Empowering Children to Reach Their Full Potential
If we do too much for children, we communicate that they are not capable of handling the many responsibilities that life gives them.
- If children are rescued every time they make a mistake, they will never learn responsibility
- Painful lessons typically lead to real learning and changed behavior
- Making excuses for children teaches them that it is ok to keep doing things the same way, which leads to more irresponsible choices and disrespect
- Irresponsible children may be a reflection of parental over-responsibility
What can you do?
- Provide children experiences that will help them feel capable and that help the life skills of self-discipline, responsibility, and problem solving
- Send the message early and often that “you are a capable person”
- Expect responsibility-it shows them that you believe in them and then they will believe in themselves
- Walk away when it is time for them to work. Do not hover to make sure they get things done and get them done right
- Assign chores to your child
Things that happen in response to a child’s behavior without parental involvement. Allow your child to experience the natural consequences of their choices. This will help them develop personal responsibility as a result of their experience and consequences.
- Have your child repair or replace lost or broken items. Do not go buy new items immediately for your child
- Miss opportunities where planning was needed or not done
- Eat school lunch when lunch box was forgotten on counter
- Face teacher when homework is incomplete or forgotten
- Ask teacher himself/herself when help is needed
School Smart Parenting Tips
- Celebrate the effort rather than picking at the results
- Validate effort, initiative and persistence rather than ability
- Homework is the child’s responsibility, not the parent’s
- Walk the talk. Model the behaviors you want your children to learn
If you want children to keep their feet on the ground, put some responsibility on their shoulders.
— Abigail Van Buren
Responsibility is the price of greatness.
— Winston Churchill
Few things help an individual more than to place responsibility upon him, and to let him know that you trust him.
— Booker T Washington