Will And Jada Smith Talk Unconventional Parenting, Never Discipline Jaden And Willow, Let Them Make 'Their Own Mistakes'


May 13 2013, Published 7:00 a.m. ET

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There's a reason Will Smith's children already seem so grown up!

The 44-year-old actor opened up recently about the parenting style he and his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, 41, have adopted when it comes to their two children together, Jaden, 14, and Willow, 12— and like the kids themselves it's anything but conventional!


Will and Jada Smith admit they don't use any discipline when it comes to raising Jaden, 14, and Willow, 12

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Will, who shares he was raised in a very strict manner by his own father, Willard, is eager to turn the tables when it comes to his children, choosing not to discipline them in any way and instead, allowing them to make their own mistakes, and when they do to sit them down and talk about it.

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"We generally don't believe in punishment," Will told the UK's Sun newspaper. "From the time Jaden was five or six we would sit him down, and all he has to do is be able to explain why what he did was the right thing for his life."

Jaden Smith

In addition to not believing in discipline, the Smiths also encourage a large degree of independence in their teen children—both have already enjoyed great success in their fledging careers, Jaden as an actor and wannabe rapper and Willow as a singer—causing some critics to brand the kids "highly precocious."

Case in point, Will admits that Jaden has requested a rather grown up (and expensive) fifteenth birthday present—his own house!

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Willow, 12, has already had a couple of hit records, and big brother Jaden, 14, has landed some big movie roles

"He says, 'Dad, I want to be emancipated,'" Will says. "I know if we do this, he can be an emancipated minor, because he really wants to have his own place."


The Men in Black star touched on how different his own childhood was, telling the Sun, "I was brought up with, You don't even talk to your parents about what your opinion is, you are not allowed to have an opinion. When you pay some bills, you can have an opinion.... My parents let me talk now."

What do you think of Will and Jada's parenting style? Sound off in comments below and tweet us @OKMagazine


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