I woke up early with a focus on Mindspark in my children. I wanted them to start thinking differently. I wrote on a flip chart, “qualities of brilliant children.”
I realize that growing in the village, influenced my outlook on life. The psychologists call it nature vs nurture. I was brought up to confront challenges and never to run away. I see this quality in my several consulting projects. Once in a while, you realize the project was a bad deal. It is just too difficult to complete within the timelines. But there is no option. You cannot hire more resources in terms of manpower because you will make losses. The only option is to burn the midnight oil. And you have to. Running away is never an option although I have been called to complete jobs where other consults failed and ran away! That is what ‘easy life’ upbringings usually causes.
The way I was brought up (nurture) required me to go the extra mile. To work hard. To finish whatever I started. And boy, I did always finish.
I learned how to fetch water from the well located about 4 kilometres away. You put a 20-litre jerrycan on your head. It presses you on the brains as it will go through! But you must keep it there and bring it home when it is full!
That is an 8-kilometer trek twice a day, and I got used. I learned how to go to the farm and dig. I would wake up early at 6 am and work up to noon during the holidays. And during school days, as a day scholar, I would wake up early do house chores and then leave for school. That is life in the village. You learn a lot about resilience than you can learn from an MBA class of theory.
There was no spoon-feeding.
We deserved our breakfast, lunch, and supper. If you wanted the millet floor, you had to grind it with your hands. And then mingle it yourself! No stories. My mother, after teaching us how to make it, would say “ayenda akaro karungi akegoyera’ meaning s/he enjoys a nice millet meal, makes it himself or herself.
This upbringing was super cool.
I remember a neighbor in our village who had the best house, several cows and goats and big farms. He worked in Hoima town in a big office. And once in a while, he would visit the village house and bring good things. He would come along with his children living with him in town. And we would all be admiring them.
Little did we know that they were not working hard.
As nurture was giving us lessons of no free lunch out there, our neighbor forgot to give these lessons to his children. And it is not surprising that later in life, they lacked the fuel to compete and win.
They would get jobs through connections, but keeping the jobs is not easy.
Aware that I try as much as possible to expose my children to the vagaries of the world. I want their senses to develop. I want them to be alert. And the only way to do this is to challenge their mental faculties.
And hence today’s lecture titled: qualities of winning children.
I listed for them nine qualities and explained them.
As homework, and to make sure they were paying attention, I asked them to get a computer and type what they did. I gave them my laptop to type.
They surprised me.
Below is a copy of their work, which I have tried to slightly edit and also add some photos to make the book easy to read. I recommend you print and give to your children to read.
Also, I shall be sharing a quality as a separate blog post to make sure you don’t miss this fantastic book.
The kids surprised me. Their English. Typing skills and the words they used are ahead when I compare to where I what I could do at their age. I accept that the world has changed. And #covid19 has opened my eyes.
The young ones are ahead.
You can download the Qualities-of-winning-children.pdf (80 downloads) . Or wait for a blog post of each quality.
Enjoy with your children.
Copyright Mustapha B Mugisa, 2020. All rights reserved.