How Important Are Moral Values in Children?
The digital lifestyle has affected almost every aspect of our life. And that includes parenting.
Gone are the days when children are disciplined for any wrongdoings. Instead, the parenting focus in the past few years has shifted to child-centered. We often let them off the hook and are rarely held accountable for their actions.
A Washington Post article blames this shift on overworked parents who are too tired to teach moral values to their kids personally. Instead, children learn about right and wrong from TV shows and online videos. And more often than not, those videos are inappropriate for their age. Nor do they teach good moral values.
This underlines that now, more than ever, our children need guidance. There’s just too much distraction around them that can lead them astray. Remember that kids are like sponges. They absorb everything they see or hear. And it falls on us, adults, to steer them to the right path.
It is our responsibility to instill moral values to our children as early as possible. They look up to us as role models. If we want them to grow up to be productive members of society, we must teach them how.
These eight reasons outline the importance of good moral values to our children:
It Builds Their Character
Knowing good moral values such as kindness, humility, courage, and compassion at an early age builds a child’s character. It forms the very core of their being and becomes a foundation of their moral beliefs.
This is why it’s essential to start teaching them moral values while they’re still children. Those values mold them to become the person you want them to be.
It Helps Them Tell Right From Wrong
In July this year, four children made headlines for stealing their parent’s car and driving across the Australian outback. They also reportedly stole petrol from two gas stations. Though this may sound shocking, it’s far from an isolated case.
A report in The Guardian in 2017 talks about children who have committed petty thievery. Most of them were missing a parent or did not have one at all. There was no adult to guide them and teach them proper values.
These are just extreme examples of children who had no concept of right and wrong. Remember, they absorb everything like a sponge. When they do something wrong, and no one bothers to correct them, they’ll start to think that it’s perfectly fine to do it again. Until those small mistakes snowball into grand schemes that can send them to prison.
It Changes Their Perception of the World
When children can tell what is right from wrong, they can also determine the good from the bad. This helps shape their perception of the world. A child who has a strong moral compass will not just stand idly by when an injustice is happening. They will take action to correct it in whatever way they can.
It Determines Their Adult Behavior
Proverb 22:26 in the bible says:
“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
The values you teach your children today will determine how they will behave when they become adults.
It Counters Bad Influence From Peers
Peer pressure – we’ve all been there. It’s normal for children and young adolescents to look up to their friends. From clothing styles to music choices, peer pressure plays a significant role in these decisions.
But according to a Canadian health site, children who feel good about themselves are more able to resist negative peer pressure. Also, kids who grew up with strong moral foundations are more secure in themselves. They rarely feel the need to follow the trend, making them less likely to give in to bad influence.
It Helps Them Cope With Difficult Situations
One of the most pressing concerns that our youth face today is depression. Stressful situations can throw some of us on a downhill struggle. But it can even be more severe for children, especially those who haven’t had much adult supervision in their lives.
Teaching them to distinguish good from bad helps them make better decisions. This, in turn, gives them the courage to cope with difficult situations.
It Boosts Self-Confidence
Doing good things help children feel good about themselves, like when they volunteer at a soup kitchen or donate used clothes to the poor. That exhilarating feeling of being able to give back and help others is not exclusive to adults. Children feel it too. This self-affirmation helps boost their self-confidence, which helps them be more secure in themselves. (Related: Top 10 Reasons Why You Should Volunteer at a Soup Kitchen)
It Teaches Them To Think About Others
Teaching kids responsibility at a young age helps them figure out their purpose in society. They will realize that the world does not revolve around them and that they have a duty to their fellows. This will teach them to be more selfless and put the needs of others before themselves.