Back in 1986, The Jamaica Test revealed some very interesting findings about the effect of parental attitudes on children’s behaviour.
Researchers divided the families of 129 children into two groups:
One group received weekly hour-long visits from a trained researcher, who encouraged the parents to spend more quality time with their children — reading, playing games and singing songs.
And the other group received nutritional supplements each week, without the parental coaching.
After two years of intervention, the children whose parents were encouraged to play more showed huge improvements in their behaviour and achievements at school, while the nutritional supplements made no significant difference.
Now this isn’t to say that good nutrition doesn’t play an important role in children’s development…
But the most powerful influence on children’s behaviour is the attitudes, beliefs and behaviours of the adults surrounding them.
Other research has found that when parents were coached by a qualified counsellor their children had fewer behavioural problems, higher rates of confidence and trust in adults, and significantly lower stress levels.
And the positive influence was also found to extend to other important life skills.
For example, the ability to understand and follow directions, to concentrate, to interact calmly and productively with others, and to cope with disappointment and frustration.
All of which are vital skills that help reduce the stress of adolescence and adulthood.
And while nurturing your kids and giving them enough attention can be hard work…
(Particularly in our already busy and stressful lives!)
There are many simple and practical steps you can take to help them reach their full potential.
If you would like some extra help with this?
You might like to consider our parent coaching service.