Teach Your Kids About Responsibility in a Fun and Engaging Way
A key part of parenting is helping kids learn to take responsibility for themselves, and for the environment around them. It is a process that can take time but is so worth it. It’s all about being patient, showing them the way, and getting them engaged in what you’re trying to accomplish. With that in mind let’s check out a few different ways you can make learning about responsibility fun and interesting.
Model the behaviour you want
As long as you make a game out of the most mundane chores, you can start to get kids to take a little more responsibility for themselves. It might be showing them how to load the dishwasher or hand-wash the dishes in a fun way, put clothes in the laundry or making their beds in the morning. Do it with them for long enough and it’ll soon become second nature. Always keep it light-hearted and don’t be afraid of praising them for a job well done. Everyone loves being praised, especially kids.
Help them to eat neatly
Young kids get messy when they eat, that’s a fact, but with a little cajoling you can play a big part in getting them to take responsibility for eating in a more civilised manner more quickly. One of the best ways of doing so is to have them eat in front of a mirror. They’ll find it hilarious, and so will you. Gradually, as you point out, and they realise, that they’ve got sauce on their nose, they’ll start to eat in a tidier manner. You might still have a few inevitable spills though, and you may find yourself wondering how to remove ketchup from clothes after a meal. Don’t worry though, they’ll get the hang of it soon!
Teach them the value of money
Teaching your children to understand the value of money will stand them in good stead for their entire life, but don’t worry, it won’t require a lecture in finance. Just like knowing how to remove ketchup from clothes is one of the parenting skills that are well worth having, so is the ability to make games out of life lessons like this. Start off with toy cash tills and coins, move on to letting them hand over the cash at the shop, and then maybe move on to rewarding them for doing their chores with a little pocket money. Gradually you will move them through fun and imaginative play to understanding that things cost money and then linking a job well done to financial reward; all reinforcing the importance of the value of money.
We’ve looked at how you can make learning about responsibility engaging and fun, and there are a number of ways you can reinforce the message:
- Be consistent
- Establish routines that involve your kids – setting up breakfast in the morning, bringing down washing on a specific day etc.
- Show them how to do something and then let them help – don’t jump in too quickly
- Take your time and be patient
Children love learning, and as long as you’ve got their attention, you can drip feed in the important life lessons as you go, without lecturing or nagging. Give some of these tips a go and before you know it your kids will be taking more responsibility for themselves and enjoying it too.
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