How to train your children

Training our kids and teaching them the things they need to be able to do to be independent can be a wonderful experience. But it can also be challenging.

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  • Training our kids and teaching them the things they need to be able to do in order to be independent can be a wonderful experience. It can also be challenging.

  • Sometimes our children get tired of always having Mom or always having Dad tell them everything. Does that happen in your home? They begin to tune you out or rebel against yet another chore Mom is making them do.

  • One of the ways you can be spectacularly successful in teaching and training your kids is by picking other people to do the job.

  • Select the Trainer

  • When it's time to begin training your child in a task, it's important to choose who will do the training. Now, pay attention here. Note: I said choose WHO will do the training. In other words, it doesn't have to always be you.

  • Get creative and pick lots of different people to teach

  • Be creative. Frankly, some of the best training goes on by other non-parental units. Pick lots of different people to help train your child.

  • Who can teach your child how to take care of his bicycle? One day my son's bike had a flat. I was busy, and my hubby was out of town. I said, "Go over and ask Ernie next door to help you." Our neighbor spent two hours teaching the boys how to care for their bikes.

  • Think about having Grandma teach your children how to make pies or Auntie Sophie showing them how to sew. This works really well with teenagers. Ask teachers, leaders, older friends to help and you'll be much more successful.

  • Trade off

  • There is nothing quite so wonderful in blasting through stereotypes as having a woman teach "guy" things and a man teach "woman" things. Who taught my boys how to make chocolate chip cookies? Dad. Who taught them about finances? Mom.

  • Have older siblings train younger

  • One of the absolute best trainers is the older sibling. This doesn't always work well for the sibling directly next in line because they're often in conflict. However, it works great if you skip a child.

  • Using older siblings as trainers can be really effective. It reinforces the training for the older child, and the younger sibling pays close attention.

  • Be safe

  • Of course, make sure it is someone you know very well and that they're not totally alone. It can be an amazing experience for your child that they will never forget. They never tire of having people pay attention to them and thinking that they are important.

  • Having lots of people involved in the training and teaching of your child can be a rich experience for everyone. In the process, your child will learn a lot about becoming self-sufficient. That's a win for everyone.

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Merrilee Boyack is a mom of four sons, grandma to two and an attorney, author, and professional speaker.  


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