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Children of primary school age

Children of primary school age

 In the morning hours of August 12, 2023, in the hallway of the Secondary School in Nova Varos, the third in a series of lectures by Dr. Vlajko Panovic was held as part of the summer seminar on parenting organized by the "Petar Mandic" Endowment.

The Third Lecture on Parenting 

The topic of this session was "Parental Attitudes Towards Children of Primary School Age: Common Questions and Answers".

After the introductory speech delivered by Branka Rakonjac, the director of the School, Dr. Panovic shared a part of his experience regarding the proper relationship between parents and children of primary school age. 

Dr. Panovic began the lecture with the period preceding the school years and particularly emphasized the importance of providing children with suitable toys. During the lecture, he explained how crucial it is to develop a healthy value system in children, which includes acceptance of others and differences among people. He especially emphasized the need for parents to monitor the content to which children are exposed during their primary school years, illustrating this with several examples of the kind of literature children are exposed to today, as well as social games that children play, which may involve concepts that are not suitable for their age. 

The lecturer insisted that parents should pay special attention to the cartoons their children watch, citing an example from his clinical practice concerning a child who exhibited unusual behavior but was actually imitating cartoon characters. He also discussed manipulative techniques used in mass media to program the consciousness of media consumers, to which children are particularly vulnerable.

As observed by Dr. Panovic, the most common mistakes for children of primary school age begin as early as the moment they start school, which is often seen as a significant event. Subsequently, there is an overprotective tendency towards children in the physical sense rather than promoting their motor skills development. Parents often write their children's homework, ask inappropriate questions when children return from school, and engage in similar behaviors. Dr. Panovic emphasised the correct approach when it comes to assisting children with their school obligations.

The lecturer placed particular emphasis on the proper approach to children's nutrition, as well as their snacks, connecting this topic with school activities. He also addressed the issue of economic disparities among children and how to handle situations where a child from a less privileged background might be involved.

Dr. Panovic responded to numerous questions from parents concerning children of this age, including the importance of preserving the physiological rhythm of children. He specifically stressed the need to restore the dignity of sleep, highlighting the ideal bedtime of around 9 p.m. He also touched upon the phenomenon of children using energy stimulants and the increasing use of antidepressants, mood stabilisers, and anxiolytics among younger children, suggesting that many of these issues could be resolved by respecting natural physiological rhythms.

Dr. Panovic also discussed the issue of graphomotor skills and children's motor skills development, which are increasingly threatened in today's times due to children's decreasing physical activity.

The lecturer underscored the importance of the psychological inclination to complete every important task initiated, a behaviour parents should model for their children because children tend to mimic our actions rather than our words.

Another topic that Dr. Panovic addressed was the necessity of shielding children from aggressive content, frequently found in evening television series that are not suitable for children but are often watched by adults alongside them.

Dr. Panovic stressed that it is better for parents to work with their children rather than sending them later to psychologists. A specific topic to which he paid attention was the joint planning of time, which he believed should be done in the evening for the next day. This practice helps children learn to distinguish between "urgent" and "important" tasks and develop a priority list.

One of the important themes discussed at the end of this lecture was the relationship between parents and teachers.

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