Custom orders for children to learn to be responsible

From the age of 6, children are usually delighted to be able to help their parents: load bags, pick up the phone ... No test is enough to stop their feet. We must take advantage of this natural inclination to please and collaborate to fix in them the Habit of responsibility through custom orders.

It would be useless to expect a child to be responsable and worker in their studies if they were not inculcated these habits since they were little by practicing some so daily commissions how to put or remove the table.

A thousand and one job opportunities to collaborate at home

What is clear is that for children, from 6 years of age, to progress, we will have to offer them a thousand and one job opportunities that allow him to practice and fix this habit. And much better if these opportunities keep a certain order and meaning. Establish as a principle that each activity has its time in the day or week is usually a formula that offers very good results.


1. On weekends. When the weekend comes, for example, our son should be aware, as we will have explained, that in the morning he will have to perform certain tasks or assignments. While we clean the dust he can do it nearby. Thus, you will understand that the house is cleaned at the first hour and that it must be kept as well as possible throughout the day. Then, we can go with him to do the errands of the week, urging him to carry the less heavy loads and making him see that his collaboration is a great help for us.

2. During the week. Throughout the week, as you will have less time, you can take care of other obligations such as caring for and ordering the objects of your use and property (clothes, toilet utensils, books ...), moving the laundry from your basket to the washing machine, take care of your pet or answer the phone when you are nearby.


Tips to be responsible with the orders

1. Constancy If we really want our son to begin to acquire certain responsibilities we will have to be constant. We can not delegate to him a few obligations and then allow him not to comply with them.

2. Collaboration.For children, simple questions such as cleaning shoes often cause serious difficulties. Precisely for this reason, and above all at the beginning, our son will need our constant presence and collaboration.

3. How it is doneEach time we entrust a new obligation, we must reason why our decision and explain in detail how it is done with examples. In this way, it will be much easier to be responsible and comply with each of the orders.

4. Give an example. IJust as the child has to assume his responsibilities, we must do the same. If we do not set an example and we are the first to leave everything "shoulder to shoulder" there is no doubt that our son by pure imitation will end up doing the same.


5. Avoid distinguishing tasks.Let's not make distinctions between children's tasks and girls' tasks. Everyone has to collaborate at home in the same way, whether it's cleaning the dust, scrubbing the floor or buying bread on Sunday mornings.

6. Avoid doing it for him or her. Lazy children are not born that way. Sometimes we are the parents themselves who encourage attitudes of these characteristics. Therefore, we should not be tempted to do what the child can do for himself.

Table of commissions for children

A good plan so that the child does not forget his obligations is to help him to make a table with each one of the tasks that he must carry out throughout the day. Thus, with a simple glance you will be able to discover what you "have" to do in the morning, the tasks of the afternoon or, simply, what are the orders of the weekend.

Elena López
Adviser: Antonio J. Alcalá. Primary Teacher and Degree in Philology.

More information in the book Your 6 to 7 year old son, by Blanca Jordán de Urries. Editorial Word.

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