Helping Your Child Become More Independent

Learning to do things alone is an important part of growing up, but may come more naturally to some children than to others. It's easy for children to rely on parents to do everything for them and can take a lot of confidence to take the first few steps towards independence. If you want to help give your child a little nudge in the right direction, take a look at the following advice from an independent school in London.

child washing up

However old your child is there are sure to be certain tasks you do for them that they would be able to do by themselves. Whilst it's not necessary to expect your child to do everything independently, giving them small self-care tasks will help to build their confidence and show them that they are capable. Perhaps start with letting your child choose and prepare their own cereal in the morning or get themselves a drink when they need one.

It is important that you let them attempt new tasks even if they get it wrong the first couple of times. Making a mistake because they have tried is better than not trying at all. If you constantly swoop in to assist your child with everything, they will never feel capable of trying it themselves. If they get a drink and spill juice on the floor or dress themselves in odd socks, quite frankly, it isn’t the end of the world. The fact that you’ve let them try will help their self-esteem to grow and soon they will have mastered the task that they're attempting. You should praise their effort in attempting new tasks rather than focusing on the fact that they may have gotten it wrong.

Family chores are another way to teach your child to be more independent. Expecting your child to chip in with the housework will teach them that they have a responsibility to contribute towards the successful running of family life. Even the rule that they tidy up their toys when they’re finished will teach them that they can’t just rely on you to do everything for them. Having a set responsibility such as taking out the bins or washing up after dinner will actually build your child’s self-esteem as they will see that they are an important cog in the family machine. Plus, the more tasks they learn to carry out alone, the more their independence will flourish.

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