Manifesting love, care and responsibility to young children is not an easy job. Every step of parenting is a challenging task until the young children can at least show responsible behavior and manage to complete their work without much assistance from parents. Jean Piaget, the famous constructivist, called a child an ‘active constructor’ or a ‘builder of knowledge’. He further went on to say that children are ‘little scientists’. He says so because each child is born with a cognitive capacity that encapsulates a gamut of things during their growth years.
If we keep assimilating thought-provoking ideas for them to explore and be an active participant. It will surely make them responsible enough at a young age. Children have the unique ability to construct and deconstruct complex ideas.
In such cases, the parents must mould them in such a way that they become independent individuals. At least they begin their process of becoming self-reliant individuals.
6 Best Ways You Can Teach Children to be Responsible
How do you teach small children to be responsible when all they do is eat, play, and sleep? Well, here are some ways through which you can manifest responsibility in your small children at a tender age. It surely will help them to become accountable in future.
1. Begin Early
This is one of the most crucial ways through which one can make small children take up responsibility. When you begin early, that is, start at a young age. Children, as stated earlier, are active constructors. If you begin at the tender age of 3 years they will pick up good habits and keep practising them for the rest of their lives.
Let them pick up their toys after they finish playing. Let them keep the crayons in their crayon box once done with colouring. These are little things that should be done by the children so that they understand the concept of responsibility.
So if you begin early while they are just doing basic things such as playing and eating, you will be successful in teaching your young child to be responsible. Also read: Which Board is best CBSE or ICSE?
2. Let them help you
Although you do not need the assistance of your kids, you can let them help you with small household chores. They will surely be more than happy to assist you in these chores. You can take their help to do simple things such as putting the clothes for laundry, taking their aid to peel boiled eggs or just letting them put their plates into the sink after every meal. The fact that they can help you, will make them responsible enough to continue such things in future. Hence, they will begin to show a sense of responsibility.
3. Show Gratitude.
When they begin to help with the small household chores, your immediate responsibility will be to praise them. As a parent, if you show gratitude and appreciate their assistance, no matter how small, your children will be encouraged to do the same thing every day.
Continuing with these activities in everyday life will aid them to make it a habit. Once it becomes a habit it remains with them for the rest of their lives. Thanking them, showing gratitude is a must to make young children responsible.
4. Keep Away From Rewards
Showing gratitude is a good thing. It encourages young children to continue with their responsibilities. But, showering them with rewards isn’t a very good thing to do to appreciate their efforts. Always remember these are everyday responsibilities that you are inculcating in your child to make them self-reliant and better individuals. It does not require you to give them rewards to show appreciation.
A mere thank you, a hug and some kind words should be enough to encourage them to keep up the good work. If you begin to give them rewards for such small things they might get used to it which will eventually become a burden for you in future. Rewards should always be for challenging situations and academic tasks, not when you are trying to teach responsibility to your small children.
5. Give Them Time
Young children may be quick at grasping things, but they may not be consistent with these tasks. As a parent, you need to give them enough time to become consistent with the responsibilities that they need to take up. You have to manage your expectations and be patient. Also, remember not to overburden them with tasks that are above their capabilities. It will make them feel fatigued, and the children may burn out after a certain period. Thus, you need to keep a check on your expectations and give them ample time to inculcate a sense of responsibility in them.
6. Explain Consequences
Not all children will readily do things that you request them to do. There may be times when they outright refuse to do the things and become stubborn. In such cases, you can explain the consequences of young children not performing a specific activity.
For example, if they do not put back their toys after playing it will become dirty, the room might look dirty, and no one will enter the room. The fear of being isolated in a room might drive them to complete the task. If they do not agree to put the dirty dishes in the sink, the plate might remain unclean, and then they will not be able to eat food on their favourite plate.
Thus teaching them consequencing will act as a catalyst in the process of teaching responsibility to young children.
If a parent follows the above ways of teaching responsibility to their children, they will surely be able to see the result within a few months. Children might remain inconsistent but, as a parent, you should continue teaching them small tasks to make them independent so that they can be left unsupervised in future. If parents model responsible behaviour sooner or later their children will also act in the same way their parents behave. Becoming a good example is the easiest way to teach responsibility to your young kids.