Parents, gear up for change: Your kids may read audiobooks, quash gender stereotypes!

parenting, school students, children, parenting trends in India, parenting trends 2020, millennials, gender neutral parenting, online parenting, eco friendly, environmentfriendly, parenting trends in 2020, lifestyle, climate change, Greta Thunberg

By Meenal Arora

With changing times, parenting styles are also changing. Thanks to more awareness among parents and emerging technologies and innovation, parenting practices are being influenced for the better. Numerous new-age concepts are affecting the decisions that parents make for their children for a good upbringing. Here's a look at the top parenting trends that are likely to dominate in 2020:

Parenting trends in 2020: Opting for Full-day schooling

The growth of dual-income families has given rise to the concept of 9-6 schooling. In this system, children stay in school till the evening working on their homework as well as extra-curricular activities. Since the school timings are perfectly synchronized with office timings, parents are able to drop and pick up their children conveniently.

Parenting Trends in 2020: Saying No to screen-time

An increasing number of parents are realizing the downsides of excessive screen-time such as eye strain and laziness. Thus, many households are adopting the no screen-time rule. They are, instead, turning to activity boxes that keep children engaged for hours. Therefore, the trend of subscribing activity boxes is set to rise in 2020.

Additionally, audiobooks are also gaining popularity as an alternative to screens. Parents prefer audiobooks that are educational and entertaining for their kids as it increases concentration skills as well.

Gender-neutral parenting is the future

As more millennials become parents, we will witness the steady decline of gender bias in parenting. Quashing gender-based stereotypes, more parents are encouraging their children to play with the toys that they prefer-no more dolls for girls and cars for boys. Further, parents are dividing domestic chores to show their kids that there are no gender-specific roles.

A recent report says that 40-45% of toy shoppers in the US prefer gender-neutral toys. As a result, many retail chains such as Walmart and Target have removed boy/girl-specific toy sections from their stores.

While gender-neutral parenting has been a long-standing trend in the West, it is now gaining scale in urban India as well. With increasing awareness about gender-neutral parenting in India, we can expect this trend to grow further beyond 2020.

Parenting Trends in 2020: Internet is every parent's best friend

The trend of online parenting communities is set to grow in 2020 as parents continue to turn to the Internet for advice and help. There are several platforms dedicated to connecting parents with each other to create conversations about best practices for parenting.

Thus, from a vertical flow of information, horizontal communication between peers is becoming the new normal for millennial parents. As a result, the internet is becoming parents' best friend.

This also helps students to remain productive after school hours as opposed to whiling away their time watching TV or playing video games. Moreover, this helps parents remain stress-free at work while their kids are safe at school with professional teachers and caregivers. Leading school chains have already adopted this system and it is projected to grow as a trend in 2020.

Parenting trends in 2020: Going the Eco-friendly way

A recent Facebook IQ report on parenting trends mentioned that environmental consciousness will be key in 2020. Eco-friendly toys and utensils made with biodegradable materials such as bamboo and wood are already gaining favour with a lot of parents in the country and across the world.

Further, we are also witnessing a shift towards environmentally-friendly diapers and a complete avoidance of plastic.

With revolutionary children such as Greta Thunberg speaking out about climate change, we can expect kids to have increased awareness about the environmental crisis. As a result, kids will also influence their parents to take up eco-friendly practices and contribute towards saving the planet that is our home.

The author is Founder Director, Shemford Group of Futuristic Schools. Views expressed are the author's own.