Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Guiding Your Child Towards Independence from Early Age

Thu 30 Nov 2023 | 11:21 PM
Pasant Elzaitony

In the journey of parenting, one of the challenges faced by many is addressing the dependent behaviors of their children.

It's a blend of inherent traits and acquired habits, some of which can unfortunately be negative. This article explores effective strategies for fostering independence in children, starting from as young as four years old.

Research indicates that while some dependency traits may be inherited, there are parenting techniques that can mitigate these tendencies.

The process begins at an age where children have a basic understanding and capability to perform simple tasks.

For instance, asking a four-year-old to tidy up their toys after playing can instill a sense of responsibility.

Similarly, involving them in routine activities like shopping, where they can assist in selecting products and handling small tasks like emptying the shopping cart at the cashier, can boost their confidence and reduce dependency.

These activities not only encourage self-reliance but also require patience and understanding from parents.

An unexpected reaction or mistake from the child should not be met with criticism but with patience.

It's also crucial to praise their positive actions to reinforce a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction.

In households where domestic help is present, it's important to set boundaries to prevent over-reliance on the assistance for personal tasks.

For example, if a child requests water, the helper could encourage the child to participate in fetching it, thereby sharing the responsibility.

As the child grows, reinforcing positive behavior with gratitude, such as saying "thank you for cleaning your room" or for other helpful actions, is important.

This encourages a habit of participation and contribution. Avoiding criticism if the task is not perfectly completed is also key to maintaining a positive self-image and avoiding discouraging the child.

Contributed by Israa Farhan