A new year has arrived, and with it comes a world of exciting possibilities! As you and your family kick off January, it’s likely that you’ll be coming up with resolutions for the year ahead. But setting goals isn’t just for grown-ups! Your child can get in on the fun too. Making resolutions helps children learn self-discipline, motivational skills, and the importance of keeping a promise—after all, a resolution is simply a promise you make to yourself! Try these four tips to help strengthen your child’s life skills and get them excited for the new year.
- Make it a family activity. One of the simplest ways to help your child make a resolution is to get the whole family involved in the fun! Sit down with your family and talk about what each of you is proud of accomplishing in the past 12 months as well as what habits or behaviors you’d like to improve in the coming year. A fun and simple way to keep track of your resolutions is to create a promise chain. Have each family member write their goal on a strip of construction paper. Tape each strip together to create a beautiful chain that you can hang as a promise-keeping reminder!
- Keep it age-appropriate. It’s important that you keep your child’s age in mind when helping them set a new year’s resolution. Young children should focus on simpler habits, such as picking up toys after playtime or brushing their teeth every night. Older children can set resolutions with more responsibility involved, like helping clean up after dinner or spending more time outdoors.
- Be a role model. You are your child’s number one role model! This is especially true when making resolutions and setting good examples. Children are far more likely to stick to a resolution if they see you demonstrate commitment to your own goals. You can also get them involved by including them in your resolutions: “I’m going to try each of the vegetables on my plate. Would you like to try each of yours too, even if it’s just a “no thank you” bite?”
- Celebrate progress. Recognizing achievements is a huge part of keeping a new year’s resolution for children and adults alike. When your child updates you on their resolutions, be sure to praise their progress and encourage them in their journey. Once half a year has gone by, celebrate six months of resolution keeping with a fun day trip or dinner at your child’s favorite restaurant!
No matter what resolutions your child chooses to make for the year ahead, you can encourage them along every step of the way by including them in your own resolution journey and celebrating their successes!
For more on building your child’s character development skills, check out:
- Keeping Promises: How to Teach Integrity to Your Preschooler
- Truth for Kids: 5 Tips for Teaching Children Honesty
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