Let us teach our children to be responsible
Our Readers' Opinions
March 10, 2023

Let us teach our children to be responsible

How did our parents manage to teach us to be responsible when they had much less? We think that we have more available to us, but our children are being short changed in this area in spite of our desire for them to do better.

Waking up on time was not optional. If we did not get up we were awakened. The day was started with morning worship. We read the book of proverbs and studied our Bible lessons. My mother was a ‘prophet’ because we often made the mistakes during the day she had warned us about during morning worship. In the evening when we reflected, we noted that if we were on our guard, as we should have been, we would have been saved from trouble.

Nowadays we sometimes let the children sleep late, skip worship and suffer the consequences of fussing, trying to get breakfast and to school and work on time.

Waking up early allowed us to accomplish so much. Breakfast was made, animals were cared for, the house and yard were cleaned. Everyone had responsibilities and the division of labour allowed all the work to be done and for us to get to school on time.

The common complaint these days is: “the children have nothing do yet they are late for school.” Apparently, that is precisely the problem. With nothing to do, time is not valued. The animals run loose permanently, causing destruction. No one cares for the fowls and hardly any gardening is done. Without tasks to accomplish within specific times, how would our children learn to be responsible?

Late arrival at school was discouraged through the use of corporal punishment.

These days some parents object to their students doing chores instead of punishment claiming that “they did not send their children to school for that.” So, the children arrive any time and do not learn the important value of punctuality.

So much so that some students could not keep their good job after graduation because of inability to arrive early.

Two students I admire for their responsible conduct in and out of school are Jemold Thomas, and Onias Greaves. During their time as students they held jobs that complemented the practical skills they were studying at school. They were successful in their studies and their work ethic guarantees them a bright future.

Learning to be responsible is an important value that would go with us everywhere. Let us teach our children this and guarantee their future.

Anthony G. Stewart, PhD