“I’m glad we have child labor laws, but it’s harder to teach kids a good work ethic now.”
I’m not kidding you, that’s what I heard on the Christian radio station on Monday. Honestly, I should really stop listening to that station, the DJs are always saying something stupid/horrific/mean.
Because really, should anyone ever follow ‘I’m glad we have child labor laws’ with ‘but’? There is no but! Child labor laws are wholly and completely good. There is no downside to keeping 4 year olds out of factory jobs. A work ethic isn’t learned from slave labor.
You know where a work ethic is learned? From parents. Kids learn what their parents model for them. If you are lazy and calling in to work and trying to avoid every task and chore you can, your kids learn to have no work ethic. If you get done what needs to get done with a happy heart and without complaining – guess what your kids will learn?
That’s what kills me when my parents generation talk about how terribly lazy my generation is (and this conversation is not new, every generation thinks that the next one is sooooo lazy and sooooo spoiled). If you think that your kids’ generation is lazy, you really have no one to blame but yourself. Who do you think raised that generation? Where did they learn their laziness? Did they learn it listening to you complain about work? Did they learn it watching you sit around the house while pinning housework on them?
I’m not saying kids shouldn’t have chores, or that parents can’t take a break once in a while. Obviously they can. And should. But a parent’s overall attitude toward work will teach a child how to view all tasks.
Are you teaching your kids what they need to know? Are you modeling for them the ethic they should have?