Part I: Reading
Having children is one thing; raising them for the next twenty years or more is something completely different. My wife and I decided to have a baby years ago, but we didn't realize it would turn into a teenager and then an adult so quickly. Actually, when children are very small, you need to take care of their daily needs: you need to feed them, dress them, change their diapers, clean up their messes, and put them to bed. As children get a little older, you still have to give them daily attention by reading to them, telling them stories, playing games with them, and consoling them when they get hurt. As they enter the teenage years, children need more, not less, interaction with parents in a different way. Being a teenager can be a challenging time for children because they are trying to figure out who they are and their role in the family. As parents, this is a time when you help children develop independence but also make careful and wise choices about what they do and with whom they associate. Teaching strong family values from a very young age will help children develop patterns of behavior that they will need for the rest of their lives. Raising children is much harder than it looks, but with patience and hope, children can mature into very emotionally-secure adults.
Part II: Discussion
What is your image of the ideal parent? What can parents do to help their children mature and make careful decisions? What do some parents do that can alienate? Describe your years growing up and your interaction with your parents and siblings.
Part III: Online Investigation
Raising successful children requires a lot of patience, practice, and some luck. Search the Internet and find at least five specific tips on raising children. Are there certain parenting tips that are culturally specific? In other words, are there tips for raising children that might work in one culture, but not be effective or appropriate in another?