Children often feel as though they are being told what to do. Guidance is everywhere, wanted or not.
You have ten more minutes of playtime.
It’s time to wash your hands before you eat.
Why don’t you try those monkey bars again?
Don’t you want to play with your friend?
They eat when the meals are served, they stop when it’s time to stop, they separate when you cue them to separate, and they do their best to perform the tasks assigned to them.
Children are often following a script. And at times, the script is very necessary (bedtime, anyone?).
But this busy world full of classes, academic learning, forced socializing, and non-stop birthday parties leaves little time for true independence.
I often hear parents discussing the best ways to foster independence.
Don’t come right when they call.
Let them struggle until they figure it out.
Always answer a question with a question.
These tactics, in my opinion, can lead to distrust, hurt feelings, and an overwhelmed child. Children ask questions because they are seeking answers, after all.
What this busy and academically driven world fails to recognize is that being independent isn’t about struggling through a difficult puzzle or waiting an eternity for help to arrive…