Children learn to respect the home authority at a tender age and this learning goes a long way in shaping their lives. Sure, there is a difference between respecting authority at home and respecting the legal authority. But, the lessons on authority that they learn in their formative years can set the tone for their behaviour in school, in their workplace, in public settings, and when they are out and about in the world.
But how do you educate your child on law and authority in a way that is ingrained in them? How do you help them grow up to become law-abiding citizens?
Have discussions with your children on the purpose of having laws in our society. How the law applies to every citizen. And what would the scenario be like if there wasn’t any law to follow. Cite examples that they would understand. For instance, what would it be like if children in school were allowed to grab things from each other at their will? Allow them to think and answer whether they would like their lunch to be snatched away by one of the children at school. Then relate this instance to the larger context of the society, country, and the world.
Tell them how the law is formed, who enforces it, and what are the consequences of breaking the law. To respect the law, and the authority that creates and enforces it, children need to be aware of the law-making process in lucid terms.
Arrange for friendly interaction with law enforcement personnel in your locality, so the children gain an understanding of how hard they work to maintain peace and order. Who knows, it might even spark their interest in the legal field.
Parents are the first set of role-models for their children. They learn from even your most insignificant habit. So, practice what you preach. When you are teaching your kids to respect law and authority, make sure that you set an example for them by not over speeding, not littering, paying your taxes on time, and so on. These regular law-abiding practices, when etched in the young minds, can deter them from the idea of breaking the law. Despite all measures, you could find your kid in a legal trouble. Having legal experts like Astor Legalto handle such situationscan be of immense help.
While watching television shows or movies, if you come across characters disrespecting the law, misbehaving with authority, ask the children for their opinion. Stoke their critical thinking abilities by encouraging them to play the role of a police officer and decide how such instances of disrespecting the law should be dealt with.
Further, tell them what happens to people who involve in such unlawful acts. This will reinforce the value of respecting law and authority in their minds.
Do you have any other tips to teach children respect and lawfulness?