As a toddler mom, I understand the struggle to foster your child’s independence. Sometimes, my daughter wants me to do everything for her. Other days, she’s a “big girl” and wants to do it “all by herself”. Don’t try to predict these times as a toddler parent! There is no rhyme or reason!
As a teacher of elementary students, I know independence is crucial for educational success. It is why I am sending my little tyke off to preschool instead of teaching her myself. For my daughter, who has spent every moment of her life attached to my hip (literally), she is ready to spread her wings. Home schooling may very well come later, but for now (sniff, sniff), off she goes.
It is a delicate balance with young children. On one hand, you just want to help your child in every way possible. You also probably want to keep them little for as long as possible. On the other hand, you want your child to grow into a capable and productive member of society. For this, they need to develop their independence.
Don’t know where to start? Well, James is here today to help us parents guide our children on the path to independence. It is easier than we may think!
How to Promote Your Child’s Independence in Six Easy Steps
Guest Post By James Paul
An indispensable part of parenting is to grow independent, confident children who can properly utilize the support of friends and parents as they grow. As a result, many parents seek for the advice on how to promote their child’s independence.
Well, it is not the hardest thing as you think. You too can develop a real sense of independence in your child. Kids usually strive for more freedom since the age of two. Thus, from this age, you should encourage them to do minor tasks such as brushing teeth, washing hands, etc.
So, let’s jump on the main topic and find out the ways to promote child’s independence.
Spend Time Teaching Your Child Independence
Initially, parents should focus on teaching some basic tasks. For example, cleaning the play area, putting toys in the cupboard, arranging dinner table, etc. These works may appear easy to us, but they boost the confidence level of your kid. You can set one new work per week.
If the task is relatively difficult, then you can divide it into multiple steps and explain to your child how to do it. For example, don’t expect your kid to put dirty clothes in the hamper. Instead, divide this task into multiple steps such as identifying dirty clothes and putting them in a basket.
Just like a math tutor first teaches the arithmetic operations and then provides sample questions for practicing; you too need to follow the same route while developing your child’s independence.
Give Opportunities to Gain Independence
Being independent and self-sufficient means being able to make settlements for yourself; therefore, set your child free to make some of the own choices. You can simplify the choices first and then allow your kid to make own decision.
For example, let your children decide what would they like to take in the lunch. If your child is unable to answer this question, then provide the choices such as macaroni, jelly, or sandwich.
Appreciate Their Struggle for Independence
Even if the outcome is not impressive, always make sure to let your toddlers know that you recognize and appreciate their efforts. Childhood is the precursor. It is a crucial time for teens; therefore, parents must appreciate even the smallest achievements in the beginning.
Hold Back Your Involvement
Sometimes you just need to supervise things instead of taking active participation in the task. Your continuous involvement may make your child dependent. Thus, restrict your contribution to initial training phase only.
Create Kid-Friendly Surroundings
You may get surprised, but it is true that creating kid-friendly environment has numerous benefits. For example, you can adopt some temporary changes in your kitchen’s design. Place cups, dishes, snacks, etc. on the lowest rack so that your kid’s hands can reach there without any support. You can implement such changes in the entire house.
In this way, you should take every possible step that can make your child independent. When in doubt, remind yourself an example of a private tutor who takes utmost care while teaching your child.
Some More Thoughts!
Honest and crystal-clear conversation can create a lifetime friendship with your child.
Setting age-appropriate tasks and creating routines will help your child learn faster
Teach your kids how to be safe while doing certain tasks
Try to become their good friend and teacher
This is how you can promote your child’s independence by taking a few simple steps. Have some more mom-tips on this topic? Please do let us know through the comment box.
James is a professional consultant and writer. He also enjoys writing career guidance articles for the students and their parents. You can find him on: SmileTutor | Facebook | Youtube | Google+.
Did you love James’ tips? Do you have your own tips for fostering your child’s independence? Please comment and share below!