No time to teach children to tell the time! Or ride a bike, or tie their shoelaces … stressed parents spend spare time doing chores
13:56 GMT, 16 November 2012
Working parents now say they are too busy to properly teach their children important skills such as telling the time, tying their shoelaces and riding a bike.
While half insist they would love to supplement the teaching done in school and by childminders, research found they struggle to find enough time.
Three in five working parents complain they are too tired to show their children how to brush their teeth, read and safely cross the road.
Many parents blame their long working hours from stopping them having time to teach their children skills
The study found that 55 per cent of them blame their tiredness on long working hours.
As a result, many of today’s young children are missing out on extra help with basic learning.
Around six in 10 say doing the washing and cleaning takes priority over things such as teaching their youngsters to dress themselves and learn days of the week and months of the year.
In the study of 1,000 British parents, more than 70 per cent admit feeling under pressure to have a career, a nice house and ‘well-spoken and intelligent children’.
Skills parents most want to have time to teach their children
Reading – 73 per cent
Writing – 66 per cent
Learning to cross the road – 45 per cent
Learning to tell the time – 17 per cent
Riding a bike – 13 per cent
Tying shoe laces – 8 per cent
Learning to catch – 4 per cent
And two-thirds of parents (66 per cent) say they would love to spend more quality time with their kids.
The report released today by parenting website yano.co.uk, found the three skills parents most want their children to learn are reading, writing and learning to cross the road safely
Nearly half (47 per cent) say the work being done by teacher at school is, in itself, insufficient and so they are desperate to add to this.
But, more than a quarter of parents say they spend less than 20 minutes a night reading with their child.
Almost half admit this is insufficient and feel guilty about it.
Ann-Marie McKimm, founder of Yano, said: 'This study shows parents are time-poor, but most would relish the chance to spend more quality time teaching their kids these skills.
'We would encourage the government and employers to consider more flexible working practices for parents, not just in the first year of a baby’s life – but throughout their schooling years.
'We’re also keen to see schools and nurseries working together with parents to help nurture some of these vital life skills.
'The most important thing is to work together to produce happy and confident children.'
For the majority, doing the washing and cleaning takes priority over things such as teaching their youngsters to dress themselves
Naomi Richards, life coach for children and author of The Parent’s Toolkit, added: 'We live in a society where life has become very busy.
'Parents may no longer have the support of grandparents or aunts to help them out, so they try to do it all.
'Part of it is us having to work hard to provide for our families.
'But we also put unnecessary pressure on ourselves to have the perfect house, a good social life, an empty laundry basket and for our children to have play dates.
'As a result time with your children can be overlooked.
'As parents we want our children to be able to do things for themselves.
'If we put in the time they will be more independent and all children need the skills we’re talking about.
'Being able to do things for themselves will give children a healthy self-esteem.'