Ally turns 6 this year and Max will be 4. They are both at the age where we feel they can make certain choices on their own. A recent trip to the supermarket made me think about how I can empower my children and build up their self confidence.
We usually do a weekly supermarket run, this involves a long list and a huge shopping cart. When I do this run alone with the three kids, I need to plan and be strategic ie: be as quick as I can. Now that Luke wants to grab everything off the shelves, I need to shop even faster. Usually all the kids follow along and I ask them to grab items off the shelf as and when I see it. It occurred to me the other day that since Ally can read, why not break up the list and get her to help? After all we were in our local supermarket, one that she knows very well and it was quiet. She looked at me with questioning eyes, and I said ” Don’t worry you can do it, I trust you” When she heard that I trusted her, she took the list from me and walked off with confidence.
In fifteen minutes she was back, with all the items on the list. More importantly, she was so proud of herself! Soon after that shopping trip, she offered to order our lunch from the waiter and even queued up at the post office to buy stamps all on her own.
I hope small accomplishments like these will help build their self-confidence and teach them to be independent.