Getting kids out of bed to putting them back to sleep involves a lot of parental involvement. While kids do depend on parents for getting by the day, there are a lot of things that kids can do on their own. By helping kids become more self-reliant, we can raise confident, competent, and healthy individuals. Here are the five simple things that you can follow to achieve this goal.
- It’s not a chore: When parents ‘tell’ their kids what they expect them to do, they can sometimes have a rebellious reaction. The trick is to ask for help. Children, like us, want to add value. Don’t forget to thank them when they contribute. Start small and make it a habit. Consistency is the key to positive change. Little things like making it the kid’s responsibility to pack his or her own school bag and reminding him or her to do it every night can be a good start. Let the kid falter. Do not give up. Most importantly, praise them when they do it on their own.
- My Room, My Rules, My Responsibility: Kids who feel like the room belongs to them, are more inclined to keep it neat and clean. Allow them to customize their rooms. Small things like choosing the color of the sheets or deciding what pictures go up the wall can personalize the room and make them feel connected to it.
- Self-help: As parents, we want to help our kids. But often, self-help is the best help. Teach them basic grooming like combing the hair or tying the shoelace. Stock up their wardrobe with washable, fuss-free clothes. Let them decide how they want to mix and match their attire. It will help them develop self-confidence in their ability to make choices. Giving kids gift cards is a good option – it will help them understand the importance of making optimum choices with the given resources.
- Homework time: Help your kid with homework and projects, but so not do it for them. Give them the freedom and space to be creative. Let them make mistakes. Breaking down problems logically will go a long way in better comprehension and grasping of fundamental concepts.
- Caring for others: The best way to teach responsibility is to make the kid responsible for someone else. It could be caring for a pet or a younger sibling, under parental supervision. Start small with tasks such as giving the pet food, keeping an eye on the younger sibling while Mommy is busy in the kitchen etc.