Is your kid always ready with an excuse for every missed commitment or question you have? Have you noticed a lack of responsibility in your kid of late? Does your kid try and put the blame on someone as a regular habit?
If you feel your kid has been displaying any of the behavioral signs mentioned above, maybe it’s time to start the responsibility talk. Read on to know how you can teach responsibility to your little one without losing your cool in 10 simple yet effective steps on how to teach responsibility to kids!
How To Teach Kids To Be Responsible?
As a parent, you are the first person that your kid learns anything from. That also includes a sense of responsibility. In every miniscule thing that you do, your kid picks up training about life lessons like taking responsibility.
You may not notice it yet, but teaching kids to be responsible can be a fruitful avenue and is an effortless and easy task. Here are some easy ways on how to raise a responsible child, that can start bringing about the change in your kid, and in you.
1. Show The Link:
Your kid may be too young to understand the concept of an act and its related consequence. Try and tell in easy terms how simple, everyday activities can have a positive impact. For example, if your kid has scored well in a school test, point out that because your kid studied hard, the test results came out so good. This will show your kid that studying hard equals to good grades. On the other hand, if your kid did not do so well in the class test, point out that because your kid did not revise at home, the test results came out not so good. Pointing out to your kid what he did and how it brought about a reaction will help him understand the link.
[ Read: List Of Life Lessons For Kids ]
2. Be The Example:
Your kid will emulate almost all your behavior, without you or your kid realizing it. You may have promised a fun evening out at the mall, but ended up cancelling due to work commitments. You may forget all about it, but this could set a tone for your kid. Promising something and not coming through with it may not look like such a big deal to you. But it surely is a glaring mistake on your part. It would imprint in his mind that it is okay to not honor your commitments. Try to stick to your promises as much as you can. If you do end up not coming through on a promise, make an effort to fulfill the promise at a stage. A word for the wise, do not commit to something that you are not hundred percent sure about.
3. Encourage Honesty:
At any given time, your kid should be able to come up to you and speak without hesitation or fear. Speak to your kid regularly and make sure you are a good listener. Any time that your kid comes up to you to share something, listen without losing your cool. Even if it is something you may not approve of, do not immediately judge or criticize. This will ease your kid into telling you the truth.
4. Assign Responsibility According To Age:
It is always a good idea to start assigning simple tasks that are age-appropriate. If your kid is very young, you can always ask him to start cleaning up after play time. Tasks like filling up the water bowl for the pet, setting the table, dumping dirty clothes in the clothes hamper and other similar simple tasks are a great way to start. These will make your kid responsible for the small acts they are assigned.
[ Read: How To Make Your Child Independent ]
5. Make Your Kid Feel Involved:
Whatever you are doing, try and include your kid in the same. If you are going out for a party, select a few options and ask your kid which one is the best. Make sure you give few options. Giving two options to kids who are very young would yield better results. Ask your kid’s opinion where you think it can be used. This will make your kid feel important and grown up. It will also encourage a feeling of responsibility.
6. Praise Your Kid’s Efforts:
When you see your kid showing responsibility, make sure you praise the effort. Tell your kid exactly what you liked about the behavior. If your kid has done a specific job that you feel was quite responsible, appreciate your kid’s understanding and sincerity for it.
7. Start A Weekly Reward System:
Encourage your kid to be more responsible by rewarding them. You could create a weekly star rating system. Put up star stickers on a chart to show your kid’s weekly progress. Give age appropriate rewards like movie time over the weekend or choosing a DVD for home watching. Simple things like this will show your kid that you do acknowledge the extra effort he is putting in.
[ Read: Good Rewards For Kids ]
8. Let Him Figure It Out:
If your kid is having trouble with something, do not immediately rush in to help. Let your kid figure out a solution and understand what can be done differently. If your kid is asking you for your help, guide your kid through the situation. Do not offer immediate solutions. Let your kid handle the situation himself and try to come out with solutions. This will help him feel accountable.
9. Help Set His Priorities Right:
It may seem a lot to teach your young kid right now, but knowing priorities is a big help. Your kid should start realizing the difference between what is more important and what can wait for now. If your kid has finished playing and now wants to go for a swim, tell him that putting away the toys is his duty and very important. He may insist on going for a swim. Tell him politely, he can go for a swim but only after putting the toys away. Show him that there is an order to things.
10. Change Your Words:
You may have been telling your kid to do something over and over again, but without any noticeable impact. For example, when you kid comes home from playing, you ask him to put his bat in the corner. But each time he brings it right in. The most common scenario is when you tell him every time how you repeat this each time but he does not listen. Instead of asking your kid to keep the bat there over and over again, change your words. Ask your kid to go back out, come inside again, and then do it differently. Changing your tactic may help your kid look at it in a different way.
These simple tips can be implemented in your kid’s daily activity routine. Based on your kid’s age, choose steps that will help your kid understand the meaning of responsibility. Do not rush into it. Keep your cool, as this can be quite a change for your kid, especially if your kid has not felt the need to be responsible till now.
If you have followed any special tips on how to teach kids to be responsible that you feel worked well, do share them here.
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