Best Interest of the Child-the operating principles of the Act (3)

Opening Charge

‘I must say that I only began to prepare myself for the challenges of adulthood at the age of 27, 9 years into adulthood. What a pitiable picture, training for the race of life 9 years after nature has blown the staring whistle.’

Today, I bring to conclusion the piece I began three days ago, establishing and enlightening that the best interest of the child must be the cardinal in all our dealings on children. I ended my personal story. I stated that I left home as a liability. I shared some of the characteristics that marked my life at 18 because the custodians of my life at childhood did not understand the principle; I am sharing with you here. Please follow me closely:

Birth of the Rain Beaten Chicken Mentality: I left my father with what I call, the Rain Beaten Chicken Mentality. I took a careful look at my life and found that there were serious correlations between me and the Rain Beaten Chicken, I saw regularly in the village. Four things characterise a Rain Beaten Chicken’s life:

  • It is Sickly: I was sick in my mind.
  • It is Dirty: I was dirty in my soul (mind, will and emotion).
  • It is Vulnerable: A needy person is vulnerable. It is difficult for a needy man or woman to have boundaries in his or relationships. For a person to erect boundaries in a relationship, he or she must be secure in himself or herself. A sage once said, ‘a man without rule over his spirit is like a city without wall.’ I had no rule over my spirit. Being needy I accepted every offer of friendship irrespective of the circumstances or tenets of the relationship. Thus my already wounded psyche again was opened to ‘avoidable’ attacks. The only way I felt I could make sense was to be vulnerable. It was therefore difficult for me to be myself, speak my mind and insist on my rights in a relationship. I must let you know that it is a difficult way to live, trying to read the mind of those you are close to and acting in accordance to their perceived desire.

I must say that I only began to prepare myself for the challenges of adulthood at the age of 27, 9 years into adulthood. What a pitiable picture, training for the race of life 9 years after nature has blown the staring whistle. Words like vision, mission, value, discipline, purpose entered into the dictionary of my life perception at the age of 27. I make bold to say that going by the foregoing calculation, I have only lived meaningfully for 14 years.

The major reason why parents and other custodians of the life of the child are not able to act in the best interest is because they do not take time to understand the child before they seek to help him. Adults have a way of feeling they understand children, enough to try to help them without their input. Unfortunately, they are not conscious of the times enough to note that the times have changed between when they were young and now.

Let me begin to conclude as I share with you five basic needs of the child, which every custodian of the life of the child must have on his fingertips

–          Every child needs SOMEONE to BELIEVE–  A Role Model

–          Every child needs SOMETHING to BELIEVEValues

–          Every child needs SOMEWHERE to BELONG-Family and Community

–          Every child needs SOMETHING to BECOME– Aspiration to Significance and Pursuit of Inner Potential

–          Every child needs the AFFIRMATION of his FREEDOM and RESPONSIBILITY- A sense of dignity and self-worth

I strongly believe that the five fundamental needs of the child become effectual in the training and upbringing when the custodians of the child, in the word of Ed Louis Cole, employ as the Operating System the following:

–                    Intimacy (not  familiarity)

–                    Discipline (not punishment)

–                    Love (not unguarded pampering)

–                    Value (not dogmatism)

I am positive you have been equipped today on what it means to act in the best interest of the child and how to successfully achieve same. Have an INSPIRED weekend.

I’m Taiwo Akinlami & I Lead the TeacherFIRE™ Revolution

POINT 2 PONDER:

The major reason why parents and other custodians of the life of the child are not able to act in the best interest is because they do not take time to understand the child before they seek to help him.’

NOTE THESE:

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