Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Is Work a Dirty Word in you House?

Are you fun to do chores with? 

Are you too stern? 

Too Critical? 

Is work a dirty word in your house?

Your attitude about chores will influence your child.

If you can enjoy the process and appreciate your child’s efforts, your child will absorb your positive attitude.  If you are impatient and critical your child will absorb your negativity.  If you resent the time spent teaching your child how to do chores, your child may become resistant.

Being positive about work may not solve all your problems, but it will go a long way to creating an atmosphere where working together feels good.

Children don’t learn from criticism.  No one enjoys being criticized.  Criticism makes people feel bad.  Encouragement feels so much better.

Of course you will need to make corrections, but choose your words carefully. Careless words are hard to recall and can damage tender feelings.

Sincere praise can go a long way to making work more enjoyable.  Can praise be overdone?  Maybe, but I doubt it.  Not if it’s meaningful. When I notice that a child is not really doing their part, I swallow my criticism and look for something to praise.

I’m not perfect at this, but when I do it right, it makes all the difference.

It sounds like this:  I noticed that you worked really hard on the sink.  I noticed that you swept the floor without being reminded.  I noticed that you cleaned up after yourself. “I noticed” is a powerful way to start this game, which is really a form of validation.

We need our children to help around the house.  They need to feel validated.  They need to feel needed.  You can validate by noticing and appreciating their efforts, even when their efforts are less than perfect.

Don’t underestimate the value of teaching children to work.  Begin early and be persistent.  Kids who know how to work have an advantage over kids who don’t.

Linda Garner

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