A question I find useful with my kids is "what's your plan?":

  • What's your plan for snack at school today?
  • What's your plan if it gets cold while we're at the picnic?
  • What's your plan for these drawings?

It works well when trying to find a balance on responsibility: the issue is theirs to resolve, but it's not something I can just trust they'll handle unassisted. It acts as both a casual reminder and an opening for me to offer feedback if I end up thinking their plan is unrealistic.

I also like that it's easy to pull back from: I can try not asking, and see how it goes. Over time, as they become more capable, many things have moved out of this intermediate state while others have moved in.

(This is another example of cultivating independence.)

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