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Actions speak louder than words

March 2, 2011

What the Experts Say…

“What is the goal of parenting? It’s to help a child grow up to be a decent human being, a person with compassion, commitment, and caring.  How does one go about humanizing a child? Only by using humane methods, by recognizing that the process is the method, that ends do not justify the means, and that in our attempt to be effective in getting children to behave, we do not damage them emotionally.”  (Haim Ginott, Child Psychologist, in his book, Between Parent and Child, p. 192)

In Other Words…

We cannot teach our children to be gracious, caring, loving human beings with methods that are hard, thoughtless, and hurtful. Compassion creates compassion. Kindness encourages kindness. Respect builds respect.

The great lessons of life are properly taught as our children see us reach toward greater civility and goodness.

How This Applies to You…

You will make mistakes as a parent. You will be unkind and impatient many, many times. Yet, as your children see you work toward greater compassion, commitment, and caring, they will learn to value those qualities and they will see first-hand the process for developing them.

Teach your child by setting an example of the behavior you want to see in them. Instead of just telling them, show them what it means to be compassionate, respectful, and kind.

To Find Out More…

For an excellent program on parenting, see The Parenting Journey at and if your children are younger than five, check out See the World Through My Eyes.

For more information on parenting, we recommend Between Parent and Child by Haim Ginott or Soft-Spoken Parenting by H. Wallace Goddard.

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