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Why now is the perfect time to build up your child’s independence

DETROIT – Doing everything at home means juggling a lot of tasks for both work and the family.

Parents are trying to work from home, while home schooling children, which is why experts claim this is a great time to build their independence.

Read more Kids at Home stories here.

Maria Dismondy is a published author and a mother of three. She said parents have to realize that giving children responsibilities can create accidents.

“My son was done with his breakfast and it was like, ‘Oh, you got to clear your own plate. Let’s let’s do this. Bring it over to the dishwasher,’" Dismonday recalled. "He spilled an entire bowl of cereal and milk. I took a picture of it because I thought I want to remember this. This was day one of quarantine.”

The more responsibilities and independence given to children, the more they could make mistakes.

“Or they may do things that are up to your quality because that’s how they’re learning," Dismonday said.

Dismondy and her husband both run their own business. The former school teacher said when it comes to showing children how to be more independent, start thinking about what you can get off your plate and share the responsibility. For the Dismondy children, that means checking into their Google Classrooms on their own.

They also came up with the idea to have her two oldest children start making weekly dinners.

Dismondy said. “And one of them was cooking.”ain things I really wanted to teach the kids while we’re here in this quarantine,” Dismondy said. “One of them was cooking.”

The two daughters decide on a menu and Dismondy makes sure they have whatever they need -- but the rest is up to them.

“They go on the computer together and they pick out a recipe they’re going to make for the family," Dismondy said. "They have been cooking once a week and they’re learning so many cool things -- like they can brown meat, they can make their own macaroni and cheese.”

Dismondy also started having her children choose their own afternoon activity every day without any help from mom or dad.

“I’m sure parents have heard, ‘I’m bored,’ and I want everyone to know that it drives me crazy just as much as it drives you crazy," Dismondy said. "I took a big piece of paper in our house and I cut it in the shape of a heart and I slapped it on the wall with some tape and we’ve been writing, ideas that the kids can do when they’re bored.”

She said when the children are bored, they look on the poster to find something to do instead of having their parents help them figure it out.

“It gives them that independence to grow in certain areas and to set goals for themselves and to do those extracurriculars that they didn’t really have a whole lot of time for before,” Dismondy said.

You can find more information on Dismondy and her books on her official website here. Dismondy’s online class can be found on the Sunny Side Upbringing Home School Program website here.


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