To get your child to take on a job at home, firstly, decide together what job your child can do.
Explain to your child that being part of a family means that everybody helps.
And that your job as a parent is to help them become completely independent – so by the time they leave home they need to be able to clear up after themselves, shop, cook, clean, iron, manage their money, and so on.
Explain that gradually you’re going to help them get all of these skills.
So make a list of all the jobs you do. Work out the ones that they could take over. And ask them to choose which job they want to do.
Secondly, teach them to do the job – and there are five steps to this.
- Show them how to do the job. So get them to watch you while you do the job and explain everything you’re doing.
- Do it together several times and let them practice each bit of the job.
- Watch them do it,and ask them to tell you about everything they’re remembering to do.
- Let them do it on their own. And
- Ask how they’ll remember to do their job without you having to remind or nag them. Perhaps at the same time each week,so it becomes part of their routine.
And finally, remember to use your coaching skills so your child enjoys learning the new job. So while you’re teaching them…
- Remember to stay calm, friendly and positive.
- Be motivating and patient with them.
- Break the job down into small steps.
- Be clear about what you expect.
- And give simple instructions.
- Make it fun and have some friendly banter going.
- Praise them when they try hard,or do the job right,or don’t give up,or don’t complain.
- This is an important one-ask questions rather than telling your child what to do.
- And listen and empathise when they find it difficult or don’t want to do the job – even though they still need to.
- And maybe do something fun together when they’ve finished their job – like have a lemonade or hot chocolate together.
So the 3 tips to get children to help around the house are:
- Decide together what jobs your child can do,
- Teach your child how to do the job,
- And use the skills a coach might use so your child enjoys learning the job.
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