Parenting styles, peer culture and a positive spin on bad situations.

This week in ECS 200 we talked about self and social and moral development.  Last semester we covered most of this in detail in ECE 200 for the younger kids.  I find it difficult to find something new I have learned, so instead I am switching my thinking to what expanded my knowledge of what I have already learned.

The first idea that expanded was the authoritarian parenting style, is not always a negative style of parenting nor does it always produce negative outcomes for the children who are parented this way.  The text (p.73) suggests that cultural and socio-economic factors may lead to this having positive outcomes.  The text gives example of students of Asian descent or students in dangerous neighbourhoods having positive outcomes with this parenting style.

Through our discussion in lecture, I found it interesting that most everything can be treated with positivity.  I find this a little difficult, which may be because I have a narrow definition of positivity.  I find it hard to believe that you can put a positive spin on calling the parents of a repeat fighting offender, for example.  I do believe you can and should be pleasant and understanding when making that phone call.  I see those as different than being positive.  I see being positive as putting a good spin on the situation and I can’t see how you can do that with a repeat offender, with a serious offense.

My knowledge of peer culture expanded.  I know that peers exert a great amount of influence over each other.  I did not fully realize the extent of it. I found it so eye opening reading the Mean Girls scenario and the incident described on p. 76 of the text.  I knew kids could be mean, but I just didn’t think they would be that strict and rigid in their self-made codes/rules.

The two connections I made from this chapter have to do with parenting styles.

The first is that my parenting style does affect my teaching style a great deal.  I have noticed in my volunteering in the classroom, that I am firmly entrenched in the authoritative style, with the students and have seemingly endless patience with them. While with my own children I sometimes cross into the authoritarian parenting style and lack that endless patience.

Secondly, is that I really need to be aware that the authoritative style may not be received or responded to well by all my students.  I must be aware that it is not disrespect on their part, but it may be cultural or socio-economic and I may have to adjust accordingly.  I may have to be more firm and direct, but I can still be warm and caring.

My burning question from this chapter comes from the lecture discussion.

How do you put a positive spin on bad situations?  i.e. Repeated fighting.

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