Instilling a love of Yiddishkeit in our children

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  • #598362

    mommamia22
    Participant

    In light of the recent thread regarding texting on shabbos, (which truly shocked me, as I had no idea it was even going on, let alone prominent), I have become much more concerned about how we can instill a love of Yiddishkeit and Torah in our children. I’m sure that many who have turned to texting were brought up in so called decent yeshivas and families. So, what can we do for our own children to try to give them a more authentic connection?

    #793524

    WIY
    Member

    Momma

    I would recommend you go to Torahanytime.com and find shiurim on the subject. There are a few from Rabbi Rietti who is a master mechaneich and a tremendous talmid chacham and great speaker.

    http://torahanytime.com/Rabbi/Jonathan_Rietti/

    You can search the words Chinuch, children, child… there should be some great shiurim popping up from the likes of Rabbi Wallerstein, Rabbi Donny Frank and other chashuv Rabbanim and mechanchim. You can’t go wrong with anything from those 3 names.

    #793525

    MiddlePath
    Participant

    Perhaps if we (the parents) show a more outward love for Jewish practices and Judaism in general, children will want to emulate that more.

    #793526

    sm29
    Participant

    I agree, when we show love and joy with our Jewish practice, it pours over to them. Plus, both parents should remember to spend enough quality time with kids, talk, listen, and have a good time.

    #793527

    welldressed007
    Participant

    Simple Simon says, do as I say, not as I do!!! Teach by true example and your children will be just fine. Children on so many levels seek to emulate their parents, so just in case the hint that was dropped before, be true to to yourself….

    #793529

    Be Happy
    Participant

    Paysach Krohn tells a story of a nursery class having a Shabbos Party. The child playing the Tatty stands up to make Kiddush. He wipes his brow and says “oi hob ich gehat a shvere voch” (Oh have I had a hard week) Is this how we greet the Malochim? Is this how we instil the beaty of Shabbos?

    #793530

    Ofcourse
    Member

    It wouldnt hurt if Parenting courses were offered at High School level, regularly. Theres so much I would have liked to know when I was younger, that I had to find out on my own. A little less Chumash/Rashi and a little more open discussions/”real life” courses.

    #793532

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    So, what can we do for our own children to try to give them a more authentic connection?…

    Perhaps if we (the parents) show a more outward love…

    I agree, when we show love and joy with our Jewish practice…

    Simple Simon says, do as I say, not as I do!!!…

    Right, so it isn’t going to be enough to “show” love and joy for judaism. We will need to genuinely “have” love and joy for judaism.

    #793533

    Abba bar Aristotle
    Participant

    Love is an emotion. So, by definition, if you are merely “showing love”, you are faking it – and children see through our superficial acts.

    If we want our children to love Hashem; Mitzvos; Torah – then we have to really love them – really feel it.

    If we don’t, then it is our job to begin a project of improving our attitudes.

    Too difficult? Don’t know how? Then we need to find the right Rebbe who can teach us properly.

    #793534

    Teach your children to recognize their maalos through you pointing it out to them. When children are aware of their individual kishronos they will naturally become more motivated. When they do mitzvos like davening/learning/keeping Shabbos make sure to point out their accomplishments to them so they will naturally learn to appreciate the mitzvos which they do, thereby increasing their motivation to do more mitzvos.

    #793535

    TheGoq
    Participant

    I think is more important to show love of their children than anything else people think parents loving their kids is an automatic but its not, my father A”H hated me and didnt let an opportunity pass to let me know that he hated me. I’m not saying parents are always to blame for otd kids but sometimes the people you know and are friends with at shul are completely different in their homes.

    #793536

    EzratHashem
    Member

    I disagree with the view that as long as all is rosy in the child’s home he/she will love yiddishkeit. Jews operate in a kehilla, there are many strong influences on a child. We are all responsible– mechanchim, community rabbaim, parents, leadership of organizations etc….Also, there is no one global answer for this question, different children have different needs… that being said, being treated respectfully and with love by peers & teachers goes a long way, aside from the necessity of the parent/child bond. Kids are the 1st to pick up on what is going wrong within, our hypocrisies, pettiness and jealousies etc…

    #793537

    MiddlePath
    Participant

    Popa, I of course agree that we must HAVE a real love for it. I specifically used the word “show” because I think not only do we need to HAVE a genuine love for it (Which we must have to begin with), but we also should go out of way to SHOW it outwardly, because some children may not see it otherwise.

    #793538

    aries2756
    Participant

    Role modeling is the best teaching mechanism. If YOU show a love of yiddishkeit, your children will learn it. If you find it difficult what do you expect.

    Furthermore, if you take a look at the school system, only in pre-school do you see that ahavah and fun being displayed. As soon as you hit the regular classes it is all serious again. There is less and less arts and crafts, music, singing, etc. and more, work, work, work. There is less of a mitzvos aseh and more chumras and lo tasseh. In pre-school it is all about what we do. In first grade and up they teach about what we don’t do.

    #793539

    MiddlePath
    Participant

    Aries, good point. (As usual!)

    You may like this thread I started a while ago:

    http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/coffeeroom/topic/educating-through-music

    #793540

    the.nurse
    Member

    Goq

    I am sorry you went through a childhood like that.

    #793541

    TheGoq
    Participant

    ty nurse it was rough and i am still dealing with the effects of it today.

