Formulating Successful Students: Listen To Your Children

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 - by Lisa A. Di Rosso

It is undeniable that we would like our children to be “Straight-A” students.  A popular belief is that full concentration on schoolwork along with disciplined study habits is the winning combination for academic achievement.  Parents often lecture their children to study harder and they will acquire the key that opens the proverbial door of success.  Barking such orders as a means for ensuring a child’s scholastic achievement is not the equivalent of effective parental guidance. 

It seems as though many parents just don’t take the time and/or have the patience to get thoroughly involved and listen, really listen, to their children.  This is a skill that parents must practice in order to increase effective parenting.  Adults are only human and carry their own problems, issues, and faults.  However, every effort must be made to avoid passing paralyzing burdens onto their children.  A lousy day at the office is not an acceptable excuse for unconstructive criticism and verbal abuse that many children, teenagers, and young adults endure time and time again.  “Power trips” executed by adults for no other reason than because they simply can only serve to chip away a child’s self-esteem.  This behavior is counterproductive and detrimental to overall development and achievement.

While attending high school and college I had met a number of peers who seemed considerably intelligent, developed good study habits, and possessed excellent memory recall abilities.  Nevertheless, I noticed that the majority of them did not accelerate educationally to the same degree as the small remaining percentage had.   I frequently pondered what particular influence gave these few students an edge to cause them to excel in leaps and bounds over the others.  I eventually uncovered the influential factor that I had previously overlooked. 

Throughout observation and personal insight into several of the high-achievers’ home lives, the missing link was found:  Their environments were extremely conducive to promoting well-rounded, successfully-educated people.  I witnessed first-hand the interaction that took place between these students and their respective parents.  The freedom to express ideas in an atmosphere of mutual respect was the prominent component I noticed.  These parents listened to what their children had to say and valued the intended messages conveyed.  Individual views were appreciated, considered, and encouraged.  Achievements were consistently praised.  Importantly, conscious effort was made to alleviate as much unnecessary stress from life as possible, allowing undistracted full potential to surface.  Education was a collective family effort, a unified investment that proved to yield great rewards.  As a result, these students appeared confident, optimistic, and well-spoken.  Seemingly high levels of self-esteem were noted within this group.

Successfully educating our children is a compilation of variables including academic abilities, self-discipline, and environments that effectively promote learning in both school and home.  It is vital that the two-way door of communication is permanently opened.  Parents must do more than talk.  They must willingly get out of the spotlight and take more than the basic amount of time to be able to listen attentively. 

When we nurture, support, respect, and listen to our children, positive self-esteem flourishes and the belief in unlimited potential allows for its reality.  When combined with the omission of nonsensical stressors and distractors we build so much more than immensely successful students.   As a result, we generate happy, secure, and productive members of society.




Lawsuit May Bring More Security To Hamilton Place Mall

Good for the military veteran that is suing for getting shot on CBL's and ERMC's watch. With this past holiday season's traumatic events unfolding at the mall and clear evidence that ERMC security does not have the ability to insure the safety of the patrons, it is time for a lawsuit to get someone's attention.  This military veteran, who clearly saw combat due to the mentioned ... (click for more)

Why The Ed Johnson Memorial Matters To Me, A Libertarian

I have seen a lot of responses to the question of whether or not our city and county should financially support the Ed Johnson Memorial at the Walnut Street bridge. Some fully support government pitching in and some say that private individuals and civic organizations should pitch in. Both are correct.  Our city has become a very sought after place to live. From our hometown ... (click for more)

School Board Approves "Partnership" With State As "Lesser Of 2 Evils"

The County School Board on Thursday night voted 7-2 to join in talks with the State Department of Education leading to a Partnership Zone for five low-performing schools. Joe Smith and David Testerman voted against the plan. Other board members said the only alternative was for the state to take over several low-performing schools under the Achievement School District in which ... (click for more)

Jury Hears About Incident Behind Food Lion That Authorities Say Led To Triple Murders In Lookout Valley; Neighbor Saw Trio With Guns

A Criminal Court jury on Thursday was told about an incident behind the Food Lion on Brown's Ferry Road that authorities say was the motive for an April 9, 2014, massacre at a Lookout Valley trailer park. Brandon Jackson said the incident five days earlier involved Derek Morse, who is standing trial on three counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted first-degree ... (click for more)

Unbeaten Baylor Rolls Past Cleveland For 30th win

The Baylor Lady Red Raiders have produced more than their share of outstanding volleyball teams in head coach Sarah Lail’s tenure, but this year’s team may be the best ever. There are no real superstars like in years past, but they have a talented group of young ladies who can beat you from any number of spots on the court. Facing one of its biggest tests of the season on ... (click for more)

Vols. UMass Matchup Pits 1998 National Champions

Tennessee takes on UMass on Saturday at Neyland Stadium. The game will feature a noon ET kickoff on SEC Network.     Tennessee (2-1) is coming off a 26-20 road loss to Florida on Sept. 16. Junior running back John Kelly set career highs with 141 rushing yards and 96 receiving yards and played a major role in the Vols' second half rally before the Gators ... (click for more)