Words have an incredible ability to build people up, especially little children! While parents continually praise children whenever they do something wonderful, be it when they say their first word, master spelling a new word, or bring home a beautiful artwork from preschool, did it ever occur to you that we could go beyond, “great work!” to effectively promote positive self-esteem in preschoolers?
Words of encouragement, when used appropriately, can have powerful positive effects on children. Common phrases like “well done”, “good job” are good ways to encourage, but when used indiscriminately, they may not produce the desired increase in motivation and in fact, may be counterproductive. It is then important to choose our words wisely when praising our children!
Why Praise Children?
“Correction does much but encouragement does more.” – Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
Tips on Using Affirmations to Praise Your Child
Here’s some tips on using words of encouragement for children effectively:
Examples of Affirmations for Children
- You worked really hard on this
- Your effort does make a difference
- You were so careful when you (stacked the blocks), look how tall it now is!
- You had amazing focus while you were (picking up these little grains and putting it into the bowl).
- That’s very thoughtful of you to (share your toy).
- Thank you for thinking of (your sibling).
- It’s okay, what’s more important is that you had fun! Winning is not the goal!
- You’ve learned so much through this experience
- You’ve done so well to not give up
- Believe in yourself, you can do it!
Finally, don’t be too hard on yourself whenever a “great work!” comes out of your mouth every once in a while! Praising mindfully and effectively is a work-in-progress. As you mindfully include various types of responses to acknowledge your child’s actions and behaviour, you’ll slowly but surely lose those generic praises! Children will then be assured that they are heard, felt, seen, and acknowledged!
At Mulberry Learning, our Habits of MindTM curriculum equips children of all ages a set of intelligent thinking dispositions for autonomous learning, critical thinking and effective inquiry. The specially curated 12 habits help children to cultivate lifelong habits and build their positive self-esteem as they navigate through challenges they face. Every month, with the help of parents, we select Habits of MindTM ambassadors to acknowledge, praise and celebrate the child’s success in displaying positive dispositions both in school and at home.
About Mulberry Learning
Established in 2006, Mulberry Learning is an award-winning Reggio-inspired preschool with 11 locations around Singapore. Mulberry Learning is the world’s first and only preschool network certified by the USA for the Habits of MindTM framework, and its curriculum has been voted as “Singapore’s Best Holistic Learning Programme” for 3 years running by leading parenting publications.
Book a virtual tour with Mulberry Learning to find out how its award-winning curriculum can help prepare your child for his or her Primary years and beyond! Explore our beautifully crafted Reggio-inspired learning spaces from the comfort of your own home with our Virtual School Tours!