Character, Influence & Children – Part 1

Have you ever thought about how you learned what you know? I’ve thought about what I know and it seems that everything I know is a result of what someone either told me or showed me.

My ability to learn is determined by exposure and how that information was conveyed to me. If incorrect information was taught to me and I never learned the truth about a given subject, I remain in a state of ignorance in terms of my knowledge for that subject.

I imagine this is true for all of us.

Being taught information and being able to synthesize and apply information is another key component of how we internalize, comprehend and ultimately process what we learn. But those aspects are within the individual, this occurs after information presentation.

The focus for this post is how we provide influence to children so that they can decide how they will process the circumstances in their world.

I’m not talking about academic information because those subjects are black or white in terms of their correctness. Subjects such as math, English, science are taught (along with their rules) pretty much in black and white in that sense. No, I’m not talking about teaching academia; I’m talking about teaching values and morals and our role as influencers.

And I hope we can all agree that this is important…otherwise we have a completely different problem to address…So lets say for the sake of discussion we have elementary age children and we are trying to instill a sense of critical thinking in so far as their moral compass.

If we go back to the early point I mentioned about all learning being a function of what we were taught by others, it makes sense that in order to help instill critical thinking in children regarding issues of morality, we must think about a number of things that we believe to be true for this subject. Here are a few things to reflect upon as we approach this subject:

  1. All behavior is learned behavior
  2. Children learn from older persons (typically adults)
  3. Adults are role models (regardless of whether they see themselves as such)

So with these three factors established, it begs the question that we must ask of us:


  1. What are my actions and words conveying to the children in my world?
  2. What is the basis for where I derive my sense of morality?
  3. Am I aware of my influence?


The reason question number 3 (in the last list) is so important is because in life, you are either being influenced, or you are influencing someone. There is no exception to this rule and it applies to all of us! In my next post I will take a deeper dive into these questions!

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Be blessed and have a great day!

WAG Publishing


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