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Mum Lets 'Independent' Two-Year-Old Son Make Tea And Use Oven

Mum Lets 'Independent' Two-Year-Old Son Make Tea And Use Oven

A mum has explained why she lets her two-year-old son cook, make cups of tea and do the laundry. Watch him getting stuck into some chores here:

Florence Taylor, from West Sussex, UK, is unusually hands off with her son Jax - and she credits this parenting method with endowing the little fella with a whole host of skills.

Detailing the array of things her son can do, she told The Mirror: "He is very independent, because he's been allowed to be. Without having to say 'mummy's busy/go play/no you're too little' all the time, he's learnt skills that some adults I've met don't even have.

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"My son can, and does, do a full laundry cycle. He knows how to put the right setting on, where to put the pod and softener, and to swap it to the tumble dryer when it's done.

"I've walked into the kitchen to see him moving the washing over to the tumble dryer, and all I had to do was say thank you.

"He's always had an interest in cooking and so I let him. We have toddler safe knives and cookware and he has made a lasagne, Bolognese and omelettes pretty much by himself."

Jax carved his own pumpkin last Halloween. Credit: Florence Taylor/@montessoraus.mama
Jax carved his own pumpkin last Halloween. Credit: Florence Taylor/@montessoraus.mama
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She added: "My son knows how to make a cup of tea, from start to finish.

"He does the whole process apart from pouring the kettle, mainly because it's too big and heavy for him. But he understands it's hot and not to touch it and that mummy does that part.

"Then he strains the teabags and removes them and stirs the tea and off we go."

Jax can perform all these tasks because he's being raised under the Montessori method, developed by Italian physician Maria Montessori, whereby children are encouraged to learn independently.

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Florence explained: "I loved the idea of my son being self sufficient, self motivated and developing in his own time in his own way.

"It's about being there to guide the child but letting them lead the way in their development.

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"There's no praise or punishment, just guidance and natural consequences. There's also a huge emphasis on what we call 'practical life work' which is daily life activities so laundry, washing up and DIY.

"The main benefits for my family personally is that because I allow my son to join me in cooking, laundry and anything else that he's interested in, there's next to no power struggles and he's a toddler.

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"A common saying in the Montessori community is 'give as much help as needed, but as little as necessary' and that's exactly what I do."

Jax knows how to make a brew, which is more than can be said for many adults. Credit: Florence Taylor/@montessoraus.mama
Jax knows how to make a brew, which is more than can be said for many adults. Credit: Florence Taylor/@montessoraus.mama

Of course, many parents would love to have their children lending a hand with chores - but they don't, because they deem it unsafe or even unfair on the child.

But Florence insists her method is safe and Jax isn't forced to do any chores.

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She said: "I am always right there to keep him safe. He uses the stove but he knows it's hot and not to physically touch it and he never has, he even told me to move my hand once because it was on the stove and the stove is hot.

"I do not force my son to do any of this stuff and nor would I. It's all things he's taken an interest in learning and I've allowed him to join me and learn and he does them purely for his own enjoyment and satisfaction. It's all optional.

"Of course I am right there ready to stop him running in the road if need be but I do give him the opportunity to make the right decision himself and he pretty much always does.

"I think because he's been given the opportunity to do things independently through his own trial and error rather than me always stopping him he's learnt it for himself."

Featured Image Credit: Florence Taylor/@montessoraus.mama

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Jake Massey

Jake Massey is a journalist at LADbible. He graduated from Newcastle University, where he learnt a bit about media and a lot about living without heating. After spending a few years in Australia and New Zealand, Jake secured a role at an obscure radio station in Norwich, inadvertently becoming a real-life Alan Partridge in the process. From there, Jake became a reporter at the Eastern Daily Press. Jake enjoys playing football, listening to music and writing about himself in the third person.