My morning passenger was a kindergarten teacher before she is a principle of a childcare center now. She also does volunteer work with kids suffering from cancer at KK. At her age, there is little doubt that she has an abundance of experience dealing with kids.
The main thing she said that is required when dealing with kids is patience and there is no compromise. That's pretty much common knowledge which is hard to disagree with. Even though dealing with adults requires patience too, kids on the other hand are innocent. They don't have any evil plans. They're just being themselves. In that sense, patience with kids will not be returned with betrayal.
I asked her why are certain kids slower than the rest and she said, although sometimes it is caused by genetics, a lot of times, it is caused by upbringing.
She cited an example of an 18 months old kid who was reserved and spoke little when he was brought in by his parents. His father was almost to tears describing his anguish at how he is not able to invoke much response from his son.
She handled this kid personally. She had him in her office and engaged him while at the same time doing her own work; talking and playing with him. Initially he was as what his father described him; keeping to himself and did things on his own and spoke not even a single word to her.
After sometime and much perseverance, the first word she could get out of him was her own name. From then on, he was a cheerful kid.
Naturally the parents were happy with the change. However, it then turned into a problem because the kid would want to go to 'school' everyday, even on weekends and would turn into his old self when he's not at the centre.
When told by the father of this, she asked about the condition at home.
It was only then that she knew the kid stayed with the grandparents and the parents only visits him and not take him home at the end of a work day, not even on weekends.
Hearing this, it was pretty clear where the problem lies.
So those with kids, or planning to have one, hope this is good read. It may take loads of patience, but like mentioned, an innocent mind has no malice and will only adsorb what's good. That is all they need when at that age. Not TV, not PS2, not distractions from the very thing they need - attention.