We all use labels for people in our daily lives, because they help us to categorize, arrange and put order into our world, making it easier to recognize. You have certainly seen extremely energetic children who sometimes wear parents down. Their attention length maybe short, their interests eternal, and they can be “wound up” day and night. Thousands of such children have been labelled “hyperactive” and treated by doctors with drugs, a practice that is now being seriously questioned.
The child is full of energy and runs around a lot we call “hyperactive” but it simply describes what he is like – it doesn’t make clear what causes his actions. Obviously, labels can lead parents into a blind alley because if labels caused difficult behaviour, then parents couldn’t do anything to change their children’s actions. Fortunately, this isn’t the case.
Schools, doctors and parents have overused labels such as underachiever, culturally deprived or any other often only because they gave little meaningful help if a child was labelled as “retarded”.
Labels will always be around, but we have to use them not only in ways which incorrectly suggest there is no hope for change. Instead of it we have to ask if there are any possible reasons for such behaviour and who or what could trigger it.
Many people think of behaviour as a gathering of personal characteristics that are also inherited from parents and grandparents much like as eye colour or hair texture. The best facts available suggest that most behaviour is learned through life experiences. We don’t inherit behaviour but we do inherit a broad potential to behave in million different ways. All characteristics such as laziness, stubbornness, leadership, courage, or honesty are the result of different learning experiences, rather than genetics.
No parents can change a child’s genetic structure but parents can and do have a incredible effect upon their children through learning.