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Define Good Parenting Skills, Please
And Use It in a Sentence

You’ve heard about good parenting skills and you want them. What are they exactly? Is there some list you could follow? Maybe you heard the public library offers a class on Tuesday nights on the subject.

But you might just take out a Dr. Seuss book for you and your child instead of attending that class, (if you have your library card handy) because I think we can figure it all out right now.

Let’s look at this phrase - very common sensibly - one word at a time and see what we get.

The first word in the phrase is maybe the most perplexing. When referring to us humans, what is “good” anyway? To simplify, we’ll use the dictionary.

: of a favorable character or tendency

Morticia and Gomez would probably disagree, but I’m going to list a few standard "favorable" character traits.

  • Responsible
  • Honest
  • Kind
  • Self-disciplined
  • Patient
  • Thoughtful
So, what’s a parent?

a : one that begets or brings forth offspring
b : a person who brings up and cares for another

Nine months of torture and hideous, death defying labor accomplished, (clearly a woman’s perspective) a child is born. We brought forth offspring. We love and care for this child. We can safely assume we got the root word "parent" part of the phrase covered.

But before we move on, let’s see what we have so far.

A "good parent" is someone with favorable character that cares for a child.

Yikes! Am I crazy? Could it really be as simple as that?

Okay...let’s go at it from another angle. How about the phrase "bad parent"? I’m sure we all have an idea of what makes one. And I guarantee it has to do with objectionable character!

Here are some unfavorable character traits in front of the word parent. Feel free to put in some other nasty tendencies and add to the list if you’d like.

  • Irresponsible parent
  • Dishonest parent
  • Unkind parent
  • Undisciplined parent
  • Impatient parent
  • Thoughtless parent
Doesn’t it stand to reason that if these and other unfavorable character traits make a bad parent that the very opposite make a good one?

Now let’s look at the second word in the phrase good parenting skills.

: the raising of a child by its parents

The keyword in this definition is "raising". And before I started to write this article on good parenting skills I had no idea that it would fit so perfectly with my train of thought.

1 : to cause or help to rise to a standing position 3 : to set upright by lifting or building

Is it just me, or do you think this is extremely interesting, too?

Here’s what I mean... the word "upright" is synonymous with some of the most favorable character traits one could have!

Synonyms: honest, just, conscientious, scrupulous, honorable

Once again, the Adams family aside – aren’t these the best things that one could hope for a child to grow to be?

So we can say...

"Good Parenting" is a parent of favorable character that helps their child and causes them to stand in uprightness.

For some reason we thought good parenting skills had something to do with being involved in the PTA or having our children participate in sports or reading bedtime stories to them. But it just ain’t so!

Any success your child might grow to have, if they lack uprightness, those achievements are useless!

Want to see some examples of what I mean?

    President of the United States
    Wow! It doesn’t get much more successful than that, does it? Now try Dishonest President. All of a sudden we’re ashamed.

    My son, the Doctor!
    A parent might brag. But if they were to say, "My son, the Unscrupulous Doctor!" we would be unimpressed.

    I think you can figure out this one by yourself!

Okay, so what about dance classes, bedtime stories, helping with homework, three healthy meals a day, and all the other things we do as a parent? Don't they add up to a hill of beans when it comes to good parenting skills?

It all goes back to the character of the parent. Whether favorable or ill, the things we do are mere offshoots of these tendencies. Of course, I have examples!

  • A Responsible Parent takes care of the needs of their child. Proper diet, rest, and exercise, keeping their little bodies and teeth clean are just some of what this parent calls important.
  • A Thoughtful Parent listens when their child talks, reads a story that the parent can’t stand (for the umpteenth time), takes them fishing and to ball practice because these things make the child happy.
  • A Kind Parent is affectionate, loving, gentle and helpful.
  • An Honest Parent is a parent a child can trust.
  • A Self-Disciplined parent keeps themselves and their child on the straight and narrow.
  • A Patient Parent is steadfast and calm even in difficulties.
If we could possess even a few of these wonderful traits then ballet class could indeed prove a profitable experience for a child.

Good Parenting Skills

Finally, let’s look at the third word of this phrase and see if we can’t wrap this up.

: the ability to use one's knowledge effectively and readily in execution or performance

People can be skillful in lots of different things. There are skillful musicians, skillful builders, skillful candlestick makers, and yes, even skillful lawyers.

Skillful people are knowledgeable in their field. And without hesitation they perform their task effectively.

When we take what we now know about the words good, parenting, and skills and put them all together we get...

A parent of favorable character, and knowledgeable in such qualities, effectively and readily helps their child and causes them to stand in uprightness.

There you have it - the meaning of "good parenting skills"! I think we can see now that it’s not what we do, but it’s what we are. All of a sudden being a "soccer mom" (or dad) seems like a walk in the park, huh?

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