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September 16, 2000
Helping Your Kids Get Better at Following Directions
Tip--Learning the difference between a parental request and a direction is a distinction all children must make and being able to follow directions exactly, an important life skill.
Are you interested in getting your children to do what you ask the first time? Do chores without arguing? Accomplishing this might be as simple as giving them practice at following directions exactly, says counselor Laurie Simons, M.A., author of Taking “No” for an Answer and Other Skills Children Need. From toddlers to teens, children have a tendency to want to do things in their own way. Learning the skill of following directions exactly will help them be more successful both in their relationships and in their life achievements, asserts Simons.
In healthy families, parents are in charge. It is essential for family harmony for all members to be able to follow rules and parental directions. As long as the rules and directions are relevant and consistent, children need to follow those guidelines. Parents can also foster leadership abilities in their children by occasionally allowing them to be the ones who give directions, within parental limits.
Tools--The following games are drawn from Simons' book Taking “No” for an Answer and offer children fun practice at following directions exactly.
You’ll find more practical tips you can use right now in Taking “No” for an Answer and Other Skills Children Need by Laurie Simons, M.A.
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