Childhood yesterday and today. Differences and keys to a good education
As of 1991, with the ratification of the Rights of the Child, the youngest members of the household became subjects of rights and, definitively, the upbringing changed. The break with the past system, where parents overlap their children, entails challenges not only within families, but also for society. In addition to the use of new technologies and the various sources of stimulation, today's parents do not seem to have an easy task. It is an interesting topic to analyze and in which there are simple ways to achieve a balanced relationship.
This is a world where the image is fundamental and children receive visual stimuli permanently, in which the computer develops its intelligence, but with a vertiginosity that for some may be excessive. It is a scenario where the success of the virtual is diminishing the importance of traditional toys, of those objects that could be built, touched and even smelled. Data from the Argentine Chamber of the Toy Industry say that the age of playing with recreational objects has been shortened; If before girls entertained themselves with dolls until they were 11 years old, today at seven they already want a computer. And the games have also changed: the Alimentum Foundation, in its II Opinion Poll on Habits of Healthy Lifestyles, in UK, It showed that 97% of parents consider it very important or important that their children perform daily physical exercise, but four out of ten recognize that their children do not carry it out. In the same sense, the majority considers that the games of their childhood were healthier than the formulas of entertainment of the children of today. Neighborhood life
The differences between current and former generations are obvious to anyone who has grown up since the 1980s. Going out to play on the street and not return until dark, was part of that. The childhood of the past seems to have been more sociable and with a family life more important and priority than in today's reality, where there are virtual social networks and the possibility of finding any information without leaving home, just surfing the Internet for searching British Essay Writers
"The life of the neighborhood allowed to grow in a freer and autonomous way, in comparison to the children of today. Confidence in their environment also allowed us to feel that the world was safer, "says Paulina Sarmiento, clinical psychologist, Master of Child Mental Health and Early Intervention, clinical supervisor of Psychological Care centers of the University of the Americas and teacher of the same House of Studies.
The specialist says that nowadays it is recognized that society is in crisis and, in this sense, there is a permanent sense of vulnerability. This is reflected day by day, for example, in the news, where it is clear the increase in crime rates: "We can not deny that the world has changed and that today's society is increasingly individualistic, which creates people focused on themselves. It diminishes the interest of neighborhood interactions and, even more, of face-to-face relationships. However, we must not settle for this premise, efforts should continue to focus on prioritizing personal and direct interactions and community spaces. The visit to the square or the park is very well valued by our children, it is enough to give them the chance to experience it ".
The real impact, says the psychologist, is the scarce possibility that today's children have to share hours with their parents. The times of family coexistence are becoming increasingly limited. He adds that a separate point play technologies that today offer children a colorful and interactive world in a single click: "Something many times more striking than going out to play on the street, but again, the idea is to give them the possibility to do so and they will see that they enjoy it as children did before. "
On the other hand he adds: "In favor of today's children we must rescue the cognitive capacity that children have developed: their eyes are more evolved than those of the children before, they see simple resolutions to problems that seem complicated for adults". For a balanced childhood
"The efforts of the parents of the current generation of children should be based on the quality of the interactions they have with their children," says Paulina Sarmiento. The specialist states that it can not be denied that the incorporation of women into the world of work, whether we like it or not, has diminished the possibility for children to have their primary caregiver at home, so we must be aware of this need. The psychologist also advises:
- Do not confuse quality of time with royalties or lack of limits : a child will develop in a healthy way if he can predict his environment and for this he needs to have a structure that allows him to understand what is expected of him. "In the word to understand is where we will also find a variant, since the children of today will not settle for a yes or a no answer; they have grown up in the era of the Rights of the Child and they need to understand why they are being asked or demanded something. "
- The response to authority in an arbitrary way is something that is rarely observed in childhood today: "This condition, which for many parents is a disadvantage, can be used in a positive way to foster dialogue with children and develop the reflective function in they".
- Do not condition love to children : "It is vital for their socio-emotional development to know that they have a caregiver who loves them and cares unconditionally; This means that they will be able to use it when they need it and that it will be receptive to their needs; this is the basis of secure attachment, which is a pillar for development throughout the life cycle. "
- Do not confuse unconditional love with lack of discipline : "We can correct them, but the message is that, although they make mistakes, we will be there when they need us. This is the basis of the development of trust. If we have children who trust their parents, we will have teenagers who will also do so, and we will be able to minimize the risk factors associated with this stage, which will lead to a more integral development in their formation as adults. Without a doubt, it could contribute to becoming a more solidary society and, therefore, healthier. Maybe, also return to the neighborhood life. "
As concrete suggestions:
On stimulation: modern evil?
- Encourage outdoor life with children.
- Disconnect from the cell phone when you are at home; This will give a message that it is available to them and, at the same time, it will set an example to follow.
- When you are at home, encourage face-to-face interactions.
- Delimit the time of use of technological devices.
- Accompany the children in the use of virtual platforms.
- Talk more. Children always value this, however small they may be.
- Study with them, not only because they need it, but because they value the company of the parents.
- Validate your emotions, whether they are negative or positive.
- Be consistent and consistent in acting.
- Respect individuality. Do not pretend that children behave like brother, cousin or partner.
That today's parents over stimulate their children is an idea that seems to haunt the environment. Is it like that? How does it affect children? "Child stimulation involves many edges and there is a belief that stimulating is filling the child with activities and keeping them busy. From this point of view, one could talk about over stimulation. However, there are significant affective deficiencies that are not being able to be stimulated in our children today, given that cognitive stimulation is only part of the children's integral development. Social and affective stimulation from early childhood, is very necessary, today there is empirical evidence that supports the idea that this increases synaptic development and, therefore, enhances the overall development of the child, "explains Paulina Sarmiento.
Somehow, and unfortunately, there is a tendency to misinterpret the concept of early stimulation, which aims to strengthen the integral development of children from the physical, cognitive, social and affective aspects. It tends to consider primarily physical and motor development, to the detriment of the social and affective. "The affection given to children and the possibilities of play are a nurturing environment that allows them to have an emotional mattress to advance in the stages of the life cycle, so, undoubtedly, it is an important point to work for parents. and caregivers.Early stimulation seeks to motivate the child in a timely manner. However, the objective is not to develop precocious children, nor to advance them in their stage of development, but to offer them experiences that allow them to form the bases for an optimal development ", says the psychologist. Friends of technology: it's inevitable
It was already mentioned at the beginning of the article: one of the most potent themes in the change between yesterday's childhood and today's is the subject of technology: how does this affect social relations? Should we restrict its use to our children?
It is difficult to think about the possibility of limiting our children's access to the virtual world, considering that, in advanced stages, it becomes part of their social world. "However, it is important to establish certain cutoff ages where the use of technologies must be controlled by adults. Thinking that a child under three is stimulated through electronic games is a mistake, because the greatest stimulation they receive at this age is through contact with another, where the need to have a stable and predictable caregiver is essential "Warns Paulina Sarmiento.
In this way, it is worth knowing:
- The use of technology opens windows of opportunity to bring children closer to a world of accessible knowledge on the web, but they must be monitored and, ideally, accompanied by an adult in this process.
- Interactive games for preschoolers only make sense if they are shared by another significant person for the child, otherwise, they become a substitute for the care and attention they require.
- There is no denying that the new technological platforms open a communication channel that can be well used by parents, considering the long work days that restrict the time that caregivers spend with their children. In this way, the use of text messaging, for example, allows parents to maintain greater contact during the day with their children, becoming a window of opportunity if it is well used.
- The challenge for parents is to be part of this new technological world; staying within the child's system is more beneficial than depriving him of participating in the virtual world to which, sooner or later, he will enter.
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