- Give your children age-appropriate domestic tasks, even if you have a thousand and one domestic servants at home. It is sheer ignorance to think that doing everything for your children is a mark of honour or a way of bequeathing royalty on them.
- Teach them to be useful and make their impact felt positively wherever they are found – in the school, place of worship, in another person’s home, etc.
- Encourage your children to always leave a good impression wherever they go to; teach them to be courteous, respectful, friendly, cheerful and helpful.
- Teach them good toilet manners – they must know how to keep the toilet neat for the next user, let them know that it is unacceptable to leave the bathroom floor and/or walls messed with soap, foam or any form dirt after bathing.
- Teach your children the importance of taking good care of their body and their environment; whether they are at home or elsewhere. Remind them that responsible people don’t leave their rooms unkempt or their bed unmade when they get up in the morning; teach them to bath very well and smell fine always. It is unbearable to have a smelly young person around you; let them take care of their armpits, teeth, hair, nail, etc.
- Teach your children to manage their used clothes and other personal belongings very well, whether in their home or elsewhere. It can be irritating to have dirty clothes or shoes, especially those of a visitor litter every corner of the house.
- Let them pack their toiletries before leaving home. Your children should not depend on their hosts for their basic toiletries like soap, cream, tooth paste and other essentials.
- Teach your children to dress well all the time, especially when they are spending time with another family. You probably allow your daughters to dress in bum shots and your sons to walk about with their chest bare in your home, but they may not be safe if they do so in another place. You may not know where a predator would lie in wait for a child.
- Teach them good table manners; not the one recited in nursery schools rhymes. Teach them to chew with their mouth covered, not to make noise with the cutlery on their teeth, not to talk with their mouth full, etc.
- Let your children know that washing only their own plates after eating is not a noble idea.
- Remind your children that jumping into a conversation when adults are talking is a sign of being ill-mannered. Discourage this both in your home and elsewhere.
- Help your children not to be social birds online and anti-social bugs offline. They should relate well with people around them, much more than they do with virtual folks they meet online. Please, discourage this idea of young people locking themselves in the room hours on end without communicating with anyone in the house – all because they are on phone.
- Empower your children to uphold your family values wherever they are. But before then, make sure that your family values are credible, empowering, socially and morally beneficial.
- Teach your children to control their appetite and learn to turn down certain offers, even when such offers come from people they know. And at home, it is not compulsory that they must taste everything they see someone eating. This will help them to take their eyes away from certain things when they are in other people’s home.
- Always remind your children that they are the window through which the world sees you. If your children’s behavior outside is bad, the general consensus is that they lack home training. And since children are not meant to give themselves home training, it means that you failed as a parent.
- Finally, make sure your children know God. Salvation is not hereditary; that you are godly or highly spiritual is not a guarantee that your children are saved. You must consciously and deliberately lead them to God
My fellow parents, let us try our best to make sure these children represent us well. I am sure you will feel good if you come to your children’s school and people are pointing at you as the parent of the best behaved child in the school. Won’t you?
Make sure your hosts and the hosts of your children are always impressed to have you and/or your children around.
May God Almighty make our children responsible and successful.