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Teaching Responsibility During the Holidays

By Jam Hops, 12/04/20, 12:00PM CST


Rebecca the Reindeer tells us responsibility is being accountable for your own actions and taking ownership of things that have happened instead of blaming others.

Whether we’ve realized it or not, we’ve been teaching our kids about responsibility since March. Being responsible for washing our hands, wearing our masks, and keeping our 6-foot bubble intact. Doing all these things has helped them understand what it means to be responsible.

They’ve done a great job so far, so what else can we teach them about responsibility during the holidays and for the new year? We have some ideas!

Help with holiday decorations: We all love Christmas decorations—the tree, the lights, the wreath on the front door, the snowmen in the yard! Do your kids know how much it takes to turn your house into a winter wonderland? Involve them this year as you’re decorating. Let them choose where the ornaments go on the tree and untangle the Christmas lights. They’ll learn responsibility by understanding the work they put in will make something that they’ll enjoy.

Write a Christmas list: For younger kids, writing their own Christmas list can teach them responsibility because they do it on their own. They will be proud of the list and even more excited because they did it all by themselves. For older kids, help them begin to understand social responsibility. Ask them to include two charities or community projects that they would like to give to. Getting Christmas gifts is great, and giving back to their community will feel good too. Giving back their time, money, or kindness will teach them to be responsible with these things as they grow up.

Help with holiday shopping: You have a Christmas list for everyone in your family—siblings, mom, dad, grandma, maybe even your pet. Ask your kids to help shop for someone else in your family. Shopping for something that makes dad or grandma happy will again teach them it’s just as important to give as it is to receive. Shopping for others will also give them a job to be responsible for.

Shovel the driveway: On the mornings you wake up with a driveway full of snow, let your kids do some shoveling. As the snow disappears from the driveway, they will see their hard work pay off.

Goals for the new year: We write New Year’s resolutions to be accountable for our goals. Get your kids involved to teach them accountability and maybe even stick to yours because you have a partner. Setting goals for the new year could be small, like do a family check-in every night at dinner, or they could be bigger, like saving more money to take a family vacation when you can travel again. Your kids’ goals could be tied to yours or be their own related to school, dance, or responsibilities.

Rebecca the Responsible Reindeer is excited for you to continue teaching responsibility after a year that has taught us all to own our actions and be accountable to ourselves, our family, and our community.