How children naturally learn responsibility

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Every person has to take responsibility in their life. And children can also be introduced to certain responsibilities at an early age. Responsibility strengthens self-esteem and self-confidence. Therefore, parents should try to accompany their children as early as possible to become independent people.

For parents, responsibility means letting go

Many parents like to wrap their children in cotton wool on a daily basis. A not entirely incomprehensible reflex that we all know. Often the little ones don’t have to face certain inconveniences because we throw ourselves protectively in front of them. Up to a certain point, you can let each pair of parents get away with it. After all, children can (and should) feel protected.

But there is also an excessively pronounced form of “protection”. So-called helicopter parents intervene particularly strongly (and unfortunately also destructively) in the life (and development) of their children.

This can lead to the child being strongly inhibited in its development towards independence – and towards a sense of responsibility. As an adult, children need to know exactly how to lead their own lives in order to be able to take responsibility for themselves and others.

Forms of learning: the categorization

Nowadays we understand “learning responsibility” to be a service that is performed independently and in a manner dependent on activity. One learns by gaining experience in social situations and relationships, internalizing general impressions – information and certain content. But you can also exercise responsibility through independent tasks that have to achieve a certain goal.

Learning can be divided into three categories:

  • The intentional learning describes the methods of learning that are consciously stimulated. Parents who ask their children to take on duties in a dialogue give them direct responsibility. This is a common method used by parents to help out around the house. Even if the child visibly does not feel like taking on a certain task: Through intentional learning, they understand that this task falls within their area of ​​responsibility. It is the only way in which accountability is explicitly an issue.
  • Indirect learning describes the methods of learning that are largely unconscious. Here, the environment provides responsibilities that are not directly perceived as such
  • Implicit learning concerns learning progress that results from lived relationships. Certain behaviors in social relationships can help lay fundamental building blocks for a sense of responsibility. Since every type of responsibility is aimed at how a person acts in the community, this type of “doctrine of responsibility” can be classified as the most significant. If parents trust their children, they can learn from dealing with other children to act self-confidently and responsibly in the future.

Responsibility is learned through mistakes made

Upbringing is always a balancing act. You want to keep your children safe from harm. However, it is extremely important to also allow mistakes. One shouldn’t keep protecting children from uncomfortable situations. It is more important to catch them afterwards. Because this is the only way a learning process takes place.

It is no different when it comes to “responsibility”. Sometimes it can be important that something goes wrong with less sensitive things. Children must be able to see the consequences of this with their own eyes. This is the only way to turn your “own responsibility” for the next situation into a positive one.




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