Teaching Kids Choice & Consequence

The following post was originally a contribution I made to thelibertyparent.com, a fantastic site covering a vast range of topics related, but not limited, to raising kids with an understanding of liberty and responsibility. In addition to their blog, they have a myriad of product reviews, activities, links, and more. 

You can see the original post here.

Teaching Kids Choice & Consequence (originally published under the title, “Choices, It’s What Kids Need”)

One of the most beneficial courses I took in my educational training in college taught one of the most important strategies for effective classroom management: PAT. Preferred Activity Time. The basic principle offered by the professor was that a key to classroom management and incentivizing diligent, respectful, on-task students is to offer preferred activity time: flexible time to be used in ways that the kids preferred, within certain guidelines, of course.

And this PAT could be increased or decreased based on students’ behavior, respect, diligence, et cetera. The basic idea here was that students have a stake in their time. They have an investment, and they can make choices as to how to use that investment.

The basic idea behind this is a cornerstone of liberty. We all know that we more highly value something we own than something we are loaned, especially if there is work involved to attain it. In the educational training, there was just a little bit of PAT to begin with (say, five minutes), but that could be increased if the students made appropriate choices with their investment, and decreased if the students made poor choices with their time.

As parents raising kids grounded with the fundamental understanding of liberty, we have to do the same. We have to teach individual responsibility. We have to help our kids understand that their time, their money, their resources and their talents are investments to be used with wisdom or foolishness. We have to give them a stake, and the consequences—good and bad— that come with that.

The same is true in teaching finance to our kids…

[Read the rest of this article here.]


Thumbnail photo credit goes to brakpanherald.co.za. 

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