As parents, we strive hard in establishing good values for our children which will be of great help in creating a better future for them. One of the most important traits that we can teach to our kids in order for them to realize their dreams and lead purposeful and fruitful lives is the sense of responsibility. No matter how young your child is, it is never too early to teach them how to be responsible. The concept of working hard for something and reaping the good results afterwards will make them understand early on that good efforts will yield positive results; and if the outcome is not the desired one, then there is always an opportunity to learn, to improve oneself, and to grow. In early learning, it is important to explain how certain tasks and specific chores are done in a way that is appropriate to their age.
There are plenty of opportunities where parents can use in nurturing their children to become responsible adults. It is important to involve your kids, believe in their capabilities, and guide them through the process in an uplifting manner and making them realize the significance of responsibility in a natural way and not out of fear of the unpleasant consequences. If kids are motivated intrinsically and they aim to do things responsibly because they think and feel happy after doing it then they are on a good path towards success.
Failures, low self-esteem, and disappointments usually stem from lack of a sense of responsibility and being disorganized. Oftentimes, certain negative circumstances could have been avoided by being able to responsibly complete a task. Encouraging your kids to be responsible should start at home. Assign tasks according to your child’s age and make them aware that everyone in the family has a job to do—even the one going to preschool. And when they become fully accustomed to their responsibilities, they will fulfil the said tasks without being asked. Activities that involve learning the values of responsibility are provided in a fun way at The Little Cottage Childcare Carlton. When the essence of helping is strongly ingrained in our children at home, the said trait will eventually be translated at school where they are always ready to give a helping hand to their teachers and classmates, and in the community.
Below are some of the ways on how parents could teach responsibility to their kids, emphasizing the importance of sense of responsibility:
Cooperation is a trait that is associated with responsibility. Chores such as tidying up the toys, watering the plants or placing dirty clothes in the hamper is a good start in allowing our kids to be in charge of some duties at home. By carefully explaining to them things such as ‘a disorganized home is an awful sight,’ or ‘a plant that is not watered regularly will soon wither and die’ will make them realize that they should do their part in making the home a happy and fulfilling place for the whole family. It is very important for the kids to know that the chore that they are doing is very necessary no matter how small or big it is.
Explain the task and teach your little one how to do it properly. Your child may not immediately understand it right there and then—especially if your child is a toddler and may make a mistake. Be patient and encouraging, explain what went wrong, and always be ready with a reassuring hug and kiss to let your child know that they are doing a good job and that their efforts and work are always noticed and appreciated.
Start teaching your kids how to be responsible in as early as toddlerhood. Simple tasks such as putting back the cap of the feeding bottle, wiping their mouth, putting back their plushies on their designated places, putting their shoes in place, and helping mum carry some stuff are just some of awesome ways to ingrain the sense of responsibility to your kids.
When assigning tasks to your child, it is highly important that it does not become too overwhelming for them. A task shouldn’t be too easy nor too difficult to your child’s age or stage of development. A more challenging task could mean lessening the other chores assigned to them. And if you choose to assign easier tasks to them, then you can add more smaller and more straightforward chores.
Be specific in assigning a chore. Telling your child to tidy up the toys scattered all over the floor may be a little confusing and overwhelming. Specifically asking them to pick up the Lego blocks and toys, and then putting them back to their respective boxes may be easier for them to understand and complete. Tasks such as gathering all the puzzle pieces and then putting them back to the box is also another good example.
In teaching responsibility, it is essential to instruct your kids to prioritize which task should come first. Tasks that are more urgent should be completed first. When your child knows how to prioritize, they will eventually learn how to be responsible in little, time-sensitive tasks and may become capable of multitasking without sacrificing the quality of work as they grow up.
Depending on your child’s age, it is a good idea to include pictures that show the tasks that are expected of them. Kids are visual so aside from showing them the task yourself, it may also be a good idea to show images as an example for them to understand the task fully. Photos that show bathing the dog, washing the dishes, or sweeping the floor may make them understand the activity easily.
A set of tasks assigned to your kids will allow them to feel that they are important. When kids feel that what they are doing plays a significant role in the household, they feel valued and capable, and this in turn boosts their self-confidence.
Kids also learn collaboration and teamwork when parents assign different household chores to them. They learn how to follow instructions and become motivated in carrying out the tasks correctly and completing them. When parents respectfully and clearly explain the task and the importance of it, the kids also become aware of certain good leadership traits which will likely be mirrored as they enter their academic and professional life.
Be consistent in establishing the sense of responsibility in your household. From the smallest task of wiping the high chair to bigger tasks such as washing the dishes, the kids learn how to be responsible and, in the process, learn problem-solving skills and hard work that in turn provides them with the positive behaviours needed in order for them to succeed at school, gain a strong work ethic when they reach adulthood, and become responsible citizens.
Do not forget to provide lots of praises to your child for a job well done with a kiss, a hug, or a reward. This does not only give the reassurance that your child needs but it also increases the bond between you and your little one, as well as provides a loving and encouraging atmosphere at home.
To be effective in teaching your little ones how to be responsible, patience, and consistency are the key. No matter how small the set of tasks are, it would be impossible to learn the sense of responsibility immediately. Little by little and by showing great support and encouragement here and there, you will succeed in teaching them important life skills and inspiring your child in his life as he is geared towards success.
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