by Michael Grose

5 top tips for raising mighty boys

Young boy using imagination with hand drawn muscles.

Raising and educating boys is a hot topic in Australia and other parts of the world. From my experience, those adults who do best teaching and raising boys have a significant understanding of what makes boys tick.

Regardless of your gender or family situation, here are 5 key understandings that will help you raise well-adjusted boys.

  1. You must like them

Approval is at the heart of raising boys. Most will walk over hot coals for you if they know you like them. In a sense, this need for approval holds many boys back in school, as they can shut for a teacher who doesn’t like them. If you can feel comfortable with their boisterousness, live with their lack of organisational skills, and not be confronted by their in-your-face ways then the chances are that they’ll respond to you.

  1. They are hierarchical by nature

Boys need limits and boundaries as they make them feel safe and secure. They like to know someone is going to enforce those rules, so don’t be afraid to take the lead with them.

  1. Boys are just as sensitive as girls

Despite the fact that research shows that boys are more easily stressed and more fragile than girls, parents will ask daughters how they feel more often than they ask sons. Also when daughters get hurt, parents tend to comfort them more than they comfort sons.

Boys are sensitive you just need to use different language to get them to open up than you do with girls. For instance, a boy will more than likely tell you how he feels if you ask him how he thinks about something. Also, he generally needs more time to process his feelings so bedrooms can become their caves that they’ll retreat to when they need the space to work out what’s going in their hearts.

  1. Loyalty is a high-driver

Understand that a boy’s loyalty to his friends and family is a key driver and you’ll unlock the key to the male psyche. They are incredibly influenced by their peers, which can hold them back, stopping many from getting too far ahead of the pack. Loyalty also gets many boys into strife with authority. Call a boy’s sister or friend an insulting name and you’re asking for trouble!

  1. Boys need a purpose to learn

If you want to motivate a boy to learn then you need to offer him tangible, short-term goals.  He’ll learn to play a musical instrument if he wants to be in a band; but get him to practise a musical instrument without a purpose and you’ll probably be locked in a continuous struggle.

Brought to you by Brighton Grammar School

Michael Grose is an Australian parenting educator, father, author, speaker and founder of www.parentingideas.com.au This article is about

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