3 ways to give your child a head start in life

3 ways to give your child a head start in life

As a mum-to-be, I am thinking ahead of my child’s future in Singapore.


Call it kiasu-ism, but as I read Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers (again), the question of whether success is exclusively a matter of individual merit, made me dwell deeper into hidden advantages and opportunities that some extraordinary people have.

These hidden advantages and opportunities translate to what academics call, “relative-age effect”. It refers to the initial advantage attributable to age, which gets turned into a more profound advantage over time.

As i prepare myself for motherhood, I have identified 3 areas that will help my son realize his potential from a young age.

#1 Inculcate Good Values

Remember the screaming kid along the aisle of Toys R Us? Or the 7 year old boy who refused to let go of his mother’s iphone at the other table? I recall the saying, “Spare the rod; spoil the child”. How appropriate in such situations. Parents need to understand that giving in does not mean ‘loving more’.

Being hardworking, respectful, kind and upholding integrity will ensure your child goes far in life. These basic traits are evergreen and are well appreciated by those with similar attributes. Start by demonstrating them during your interactions with your husband (husbands can thank me later), and child. For example, to demonstrate respect and gratitude, I constantly remind myself to say thank you until it becomes a habit.

#2 Inner Circle

Good communication is always the key to parenting. For example, take time every night before their bedtime to engage with them, asking them how was their day in school. Let them know that you are interested and involved, where you will step in when help is needed. Be there for them, guide them in the right direction and remind them to be confident in everything that they do.

Listening is important because it promotes learning and obtaining the opinions of others matters. The support from family and friends promotes a healthy and conducive environment for your child to grow up in.

#3 Environment

Every school is a good school. A good education will lead to a better career prospect and this starts from young. Every parents dream for their child to enroll into a university. But how many of us are truly prepared for it when the time comes?

In 2030, A four-year degree will cost 70.2% of an individual’s average yearly income, up from 53.1% in 2015. According to a new study by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), tuition fees at local universities have gone up every year for most undergraduate courses since 2010 – A sign of the rising cost of living in Singapore.

Here’s a chart on the rising cost of a four-year university course in the coming years.

Scary isn’t it? You might have heard stories of parents getting caught up with tons of debt. Some parents in Singapore might be unprepared and have to withdraw a portion of their retirement funds as a last resort. 39% of parents wished they had started saving earlier, and 34% wished they had put more money aside for their child’s education. These are the latest findings of a Value of Education survey series by global bank HSBC.

A recent survey also shows that parents are willing to spend as much as $21K per year on university education for their children. It is tough to imagine how one would not have to face any financial issues. That doesn’t have to be the case if you prepare early.

The Sliver Bullet

One alternative is to secure your child’s future early by having an education savings platform. Manulife Educate will ensure you have a greater peace of mind by cutting short the financial commitment that usually lasts for more than a decade. What’s more, this platform can be customized to perfectly meet the needs of your child.

Early planning and saving for education can help your children fulfil their potential and limit the strain on family finances. It is never too early to plan for your children’s future. Simply visit here and find out more.


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