Learning to be responsible is part and parcel of growing up. Some children take to it more quickly, others need a little more help and coaching along the way. Here are some simple, everyday ways to teach your child to be more responsible for their actions and their belongings.
Understand Your Child
Before you can help your child, understand what works for your child as an individual. Is your child passive? Give prompts and hints. Wilful? Avoid giving orders, try phrasing your words in a different manner. Easily overwhelmed? Always give crystal clear instructions. Every child is unique and different; to effectively reinforce responsibility in your child, take the time to find out your little one's quirks.
It can be tough to remain calm when your child simply refuses to cooperate. However, remember that harsh words are hurtful and destructive. Although they may have a momentary effect, such methods do not teach your child self-discipline. Instead, try using reason to bring your message across. Instead of reprimanding your young one for leaving toys on the ground after playing with them, ask if it was the right thing to do, work through the reasons with them. Most children will respond well to a logical and well-reasoned explanation.
Walk the Talk
Children model themselves after their parents. Therefore, instil responsible behaviour in your children by acting responsibly yourself. This can be done with little, everyday actions. For example, if you want to teach your child to be a responsible pet owner, be sure to walk the dog every day. Place your things where they rightfully belong, and clean up after yourself. Children want to be just like their parents, so give them the opportunity to learn the right things from you.
Make Responsibility a Priority
Make sure that your children understand that fulfilling their responsibilities should always be a priority. For example, if they want to go the playground, ask them if they have finished their homework. Let them know that you will gladly bring them to the playground if they can finish all their homework and all their other responsibilities first.
Accept Their Mistakes
As parents, it is tough to stand by and watch your child make mistakes. However, as long as the consequences are not disastrous, allow your child to face the results of making a mistake once in a while. While it may seem harsh today, it is an effective way of allowing your youngster to remember the lesson on responsibility well into the future.
Every child is unique; take the time to understand your child's quirks and needs.
Be a responsible parent and your child will naturally follow in your footsteps.
It is okay to let your child face the consequences of his actions sometimes, as long they are not disastrous.