11 Duggar Parenting Rules We Can All Use

duggar familyIn a family with 19 kids, efficiency and schedules are what keep the ship running. The Duggars rose to fame as the stars of 19 Kids and Counting and showed us all about what parenting, courting, and schooling look like in a family of 21. And though most of us do not have the same size brood (or anywhere near), there are still plenty of things we can learn from the Duggars.


Here are 11 Duggar parenting tips every family could use:

  1. Jurisdictions are key. The Duggar kids don't have traditional "chores." Instead, Michelle and Jim Bob have implemented a jurisdictions system where the little kids are each responsible for a certain home cleaning, minding, or upkeep list. They last anywhere from six months to a year and then rotate between the siblings. Check out the Duggar-approved chore list.
  2. There is a little allowance. If the kids work outside their set jurisdictions, they earn $.03 per chore. If the little kids do 15 chores per day, they earn about 50 cents. The older kids, however, get more. "They go above and beyond, and we'll reward that. If they offer to clean the van or mop the garage, we'll give them a few dollars or something to show them the value of hard work and acknowledge their initiative," says Michelle.
  3. Don't forget about romance. Yes, life is all about the kids -- especially when you have 19 -- but some couple time is vital too. "It's important to keep that focus on building and strengthening your marriage relationship because that gives your children stability in their lives," Michelle says. "When they see Mom and Dad are making it a priority to love each other and focus on their relationship, it reminds them that their parents love each other and that their relationship is a top priority in the family."

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  4. Utilize the buddy system. Whenever a child is born, Michelle is their buddy. That means they do activities together, eat together (she breastfeeds!), and have some to assist them should the time come. Once they're in the toddler stage, they get a new buddy. The kids are paired off so that a young one always has an older sibling to talk to, ask for help, and hang out with at all times. Don't have enough kids to implement a family-wide buddy system? That's OK. Just remind them that they can go to their sibling for help and entertainment before they call on Mom.
  5. Make life as simple as possible. "When you have young children at home, make your life at home simple," Michelle stresses. This applies to families both large and small. "Try to be home as much as you can with those little ones," she adds. "They need that stability at home... be a keeper at home."
  6. Especially the laundry. If laundry day already haunts you, imagine doing it for a family of 21. But it looks like Michelle has hacked the system. "I made my life easy," she says. "I would have them all wear the same colors one day so my laundry would be easy that day. It made it simple for me until I was able to train my kids -- the older ones -- to be able to help in that area." Hear that? Matching colors for every day of the week means no laundry mishaps.
  7. Teach them to settle arguments themselves. Disciplining multiple kids and settling siblings squabbles is a struggle every parent of multiple kids faces. But teach them to resolve issues and you'll be home-free. Michelle teaches her kids that "if you have a problem, you talk sweet to your brother or sister and try to turn their heart to God," she says. "You encourage them to do what's right. Usually by the time mine are five or six years old, they really do get along because they learn there's a price to be paid for being selfish." Yes, Mom is there to referee if need be, but the first step is always to do it yourself.
  8. Spend some one-on-one time with each child. Whether you have 19, three, or just one, spending one-on-one time with your kid is important. Just you and your child. Make a date out of it, and give them your undivided attention, Michelle suggests. You'll see how quickly they open up.

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  9. Praise your children 10 times more than you correct them. This tip is all Jim Bob. For every time you discipline them for something they've done wrong, point out 10 things they've done correctly. Did they spill water on the table? OK to point it out, but also note that they helped clean it up, did well on a project, or that you appreciate their effort in pitching in at home.
  10. Work the Quiet and Still method. The Duggars train their children to practice stillness and obedience. "I'll sit him in a chair, and I'll say, 'Okay, Mommy's going to sit beside you, and you're going to practice being still and quiet, yes ma'am?'" says Michelle. "We may do that two or three times a day for about a week, and usually they catch it. They're learning self-control. They're learning to obey Mommy's voice. Then it can be transferred to when you're in the grocery store and they're sitting in the cart....They can learn to do that wherever they are because it's trained in their little hearts."
  11. Apprenticeships encourage the older kids. While the younger children finish up their homeschooling, the older kids learn hands-on skills. John David has an apprenticeship at the police station, and Jill was midwifery. But the same can apply for any child. Does your kid love animals? They can volunteer at the pet shelter. Want to be a firefighter? They can volunteer at the fire department (like Jana!).

Which Duggar parenting tip will you use at your home?



Image via duggarfam/Instagram

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