Eden McNellee, 3, Levi Carter, 4, and Sofia Melo, 3, from Mudgeeraba.  Picture: Liam Kidston
Eden McNellee, 3, Levi Carter, 4, and Sofia Melo, 3, from Mudgeeraba. Picture: Liam Kidston

‘Why you should swear in front of your kids’

AUSTRALIAN child experts are outraged over a neuroscientist's call for parents to teach children swear words and when to use them.

Emma Byrne says two is the age to expose kids to bad language, rather than shutting it down.

The scientist has written a book Swearing is Good for You: The Amazing Science of Bad Language.

Dr Byrne said education on swearing should come from parents rather than peers, as it helped prevent the moment of shame when a toddler suddenly dropped the F-bomb.

But Australian child psychologist Michael Carr-Gregg blasted the advice as "asinine".

"Bad words coming from a child should be shut down," he said.

"We live in a society where swear words are more in our faces.

"We don't want this to become the norm with our young generation.

"People are judged on their language, and a child who uses bad language will be harshly judged.

"Parents need to explain these words are not acceptable."

Eden McNellee, 3, Levi Carter, 4, and Sofia Melo, 3, from Mudgeeraba.  Picture: Liam Kidston
Eden McNellee, 3, Levi Carter, 4, and Sofia Melo, 3, from Mudgeeraba. Picture: Liam Kidston

Leading by example is also the key, the specialist says. Parents need to rein in the language around their children.

Dr Byrne said the words "ugly" or "stupid" were horrendous, and children should know the impact of all words, not just the normal swear words.

Childcare workers are faced with the challenge of regulating children's language.

"Children are usually imitating others when they swear," childcare director Lucy Cook said.

"I usually tell them that I don't respond to those words, and ask them what alternative could they use if they are angry or upset.

"Over the years I haven't noticed that the language from small children has become any worse.

"Parents try to do a good job. It's a bit different when they go to school though."

How to react when child drops F-bomb

*Don't laugh or encourage

*Don't become angry

*Offer no reaction

*Explain it's not good word to use

*Come up with alternative word

*Set good language example



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