Good Parenting 2017: How to Teach Responsibility to Your Children
One of the most common responses among parents when are asked about the traits would like their children to have is to be responsible. There are many meanings of being responsible such as keeping one’s word, meeting one’s commitments, being dependable, doing something to one’s ability, being accountable for one’s behavior, acknowledging mistakes, and being an asset to one’s family, community, and society. Parents often associate obedience with responsibility. Most parents would like their children to do what they ask their children to do, to follow instructions and to not question their authority. However, this is not at all responsibility, these are the qualities of obedience.
Over time, many parents want their children to accept ownership for a chore or task, and their children do it because it needs to be done, and eventually they accept that it’s their obligation to do it. With practice and constant reminder, children develop a sense of ownership and they may even initiate performing a task over time with constant reminder and practice because it needs to be done and not because they are being told to do so, which is an attitude of responsibility. Parents may need to give up their own exact timetable and how they like things to be done, and allow their children to move from being obedient to being responsible according to on their own pace. If you allow your child to do things you instruct on his own way will encourage a feeling of pride and accomplishment as well as foster a sense of accountability and responsibility. There are several issues raised when considering the transition from obedience to responsibility, about how involved you should be when helping your child meet his commitments and complete tasks.
Many parents are afraid for their children to fail, and they do much for their children, that’s why many children do not learn to take on the responsibility themselves. On the other hand, there are also times when our children need our guidance and support for them to learn how to be responsible. It is very important to know how to find balance between under-parenting and over-managing by knowing and deciding when is the most appropriate time to step in, and when is the best time to effectively let your child go to develop his sense of maturity and responsible behaviors. In order to develop their sense of responsibility, it is important to allow your child to join extracurricular activities, keep a pet such as a butterfly koi or puppy, and give your children household chores or tasks. The best role model when it comes to being responsible for your child is you, so it is important to internalize and assess your own actions and check if you are setting a good example or not.