A teacher's message: What children wish their parents knew
Have you been so busy working that you might have missed out some of the things your child tried to tell you? Read on to find out what your children say about you when they are in school.
Today is Teachers’ Day and I know that you must have spent the last couple of days shopping and preparing gifts for your children to present us with. Thank you for your kind thoughts. In light of this day that celebrates our profession, I would like to tell you what children wish their parents knew.
First of all, we want you to know that we are thankful for your beautiful children. They keep us going and give us the motivation to get out of bed early in the morning.
We love our job and we love your kids. In fact, we love your kids so much that we often call them our kids, even when we have a couple of our own.
Your children are incredibly precious to us. Yes, you are their parents but we see quite a bit of them. We spend a couple of hours in the classroom with them. We hold meetings to discuss them and we even think of them as we are drifting off to sleep.
And that’s precisely why we can’t stop ourselves from caring, a little too much at times.
So today I want to be their voice and tell you some things that they really want to tell you, but don’t know how to. I don’t mean to sound sanctimonious, I’m just passing the message really.
Children wish their parents knew just how much they love you and crave your love and attention. When you are busy working and come home way past their bedtime, they miss you and they tell us that they miss you. When you are talking to them but looking at your boss’s email, they notice.
Sometimes, all that your children really want is that little bit of your undivided attention. And when they are unable to communicate that, they unknowingly start acting up.
Children wish their parents knew that they really do try their best to make you happy. You often berate them and tell them they aren’t good enough and it breaks their heart when they can’t live up to what you want.
They wish you would celebrate their tiny achievements instead of harping only on big milestones and grades. They wish you knew their teacher praised them for helping the librarian, they wish you knew that they stood up for a student who was getting bullied, they wish you knew that they returned the wallet that they found, with $100 in it.
They wish you know that they tried their very best for that test that they failed. They did not pass but in preparing for the test, they got a step closer to passing. Maybe they will pass the next test.
Children wish their parents knew that their struggles and problems are real. Please don’t dismiss everything that they say as trivial. Remember they told you that their best friend betrayed them? Well it matters and it matters a lot more than you think it does.
They really wish you would walk in and hug them when they are up crying all night. At the very least, they wish you would notice when they wake up with red and puffy eyes. And that you would attempt to find out what’s going on.
Maybe someone called them fat, maybe they saw a stray cat dying, maybe they lost their sticker book. None of these seem important to you but it’s important to them so please feel them.
Children wish their parents knew that it hurts them when you tell them ‘I told you so’. Yes, you are often right and they are often wrong but please don’t rub it in their faces. Listen to them without judgment. Listen to them with empathy and understanding.
And here’s the most important thing that children wish their parents knew. They wish you knew that they want to love you, not fear you. They want you to be the first person they run to in good times and in trying times.
They want to tell you that they got selected to represent the school for a debate competition, they want to tell you that they performed terribly in the last Science test.
They want to tell you how they made their teachers and friends laugh at their ‘super funny’ joke and they want to tell you how the teacher yelled at them so loudly that other teachers walked out of their classrooms to find out what’s going on.
But often, they don’t end up telling you many things because they fear you. They fear the words you may hurl at them. They fear the cane. They fear you hitting them. They fear you telling them that they are lousy.
They fear you comparing them with their siblings and they fear you telling them that they are good for nothing. They fear you refusing to talk to them.
Or in other cases, they don’t tell you anything because they say you are too busy to notice anyway.
Children wish their parents knew that they are children at the end of the day. Yes they jump around, get excited at the tiniest thing, giggle and chatter incessantly and find any excuse to break into a chorus of cheering or jeering and yes it can get a tad bit irritating, but they are children after all!
I often see them hanging around school way past their last lesson. They don’t want to go home because they are bored, lonely or have nothing to go home for.
So dear parent, I know how hard you work for your child, and I know just how hard it is to be a parent. I know that you wish that they knew, that all that you do is for them and in their best interests.
But do remember, their world is only as wide as your arms can stretch. And for the most part, their world really does revolve around you. Find a little time, to soften a little, and just love them. Unconditionally.
They are kids and at times they are rude, ignorant and a little difficult. They can be annoying or even impossible at times. But once the anger blows over, you and I know that it’s all their little idiosyncrasies that make them who they are.
What’s there not to love about them anyway?