Name of respondent: Gerard Thomas (a.k.a. Coach Jerry)
Bio: I have always emphasised that a child exude HEIGHTENED CONFIDENCE and are most teachable when they are HAPPY! And in this state of mind, we will be able to bring out the CHAMPION in them.
Who influences your parenting style?
My mummy, daddy, siblings, wife and children, surely! Their hugs and kisses makes me feel very special. I always felt like a champion because I know my family members love me dearly. Hence, this is the way I want to approach parenting.
How do you develop close relationships with your children?
The word is LOVE! Your approach should be soft and you MUST talk kindly. You can be firm but never rough! This is the most important way to win a child's heart. Then, you must know how to make them laugh and be happy. Share the “7 Habits of Happy Kids” by Sean Covey, at every chance that you get with the child. This must be ‘part and parcel' of their early childhood. My gift from God: I love children and they find me funny and approachable. Over these 10 years, we have even cared for children with special needs. It is the way you deal with each child. Knowing their strengths, weaknesses, wants, needs, and engaging with them accordingly.
What is the best piece of parenting advice or guidance you have ever received?
From Mummy: before you say or do anything, think! Put yourself in the other party's shoes and decide if your action or reaction will hurt. Follow your heart and do the good thing.
What are some of the biggest challenges you face in parenting? How do you deal with them?
Understanding their thoughts, needs and wants. Keep them always in sight and close to you. Family meals and frequent outings together are very crucial to a close relationship.
As a parent, what is the one thing that you want to do better or be better at?
In doing the things your children like, e.g. X-Box, etc…. hahahaha!
What advice do you have for parents who have kids of the same age?
Never ever raise your hands or threaten or shout at your child or use vulgarities! These actions will come back to haunt you through their actions, someday!
With the COVID-19 virus raging out there, how do you deal with working from home with the kids around?
Allocate your working time, make it your first priority of the day and try to complete it. Thereafter, you can have fun with the family. For younger kids, this is a good time to play games by letting them do household chores and rewarding them with pocket money for their piggy bank each time. Tell them that you have a budget to distribute to them through these fun games and challenges. Use the money that is supposed to be their daily pocket money anyway as their rewards.
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Our aim is to help our children discover their talents, realise their full potential, and develop a passion for life-long learning.