Lauries Kitchen

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Tiger Mothers

Ok, I know......I have been thinking it too.....I need to change the name of this blog. I'm thinking something like the ramblings of a crazy mom or something like that....But on to today's thoughts.

Have you been hearing about this book "Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother" ? Here's a brief synopsis from the NPR website.

 Strict, uncompromising values and discipline are what makes children raised by Chinese parents successful. That's the message in a new parenting book by Yale Law Professor Amy Chua. "Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother," is based on Chua's personal experiences has raised questions about whether the book reinforces stereotypes of the unsparing Asian parent.

Well, I just want to weigh in on my thoughts. Neither the traditional Chinese or western style of parenting is best for every kid. Raising a child with respect and love does. That being said, I am fairly certain the Bible gives instruction to teaching the child self discipline and reprimanding the child when necessary.

The traditional Chinese style of parenting (Tiger parenting), from what I have read is very strict. No fun things, such as friends over or speepovers. Hours and hours of daily music practice. Extra homework assigned by parents especially in the fields of math and science. No sports. From what I have read traditional Chinese parenting involves berating the children, making them feel 'barbarian' when the do not comply with expectedness. Being number one in music and Math is a top priority.

Western style of parenting involves sleepovers, birthday parties, laying around in pjs all weekend, no set practice times, letting the child basically do what ever he wants. Sports are allowed. As well as trips to the movies and other social events with friends.

After some thought, here's where I think I fit in...

Tiger:   My kids have chores. They do their own laundry. :) They load the dishwasher EVERY time. They take care of the cat. They take care of their rooms and their bathroom. They do their homework every day and Coy may or may not add extra for every subject. (Depend on whether or not he believes they understand the concept in the homework.) Math is a priority in this family-mainly because Coy loves it. Grace loves it and so does JoGail. (I am the oddball out here, folks) The girls have limits-both behaviorally and academically. They are reminded when they cross over the line.

Western: We have simple birthday parties. We have sleepovers and watch movies. And play the Wii. We place alot of emphasis on our faith but remind that girls that faith without works (or practice) is not always the best idea. We do fun things as a family-watching old reruns of Family Ties, for example. When the girls cross the acceptable/unacceptable lines, we let them know. Sometimes harshly and sometimes gently. They do not get their way ALL the time.

No, I don't know how my girls will 'turn out' yet. But I do know we are trying to parent them with love and respect. Respect for who they are and what they enjoy.