The final segment of my three part blog post about ethics and public education is basically a reference post. I came across a NY Times article from last week that I found quite interesting. Titled, "Raising a Moral Child," the author unveils some fascinating research about how to raise a "moral" child. As the article states, "When people in 50 countries were asked to report their guiding principles in life, the value that mattered most was not achievement, but caring." The article goes further:
If we want our children to care about others, we need to teach them to feel guilt rather than shame when they misbehave. In a review of research on emotions and moral development, the psychologist Nancy Eisenberg suggests that shame emerges when parents express anger, withdraw their love, or try to assert their power through threats of punishment: Children may begin to believe that they are bad people. Fearing this effect, some parents fail to exercise discipline at all, which can hinder the development of strong moral standards.
I highly recommend to read the NY Times article and review some of the innovative research cited therein. As the author, Wharton Psychology Professor Adam Grant, concludes: "People often believe that character causes action, but when it comes to producing moral children, we need to remember that action also shapes character."
Parents, this is advice we must all heed.