Monday, September 10, 2012

Creating a Culture

"My students quickly see that the simplest tools that parents can wield to elicit cooperation from children are power tools. But there comes a point during the teen years when power tools no longer work. At that point parents start wishing that they had begun working with their children at a very young age to build a culture at home in which children instinctively behave respectfully toward one another, obey their parents, and choose the right thing to do. Families have cultures, just as companies do. Those cultures can be built consciously or evolve inadvertently.
If you want your kids to have strong self-esteem and confidence that they can solve hard problems, those qualities won’t magically materialize in high school. You have to design them into your family’s culture—and you have to think about this very early on. Like employees, children build self-esteem by doing things that are hard and learning what works." Clayton M. Christensen from How Will You Measure Your Life?

This article has me thinking, what would it look like to create a family culture? (Surely, we already have created a family culture, but is it as intentional as we'd like it to be?)  Who are we as a family and what does that mean for our daily life together?  How does our daily life, how do our discipline strategies, how do our family traditions, etc. reflect our values?  Beyond our family, what is our neighborhood culture?  What is our community culture?  What role do we have in shaping that culture?

As always, I'd love to know your thoughts...

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