When children take tests or learn new skills, their confidence level often determines their success. Therefore, it’s important for parents to help their kids develop a can-do attitude that prepares them for challenges both in school and in life.
If you want to help your child develop confidence as he or she grows, try the confidence-building tips below.
Provide Opportunities for Success
Children feel more confident when they feel competent. But although kids enjoy receiving encouraging words from their parents, they appreciate praise more if it’s based off of real and specific achievements.
Whenever possible, give your kids opportunities to master skills that you can praise. You can feel free to praise your child’s accomplishment of small tasks, such as learning how to solve a new math equation.
Remember to give your child many opportunities to succeed in every area of his or her life. For instance, you can give your child responsibilities at home like washing the dishes. Feeling needed and useful will also foster your child’s self-esteem. Once children experience success, they will begin to approach other challenges with confidence.
Help Children Develop Problem-Solving Skills
Problem-solving skills are critical to children’s success in school. When your kids learn problem-solving skills at home, they’ll be better prepared to tackle problems when they’re away from home.
One of the best ways to encourage your children to solve problems is by limiting your interference. For example, imagine that your child complains that another kid took his or her toy. You might be tempted to go take the toy back from the other child yourself. However, unless you’re aware of issues like bullying, you can take this opportunity to ask your child how he or she can solve the problem.
Instead of solving the problem for your child, take the following steps:
- Tell the child that you understand how he or she feels.
- Ask the child if he or she knows what caused the problem.
- Provide additional observations that may help resolve the issue. For instance, you might observe that the child who took the toy might be bored or want a friend.
- Ask the child for his or her input on how to solve the problem. Offer suggestions if your child can’t think of solutions.
As a parent, your goal is to offer guidance and support during problems-not to intervene in cases when your children can solve their problems on their own.
Confidence doesn’t come easily for every child. If you see your child struggling to pursue goals, help him or her by being optimistic yourself. Remind your child to look for positive aspects of the situation as well as finding solutions to potential challenges.
Respond to failure by recognizing your child’s feeling and then asking him or her for ideas on how to improve next time. When parents show their children how to be optimistic, children learn crucial skills they need to overcome obstacles.
Offer Sincere Praise
Often, parents will say the words “good job!” every time their child completes a task. If your child hears the same praise for big and small accomplishments, though, he or she may questions which events are worth celebrating.
Avoid praising your children when they complete a task that they’re expected to do, such as doing their homework or cleaning the bathroom.
Simply saying thank you after these tasks is enough. Reserve exclamations like “good job!” for times when your child overcomes a specific challenge.
Similarly, children can sense exaggerations, so make sure that you only offer sincere praise. You can help your child understand which tasks are worth celebrating by offering specific compliments. Instead of saying, “That’s the best painting I’ve ever seen,” say, “I love the red and green colors you used in your picture. They look great!”
Incorporate these tips to prepare your children to handle challenges in school with confidence. Over time, your children will develop a strong selfesteem that will benefit them for the rest of their lives.