'Lawnmower parenting:' Solving problems, daily tasks

Teaching your children how to figure things out for themselves: It's a good way way to avoid "lawnmower parenting."

This week, we spoke with Mika Gross at the Parent's Place in Wichita about steps you can take to help you child grow up to become a responsible adult.

One suggestion is instead of fixing your child's problems that come up, give the problem back to them to figure out on their own.

"If my child spills milk, I can get pretty frustrated because I know we've got to clean that up. But I can also choose to look at the child and say, 'Wow, you spilled some milk. What do you want to do about that?'" Gross says. "And for little children who don't know what to do, that's okay because we know they don't have those answers because they've never had to solve those problems before."

Another good way to help children become accountable is to give them daily tasks once they're old enough to handle them. First, decide which task you want to assign. During our interview, Gross used the example of putting dishes in the dishwasher.

She says you should start by having your child watch you complete the task to see how it's done and to ask any questions they may have. Next, you can do the task together and coach them so they can learn with you. Then, have them perform the task alone while you watch. Finally, hand the task over, adding the chore to your child's list of responsibilities.

Unloading a household chore or daily task a child can safely perform can greatly benefit your child's development in the quest toward helping them grow toward becoming an independent, responsible adult.