Michael J. Prince, B.A., Psychology
How to Raise a Moral Child
40 Things You Can Do To Raise a Moral Child
by Arthur Dobrin © 2001 All Rights Reserved
Emotions Are the Groundwork of Morality.
- Tune into your child's feelings.
- Comment on your own emotions.
- Talk about how you think others may be feeling.
- Read stories that are fanciful.
- Sing to your children.
Feelings Need to Be Guided by Reason.
- Give reasons why you approve or disapprove of your child's behavior.
- Provide reasons for rules you want your child to follow.
- Encourage your child to play with children of various ages.
- Engage your children in reflective discussions by asking open-ended questions.
- Promote independent thinking.
Self-Respect Is a Prerequisite to Acting Morally.
- Treat your child with respect.
- Express interest in your child's activities, projects and dreams.
- Help set goals and encourage your children to see them through.
- Praise a task well done.
- Give your child emotional and verbal support to stand against the crowd when necessary.
Behavior Has Consequences.
- Be flexible - not arbitrary - in your discipline.
- Don't use intimidation; never use ridicule.
- Severity of punishment should be related to the severity of the wrongdoing.
- Discipline with explanations.
- Criticize in private.
Treating All People Fairly Is Fundamental to Morality.
- Examine your own biases.
- Provide examples that counteract society's prejudices.
- Don't allow biased or bigoted comments to go unchallenged.
- Give your child books that show different kinds of people playing, working and living together.
- Talk about differences between people, but speak about them neutrally.
Some Values Are More Important Than Others.
- Tell your children about the people you admire and why.
- Live your life, as you want your child to lead hers.
- Show the importance of protecting the vulnerable.
- Comment on compassionate behavior - let your child know that caring is an important value.
- Let your children know what you value and why you value it.
Morality Is Learned Through Observing and Doing.
- Provide opportunities for your child to help others.
- Give positive verbal and non-verbal feedback for being a good person.
- Work with your child in community and volunteer service.
- Expect and encourage good deeds from your children.
- Help your children to keep promises.
Morality Involves Other People.
- Talk about the TV shows, music and movies your child sees.
- Get involved in your child's education.
- Make family meals an important and regular occasion.
- Encourage activities that involve your child with others.
- Take an interest in the world outside your home.