“Let all things be done decently and in order.” ~1 Corinthians 14:40
We all know how easily bad habits are formed. Did you realize that good habits are formed the same way? Instilling good habits in your children will make your home run much more smoothly and orderly. Imagine a day where you did not have to remind your children to brush their teeth, clean their room, do their work, or complete their chores. The simple process of repetition over time will form good habits in your children. The trick is to be purposeful in training these habits.
A habit I try to instill in my children is executing chores and schoolwork to the best of their ability. It is not always easy to instill this habit, as it takes restraint and work on my part–restraint from just taking over the chore and doing it for them and work because I must model what I want done many times to instruct my children properly. The point is not to do the job perfectly. The point is having the child do her best.
Often my daughter will become frustrated when doing copy work because her letters are not perfect. I correct her by telling her that the job requires her best, not perfection. If copy work is not done to the best of her ability, I stop her and make her do it over again. If a chore is not done to the best of the child’s ability, they will repeat it.
The key is showing the child the task and modeling what you expect over and over again. It is purposeful education that requires patience no matter what habit you are trying to teach. Do not try to teach every habit from morning routines to chores at one time. Allow the child to make progress or master a habit before moving on to the next habit.
Resources for Habit Training: Hints on Child Training by Clay Trumbull, Smooth and Easy Days by Sonya Shafer (Free download on Simply Charlotte Mason.com), and Laying down the Rails: a Charlotte Mason Habits Handbook by Sonya Shafer