Lori Blum-Fagien

Senior Executive Director of Preventive Healthcare and Wellness, Consultant - Health and Wellness

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Should parents instill principles over rules through truth over harmony with our teens current social culture

Too many teens today are beneathe the radar with their families, teachers, and friends due to the dynamics of new blended families. Children are our priority and few schools are addressing the social issues creating a culture of teens who don't believe in the core principals of humility, curiousity, respect and responsibilty. Through social networking we have created a generation of teens who are selfish and feel entitled to everything. What are the options for creating change in our public, private and boarding schools.

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    Jul 29 2011: I teach teens and think that with the right support they will be better. Teach my students that they can succeed and that everyone earns what they get in life after they leave their families. I also tell them that if you want respect you must give respect and above all let love come through. I still get kids who stop and talk with me in stores that are now married and have children of their own. It is the love and respect that I show them that gets it back to me in the classroom.
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    Jul 27 2011: Parents should be the ones setting the standards and utilizing their principals, not all parents make the best decisions but those who are educated should receive the respect from their children and value their wiseness and decisions based on their experiences. When children's attitude is overlooked because their aptitude is good, that in itself is a problem. Yes truth can be stretched but when we allow our children to lower the bar of our standards to keep "the harmoney" or peace in our household, then when has the parenting stopped and we've become their friends instead of their mentors as parents even if they don't like the outcome we should inspire our children as that is our biggest job as being parents.
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    Jul 27 2011: Let me start with family taking it first organizational unit of society /community as a whole. increasingly that became more of an economic unit than as a social unit as it started in the very dawn of civilization. Conversion of family from social to economic unit made it more individual GREED driven than being driven by compassion and togetherness. Unless we correct that what principal or TRUTH we can set for Teens or kids to follow?

    What is the definition of that principle orr truth? What is the validity of those. How relevant those are to whom parents will be putting those forward?
    When adults are putting some principles or TRUTH for the next generation, there is always a GAP in between, now technology making that gap even wider.......
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    Jul 27 2011: Absolutely agree. However, current culture with divorced families makes this task even harder when the parents aren't on the same playing filed and the children use that as a manipulating tool looking for the best outcome.
  • Jul 27 2011: They say... catch them young.... and our society has caught them to create a generation which we ourselves are not liking. What is required is to prepare them to learn to know what is appropriate and what is not ! That is the need of the hour. To make them feel responsible, society first needs to feel accountable for it !
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    Jul 27 2011: I absolutely concur with everything you're putting forward here. As an 18 year old university student, I can actually see the implications of the points you raise. So many of my peers aim to abide only by societal rules, and don't develop an individual code of moral principles that they deem important to them or aspire to reach a greater level of moral development. Having had parents who have encouraged me to think liberally, question my surroundings, and make my own assessments based on cognitive knowledge I've accumulated, I feel as though I've been able to develop the ability to think independently, which I believe has been instrumental to my growth from a hapless teenager to a young adult. I absolutely would encourage parents to try and foster the ideal of kids thinking independently over simply abiding by the rules.

    To my peers, what's the harm in questioning your surroundings? Progress in any area, whether it be work related or personal, has not been achieved without an innate burning curiousity to answer life's questions.

    As for your concerns with education. I would imagine that an upheaval of traditional protocols would be very difficult, albeit worthwhile. I think the classroom should aim to be a more engaging place for students, and seek to get them more involved. From what I've seen, many educational systems seem to be very linear and purport change. I think in place of this, classrooms should try and break free of the shackles of traditional learning mantras. Why can't they be a place of constructive debate and thought amongst peers, with teachers acting as mediators?

    In theory, all of this is well and good, but as I said before, an upheaval of a system that has been in use for generations is unlikely. However, I do believe the pursuit of new generations being able to mould independent views and standpoints on issues based on their own core principles is an absolutely critical endeavor.