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Using Home Schooling to Teach Children Responsibility

Jul 15, 2008
Teaching children responsibility is the goal of education whether it takes place in a regular school setting or through home schooling. Many parents feel that the regular school can do this much better than they can, but this is not so. Parents are the child's first and most important teachers and it is through the parents that children learn the quality of responsibility. This means that all parents are responsible for providing this education for their children.

In order to teach responsibility to their children, there are certain things that parents must do. These include:

- create an environment where responsibility is an expectation

- become in role models for the children in the area of responsibility

- teach children to be responsible for their own actions at an early age

- let the children know that responsibility is the norm

- reinforce any responsible behaviors with praise rather than rewards

- provide consequences for irresponsible behavior to deter any future episodes

How can parents create an environment where children know they are expected to be responsible? In a home schooling situation, the parents demonstrate responsibility by making sure they pay attention to the children's needs in education and have times when children are expected to complete their schoolwork as well as their regular chores around the house. They should provide the children with time when they can work on their own and times where they can help the other children of the family.

Parents that admit when they make a mistake and take steps to correct it show their children that they are willing to take responsibility for their actions. They should not try to hide their faults from the children and if there is something that they cannot do or do well, they should say so and find another person that can help the children.

Even as toddlers, children should learn right from wrong. They should have rules set and know that when they break these rules, there will be consequences. Toddlers can learn to put away their toys when they are finished playing with them. Children can learn to speak politely at home and to ask for help when they need it. Teenagers usually have an allowance that they can spend as they wish. They will learn quickly that if they waste it or spend it all at the same time, they will have to do without until the time of the next allowance.

By breaking large expectations of responsibility into small manageable chunks, children can comprehend the concept better. Instead of assigning a large chunk of material to be completed by a certain date, parents can divide the material in manageable sections with a date of completion for each section. Then as the child gets older, the sections can become larger.

Every time a child shows responsibility, the parent should recognize it with praise. Praise is it s own reward by making the child feel good about himself/herself. When you provide rewards for showing responsibility, the child may get the idea that he/she should be paid to act in this way and may not do so when there is no tangible reward presented.
About the Author
For more on teaching children responsibility ,home schooling as well as homeschool lesson plans visit http://www.HSIdea.com
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