As parents, it’s one of our biggest duties to raise our children to be responsible. We want our children to grow up to be responsible citizens when they’re adults. This means we must teach our children to understand the consequences of their choices and their actions so that they understand the impact that they may have on the world around them and be responsible for that.
We’ve put together our list of three of the easiest ways you can teach your kids responsibility, even from a very young age:
- Responsibility is a joy.
You must put it across to your child that being responsible isn’t a burden from life, it is a blessing. By nature, children model themselves on the adults around them, and they can see that these grownups are responsible. Children want to be like the adults that they see, but they have to see that responsibility is a gift to them, and something they must respect and take pleasure from.
You can teach your children to try and make a positive contribution to the world, that way they will be able to see from early on that being responsible is a gift that has been bestowed upon them, and they can use this to the best of their ability. They can take joy from the benefits that being responsible brings them.
In other words, all you need to do is show your kids that they have the power to contribute something positive to the world, and this will help them to be responsible for their actions.
- Irresponsibility is a non-starter.
Another way to easily teach your child about the value of being responsible is to reverse it and teach them the negative aspects of irresponsibility. You can teach them that responsibility is rewarded, whilst irresponsibility is frowned upon. This simple logic will help your child understand that being responsible has positive value, whilst not taking responsibility for themselves will have negative knock-on effects.
This is a valuable lesson for the wider world. You can also ask that other care providers follow these kinds of instructions so that your children are taught good values. At the day care centres in Melbourne, the staff always does its best to instil a sense of responsibility in children. The staff can guide the children away from irresponsibility by providing an example of how to clean up after themselves.
- Let children do it themselves.
We all know that things would get done much quicker if we – the adults – do them ourselves. As much as our young children want to take command, we know that they’re not very dexterous or otherwise skilled to complete the tasks. But your child saying that they want to do something by themselves is them desperately trying to tell us they want to learn how to be responsible.
Next time your toddler screams out that he or she wants to “do it myself”, try letting them, even if it takes longer. Give them a helping hand if need be, but try to let your child complete the task themselves. That way they can learn that being responsible isn’t straightforward or as easy as it looks, but it can be rewarding once they’ve mastered how to do it. Children will take pride in being responsible if only they’re allowed to do so.
We could think of several other ways to help your child to begin to learn responsibility, but these are three of our easiest recommendations. Try following these first to see if you can instill the value of responsibility within your children.