Play is one of the best ways for young minds to learn how to solve problems.When there's a problem a parent can say to a child, can you think of one or two ways of solving it.So the message constantly is, you have the resources to start coming up with solutions yourself. ” is a parent’s primary way to exert authority and resolve conflict, they are not giving kids the tools to thrive, and are who solve every problem and shield their children from accepting responsibility are better.“Basically, if parents do the problem solving for their children, that becomes a learned helplessness that follows them, and whenever they encounter a problem they immediately assume that somebody else is going to solve it for them,” explains Alison Kennedy, Ed. “As they start to get older and older, through elementary school and middle school and even high school, kids suffer from this learned helplessness, and any problem they encounter they assume most of the time that a parent is going to swoop in and solve.”As a result of this learned helplessness, kids struggle with advocating for themselves or resolving minor peer conflicts.You know that look: Your child is faced with some problem—a playmate who won’t share, a school project he saved for the last minute—and his eyes flicker up to you. Although it would likely be faster and easier for you to fix it yourself, often the biggest favor you can do for your child is to let him try to figure it out on his own.In teaching kids problem-solving skills, you teach them independence and help build their confidence.“It’s your child’s right to take or leave your advice, and that’s very empowering to her,” says licensed therapist, Jody Baumstein, LCSW.Each day, we have plenty of opportunities (big and small) to model problem-solving for kids.Even hide-and-seek gives the brain a workout as kids think about where to hide or look. Leave plenty of unstructured time so your child’s imagination is free to roam.If a conflict arises with another child, don’t swoop in to solve it.