically and emotionally healthy.
Nobody is born knowing how to be a parent. You learn this. As an immigrant, you are in a special situation. Many immigrants say they came to Canada because of their kids – to give their kids a better life and a bright future. If that’s your story, you need to take one more step – EDUCATE YOURSELF on how to bring up your kids so that you can give them the best chance in the future.
Learn the strategies for modern day parenting
Your relationship with your kids and their future success are worth it!
1. How do people usually learn parenting?
a) from books b) from their families
2. Which two new things modern kids have access to that didn’t exist before?
a) money and toys b) technology and junk food
3. Do different countries have different parenting styles?
a) yes b) no
4. Where can you find information about modern day parenting?
a) online b) at a bookstore c) both
Please share your ideas in the ‘Share your Advice’ box below.
- What differences have you noticed between your country parenting style and Canadian parenting style? Give examples.
- What advice can you give to new immigrants about parenting in Canada?