Family & Education

Dear Next Generation: ‘Teach Children to Think of Others’

TIMEDecember 6, 2021

In the aftermath of receiving a verbal tongue lashing from a close relative, my downcast grandmother shared this piece of wisdom with me: “An unkind word spoken in haste can never be retrieved.” Those words have stayed with me over the years and helped me to hold MY tongue many times.

Jeanine Trofholz, Nebraska


Advice: Do not keep your friends hidden. Share them with your other friends, share them with your siblings, and most important of all, make sure your parents know who your friends are. Doing this makes you and your friends much more accountable for your actions.

Daniel Delp, Pennsylvania


What is the greatest advice of all time? Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

That is where many religions, Christianity holding it as the highest virtue, hold a duty to others. That can be writ large, as in patriotic or familial. Or it can be writ small, in ways that present themselves every single day of our lives to think of the other person before we think of ourselves. Not always practiced even by the most saintly, but what an aspiration!

Teach children to think of others. It is one of those things that must be actually taught.

Giving to our children/grandchildren doesn’t really teach them that Golden Rule. That’s our duty.

Tina Lorge, California


Were I to give the very best advice I could think of to those growing up, it would be this: Read.

There is nothing more helpful to everyone on this earth than the ability to read well. Everything we do involves words, and the very best way to learn new words is through reading. Little children can start small with books with more pictures than words and then work up. Pretty soon they can read chapter books with no pictures at all. The more children read, the better their vocabulary will be, and a good vocabulary builds self-confidence. In adulthood, children will find that a good vocabulary allows them a wider range of employment choices and even a better salary.

Parents, start your children off early with plenty of books to pick up and look through. You set the example, so please let your children see you reading books and newspapers. Reading will soon become a family habit. When my four children had a particularly trying day and were tired and quarrelsome for dinner, I would sit on a stool and read a story or two aloud as they ate. It was a pleasant way to be together, and we all felt better for it. (Old Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle was always a favorite read.)

The very best part is that books are a cheap way to get smart—they’re free at the library and can be bought for very little at all sorts of thrift shops and used book stores. No electricity needed.

Mary Weston, New Hampshire


What advice would you like to give to the younger generations?

We call on all of our readers to share the timeless values that define right and wrong, and pass the torch, if you will, through your wisdom and hard-earned experience. We feel that the passing down of this wisdom has diminished over time, and that only with a strong moral foundation can future generations thrive.

Send your advice, along with your full name, state, and contact information to or mail it to: Next Generation, The Epoch Times, 229 W. 28th St., Floor 7, New York, NY 10001