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Parent Care vs. Pay Care

Teaching a child basic early on
Derek Rose

It is not likely talk radio will solve the social ills experienced in the New Orleans area or around the nation but, local talk radio can often bring issues from out of the closet into an open forum. Wednesday, on Tommy Tucker’s WWL radio morning show two issues which affect children and families were discussed. Stay at home parents and the Common Core educational platform. But no matter what educational system that is brought forth for students when they are of school age, there may be nothing more important than what children learn in the first three to six years of their lives. Children need to be nurtured and stimulated for learning at a young age and a stay at home parent, whether a mom or a dad can be vital to a child’s early development, if the parent takes the time to teach and interact with that child constructively. It has been said, small children are like sponges, they soak in everything and learn much from observation alone, however observation without interaction could stifle advanced cognitive development. If babies or toddlers are put in front of a television to watch Sponge Bob Square Pants they may be entertained but what will they learn from it? Chances are they may learn how to say Sponge Bob but if a parent watches Sponge Bob with them and narrates what Sponge Bob and other characters are doing and saying the dynamic changes tremendously on what that child takes in. Those early years are also an opportune time to teach children counting and the basics for reading so by the time children are ready for Kindergarten they will have already learned all of the alphabets and significant counting, adding single digits, and basic reading skills. For a lot of families a stay at home parent may have a greater financial advantage as well, which was one of the matters discussed on the Tommy Tucker show. With the high cost of daycare it may make more sense for a parent to not work rather than work just to pay for childcare and especially if the child is not learning while in childcare, or worst learning bad behaviors or habits. Ultimately parents must weight what is the most important alternative.