Daily chores help make children feel more included and important to the smooth running of the family household. Spinks-Franklin said there is a correlation between being given responsibilities as a child and being a responsible adult later in life.
Spinks-Franklin said young children can do simple chores, including setting the table, washing dishes or putting things away.
Children can be taught these skills at an early age because that is usually when they are curious enough to want to know how things work and are eager to participate. It helps children develop problem-solving skills. It is also an opportunity to help children see that their behaviors have consequences for others, as well as themselves.
Spinks-Franklin said constant opportunities for conversation and dialogue also helps parents instill family values in their children and to be sure they understand their children.
Therapists say it is important to have clear, non-negotiable rules (even when you suspect the rules are likely to be bent or broken). Children are likely to push the boundaries, but they need to have a sense of how far they can go while trying to exercise some independence.
“It’s not THE talk, it’s multiple, ongoing conversations about everything – substance abuse, friendships, sex – that occur over the span of their childhood,” Spinks-Franklin told the Bellaire Buzz. “These give them a framework with which to work when they hit their teens.”