A few days ago, a reader complained to me and told such a story. On the weekend, she went to a colleague\’s house to chat and drink tea. Her friend\’s five-year-old daughter Tiantian was playing with building blocks by the bay window. Tiantian is a very well-behaved little girl. She is sensible and obedient. She concentrates hard on everything she learns. She basically does not need adults to worry about her. She is a typical \”other people\’s child\”. This colleague has always been a tiger mother, and because of her daughter\’s various well-behaved behaviors, she has gradually become a parenting expert in their circle of mothers. The weather was particularly nice that day, with the sun shining warmly through the bay window. During the conversation, she noticed a detail. Tiantian, who was playing with building blocks on the side, would often quietly turn her head and glance at her mother while arranging the building blocks. Her eyes were timid, as if she was seeking her mother\’s approval, or to confirm whether her mother had done anything. Frowning in disapproval. This detail shocked her, and she swallowed back all the parenting questions she had originally planned to ask. Tiantian\’s performance made her feel distressed. The seemingly well-behaved and sensible little girl seemed to lack the innocence and brazenness that children of this age should have. The key is that she did not appear confident enough. Is it because her mother is usually too strict and doesn’t give her enough freedom? She originally felt that the little guy at home who was always \”taking advantage of the house\” needed to be properly disciplined, but suddenly she felt that being too strict was problematic. She was confused. If the control was lenient, she would be \”bearish\”, but if the control was strict, she would be \”cowardly.\” What should she do? Frankly speaking, I can\’t give a very direct answer, but we may be able to get some inspiration from the practices of American schools and parents. I think many of the education methods in the United States and the United States need to be looked at twice, but on this issue, I think their sense of proportion is quite appropriate. In general, most parents in the United States are very strict in disciplining their children, perhaps even stricter than we imagine. Sometimes a gesture or a tone of voice can shock a disobedient child. However, in many other cases, American children are more \”free\” than we imagine. They can handle and decide many things on their own without the discussion and consent of their parents. What is the difference between lenient and strict, and where is the boundary between \”freedom\” and \”unfreedom\”? Speech and behavior are not free. The first thing American children feel is the lack of freedom of speech. Some things must be said, and some things must not be said. American families often organize various parties for their children and invite children to play at home. You will find that when the party ends and the little host sends each little guest away, he will say very politely: \”Thanks for coming.\” (Thank you for coming.) At this time, the little guests will also respond very politely. : \”Thanks for inviting me.\” (Thank you for inviting me.) When the children are not yet proficient in using these two phrases, parents on both sides must be there to encourage and supervise. Anyway, the party will not end until these words are fully said. But there are some words that must not be said and are considered taboo. For example, in the escape school, words like stupid (stupid) and dumb (dumb) (actually, I think dumb is not that serious, but the school regulations are notcan be said) is absolutely not allowed to appear. At the end of last school year, I received an email from the teacher who escaped from the classroom to parents. The main idea was that some students had set the usernames of some iPods in the classroom to ××is dumb. The teacher believed that this practice had a serious impact. , and decided not to provide iPods to children for the rest of the school year, and hoped that parents would also communicate well with their children. Restricted speech is only part of the \”unfreedom\” of American children, and their behavior is even more restricted by various rules. For example, in a school where students are running away, starting from preschool, being late is a very serious matter, which is equivalent to being absent from class. If the cumulative number of students exceeds the prescribed range, they will be expelled and need to re-apply to the school district. In addition, they have to learn various behavioral norms and social rules since kindergarten, such as the classification of garbage, which takes several weeks to learn and practice. And when a child grows up and is more exposed to society, the restrictions he receives also become more restrictive. Last week, there was an assignment about fishing in Escape. Originally, I thought I would just go to the lake to fish and experience it and that would be it. Later I found out that it was not that simple. It was said to be a fishing operation, but before I actually started fishing, I had to do a lot of homework and understand a lot of fishing rules. Fishing in the United States requires a license. Before fishing, you must apply for a fishing license. And different types of permits may be required for different lakes. In addition, you should also check the specific requirements of each lake. Some lakes can only fish on the shore, while in other lakes, you can fish in the lake by boat. There are also regulations for caught fish. If the fish is smaller than the specified size, it must be returned to the lake. It’s not easy to let children go fishing comfortably in the United States! Life is full of all kinds of insurmountable rules, and there are restrictions everywhere. These rules need to be respected. This is what American children need to understand and learn from an early age. So are there any areas where they are particularly relaxed and free? some. \”My territory is my own.\” In the United States, the first \”free zone\” that children occupy is their own lunch box. Many children can decide what to eat for lunch every day since kindergarten. This is amazing, because the children\’s decision is not just verbally talking or yelling for their mother to prepare it, but they actually put their little heads into the refrigerator and take out everything by themselves, mix it well, and put it in. Take it to school in a lunch box. Of course, this is also because lunch in the United States is not very particular. Most families will prepare enough bread, cheese, jam, fruit and other food, and the children only need to mix it by themselves. The same goes for hobbies and interests. Many American parents have a rather optimistic \”wait and see + support\” attitude. Our neighbor has three children, all boys. Their father is a professional football coach and is somewhat famous in our area. According to our ideas, the three boys should play football around dad all day long, but the reality is that dad still plays his football, while the children play their own things. The eldest loves skateboarding, and the second child likes swimming. , the third child likes to draw. I once asked my neighbor’s father if he felt a little regretful that none of his three children played football with him.? He smiled and said that maybe the mother would be more regretful because none of her children were female like her. In addition to \”eating, drinking and having fun\”, American children also have greater autonomy in learning. In the curriculum of their school, there is free reading time every day. During this time, children can read any book they want. They can read it in the classroom or in the library. They can read it lying on the floor or lying on a chair. They can also read it while eating snacks. , with all kinds of postures. If you walked into the classroom at this time, you would definitely sigh, this is too loose and loose~~~ Where should it be wider? Where should we be strict? Have you discovered that not affecting others is actually the scope of American children\’s \”freedom\”? If it is a matter that only concerns the children themselves, parents will generally have a looser control, and the children will have greater freedom. They can make choices and decisions according to their own ideas, and control many things within their own jurisdiction; but If the matter concerns others and affects the external social environment, children\’s \”freedom\” will be greatly reduced and they will encounter various warnings and regulations. This range may appear to be a limitation, but in fact it is a more effective way to ensure the purity of children’s “freedom”. Because only by clearly knowing where the boundaries are, can we more freely grasp the \”freedom\” within this limited range and maximize this \”freedom\”. Being measured in how you treat people and things externally, and having no limits in exploring yourself internally, this is the most appropriate definition of freedom that we should give our children. Going back to the previous reader\’s troubles, I feel that it is not the key to how loose or strict the control of children is. The key lies in where to be loose and where to be strict. Give your children enough freedom within their own scope, and give them clear norms and limits when interacting with others. External strictness and regulation can help children win the respect and trust of society, while internal freedom can allow children to enjoy the feeling of \”making their own decisions in their own territory\”. In the process of making their own decisions, children\’s self-confidence will also increase. It gradually became solid.