Teaching Your Child To Be Constructive

Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 1


Why Is This Important?

It is easy to see how children can easily be destructive. Most tend to be messy and destructive by nature.  It is amazing to me how quickly my boys can create chaos in their room with in minutes of cleaning it.  Teaching your child to be constructive takes intentionality.  Toddlers especially enjoy making a mess and knocking over toys etc.  To them this is a learning phase, they are learning cause and effect and sometimes the sensory play of “mess” is important.  But there are things we can do to make it a constructive playtime.  Being destructive for the sake of destruction is something that our child needs to grow out of, with the help of training.  There are things that are destructive that can be learning tools.  Such as taking something apart to learn how it works.  When we are intentional we can take playtime and make it constructive.  We can even take some things that may be considered “destructive” and make a learning experience out of it.  Ultimately, teaching constructive play may be training in delayed gratification. discipline and vision for the future.  We will spend all week talking about how to teach this to your child, make sure to check back.



Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 12017-11-09T12:15:22-04:00

Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 2


It Takes Time

Teaching a child to be constructive takes intentionality and effort.  Giving a child the patience training from building “things” is worth the effort.  For toddlers this can be the building of the tower to its full height before the joy of watching it fall down, for preschoolers completing the coloring page or play dough master piece, school aged children finishing the first chapter book or puzzle, helping our child complete these tasks take time.  By helping them with these seemly simple accomplishments, this constructive play is ultimately teaching them how to build for the future, on a small scale.  This is a very important adult skill; we build savings for a house and put into a marriage for the future of the relationship, etc.  Breaks from school and summer time are perfect opportunities to take on bigger projects with your child, such as a craft, longer book or building project to teach something constructive.  Make sure to set aside time for this in your schedule.



Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 22017-11-09T12:17:23-04:00

Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 3


Where Does A Parent Begin?

We have given a few ideas through the week on where to begin as a parent teaching how to be constructive vs. destructive.  Think about the activities you do with your child.  Which ones develop constructive long term patience?  Which ones make, build or achieve something?  We talked about taking the time to build towers with you toddler who is itching to knock them over.  You can also start working on finger painting or coloring.  As they age you can use their interests to your advantage.  Things like trains, blocks, legos, and Lincoln logs are great exercises.  Both genders enjoy doing crafts, there are so many instructions and ideas on pinterest for crafts.  The key is take the time to find one that will peak their interests.  Including your child in the cooking process is another great constructive activity.  One idea that we did as a family is having a reading night.  When children are younger a parent can start a chapter book to read.  As children get older there can be a night set aside where each family member can enjoy their own book complete with snacks and hot chocolate.  Take the time to process through what constructive activities your children would enjoy.



Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 32017-11-09T12:18:29-04:00

Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 4


Every Child Is Different

Let’s take a moment and reiterate that this isn’t about the project or completely about constructive vs. destructive.  It is all about life skills.  There are many things that take constructive input and patience, our faith, our marriage and even parenting.  These areas are completely about small steps and patience.

Because this is so important we need to remember that each of our children is different, possibly different genders and/or personalities.  This is one of the areas that we may need to use some creativity and where the being a student of your child will pay off.  Teaching this will take knowing your child.  What will peak their interest? Not every child is into reading, though every child can benefit from a family reading night, or puzzles.   You want this learning activity to be something that is a positive experience so they can fall back on the training during difficult times later on.  Look at the activities that your child is interesting and see if you can creatively apply this lesson.  Is it cooking, a building project, a science experiment, putting together a big Lego project, knitting or sewing?   Take the time to learn each of your children and what will help to teach this important life skill.



Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 42017-11-09T12:19:29-04:00

Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 5


Working With Teens

The question of parents with teens is sometimes; what if I haven’t started this yet, is it too late?  The answer is a resounding… it is never too late!!  Teens are constantly faced with destructive behavior, from tearing each other down, violence in their culture and media, music, and some are even destructive to themselves. This stage more then ever may need a redirection to things that are constructive.

In order to teach the life skills of constructive input and patience, there are many areas we can look to.  Because they are older, a teen may be trusted to help with a household or simple car repair.  Teens can be taught to cook a whole meal themselves.  There are many projects that teens and parents can do together.  Mission trips are great for teaching these skills, as well as serving others.  Take the time to look for long-term projects that you can do with your teen.   Remember it’s never to late!


Teaching Your Child to be Constructive, Not Destructive | Part 52017-11-09T12:20:35-04:00