Between family, friends, school and extracurricular activities your kid doesn’t have much time to be just a kid. A kindergarten child needs space to evolve without feeling pressures similar to adult life. As parents we are all dealing with this major disease called “peer pressure” and its influence on the child’s psychology.
Studies have shown that the influence of peers has a significant role to play in the academic and non-academic achievements of your kid. All the influences of peers are not necessarily negative. Also, we cannot place every action of your child completely on the shoulders of a peer group.
Following in the footsteps of more intelligent children is usually presumed to be a good thing. But this coin has two sides:
It could make your kid smarter too. The child may develop a killer-instinct for setting his or her goals and working towards achieving them.
On the other hand, the peer pressure could prove too much for the kid. The child would then show signs of rebellion. This behavior is a defense mechanism so that he doesn’t have to match the achievements of the peer group and this can become a habit.
Negative peer pressure doesn’t necessarily mean vices, substance abuse or petty crime! There can be other negative influences of peers that will not only affect the child’s academic performance, but will also change the entire future of the child.
Your kid is very intelligent and capable of achieving good grades. But his peers consider only physical activities and games as achievements. This situation is very common and seems fine when you look at it superficially. But if you look at the long term prospects of your child and potential for higher achievements, it would be a tragedy to let the kid focus only on sports.
The influence of peer groups starts when a child is in kindergarten and not as teenagers. So here’s a six-step antidote for the ailment called peer pressure:
At the end of the day it boils down to one thing, LISTENING! The more you listen to your kindergarten child talk, the better is your influence on his/her thoughts. Don’t give up your parental right to influence the mind of your child. Most times, just being there for the child at the right time is all that is needed to make the kid self-reliant and self-confident enough to deal with peer pressure.