Building Success and Confidence in Children (Part I)
By Dr. Evan Brody
Your child enters a new environment, what is his reaction? Does he immediately jumpright into the situation or is he more cautious, clinging to your leg and refusing to part with you? How a child reacts to new challenges is determined by several factors, but the most important to their self-esteem is how you, as a parent, react. Here are some factors to take into consideration when helping to build your child’s self-confidence.
Personality. Take into consideration your child’s personality. If he is naturally shy, he may be more hesitant than the outgoing child who runs right up to your child and asks him to play. A parent’s encouragement and feedback can make a huge difference in the child’s willingness to be involved in a given activity.
The Impact of Learning Environments. The learning environment a parent creates directly influences the rate of learning, success and improvement of confidence in children. In addition,what and how a parent communicates with their children will facilitate, or interfere with the child’ssuccess and self-confidence.
Motor Skill Development. Skill acquisition is a function of the learning process, which in turn is dependent on the amount of quality instruction, proper practice and one’s successful past experience.
Confidence. The by-product of the skill acquisition process is confidence. The more success the child experiences, the better he will feel about himself.
Watch for the next issue of the newsletter that will discuss techniques you can use in every day life to help build success and confidence in your kids.
Building Success and Confidence in Children (Part II)
In the last issue of our newsletter, we discussed factors to take into consideration when helping to build your child’s self-confidence. In this issue, we continue to discusstechniques you can use in every day life to help build success and confidence in your children.
How do you build self-efficacy and/or confidence? First, you as a parent can set realistic goals and expectations based on the present ability level of your child. It is of vital importance that age and development be considered in setting realistic goals and expectations in growing skills.
Specific Positive Feedback and Directive Practice. Two very important communication devices weuse at The Little Gym include Specific Positive Feedback (SPF) and Directive Practice (DP). SpecificPositive Feedback is The Little Gym’s method of communicating to the child what the child did well. It is framed in a positive and nurturing context. Directive Practice involves telling the child what they cando next to take the skill to a higher level. Use this at home. It works.
Structuring Your Child’s Environment for Success. Environmental structure deals with creating an environment rich in love, support, encouragement, and compassion. Confidence is a consequence of successful experience. By creating an environment which nurtures learning new skills you can create success for your child. The results will be improvement in intellectual, social, emotional and motor skill which brings a greater ability to learn new skills.
This ability to explore and grow by the child leads to greater future success. Success will result in feelings of confidence and competence. The greater the confidence, the more likely your child will be able to handle challenging and adverse situations in his future! Try these practices out and help your child be the best they can be!
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