If you read our 7 Tips for Raising Responsible Children, you know how important it is to raise your kids to be responsible. Most parents use chores and/or pets to begin teaching responsible behavior. Even if your child is mastering those, he or she may still not realize the impact being irresponsible can have on others.
Want a fun way to teach them the concept and help others at the same time? Have a service project assembly line. Find a project that involves several steps which must be repeated multiple times. (Our parent website Teach One Reach One has lots of great free ideas.) Often collections, like bags of school supplies or disaster supplies, make great assembly line service projects. Or maybe you can make multiple batches of cookies or games. Anything that requires multiple steps and you can afford to make several of them.
Give each person in your family a task in the assembly line. Talk about the concept of doing a great job well, but quickly. Then start your line. It’s even more fun if others can join you and you have several assembly lines competing. At some point, you or other adults may want to skip a bag, put two of your item in one bag or try to take over someone else’s task. Make sure you have “quality” control at the end of the task. Were all the items assembled appropriately and was the quality of the finished product consistent?
After you have finished your project, grab an ice cream and talk about what happened. Read them Romans 12:3-8. Ask them why God has given each of us different gifts and why He wants us to do the gifts He has given us well. Discuss the concept of the Church as a team and how it is important everyone does their part and does it well. Remind them about their assembly line and what happened when someone didn’t do their part.
A fun day of assembly line and a devotional won’t necessarily make your kids immediately more responsible. It is however a great memorable way for them to understand how vital their role will be in God’s Kingdom and how to be responsible in that role.