7 Things Parents and Teachers should Know about Teens
- Jul 01, 2015
“Believe me, Ma’am, Organic Chemistry is just not my cup of tea!”, exclaimed Farah to her Chemistry teacher, after her fourth failed attempt to memorize the formulae of organic compounds.
Farah’s furrowed brows clearly revealed her disappointment during her Chemistry lessons. And, of course, it manifested itself through her poor grades in this Science subject.
An ardent lover of basketball, Farah Munir Haque was just fifteen.
Although this teenaged girl performed pretty decently in most of the other subjects, Chemistry turned out to be her major stumbling block. Despite her best efforts, she failed to balance the equations perfectly or complete her experiments successfully in the Chemistry lab at school.
Simply put, Chemistry was Farah’s worst nightmare.
Why then, did this girl opt for the Science stream? Well, it is simply because she had succumbed to parental pressure. Farah’s father had always dreamt that his only daughter would grow up to become a doctor.
Mr. Haque’s aspirations compelled Farah to suppress her desire to pursue Commerce and take up Science instead, at the high school.
Consequently, it adversely impacted her academics, and Chemistry was the major culprit. And that was not all. This beautiful young lady spent sleepless nights, haunted by panic attacks. She developed a phobia against this subject and started avoiding it. Farah also started skipping the basketball matches organized during the physical training sessions at her school, traumatized by the fear of Chemistry.
Depression was the constant emotion that accompanied Farah everywhere and developed into her shadow!
Influence of Adults on Teens
Now, just think about it, dear parents and teachers.
Would Farah retreat into a shell had her parents been more understanding and dealt with the issue more maturely? However, I would not accuse the parents alone. Because, somewhere deep down I feel that educators, too, share a responsibility to motivate young adults to fall in love with academics.
And most importantly, teachers play a crucial role in enlightening learners about the most effectual tactics to master lessons, navigating the challenges associated with it. In this process, teachers and education administrators should contribute to a healthy ‘teen-hood’.
Let me remind you, this is something parents and teaching professionals need to address jointly.
At home, youngsters spend a great deal of time with their family. On the other hand, teens are more exposed to peer groups of similar ages as well as their course instructors or teachers. Therefore, it is the joint responsibility of parents and teachers to analyze the psychology of the teens to guide them in every sphere of their lives.
family mother consoling daughter silhouette
After all, ‘teen age’ is similar to ‘molten clay’.
Just as you can easily mold a piece of molten clay to any shape or texture as you desire, you can influence the thought processes, ideas, and eventually, the entire personality of the teenagers!
A generous comment or a pat on the back of the teens who have accomplished the smallest goal has the potential to bring about a world of difference in the lives of these young adolescents.
However, in order to achieve this objective, you should be familiar with the thought processes that are quite common among a large number of teens.
What do Teens Generally Think About?
Parents and teachers should bear in mind that young adults are extremely vulnerable — to the manifold elements of stress, peer pressure, temptation and depression. It is high time you observe teenaged students carefully and identify their personal thoughts and beliefs if you are keen to assist them in overcoming their hurdles.
I have compiled a list of some of them here.
- Contemplating about their purpose: Most teens reflect about their purpose in life. In short, they ponder deeply about their role on earth and keep questioning their self-worth. Besides, they also think about their goals and objectives.
- Thinking about their ‘gifts’: You must be already acquainted with the fact that every individual is blessed with a gift ever since he is born. All you need to do is realize your talent or your strength, and work on it to the best of your ability. I have noticed several teens trying to analyze their strengths.
- Seeking a ‘soul connection’: When people arrive at the threshold of their life known as ‘teenage’, they start seeking for somebody with whom they can instantly strike a connection – be it a human being or anything they can relate to.
- Striving to rise above all fears: Uncertainties and fears are common emotions that engulf the minds of maximum teenagers. These trigger in them a constant defense mechanism that compels them to struggle to wriggle out of messy circumstances or doubts.
- Pursuing their inspiration: Last but not the least, teenaged students often end up looking for ‘that ideal inspiration’, which awakes their inner voice.
If you are aware of these thoughts of your teen children, I am pretty certain that you are smart enough to protect them from pessimistic ideas, aggressiveness, anxiety, and all other evils.
Let me introduce to some of the popular truths about modern teens that would enable you to befriend them immediately.
#1. Teens Lie
If you are a parent of a teenaged child, I bet you are no stranger to this one.
Yes, teens do lie.
But, before you go at them hammer and tongs, let me tell you: there is definitely a good reason for their lies. Well, the only culprit that compels them to conceal facts from elders or state facts inappropriately is that they hate disappointing you. They feel threatened that their truth might create a rift between you and them, thereby breaking their relationship with you.
Therefore, they actually do not possess any intention to deceive you by being dishonest.
But they are really trying out everything in their power to protect their relationships. Because, though they might try their level best to appear confident youngsters, in reality, they are a bunch of sweet, confused, yet intelligent young things!
#2. Teens Crave for Your Company
How often has your teenaged daughter nagged you for taking her out for a movie or to a restaurant? Or, how many times do your students request you for taking them out on field trips?
