The reason for encouraging independence is to build a sense of responsibility. A parent cannot always be around for his/her kids, and that is why teaching them to be reliable is important. However, it may be a bit heavy on them at first, and thus, the following tips will help you ease your kids’ transition towards independence:
1. Use tools for reminders.
Having a board on the corner, a calendar of schedules, stick-it notes, and magnets on the fridge are some of the most common and useful things for reminding your kids. Make it very noticeable and free of ambiguity.
2. Create a snack container that is self-serving.
The days of you serving your kids with snacks has to be gone. Although it may be early for them to make a sandwich, why not put finger foods and snacks on containers that can be easily accessed and organized instead.
3. Keep wet wipes for cleanup.
The faucet may be a bit high for kids, and sometimes, water might be wasted. For convenient cleaning for their hands and face, while you’re absent, wet wipes are preferable. Also, you might need to always teach them how to throw the trash into the bin.
4. Have your kids serve themselves during mealtime.
As your kids slowly pick up the self-serving snack container system, you have to reinforce that by teaching them to serve themselves during mealtime. They will become more adept with utensils, learn to measure their own appetite and value the importance of food.
There’s no need to march around your kids like you are a dictator. Kids have to feel that they are given enough space to operate on their own, but at the same time, they are aware of what they are doing. If there are mistakes, adjust accordingly.