It’s an odd paradox that the workplace seems so reticent to take on and take back new mothers to the fold after maternity leave. Especially when you consider that by definition a new mother is amongst the most multi skilled and conscientious people on the planet, with time management skills that would make even the busiest of CEOs blush. She has just spent the formative months of her child’s life spinning so many plates and keeping track of so many aspects of her child’s development that she’s become a human encyclopedia / Swiss army knife hybrid. Yet, just as she thinks she’s finally managed the precarious balancing act, a well meaning friend or relative leans over and whispers, “You know, it’s never too early to start thinking about…” before beginning a lengthy monologue to make this new Super mum think that she should just hand in her Mum card and hang her head in shame.
Cover Image by Pexels
The most infuriating thing, of course, is that they’re right. Just in case you haven’t had the talk yet, here are some things that it’s never too early to start thinking about in terms of your child’s development…
Your little one may only just have learned to recite the various noises made by farmyard animals, but this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t already be thinking about their education. As they develop, different children begin to show different aptitudes that can shape their future skill set. This may start you thinking about what educational path will be right for your child. They may or may not benefit from a university education. They may or may not benefit from going to a private girls school… Especially if you’re raising a boy! A promising mind can either be nurtured or stifled by the right or wrong learning environment and given how competitive it can be to get your kids into the right schools, it’s a decision that’s never too early to begin pondering. Every concern you’ve had about finding the right childcare for your return to work goes double for education.
Reading really is the key to unlocking the world, particularly in the digital age, where we have such a wealth of information at our fingertips. Moreover, developing good literary skills at an early age will help them to be well prepared for the challenges that they will face in early years education. Thus, it’s never too early to start reading with your baby or teaching your toddler some of the rudiments of language. Feeling like they have an understanding of the concepts they’ll be dealing with in nursery or school will enable them to enter their education with a feeling of confidence that will hopefully propel them on the right path.
In an age where most toddlers know their way around a tablet, it’s more important than ever to start teaching your kids about media literacy. Not only should we teach them to incorporate their digital activities into a varied and healthy mix of activities, we should teach them the difference between the media they consume and the reality in which they exist. As they get older and are exposed to the sensationalism and fake news of the current media cycle they should be taught how to apply critical reasoning skills to what they read rather than believing everything they read and learning it as writ.