Some parents or teachers might be wondering about why teens have been requesting them for such things.
I will tell you why.
Teens look for opportunities to hang around with you. Because they just crave for your company and wish to spend quality time with you. They might not confide this to you directly, since they try their best to come across as ‘cool’ youngsters who are born with ‘emotional independence’.
Rather, it is just the opposite.
Children within the age group of thirteen and twenty are generally exhausted of the company of their electronic gadgets or their friends. For, they are constantly in the presence of their classmates who share similar tastes, choices, or interests. Or, they are surrounded by inanimate electronic appliances that provide them ‘temporary pleasure’.
#3. Teens Secretly Wish You Asked Them Questions
They might be unpredictable. Violent. Social creatures. Or simply humans desiring an ample amount of ‘space’ and ‘solitude’. Yet, they yearn for an affectionate embrace from their parents. Or a warm handshake from teachers when they display signs of progress in academics.
So even if they might appear distant, chances are they might just be faking it.
Here is the secret: they do wish you asked them questions. The questions might be focused on their daily activities at school, or their opinion about a particular movie they have recently watched. They expect parents to question them about their best friend. Or, their experience at a late night party.
Some youngsters even wish their teachers asked them about their exam preparation or their favorite subject.
Now, you might ask me: teenaged people seldom open up when they are asked questions, so how to go about it?
It is easy.
A little prodding from your end would encourage them to open their heart out. And you would thank yourself for having inquired your teenaged kids.
#4. Teens Get Bored Easily
Boredom is one of those terms that you cannot have missed if you have a teenaged child or student in your vicinity!
Two other common emotions include frustration and ‘mood swings’.
Have you ever spared a thought about what causes such an intense level of boredom in teenagers?
Don’t you think it is inevitable, with all those social networking platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and others reigning supreme in the life of maximum teens?
Technology, after all, has two sides like a coin.
And while you might be all praise for it, you obviously cannot rule out the fact that it is not free of its pitfalls. For instance, nobody can ignore the fact that your kids turn gloomy and remain so unless they see ‘likes’ on their ‘profile picture’ in Facebook. Or, till their tweets are ‘retweeted’ or ‘favorited’ or replied to.
Such a fierce obsession about the mediums of technology leads to boredom and impulsiveness among numerous users, as per the latest research findings.
#5. Teens are Addicted to Cellphones
Addiction to cellphones is yet another major trend among teens.
At times, parents and teachers might walk that extra mile to persuade teens that it is okay if they do not carry their cellphones with them every now and then.
You can formulate a set of rules that restrict them from overindulging in the luxuries of utilizing these electronic devices 24X7. For example, you can tell your teenaged kids not to use their phones in the dining room, or when they are watching a television program with the entire family.
Ensure that your home turns into a peaceful, ‘no-texting’ zone at certain hours and at certain places.
I am sure you would not prefer your child checking their phones every two minutes into an interesting conversation at the dinner table. So, make your rules about cellphone usage in your home, loud and clear. And remember to make the text-free duration quite entertaining, so that your kids are not tempted to check their text messages or the notifications from social networking sites on their phones!
#6. Teens Want You to Listen
Well, dear parents and teachers, my advice to both: make efforts to be really great listeners instead of trying to be ‘cool’ in front of your teenaged kids or learners.
If your teenaged youngster approaches you, pay heed to her.
Sit down with her for a little chat session after she returns home from school and has taken a nap. Now, with an open mindset, be all ears to everything your little teenaged darling has to share with you. She might be ready to talk to you about her crush in her class, or discuss her apprehension about her Math grades in the finals!
Whatever be the issue, please do listen patiently!
Listen to the entire experience or problem of your child. And then, ask your child about what, according to her, would be the best solution to her issue. Offer your feedback only when your daughter is ready to accept it.
#7. Teens are Rebellious
Rebelliousness is yet another common behavioral pattern of teens.
Well, it is mostly due to a sudden vacuum that might have gradually crept into their lives, albeit unconsciously. Such a vacuum might have been triggered by a communication gap between parents and children. All of a sudden, a teenage student might display symptoms of aggressiveness, like throwing tantrums during a school trip. Or, argue with parents for their permission to spend a night at her friend’s place!
I would suggest you start taking it seriously. And, revitalize the souls of your teenage children by discouraging all sorts of rebellious behavior.
If your children get into the habit of swearing or behaving rudely with you at home, soon he would start practicing it with his teachers and friends at school. It would not cease at this. Your child would grow up into a jerk who loses his temper at the drop of a hat and finally gets fired by his boss at his workplace, due to such behavioral issues.
Inculcate in him the values of kindness, compassion, and respect for humanity and watch him bloom into an adorable gentleman!
These are some of the universal character traits of teens that you need to know to help them out. Teenage or ‘adolescence’ is a transition phase that bridges childhood and adulthood. Therefore, the impression formed on the fresh minds of teenagers is likely to have a profound impact on their conscious as well as subconscious mind. And this would, in turn, act as a foundation for their personality development and character-building.
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