Before being a teacher, I am a parent first. This is what life is to me, my raison d'etre. Like anybody else, I had no practice being a parent. And so, it's kind of a hit or miss. However, it should not be. I cannot afford having too many misses.
If life was only about black and white.. moral and immoral... good or bad, it would have been a lot simpler. yet, it is not so. There are too many things in between. Let me illustrate.
Being parents, me and my wife have made too many close calls. These were crucial as what was in line was the fate of four kids who are dependent on us for sustenance, shelter, education and everything normal children need. Life is about decisions and we have to teach the children to learn how to make the right ones. Take note, I said teach them to learn how, not teach them the right ones. It may be easier to say don't do this or that but the lesson might not be learned. Giving them options and leading them on to the right path might.
When my third child, Kim, was in grade one, she had an assignment to bring her CL handout. During this time, they had several handouts which looked alike. Anyway, she forgot to bring hers and feared she might be given a zero as the teacher threatened the day before. Knowing what the assignment was, my wife asked Kim during dinner what happened during the subject. "Kim, you forgot your handout. I suppose you got a zero in class today." "No, mom," was her reply. "Really, what did you do?" asked my wife. "When the teacher asked us to read the hand-out, I took the one for Language and pretended to read. She didn't notice." My first reaction was to scold her as that was being dishonest. However, as I pondered what i have to say at that time, I said to myself, "not bad. Kim is a survivor." My wife and I were thinking, what Grade one kid would have thought of that? So, as I told her it was dishonest and not to repeat it again, she didn't receive any tongue lashing that time.