Module #6: Types of Parents “Your pleasant presence matters quite a lot." “I’m a 4-H Parent…Now What?” Indiana 4-H Parent Resource Series for Extension Educators, Volunteers, and Parents Compiled by Steve McKinley, Extension Specialist, Leadership & Volunteerism
Objective: Describe four general types of parents. Questions to answer: What are four general types of parents? How can we help all types of parents participate in the 4-H program?
Types of Parents • Parents can be classified into four general types: • Balanced • Overindulgent • Overstrict • Unconcerned
Balanced Parents… • Share planning, decision making and home project work with their children. • Encourage 4-H to become part of the family. • Teach their children the self-discipline necessary to do 4-H projects.
Balanced Parents… • Use a kind but firm hand. • Need less guidance than some of the other types, but want to be constantly informed of any new developments, projects or activities that are available. • Are more concerned with the educational value of 4-H than with the specific award the member’s project receives.
Overindulgent Parents… • Protect and pamper their children. • Have boys and girls who join 4-H only because their parents think it will be good for them. • Frequently do much of the project work and record keeping for their 4-H members.
Overindulgent Parents… • Find it easier to do the work than to guide and teach their children the self-discipline necessary to complete the work. • Have children who may lack initiative. • Hinder the development of their child’s imagination and creativity.
Overstrict Parents… • Are the fault-finders who give very little constructive criticism and no praise. • Frequently force adult standards on their youngsters, making it impossible for the 4-H member to succeed. • Have children who may be insecure, frustrated or rebellious and may not complete the project for fear of it not being “good enough.”
Unconcerned Parents… • Give their children no encouragement. • Have children who tend not to join clubs at all, or if they do, they become only “members.” • Have members who, if they start a project, seldom finish it because of the lack of guidance or enthusiasm at home.
Unconcerned Parents… • Should be contacted frequently and kept informed of their child’s progress. • Need to be encouraged to find some areas in which they can develop an interest in the child’s work.
Challenge to Parents: • Why did you want your child to join 4-H? • If it is to win, you will be disappointed. • If it is so your child can learn and become involved in a worthwhile activity, you will be satisfied. • Recognition comes with doing the best your child can do. • Be a supportive parent and help your child and 4-H volunteer to “Make the Best Better!” • Remember…the development of your child is more important than your ego!
Challenge to Volunteers and Extension Staff: • Each type of parent is different and each will require various ways to be involved positively. • Consider each child and each parent in the light of individual differences as you set up the 4-H Program and ask for parental involvement.