Children need praise and encouragement. It’s a basic human need to be acknowledged by other human beings … to be recognised.
In an ideal world we would only seek and value positive acknowledgment, praise, encouragement and at times reward. However, if the only acknowledgment we can get is negative then that will do.
How praise works
- Praise is when you tell your child what you like about their behaviour. Praise cherishes your child’s self-esteem, confidence and sense of self.
- By using praise you’re encouraging your child how to think and talk positively about themselves, supporting them to recognise when they do well.
- If you’re using praise to change behaviour, you can praise effort as well as achievement. For example: “It’s great how you used words to share the toy”.
Why is praise important?
Well if our children thrive and need to be acknowledged then let’s make sure we focus on making it positive, genuine and encouraging.
I think we can all agree that praise helps our motivation. If we are struggling or have given our all then to have it noticed makes us want to try harder, to carry on.
Children are more likely to repeat behaviour that earns praise. This means you can use praise to help change difficult behaviour and replace it with desirable behaviour.
At first, you can praise every time you see the behaviour. When your child starts doing the behaviour more often, you can praise it less.
We want our praise to be meaningful and genuine, to focus on their effort as well as achievements.
Some children, especially those who are less confident, need more encouragement than others. When praise is encouraging and focused on effort, children are more likely to see trying hard as a good thing in itself. They’re also more likely to keep trying and to be optimistic when they face challenges.
In the same vein children are also very observant and know when we don’t mean it. After hearing the same praise over and over it can become ineffective and meaningless so here’s our list of 100 ways to praise a child. It might give you a few ideas.
If you have any questions regarding ways to praise and encourage your child then please contact me on 01636 378130.