A lot of times we parents struggle with how to really teach our kids the why of life and correction. If we really want our children to make the right decision, we have to explain to them why it is the right decision. If we never give a reason why, then the correction we give is for the "now", not for future action. Sometimes though we can get caught up and expect our kids to grow up too fast. We must make sure that the information they are receiving from us is appropriate for their age. For instance, we must teach our little ones to share because other people are special and we want to be kind with our words and actions. If we simply tell our kids to share, they are missing out on a key ingredient in their interaction with us and beautiful learning experiences.
We have to be appropriate with those learning experiences though. At the age of 2, my son is not ready to drive a car, or a tractor for that matter. There are many things he must learn and experience before he gets the "here's where the gas pedal is" lesson. Children this age are in need learning simple truths and developing a trust with mom and dad. If you show your trust worthiness through simple contacts with your children, they will trust that you will explain the reason why within time.
As children age, the appropriateness of what and how they are taught changes. For instance by the age of 3 kids can learn how special others are in the eyes of God, for that reason we are kind, loving and share. At the age of 3 they can even comprehend why we clean up after ourselves and take care of our things.
As children age they begin to develop a deeper understanding of why. By the age of 12 they can capture and understand why saving money, or being a good steward is important. They dig deeper into how their decisions affect others, and how their actions and body language speak volumes. They can capture the reason we respect parents, elders and authorities.
If all of this works well, and we capture the why of my actions, your teenage years will be defined less by explanation and more by discussion. Want a civilized conversation with your kids? Teach them the why now... and see what a difference it makes in the long run.