Today, in the COVID pandemic, when more and more children study online, people argue that communication with peers is necessary for children’s development. While this is undoubtedly true, there is a more substantial influence within the family, that of parents, who play an essential role in forming personality. This paper argues that parents’ impact on their children’s life surpasses peers’ influence and cannot be overlooked when education issues are concerned.
Parents’ main task is to define the boundaries within which it is safe for children to operate. Children should understand what societal reaction they may encounter if they go beyond the set of established norms. This way, they can explore the world safely, gradually complementing the idea of what is acceptable and what is not (Moreira et al., 2017). However, these boundaries are unstable and may change as a child grows and acquires new rights and responsibilities. By defining borders, parents help a child interact with the outside world in a way that would be beneficial for the kid and society.
Controversially, parents are not always ready to set boundaries. More and more parents opt for the education style where children are allowed to explore the world freely. Communication with peers often helps establish the limits that are not yet set, forming the children’s notions of right and wrong (Moreira et al., 2017). The evidence of this lies in the fact that children with deviant behavior are often not admitted to their peers’ company. Thus, peers play the role of judge of what is good and what is not.
Parents ensure the emotional and physical safety of children, regardless of how the child behaves. Home warmth gives stability no matter how chaotic the world outside the family is. A family where a child feels welcome and respected and within which his interests are shared and not neglected will always be a sacred place for him and be a source of his self-confidence. No peers can provide this feeling regardless of how friendly they are.
However, a close group of friends can give a feeling of unity. Having the same interests, children confide their concerns to peers more easily than to parents because they subconsciously feel each other’s similarities. This phenomenon helps them to deal with problems and achieve a certain autonomy. The fear of not living up to parents’ expectations often lies at the core of such an attitude (Moreira et al., 2017). When the parents are strict and uncompromising, children are sometimes afraid to speak out and turn to peers searching for support. Thus, peers often act as advisors in situations when their parents’ overriding authority makes it difficult to confide in them.
Finally, the family is where a child can understand his likes and dislikes, abilities, and limitations without fear of ridicule or rejection. Parents create conditions to develop a child’s personality and talents, and there is competition, such as can be seen at school when children engage in an activity. Parents support a child’s initiatives and are ready to accept his failures where peers may be critical and discouraging. This way, the family is always there in all life circumstances.
Thus, parents play a major part in children’s education, and the role of the family can hardly be overestimated. Being the key players in a child’s life, parents should find support at all levels when they find themselves in a difficult situation, be it monetary support, psychological, or some good advice. In a broader context, the family represents the model of society and is, in essence, a fundamental part of it. Support of families with children should be among the priorities of every state worldwide. This way, children will be able to feel needed at home and in society at large.
Moreira, H., Fonseca, A., & Canavarro, M. C. (2017). Assessing attachment to parents and peers in middle childhood: psychometric studies of the Portuguese version of the people in my life questionnaire. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 26(5), 1318-1333. Web.