When it comes to teaching the children how to decide on their own, nothing is better than the parents themselves are the ones doing it for them. From simple acts of picking up a toy, changing TV channels, to more challenging, complicated tasks, a child will be tested how he or she was gaining facility using his or her will. The ability of a child to choose wisely on a given situation is indicative of how he was able to learn effective decision-making skills.
But what is the best age to start teaching your children how to decide on their own? I think it depends on your children as each child has different developmental needs in response to a stimulus. In Nathaniel’s case, I was able to introduce it to him just a few weeks right after his second birthday.
It was when we were on a grocery store and I let him decide which one to choose from two of his favorites: chocolates, or ice cream? He picked up the ice cream over chocolates. But, guess what? He asked for the chocolates when he was done eating the ice cream. The following are what I can suggest on how to teach your children how to choose wisely:
HELP YOUR CHILDREN TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY
You have to do it gradually by simply starting with the simple things. Once you’re through with simple things, you have to start showing them how to engage their wills in a strong and meaningful ways. You have to make them understand that they have the power within them to choose what is right from a wrong or what is best from what’s not. Once these things are practiced, then you’re helping them build their decision-making skills.
ENCOURAGE THEM TO FREELY EXPRESS THEIR THOUGHTS AND EMOTIONS OR REASON OUT FOR THEIR CHOICES
It is important to show interest in what your children are saying. Let them explain before you why they have chosen a particular thing over another; allow them to voice out their minds on a particular issue as this will help them to think better that will lead to good decision making.
INVOLVE YOUR CHILDREN IN FAMILY DECISIONS
Whether you’re planning to go to a picnic or change the setting of your living room, when you involve your children in it, they will learn how to make decisions that will not only take others into account but as well asking them to share their own views and ideas for that matter. When you let them participate in family affairs that require them to decide, you’re giving them the opportunity to engage in things that may, in one way or another, affect them and that which lead to their learning of new things while, at the same time, developing a closer connection to the family.