    #793542

    aries2756
    Participant

    Goq, that’s terrible. There is no excuse for that. Even if a father has mixed emotions or does not have a strong bond towards a child they should never show it and they should work on it every single day. It is a parent who chooses to bring children into this world and not the other way around. The parent has the obligation to make a child feel loved and wanted. That must be the worst aveirah ever.

    #793543

    TheGoq
    Participant

    Thank You Aries, it was a pretty miserable existence, the smartest thing i ever did was move far away from home, the stress that this relationship put on my life was undescribeable it manifested itself in stomach troubles and hair loss both of which ceased not too long after i moved away.

    #793544

    Another name
    Participant

    The Goq, Much of what I wanted to say was already said, but I still want to let you know that what you went through was tragic. It is amazing that you are not shattered. That you moved on and grew from this experience. That you remained a g-d fearing jew when your key role model didn’t provide that positive image. I was shocked to read what happened to you, since all your posts are always filled with so much brilliance, knowledge, encouragement, and strength. Wow, the goq, I respect you.

    #793545

    TheGoq
    Participant

    that is so nice ty another.

    #793546

    Not going to go into specifics because I don’t want the mods to censor my post…. so here goes:

    When my kids were teenagers, life was very rough in our house due to illness in the family. One kid was left to his own devices too many times because of the illness. He started hanging with the wrong crowd and I was scared for him. He was not in HS yet, but I decided mid year to send him to a Yeshiva out of town so that he could be surrounded be the Torah way in a safer environment than he was getting at home. When he was with me, whatever crazy music or styles he was interested in, I met him halfway. I showed him that, in my opinion, he could listen to M&M and other rappers and still be a Torah Jew. I learned the lyrics with him. I wanted him to see that we could incorporate his likes into our lives as long as they did not interfere with our Torah life. I made it well known that I trusted him to make the right decisions and I expected him to be the best Ben Torah he could be no matter what was going on at home. He never went off the derech. (at least not in my opinion.) He is now in his 3rd year in Yeshiva post HS in Israel. Maybe it worked out so nicely because I lean more towards the MO way of life and had more lenient expectations. I would NEVER allow texting on Shabbos, but if he wanted to wear jeans during the week, he could. He has chosen NOT to, in case you are wondering.

    #793547

    ItcheSrulik
    Member

    First and foremost, the kid has to differentiate between Judaism and the Jews. That’s the only thing that kept me shomer torah umitzvos.

    #793548

    HaLeiVi
    Participant

    Since I had real, solid role models, the particular Rebbi didn’t make much of a difference.

    When I’m trying to stop a child from doing a Melacha on Shabbos, in stead of saying, yaw notta ladda, I say, Shabbos with a tone of awe. The child understands that obviously it is something not to be done, but he also gets the message that it is because of the specialty of Shabbos and not the restrictiveness thereof. Whenever discussing Shabbos, and what it is about, we mention the Seuda, nosh for kids, and not that it is a time when we aren’t allowed to do things.

    #793549

    MiddlePath
    Participant

    Goq, I was totally unaware of your situation before this thread, and I’m sorry to learn of it. I must say you seem to be incredibly strong willed and positive to be able to go on with seemingly no problems at all. I can only try to be as strong willed as you when dealing with my own family situation. Respect, bro.

    #793550

    mommamia22
    Participant

    The goq

    I’m sorry for what you went through. It’s amazing that you came out intact, and a real credit to you.

    I find it hard to instill a real appreciation of Yiddishkeit in the home. A lot of Yiddishkeit is about have to or can’t do’s. I remind my kids to say brachos and explain it’s how we thank Hash-em. I give them good positive verbal feedback (good job!) when they say it. But, somehow, the reminders seem a bit like nagging, and although they’re young, I don’t think they value saying brachos (for instance). We try to make shabbos fun (play dates, going to the park, shabbos treats, etc). But the do nots are so blatant (no elevator in a building, no bike riding, no muktza toys, no touching the air conditioner if you’re cold, no cooking (even if you want eggs or grilled cheese), etc. And the list goes on. Also, with regard to peer relationships and teachers, that can be an even greater challenge with a kid who doesn’t fit in b/c of special issues. The things that I would love to do that inspire me, to learn/read, go to shiurim, actually be able on shabbos to participate in a shul davening… None of these things are readily available to me at this time/stage in my life. So, I read to my kids, and sing to them at night/shma etc.

    #793551

    EzratHashem
    Member

    Smiley: We sorely need role models like you, in helping us deal with rampant OTD. Kol haKavod for successfully keeping your balance walking that very thin line.

    #793552

    EzratHashem
    Member

    Mommamia: Try talking to the kids about Hashem as though He is a member of your family, for ex, when they say a bracha well, try ” Hashem heard your bracha and He is so happy that you are thankful for your food…..” Try to bring Hashem into as much of what the kids do, in other words, facilitate the relationship and dialogue between themselves and Hashem. On Shabbos, it might be helpful to talk about your own pleasure in the day; share with them in a real way, as you might to a good friend, about what is particularly wonderful to you about Shabbos. Just suggesting.

    #793553

    TheGoq
    Participant

    ty middle and momma

    #793554

    mommamia22
    Participant

    Ezrat H. : great suggestion! Thank you so much! And thank you all for writing and giving your thoughts and opinions. It definitely helps to hear what worked, what didn’t and all your suggestions. Again, thank you.

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