“Live so that when your children think of fairness, caring, and integrity, they think of you.” – H. Jackson Brown
Children usually have a habit of yelling – “That’s not fair!” Every time we hear it, we start thinking: What’s happening? It is worth noting that children seem to understand injustice at an early age. First of all, fairness in children is not about all things being equal; rather, it’s about actions and consequences that are right, honorable, and equitable.
Fairness in children means everyone gets what they need, however, considering the visible gaps in opportunity.
Tips To Help Develop A Sense Of Fairness In Children:
1- Have family meetings, set house rules together, and be consistent:
School-aged children thrive when they have structure, rules, and boundaries. Teachers often set rules displayed in the classroom. At home, too, one can choose to write down the house rules, helping children know what is expected of them. Some of these can include using indoor voices,” “using gentle hands,” “or “using kind words.” Following the rules is put together consistently to avoid confusion.
2- Be a role model:
As a parent, you need to note. Children pay close attention to how adults follow the rules and treat people. As a parent, you must strive to be a role model. Children will notice inconsistencies and point them out; note this. Demonstrate the types of behavior you’d like to see in kids.
3- Listen to what message they want to convey:
One of the vital things to note is that you need to Listen to your children and validate their feelings. Ensure you take the time to find out what happened and become the mediator in the case of a conflict. Don’t blame and give out a consequence in a reactive way. When you see your child break a rule, talk out the consequences clearly and logically to the children. You can rest assured you’ll be fair once you choose to listen to what your child has to say before making a decision.
4- Empower them:
As a parent, the role you need to play is to talk to your children about what is fair and not fair. Make sure you invest the necessary effort in teaching them what is right and wrong. In addition, you can also read books with morale in them and choose to discuss the main points of interest. Also, you must talk about how they would feel the unfairness happening to them. Children get older, and their brains develop. So, in that case, parents need to share more sophisticated examples of injustice and ask them about their opinions.
5- Fair, but not equal:
Treating siblings “fairly” should be the act where everyone gets what he or she needs. And not that it shouldn’t be what she or he wants because he or she throws a tantrum!
It’s Difficult For Children To Understand The Concept Of Fairness.
Young young children are concrete thinkers, and in this regard, fairness is an abstract concept. It is worth understanding that Children are naturally selfish and tend to think of themselves first. Young children identify a situation or action that works against them as unfair but have a more difficult time identifying an action to perform as unfair to others.
Strategies To Teach About Fairness And Make It More Understandable For Young Children
Be equipped with children brainstorming and role-play solutions, including trading toys, sharing, and playing together.
Be attuned to children’s interactions and be smart enough to respond immediately to incidents of unfairness.
Encourage a secure atmosphere where children can freely express their feelings and ask questions.
Identify fair and unfair behaviors.
Ensure that the idea of fairness is concrete. To make it proper, you can use images to inspire conversations about fairness.
How To Help Children Respond Appropriately When Conflict Arises
Make sure you Address unfair behaviors honestly, directly, and immediately. Children should get the language they need to talk about unfair treatment. Inform them of the words or phrases they can use to express their feelings and guide others to correct unfair behaviors.
Think about the learning environment and try to reflect.
While teaching your children fairness, be sure that they may be disappointed, but you need to explain to them that it is a part of life. As a parent, you need to explain to them that they will not always get what they want whenever they want. Learning and applying the concept of fairness stretch a child’s ability to be patient. Besides, laying the foundation for developing empathy and sensitivity towards others becomes highly beneficial.