Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Capable and Responsible Kids

I don't have much time but I saw this article (click on the title Capable and Responsible Kids to view article) and thought how true this was. When I mention to people how my kids (12,9 &9) can do all their laundry from beginning to end, make themselves a balanced meal, clean a bathroom and many other things they do each day, I either find people are shocked or are apalled. Is it child abuse? Is it child slave labor? Is it mean and uncaring? I don't think so. Kids need to be responsible. They need to know these things - boys and girls. They should know how to change a tire, maintain a home, mow the lawn, make a bank deposit, make a grocery list and balance their budget.

We do our children a great disservice if we fail to teach them these things. Someday, they will be out on their own and the more capable they are now, the easier it will be then. Our parents and grandparents had the right idea. Read "Farmer Boy" by Laura Ingalls Wilder and compare your kids to the capable Wilder's. You might be shocked in comparision. Read it to your kids and explain how capable the Wilder's were and how capable your kids are as well.

When they are little, teach them to pick up their toys, straighten up their room, and put their clothes in a hamper. By 3 and 4 teach them to wipe off a counter top (I like clorox wipes) and put all the shoes in their place. Daily chores are a good thing. "What Every Child Should Know Along the Way" is a great book with lists of chores and activities per age group. I have used this since my kids were little. It's a great resource and can be found at http://www.gfi.org/ under the GFI store. We don't have all of these things down but we have a good portion of them done.

Let's not raise imcompetent kids. We won't be preparing them well for whatever God has for them.


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