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Teaching Independence

As your children get older you need to find a ways to learn how to take care of themselves. Not only does this benefit them, it frees up your time as well.

  1. When your children first start bathing/showering themselves they can waste a lot of shampoo. Save the dosage cups from your over the counter medicines and wash them out. When your child is getting their supplies ready for their bath, fill one with shampoo. They will see how much shampoo is a good amount to use.
  2. Invest in a shower mirror. This will help your child to see their hair to know if they have washed it all and also rinsed all the shampoo out.
  3. Teach them to sort laundry by color as they get undressed. Our laundry sorter is in the bathroom and they sort the colors as they disrobe.
  4. When they are learning to pour their own beverages, buy quart milks so that they can handle the weight and lessen the spills. Have them practice on the driveway with a pitcher of water and cups.
  5. When they are finished with dinner they should clear their own plates to the sink area.


We all benefit when we are in a routine. Routines help your children to know what to expect next and it will make it easier for them to start doing things for themselves.

  1. If you do not have a morning routine, on school days especially, you need to get one!
  2. Your children should wake at the same time, eat at the same time and know what they need to do to leave for school without constant follow up.
  3. TV should only be allowed after they are completely ready to walk out the door.
  4. Bedtime is the same situation. The children should know that bath, pajamas, brushing teeth and then bedtime need to occur.


As your children get older setting up a chore schedule is an obvious benefit to you as the homemaker as some of the responsibility of taking care of the house is being shared. Children also gain as they learn responsibility for taking care of the house as well.

  1. A chart on the refrigerator or other prominent area in the house is a good start. This is a visual reminder of what needs to be done and what has been done.
  2. Charts are easy to manage. Type up one on you computer or buy a wipe off kind at your local discount store.
  3. Chores should vary by the age of your children. Obviously as the children age, their responsibility can and should increase.
  4. Find chores that can be alternated between the children. For example, for the trash and recycling you can alternate that responsibility between your children so that there is variety in their chores.
  5. Each child should be responsible for their own room.


Start your children off on the right foot when it comes to homework.

  1. As soon as homework starts to come home, in our case it was Kindergarten, make a designated place in your house to have it done.
  2. Keep the area well stocked with pencils, paper, erasers, etc.
  3. The area should be well lit.
  4. Make sure homework is a priority. We do homework before we play or watch TV.
  5. If you know that the next day is busy right after school, see if your child can do the next days homework in advance.
  6. Work with your child’s teacher. When we take our child out of school for vacation, we have them do their homework before we leave.

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