LATELY, there has been an influx of young people using strange English and wearing low-slung trousers. These are students on vacation and their parents are wondering how to keep them occupied.
BY RONALD OMARA
LATELY, there has been an influx of young people using strange English and wearing low-slung trousers. These are students on vacation and their parents are wondering how to keep them occupied. Tips on how to achieve this:
Discuss and set rules at home with them: Agree on what television stations to watch and for how long, visiting hours, alcohol and church, etc. Making the rules with your children means that when caught in the wrong, they have broken their rules, not your authority.
Employ them. It could be at your office, the family shop or salon, the home building site or church projects. Some organisations even have opportunities for volunteers who are paid something. This teaches them that nothing comes free.
If you are uncomfortable letting your 16-year-old child go to work, engage them in chores at home like cooking and slashing the compound. They can receive pocket money in return or even keep the change when they go shopping. Some parents could even send the house-helps on leave to enable the children learn certain chores and grow into adults who love work.
Send them to the village if it is secure. Besides bonding with other relatives, they learn many skills (milking, digging, harvesting and looking after their grandparents). They can learn how to manage a home with minimal supervision and will love the fact that their parents trust them enough to leave them alone.
Engage their intellect on a daily basis. Discuss topical issues, involve them in making decisions at home, encourage them to read novels, newspapers, listen to news, fill crossword puzzles, etc. Provide the books and newspapers on a daily basis. Let them listen to news in your absence and report to you upon return.
Bond with them. Set Sunday (or any other day) aside for the family where there is eating, telling stories and playing together. Take them out to lunch or wash the car together, but do something as a family. You will realise the joys of parenting through such interaction.
Needless to say, be a good example. Keep your word and be genuinely interested in them. Preaching water and drinking wine will only solicit trouble and pain.
KEEP YOUR CHILD BUSY THIS HOLIDAY