If you haven’t already, read Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. It raises a lot of important questions about how we raise our children. The author argues that American parents, in general, are too soft, allowing kids to quit playing piano after one lesson to focus on other passions like watching T.V. or going on “play dates”.
The Chinese-American author forced both of her children to play piano or violin. They couldn’t go on play dates, attend sleepovers, or get any grade other than an “A”. They are now both happy, healthy students attending Harvard Law School.
The book’s entertaining, and it sparked some interesting conversations with colleagues. How much freedom should our children get? Should we ever force them to take lessons of any kind? Should we expect perfect grades?
I don’t really know the answers yet, but I plan on exploring this idea more. This debate from Intelligence Squared is next on my agenda: