Are toddlers losing part of their childhood by going at an earlier and earlier age to school? In Australia they start with babies of six months of age to six years. Parents want smart and clever kids and choose the best pre-school activities and education, sometimes driving from one activity to another totally fatigued. There are religious education classes in the afternoons; violin lessons, soccer practice, and the kids hardly have time just being kids with all the scheduling for extra activities to turn them into super kids. In a way some of the old parenting methods worked better because the mother spent more time with their babies in the early years.

 The two zeesCredit: Rayda Jacobs

Enjoy your toddler’s early childhood

Don’t put your toddler in a day care facility for at least two years; let your toddler have the pleasure of crawling around and taking the pots and pans out of the cupboards. We did it and nothing bad happened. We learned what not to eat on the floor and what not to put in our mouth. We learned about danger and the heat from the electric and coal stoves. We knew how far away to sit from it in winter and knew not to touch the knobs. We were learning all this under our mother’s watchful eye; not from a day care facility. It is more work for the mother, of course, but the toddler is in heaven discovering all kinds of things.


First important years

A busy mother does not want to run after a toddler crawling around and scratching out. For the toddler, however, the floor is an entertainment park. During these crawling months you can teach the child simple words like mummy, daddy, please, thank you, and don’t touch. The child remembers because it is his mother. He remembers her touch and her smell. He knows he is safe as long as he sees her in the room. It is not to his father he runs when he is hurt; it is to his mother. A different kind of education takes place when the mother herself is there for those first important years. She gets to know her child and learns how to raise him. She can instil God in him. She can teach him values; he will listen because she is the most important woman in his life. A child who has his mother’s undivided attention in the early years fares better than a latch-key kid or one who spends his formative years in a teaching facility.