Categorized | Parenting, Parenting Tips

Teaching Toddlers To Be Independent

As toddlers grow, their need for identity and thirst to do things on their own also gets stronger. It is very important that parents prepare their children for adult life as early as possible, and that means teaching toddlers to be independent. Here are some tips on how to do it.

Create A Routine

The best way to teach your toddler independence is by building a routine. Routine creates consistency which is essential in helping children thrive. Establish a morning and bedtime routine and make sure you stick to it. Soon, your toddler will find his independence and complete tasks without you having to tell him.

Demonstrate It

Being able to do a job well promotes a sense of independence and accomplishment in your toddler. But in order to foster his abilities, you will have to show him how things are done step by step. While doing so, talk about what you are doing, let him assist you and then watch him do it on his own. For instance, you can show him how to dress himself by helping him put on a shirt first, then shorts, then socks and then have him do it. Do not forget to give him a pat on the back for trying.

Have Your Toddler Look After His Things

Tell your toddler that he is responsible of his own stuff. For instance, if he leaves dirty clothes scattered on the floor instead of putting them in the hamper, do not pick them up. Tell him to pick them up. Teach him how to put his shoes on the shoe rack after he comes home from school, how to make his bed every morning and so on.

Assign A Task

Give your little one age-appropriate chores around the house. Tell him that it is his responsibility to store his toys after he is done playing with them, to keep his bedroom clean or to clear the table after dinner. Better yet, let him pitch in. If your toddler wants to help you cook, clean or fix something, find a way for your toddler to help you. He may not be able to mop the floor, but you can ask him to fetch you a clean rug.

Let Your Toddler Make Choices

Saying no all the time does not guarantee your toddler will not fail and make bad choices. Once in a while, let your child take the lead and let him fail. If, for example, your toddler insists on eating all of his food in one sitting, let him. At some point, he will get hungry and realize that he has no more food left and that eating only small amounts of food makes more sense. When you allow him to make his own choices, you give your toddler a chance to learn and grow.

Be A Helper, Not A Solver

Do not step in and solve your toddler’s problems. Help your toddler figure it out instead. Ask things like, “How would you handle this situation?”. Just guide him and give him tools to solve problems on his own. He will feel more accomplished afterwards than if you resolved the problem for him.

Teaching your toddler how to be independent at an early age is very important. He will grow and live his own life, and this skill will come in handy so he can endure both the good and bad times.

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