Parenting: a Balancing Act

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Parenting:
A Balancing Act
“You’re not doing well enough!” Just how many times have children heard this from their parents? After all, parents do expect their children to do well in life, but sometimes those expectations could place too much of a burden on their children. Most parents worry about the “Big C”, college, which is shown through many of their expectations on their child’s academics, extra-curriculum’s, and sometimes future careers. A study in 2007 by the Childs Trend Databank shows that 69.7% parents expected their children from 6th to 12th grade to receive a Bachelor’s degree or higher. Easier said than done right? Of course, the parent might fill their child’s schedule with dozens of E.C’s and A.P classes to make them stand out in the college applications, but that does not mean they will automatically get into any university or college. Like in the article, “Taming the Overachieving Monster”, the composer, Callie Schweitzer, writes: “Does being class president, captain of the track team, and sole organizer of the school's clothing drive add up to a top college acceptance? No. All it guarantees is stress.” Parenting requires balance between high and low expectations, a task not to be taken lightly. Thus, parents need to learn how to limit their own expectations of their children due to the stress it causes on them.

In some cases, the parents put their children in many after-school programs and encourage them to do more if they want to. Of course, not all children look forward to doing so much and simply want to hang around with their friends or go out shopping. However, this sometimes leads to conflict between parent and child. “I only want to relax in my room and talk on Facebook and have fun, but my mom yells at me to go do more practice work for the SAT’s.” says Anonymous 1, a student. The SAT’s, or the super important test for college, is one of the few tests that is required by colleges in order to apply to them. Out of a maximum 2400 points, parents expect their children to score high in order for them to get into a good college, but to get a high score in the SATs is not exactly the easiest task to do. Some parents expect 2400, some expect 2000 and up, but it still adds more stress to their child when their already grueling schedule is weighted down even more with SAT preparatory classes. Back in the article, “Taming the Overachieving Monster”, Callie Schweitzer states, “It's natural to want your child to succeed, but what, exactly, qualifies as achievement? Too many of today's parents define it as a 2400 on the SATs*, a schedule full of AP classes, and extracurricular activities that take up every afternoon of the school week. Parents often dismiss the reality of the hours of homework this kind of academic load entails”. And it is quite true; some parents do often dismiss the amount of workload coming from all these academic loads.

In a clear sense, parents need to get rid of college rankings or reputations because any college can give their children a good education despite the rank, if their children actually work hard and try. Just because a college or university is ranked high does not mean that going to any college that is not ranked high nor has a great reputation like the “Ivy Leagues” will not give a good education. After all, even if you have a degree from a “prestigious” college, there is no guarantee that employers will fight for you or you getting instant jobs the moment you step out. Like in the article, “Taming the Overachieving Monster,” Callie Schweitzer, quotes, Alexandra Robbins, best-selling author of The Overachievers: The Secret Lives of Driven Kids. Robbins writes,”’Forget the name-brands, forget the reputations in your area and social circles, and for goodness sake, throw the college rankings in the trash.’" Getting a job takes your own effort and time, not solely on getting a degree from a "super-ranked college". “My parents expect me to get into the UC’s only and not...
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