“Positive parenting” describes both a variety of actions and an overall approach. It is built on the knowledge that children develop in specific ways, and that the adults around them have a specific impact on that development. Every positive interaction that parents have with their children contribute to the self-esteem, confidence, adaptability, and overall success and well-being of the child. Such positive interactions are also joyful and self-fulfilling for parents as well. Additionally, the interactions that children have with adults in school, after-school activities, workplaces, places of worship, and other community contexts affect children’s development in crucial and life-altering ways.
A core component of positive parenting is to guide children to grow up healthy, happy and able learners. This can be done without resorting to violent child rearing, which harms the child and is not effective. Positive parenting increases children’s self-confidence and success, and helps make them psychologically, socially, intellectually, spiritually and morally strong. And it is a chance for parents to teach and lead by example. It is important that positive parenting includes gender and age sensitivity and equal treatment of all children, including girls and boys, children with disabilities and children of different age groups.
Parenting has been described as a “joyful, frustrating, exhilarating, exhausting journey…to take the hands of a brand-new human being and guide her toward adulthood…(And) most of us learn parenting on the job….We rely on our instincts or our own childhood experiences. But many times our instincts are really just emotional reactions that aren’t well thought-out. And sometimes our own childhood experiences were negative or even violent ones. As a result, many parents think that discipline is no more than scolding and hitting. Others feel badly about losing control of their emotions. And others feel helpless. But there is another way.” (Durrant, J. Positive Discipline: What it is and how to do it, Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children and Save the Children, 2009, p. 1-2).
From “ABCs for Action and Advocacy: A Note on Positive Parenting,” World Day of Prayer and Action for Children Secretariat New York, Working Document, 20 November 2011, p. 3-4.
Parents give birth to the future—because children learn from their caregivers what life is about and how it can be. In its positive parenting theme, the World Day focuses on how to protect children by using safe and nonviolent parenting techniques. This may involve changing traditional child-rearing practices. Read on and take action with us in this effort!
Ideas for Action on Positive Parenting
Article no. 1 — Interview with Save the Children
ABC for Action and Advocacy
A Note on Positive Parenting and Non-Violent Discipline